David's Real Estate Blog | Dispatches from Diamond Head

Latest real estate news and articles from David E. Buck, Realtor-Broker

July 18, 2017

Median Single Family Home Price Hits Record Price of $795,000

This past month, we broke another record for the median single family home price on Oahu which finished off at $795,000. This was up 4.6% and crushed the previous high from June of 2016 that was $760,000.

June, 2017 Real Estate Market Stats on Oahu

This is the first market update I've done in awhile as we've been busy the past few months with our office relocation from Kaimuki to Kapahulu. Here's a quick video I'd like to share to give you an idea of the space:


New Harcourts Island Properties Office Space

It's a great location on Kapahulu Ave. on the outskirts of Waikiki and off the base of Diamond Head. Feel free to come by and visit now that we're up and running. Now, back to the market stats:

Single Family Home Stats

Waialua Home for $795,000

This Waialua home (MLS # 201711838) on the North Shore is listed for June's median of $795,000

Not only was the median sales price at an all time high. We also witnessed the lowest median days on market I think I've seen in my career (over the past 17 years). It's now at just 12 days. The previous record was 14 Days in June of last year. We also had 370 sales on island, which was a whopping 14.2% increase from last year. If these stats aren't leaving you to believe this is a Seller's Market, I'm not sure how else stronger the argument could get.

Condo Sales Stats

Honolulu Tower Condo for $400,000

This Honolulu Tower condo (MLS # 201713140) is listed for June's median price of $400,000

The median condo price on the other hand was down 1.4% from last year and was off from April's high of $415,500. The inventory was also moving though with just 13 days on market, which was also the lowest we've seen in years. Sales volume wasn't nearly as strong either with sales down 2.2% from last year.

Local Market Updates

As always, real estate is local and here's what neighborhoods were hot for buyers and sellers in the month of June:

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Sellers

  • Home sales on the Windward Coast were up 300%
  • Home prices on the North Shore were up 31%
  • Condo sales in Diamond Head-Kapahulu were up 700%*
  • Condo prices in Diamond Head-Kapahulu were up 161%*

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Buyers

  • Home sales in Kalihi-Palama were down 36%
  • Home prices in Aina Haina-Kuliouou were down 22%
  • Condo sales in Kalihi-Palama were down 42%
  • Condo prices n Downtown-Nuuanu were down 23%

What’s Happening in Your Neighborhood?

Please consider these are broad overviews for regions on Oahu. To find out what is happening in your specific neighborhood (or street for that matter), feel free to contact me for more information.

* There was only 1 condo sale last year, which is why the jump was so significant

July 17, 2017

New Mid Century Modern Inventory in Makiki Heights and Manoa

Over the past few weeks, there's been some pretty cool mid century modern homes to hit the market in Makiki and Manoa. Some were pretty original and others have been upgraded over the years restoring their original luster and awe...

Makiki Heights

2399 Aina Lani Place

2399 Aina Lani Living Area2399 Aina Lani Kitchen

2399 Aina Lani Place (MLS # 201713213) is my favorite

Built in 1957, it was remodeled 10 years ago in 2007. Although the classic lines were kept, the remodel was done in a very classy and contemporary fashion. The original architect for the home was Haydn Phillips - who has also done some cool homes in Diamond Head and Kahala over the years.

With incredible views of Diamond Head, Waikiki and the ocean, there's many reasons why this one ranks at the top of my list for current mid century inventory for sale...

1960 Makiki Height Drive Exterior

1960 Makiki Hts. Drive Living Room1960 Makiki Hts. Drive Kitchen

1960 Makiki Heights Drive (MLS # 201715482) is definitely more of a blank slate

Built in 1957 as well, this one is definitely more original condition as the last remodel took place back in 1960 according to MLS.

For those more on a budget, this one is priced at roughly only 35% of the asking price of the Aina Lani home above. You'll never get the view of that one here, however there's definitely room for improvement to work with. Lots of the original features are intact such as the open beam ceilings, lots of built-ins and a galley kitchen which was common at the time.


3607 Woodlawn Terrace

3607 Woodlawn Terrace View3607 Woodlawn Terrace Sitting Area

3607 Woodlawn Terrace (MLS # 201715136) in a tropical setting

Built in 1965, this gem is in a tropical setting and priced less than both the Makiki Heights homes. With a generous lot on a roughly a quarter acre, the original owner was a University of Hawaii botanist and you can tell by incredible foliage. Did I mention it was in Manoa? I'm sure the rain helps keep everything green as well!

2926 Lowrey Ave.

2926 Lowrey Living Room2926 Lowrey Dining and Kitchen

2926 Lowrey Ave. (MLS # 201715291) has the lowest asking price in this article

Built in 1967, this is the both the newest of the 4 homes covered in my article and also the lowest price at $1,298,000. The've also done a great job staging the place with some retro mid century modern furniture that looks similar to some pieces we own. One can enjoy another clean slate as it appears to be very well kept over the years.

