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Latest News and Articles from Harcourts Island Real Estate

May 22, 2022

Oceanfront Living on Oahu Under $1 Million

I've recently listed two Penthouse condos at Pats at Punaluu. Both are the size of many single family homes on Oahu and either can be yours for under $1 million.

Pats at Punaluu PH 4

Pats at Punaluu Penthouse #4 (MLS # 202206807) is listed at $995,000

Penthouse 4 is a 2 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom 2 story unit. It has 1900 sq. ft. of interior living area, several outdoor lanais and comes with 2 covered parking stalls. What's also nice about condo living is it's really easy to lock up and leave when traveling. On site amenities include a swimming pool, BBQ and fitness center.

Pats at Punaluu PH8

Pats at Punaluu Penthouse #8 (MLS # 202206803) is also listed at $995,000

Penthouse 8 is a little smaller and has lower maintenance fees. However it has 3 full bedrooms and 2 bathrooms and comes with 1 covered parking stall. It also has several mountain and ocean facing outdoor lanais. Both units also have a washer/dryer in the unit (not all condos do).

When you think about oceanfront fee simple ownership on Oahu, the ship for single family home ownership under $1 million has sailed awhile ago... There's only so much oceanfront available on Oahu and this might be one of the last great options. Homes in Honolulu on the ocean start at about $6-7 million and homes along this coast are just over $1 million, however they are typically tear down single wall construction builds. To get a "Beachfront Bargain" on Oahu, I'd recommend checking out these two great offerings.


Posted in Oceanfront, Penthouses
May 19, 2022

Waipahu Home Sales Up 47% in April

Local Neighborhood Update for Single Family Homes

Can you believe home sales in Waipahu are up 47% from last year? This is David Buck with Harcourts Island Real Estate here to give you the local market report for April of 2022. Well, last year in April of '21 there were only 17 home sales in Waipahu and now there are 25 this year. Here I am in Waipahu and from what you can see here is it stretches all the way from Pearl Harbor to crossing H-1 to Waikele. Waipahu saw the largest increase year over year from April of 2021 to April of 2022.

Kawaikui Beach Park Kawaikui Beach Park Sign

Kawaikui Beach Park Between Aina Haina and Kuliouou

Can you hear that ocean in the background? I'm here at Kawaikui Beach Park at the base of Hawaii Loa Ridge. The reason I'm here is Aina Haina-Kuliouou saw the largest increase in median sales price from April of last year to this past April. It was at $1241,000 to just over $2 million ($2,086,111) for the median sales price, which was a 68% increase. The reason being is we probably saw a lot more trades in Kulioouou vs. some more recent trades up on Hawaii Loa Ridge, which are going to be in that multi-million dollar range. That's directly behind me in a gated community.

It's not a bad day today. We were forecasted to have thunder showers yesterday, today and tomorrow. But, check this out! It's not a bad set up (sunny day at Kawaikui Beach Park). I'll be up shortly to give you the local condo report.

Local Neighborhood Update for Condos

OK. We are here to talk about the condo market on Oahu. What you can see in the background here is we're not on the North Shore of Oahu. We're actually on the South Shore. I didn't have time to make it out to the North Shore, but the North Shore had the largest increase in condo sales year over year going from 4 sales to 7 sales. So, that's up 75%. Since we're on the South Shore heading into summer I wanted to show you the backdrop here. There. are high surf warnings. The flags are up here on the Gold Coast in Waikiki, in front of the Sans Souci and some of the oceanfront buildings on the South Shore of Oahu behind me. We've got a summer swell that's coming in from some of that storm surf. We were expected to have thunder showers all day today, but we actually got some semi-sunny skies.

Ala Moana-Kakaako saw the largest increase year over year from April of last year to April of this year for median sales price. It was up 63%, going from $450,000 a year ago to $732,000. Well, you might think to yourself that might not get you much for that price, because in Kakaako it's hard to get something decent under $1 million these days to be honest. But, believe it or not some of the older construction around here in Ala Moana you can get in that $400-500,000 range, and it also takes you back inland of Ala Moana as well. I have a condo listed right behind me at Atkinson Plaza (MLS # 202209156). It's a great value at $500,000. So, you can definitely get in this neighborhood with walking distance to Ala Moana Beach Park as well as Ala Moana (Shopping Center) itself on the west side of Waikiki here for just around half a million dollars.

If you want to hear more about what's happening in your market, give me a call. Mahalo.

May 19, 2022

Is Now the Time to Buy Kahala Beach Apartments?

I receive several calls a week on the Kahala Beach Apartments. For most people that see something that "looks too good to be true", it normally is...

Kahala Beach Condos

Oceanfront Living at The Kahala Beach Apartments

Too Good to Be True?