Contact a Mid Century Modern Expert

To learn more about mid century modern homes on Oahu, feel free to either visit my mid century modern page for the latest listings or contact me for more information.

June 26, 2017

Niu Valley Inventory and Home Sales on the Rise

Over the past 6 months, there have only been 2 sales in Niu Valley. This summer, the word sure has gotten out about the shortage of inventory. As of today there are only 2 active listings, however there are 7 homes currently in escrow!

Active Listings

313 Halaki St. in Niu Valley

1. 313 Halaki St. (MLS # 201713113) is listed for $1,050,000

5846 Kalanianaole Hwy

2. 5846 Kalanianaole Hwy. (MLS # 201627962) is listed for $1,838,000

Homes in Escrow vs. Recent Sales

The last two homes that sold in Niu Valley were:

  • 5660 Haleola St. sold for $935,000 on March 30, 2017
  • 222 Halemaumau St. sold for $968,000 on May 4, 2017

Meanwhile, the 7 homes in escrow have asking prices that range between $1,050,000 and $1,830,000 with an average of $1,260,714 and a median asking price of $1,200,000. This is a significant increase over the two fixers that have sold recently!

Is now the time to Sell?

If you're you'd like to take advantage of this Seller's Market in Niu Valley, feel free to contact me for more information.

May 29, 2017

Historic Nuuanu Home Reduced $150,000

Last year, I had the opportunity to sell one of the most iconic Historic Homes in Nuuanu - The Marks Estate. The new Buyer has plans in store and in the meantime secured a lease from a major movie production company. Although that one is gone, here's another opportunity for a historic home in Nuuanu.

2712 Old Pali Road

2712 Pali Hwy (MLS # 201621795) is listed for $1,845,000

A few days ago the price was reduced $150,000 from $1,995,000 to $1,845,000. The improvements are roughly have that of the Marks Estate and the land is a fraction. However, it is still "large" compared to your typical Honolulu home boast over a half acre. It was also built in 1908, so it preceded the Marks estate by roughly 20 years. Considering the age, it does have a lot of its historic charm and good bones intact.

Nuuanu Entry and StairwayNuuanu Living Room and Fireplace

Grand Stairway and Living Room with Fireplace

Nuuanu DiningNuuanu Top of Stairway

Dining Room and Top of Stairway

The home is a replica of a home in Chicago and it was poured concrete to look like bricks. It also looks like the bluestone used and seen in a lot of historic buildings around Honolulu.

Nuuanu Concrete ExteriorNuuanu Exterior

Poured concrete exterior meant to look like brick

These types of homes don't come up often and now is a great opportunity to live in such a solidly built home.... If historic homes are your thing, feel free to contact me for more information on this or other historic homes on Oahu.

April 11, 2017

Mahalo for Your Business in 2016

As we've been working on our taxes from last year, I just wanted to take the time to reflect on 2016....

Thank you for our success in Real Estate. We could not have done it without you!

 January 20 Kalama ValleyJanuary 22 Ocean PointeFebruary 9 MakahaMarch 21 Uraku TowerApril 15 Makaha Valley TowersMay 18 Hokulani in KailuaMay 18 MokapuMay 20 KoolaniMay 31 Ala Mona HotelJune 2 Kuapa Isle SellerJune 2 Kuapa Isle BuyerJune 14 Symphony PenthouseJuly 1 Kaioo TerraceJuly 1 IlikaiJuly 22 Niihau ApartmentsAugust 12 Waiholo BuyerAugust 12 Waiholo BuyerAugust 29 MoloaaSept 28 NanamoanaOctober 18 Old Pali RoadOctober 31 KapoleiNovember 16 KuliououDecember 2 HoakaleiDecember 7 Collection Ala MoanaDecember 21 St. Louis Heights


Each one of the photos above represent the wonderful Buyers and Sellers we were able to work with and successfully purchase or sell in 2016. THANK YOU for contributing to our success in Real Estate!

We are very appreciative for our great clients and network of friends and colleagues who have done business with us and referred our services to others.  As a result, our business continues to grow!

April 8, 2017

Upgraded Ossipoff Home for Sale on Waialae Nui Ridge

Waialae Nui Ridge is a neighborhood in east Honolulu where you can find quite a few of Vladimir Ossipoff's works. Although his homes are getting hard to come by, you can almost bank on one hitting the market on Waialae Nui Ridge every year or two.

Waialae Nui Ossipoff Home framing Diamond Head

Diamond Head views perfectly framed: Ossipoff Home (MLS # 201706881) on Waialae Nui Ridge

Built in 1964, the homeowner remodeled 50 years later in 2014. I typically love the original homes much better than those that are remodeled due to bad taste and killing the original style. However this owner seems to have done a great job blending "Mid-Century Modern" with today's "Modern". Both the kitchen and bathroom remodels kept with the original sleek lines and use of hardwoods and solid surfaces.

1778 Halekoa Kitchen 11778 Halekoa Kitchen 2

Kitchen remodel

Wailae Nui Bath Remodel 1Waialae Nui Bath Remodel 2

Bathroom Remodels

There were also some incredible views of Diamond Head from the expansive outdoor deck. Ossipoff was known for his use of the indoor/outdoor space.

Diamond Head View from Deck

1778 Halekoa Deck 11778 Halekoa Deck 2

Enjoy the expansive decks for entertaining and indoor/outdoor living...

Given the location, architecture and condition of this home, I'm assuming it will sell pretty quick! To learn more about Ossipoff and other Mid-Century Modern Homes on Oahu, feel free to bookmark my Mid-Century Modern page for the latest up to date listings.

March 25, 2017

Alfred Preis Home for Sale in Manoa's Woodlawn Neighborhood

It's been about a year and a half since an Alfred Preis home hit the market on Oahu. The last one was on Melemele Place in Manoa, which is a street you can find a nice concentration of his works. This newer listing is on Woodlawn Drive.

Alfred Preis Home at 3612 Woodlawn Drive

Front entry to Preis home (MLS # 201705766) on Woodlawn Dr. in Manoa

Although the home went through a remodel in 2001, there are lots of features that were unique to his architecture that can easily noticed. Since I live in a Preis home and have seen a number of his works re-listed over the years, here are some of the traits I noticed:

Preis stained wood paneling and open bean ceiling

Stained wood paneling, open beam ceilings and great use of natural light and airflow

Preis built-in shelving and drawers

Built in shelving and drawers

Turquoise Kitchen CounterTurquoise Counter Bathroom Sink

Use of Turquoise countertops on hard surfaces above cabinets - seen here in Kitchen and Bathroom

My guess is this one will go pretty quick, knowing the demand for these Alfred Preis homes (and Manoa homes in general). To keep up to date on Mid-Century Modern Homes on Oahu, feel free to bookmark my Mid-Century Modern Page, where I curate the latest Mid-Century Modern homes for sale.

Contact a Mid-Century Modern Expert

I'm also available to chat for a no-obligation consultation about a purchase or sale of one of these special properties and can be reached at 808-371-3509. 

March 20, 2017

February Hits 2nd Highest Median Home Price on Record

The median sales price for a single family home on Oahu in February was the 2nd highest on record.

February 2017 Housing Statistics on Oahu

Singel Family Home Stats

Ocean Pointe Home for $753,900

This Ocean Pointe home (MLS # 201702637) is listed just under February's median price

February was another great month for Sellers on Oahu as the median sales price hit $755,000, which was a 7.9% increase over February of 2016. The highest on record was June of last year that hit $760,000. Homes were also selling fast with just 21 days on market and active listing inventory down 9.5% from last year.

Condo Stats

Leasehold Waikiki Condo for $385,000

Leasehold Waikiki Condo (MLS # 201627511) currently listed for February's $385,000 median price

Meanwhile, the median condo price was up 1.7% from last year, however still was still over $20,000 under June's record of $405,500. The number of transactions however took a nice bump of 11.7% to finish off the month with 362 closed sales. Median days on market was also favorable to Sellers with just 22 days. In addition, active listings were down 8.4%.

As always, all real estate is local. Here are the neighborhoods on Oahu that were hot for sellers and buyers in February:

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Sellers

  • Home sales in Waialae-Kahala were up 140%
  • Home prices in Aina Haina-Kuliouou were up 62%
  • Condo sales in Diamond Head-Kapahulu* and the Windward Coast were up 100%
  • Condo prices in Kalihi-Palama were up 82%

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Buyers

  • Home sales on the North Shore and the Windward Coast were down 60%
  • Home prices in Moanalua-Salt Lake were down 22%
  • Condo sales in Kalihi-Palama were down 40
  • Condo prices n Diamond Head-Kapahulu were down 52%*

What’s Happening in Your Neighborhood?

Please consider these are broad overviews for regions on Oahu. To find out what is happening in your specific neighborhood (or street for that matter), feel free to contact me for more information.

* Only 30% of the sales in the Diamond Head-Kapahulu region were in the Gold Coast area of Diamond Head this year vs. 75% last year

Feb. 21, 2017

January Homes Prices Flat and Transaction Volume up on Oahu

2017 got off to a sluggish start as prices remained stagnant for both single family homes and condos. Transaction volume on the other hand had a significant bump from January of 2016.