Most people initially see the Kahala Beach condos on Realtor.com or Zillow and think to themselves, "Wow! I can buy an oceanfront condo in Kahala under $100,000". I don't blame them. Everyone is looking for a deal. When oceanfront homes in Kahala start around $7 Million or more, if these units were fee simple, they'd be at least $2-3 million apiece, like the oceanfront condos on Diamond Head's Gold Coast.

Kahala Beach Swimming Pool

Kahala Beach Swimming Pool

Unfortunately, the Kahala Beach condos are Leasehold and the land lease only has 5 years left (expires in 2027). I've also heard that Kamehameha Schools, the Lessor (land owner) has been taking back units already where the owners have walked away.

Russian Roulette

Can the land owner really kick you out once the land lease expires? The answer is yes. A case study is some old apartment building condos in Kailua that were owned by Kaneohe Ranch. As the land lease was coming up for expiration, speculators came in and started buying them up at $20,0000-$30,000 a piece. Low and behold, when the land lease expired, they were all evicted. The buildings were then leveled, the land was sold to DR Horton and they built Ka Malanai on the site of the old leasehold condos.

I hate to say it, however I've used the analogy of owning at Kahala Beach is like playing Russian Roulette. You may not want to be the last one holding it.

$100k Down and $4k/Month

If someone were to buy a unit at Kahala Beach today, you'd be looking on average to put $100,000 down and have carrying costs for $4,000 per month for the remainder of the land lease, maintenance fees and property taxes. What if you were to apply that same math of $100,000 down and $4,000/month and buy something fee simple for, say $800,000. It might not be oceanfront, however perhaps a condo on the marina in Hawaii Kai or a place like Kukilakila on Enchanted Lake in Kailua?

I've been in real estate now for over 21 years now and live just a few miles down the road from the Kahala Beach. The reason why I have never bought one personally is that I'd rather purchase something that is fee simple and would go up in value over time (not down). If however, money is not an issue for you, perhaps the Kahala Beach makes sense for strictly a lifestyle play? It's hard to beat oceanfront living in Kahala, however if something is "too good to be true"... 

May 16, 2022

Only 10 Homes for Sale in Diamond Head?

We've been hearing about a nationwide shortage of housing inventory, however all of the sudden there are only just 10 homes for sale in Diamond Head.

Aerial View of Homes in Diamond Head

Homes at the Base of Diamond Head

Over the past 15-20 years since I've been tracking inventory in Diamond Head 20 active listings was considered very low. We typically cary about 30 homes for sale in Diamond Head in MLS. With this lack of inventory, prices have been on the rise. Of the 10 homes available for sale in Diamond Head, the average and median price are both over $7 million. The lowest price is $3,350,000 and the highest is $10,850,000. There are only 3 homes on the market now under $5 million.

4121 Black Point Road

4121 Black Point Road (MLS # 202205862) is the Lowest Priced Home in Diamond Head

3047 Kalakaua Ave.

3047 Kalakaua Ave. (MLS #202203111) is the Highest Priced Home in Diamond Head

What's really a tell tale sign of this low inventory is we've seen 25 single family home sales in Diamond Head over the past 6 months with a median price of $4,700,000. The average sales price is just over $1400/sq. ft. and the average asking price is just over $2100/sq. ft. If you're looking for a great value in Diamond Head, I have a listing coming soon priced under $1000/sq. ft.

Coming Soon Listing on Papu Circle

Coming Soon Listing in Diamond Head under $1000/sq. ft.

To learn more about this home or buying or selling in Diamond Head, feel free to contact me for more information.

Posted in Diamond Head, Luxury
May 12, 2022

We DID NOT Hit a Record Home Price in April

Single Family Home Update

Well, guess what? We DID NOT hit a record for home sales this month. This is David Buck with Harcourts Island Real Estate here to give you the market update for April of 2022. We've had such a phenomenal ride... We've hit a record for so many months we've talked about over the past 6 months to a year. However, the median sales price in March of $1,150,000 we've dropped off a bit from that. But, we are still up 19.1% from a year ago, where homes were trading at just $928,000. Now they are at $1,105,000, which is $45,000 shy of the record we saw in March, but still a great market for home sellers on Oahu.

We did see a slight slow down in sales, which were down 2.7%, going from 375 sales the previous year to 365 sales this year. Days on Market are also just creeping up a little bit, going from 9 Days to 10 Days. We're also seeing a slight increase in inventory, which is up 3.7% from a year ago. So, I don't know if that's an indication of interest rates just yet, but we're just seeing a little bit of a softening here in the market. Stay tuned as I'll be up shortly with the condo report. Mahalo.

April 2022 Market Snapshot

Condo Update

OK. As we jump into the condo stats, the prices were up as well. They were up 13.3% going from a median price in April of last year going from $450,000 to $510,000. That's also going to be shy of March's record of $515,500. However, $510,000 is still a healthy number for the median price for condos here on Oahu.