January 2017 Sales Stats on Oahu

Single Family Home Stats

Kalihi Valley Home for $729,000

This home in Kalihi Valley (MLS # 201702779) is listed just under January's median for $730,000

The median sales price was down .5% from last year where it was $733,500. Sales volume was up 6.5% with 247 closed sales. It was still a Seller's Market with days on market. Last year was at 20 days and this year was still great with the median time just 21 days. There's also 5% less inventory than there was last year, which is showing great absorption of homes listed for sale.

Condo Stats

Punchbowl Condo for $380,000

Punchbowli Condo (MLS # 201702077) listed for January's median of $380,000

While single family home prices were down slightly the median condo price was just barely up 1.5% from last year's $374,500. Two stats that really stood out at me were:

1. Median Days on Market jumped 30% from 20 to 26 days

2. Active Listings were down 7.3% from last year

As always, all real estate is local. Here are the neighborhoods on Oahu that were hot for sellers and buyers in January:

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Sellers

  • Home sales on the North Shore were up 250%
  • Home prices in Aina Haina-Kuliouou were up 41%
  • Condo sales in Makakilo were up 171%
  • Condo prices in Kalihi-Palama were up 82%

Neighborhoods “Hot” for Buyers

  • Home sales in Moanalua-Salt Lake were down 67%
  • Home prices in Downtown-Nuuanu were down 23%
  • Condo sales on the North Shore were down 67%
  • Condo prices on the Windward Coast were down 73%

What’s Happening in Your Neighborhood?

Please consider these are broad overviews for regions on Oahu. To find out what is happening in your specific neighborhood (or street for that matter), feel free to contact me for more information.

Jan. 13, 2017

2017 PGA Sony Open: Waialae Golf Course Homes for Sale

The 2017 Sony Open is in full swing this week on Oahu. Some of the PGA's best are taking to the course and having some great early rounds with the light wind conditions. As every year the players come and go, so do the homes for sale fronting the esteemed Waialae Golf Course.

This year there are 6 listings that front the course in the 3 surrounding MLS neighborhoods of Kahala, Kai Nani and Waialae Golf Course that range from just over $2 million to just under $6 million:

4509 Waikui St.

1. 4509 Waikui St. (MLS # 201627362) in Waialae Golf Course is listed for $2,285,000

This home on Waikui St. is the most reasonably priced listing for sale. Although on a quiet cul de sac, it also backs up to Kalanianaole Hwy., which is why it is heavily discounted for a home fronting Waialae Golf Course. Originally listed for $2,450,000 the Seller has definitely shown signs of motivation with 3 price reductions already since coming to market in November of 2016.

1057 Waiholo St.

2. 1057 Waiholo St. (MLS # 201521858) in Waialae Golf Course is listed for $3,450,000

This listing offers THE BEST location of all the active listings in my opinion. Facing slightly east, you get the morning sun and this is one of only two that has ocean views. This Seller is also motivated having come down significantly from an original price of $4,888,000 in 2015.

4817 Kaimoku Way

3. 4817 Kaimoku Way (MLS # 201612958) in Kai Nani is listed for $4,195,000

Built in 1970, this home had an incredible makeover in 2015 giving it a more modern/contemporary look. It's also the other one available that has some ocean view. The only downside to Kai Nani is you need to drive a little further on Kalanianaole Hwy. (from Kahala) to reach this one as it's the furthest listing to the east on the course. This Seller has also expressed motivation having come down from $4,995,000 from June of 2015

4631 Waipahee Place

4. 4631 Waipahee St. (MLS # 201612961) in Waialae Golf Course is listed for $4,780,000

This is my favorite home of all the ones on the market. Unfortunately, someone else has seen it as their favorite too as the Seller accepted an offer last week. In this business though, it's never over until it's over so we'll see how their escrow goes. Built in 2004, this home has been on and off the market for years (listed as high as $5,888,000) while I've been writing these articles and glad to see there was a Buyer and Seller that had a "meeting of the minds" on price and terms.

4952 Kahala Ave.

5. 4952 Kahala Ave. (MLS # 201700606) in Kahala is listed for $4,995,000

This is the latest golf course home fronting Waialae to hit the market - just a few days ago. It's the only one for sale in Kahala and offers a nice single level floor plan. Built in 1999, it's also the closest you'll find to the club house off Kahala Avenue.

951 Waiholo St.

6. 951 Waiholo St. (MLS # 201618648) in Waialae Golf Course is listed for $5,900,000

This home on the 11th fairway is the priciest home on the market listed just under 6 million. Built in 2007, it also offers a single level floor plan and has a semi-above ground pool. Since the Seller paid $5,663,000 in 2015 it's hard to say how much room is negotiable in the price with this one...

In any event, it'll be exciting to see what the next few days have to offer in the tournament. In the meantime, if you're interested in other golf course homes on Oahu at a more affordable price, here's a page of all the golf course frontage homes and condos on Oahu I put together or feel free to contact me if there's anything I can help with.