Sales were actually up 4.2%, going from 645 sales last year to 672 sales this year. Days on Market dropped slightly from 13 Days to just 12 Days. Inventory, contrary to the single family home market (that bumped up a little bit) inventory for condos was down over 19% from a year ago. So, it's a little more slim pickings on the condo front in that particular price point and what people are looking for.

To find out more about what's happening in the market, feel free to contact us for more information. Mahalo!

May 12, 2022

Alfred Preis Makiki Heights Home

It's been several years since we've seen an Alfred Preis home on the market. There's now a nice one that came up on Makiki Heights this past month and surprised it's still available, given the way the market has been...

Alfred Preis Makiki Heights Living Room

2316 Round Top Drive (MLS # 202206724) in Makiki Heights

This 3 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom home was built in 1954 by arguably one of Hawaii's best mid century modern architects. How fitting, considering there was a recent press release of the 60 Year Anniversary of the Arizona Memorial (also designed by Alfred Preis. This owner has done a great job of keeping the mid century style.

Alfred Preis Mid Century Kitchen in Makiki Heights

Original Mid Century Kitchen

The kitchen was kept true to its mid century style with the stained mahogany cabinets there were signature of his work at the time. The angled built in drawers were also signature of his work. I also love that it has the stainless steel countertops, which you don't see as much these days. I loved that feature when I was in the Honolulu Fire Dept. here. Nearly every station had a stainless steel countertop that was great for prep and cooking.

Alfred Preis CMU Blocks

Thinner Mid Century CMU Blocks on Wall

Outside of the traditional open beam ceiling, the thinner CMU concrete blocks seen on this wall were typical of Alfred Preis mid century modern homes of the era.

Alfred Preis Planter Near Entry

Planter Near Entry

Outside of the features mentioned in this article, this planter feature is also something that Preis did and we have in our home as well. To learn more about mid century modern homes on Oahu, feel free to contact me for more information.

May 3, 2022

Tennis Tuesday: Hawaii Loa Ridge and Maunawili Home

Thinking of owning a home with a paddle tennis or pickle-ball court on Oahu? Here's two listings on Hawaii Loa Ridge and Maunawili to consider this Tuesday:

Hawaii Loa Ridge Home with Pickle Ball Court

1. 699 Kahiau Loop (MLS # 202125784) on Hawaii Loa Ridge

This home on Hawaii Loa Ridge sits on nearly a half acre and has ocean and Diamond Head views. It's also smartly designed in that the court is on the leeward side of the ridge, so the main home up above would help block the winds on a typical trade wind day. Not a bad set up, to have your own pickle ball court. However if you ever get bored and want to play some traditional tennis, you can go to the full sized courts within your own gated community.

Maunawili Pickle Ball Court

2. 1362 Kukana Place (MLS # 202206849) in Maunawili

This Maunawili home just hit the market and is also situated on just under a half acre in Kailua. Similar to the Hawaii Loa Ridge Home, it has a swimming pool as well. What I love about this one is you have your own covered lanai/cabana adjacent to the court to cool off with a cold drink while watching others play.

To learn more about these homes or other tennis properties on Oahu, feel free to contact us for more information.

April 28, 2022

Country Club Village is a Great Condo Option when PCSing to Honolulu

Well the trade-winds are blowing today and I want to give you a tour of my 3 bedroom, 2 bath listing here. As you can see from the walkway here, you have a nice backdrop of Tripler Hospital. So, this makes a great location for those working at Tripler, nearby Fort Shafter or Hickam. Those are just 3 of the nearby military installations if someone were to PCS to Oahu. This is an end unit. It's a 3 bedroom, 2 bath with 2 (covered) parking stalls. 

Entry, Remodeled Kitchen and Extra Storage

As we enter unit #1012 (MLS # 202204791), this is an end unit, so you're not going to have any neighbors walking by you. You come out of the elevator in the middle of the building and here you are at the end. As you step into it, check out this beautifully remodeled kitchen. It was done in 2016, with all new hardwood cabinets, oven, cooktop, dishwasher and look at all this extra storage my clients added on here with drawers on either side of this island. There's a stainless steel refrigerator as well as the rest of the appliances here. They've also built out this extra storage here as you come into the entry on the left, which is quite convenient for those Costco runs.

Dining Area

As you enter in here, you've got additional storage with that same modern theme. There's a nice dining area, which is hard to get in condos, to get that separate dining and living space, which you've got here, as well as a bar. As you take a step back, you'll see that great view you have of the mountains. 

Hallway w/ Laundry, 2 Bedrooms, 1 Bath

As you walk into the hallway off to the left, you have a full washer/dryer. It's a stack off of the hallway. You've got one bathroom here, a full bathrooms off of the left. There's a full bedroom at the end of the the hall (bedroom #1) with a closet and views of Moanalua High School out the back. Next, you're going to come back to bedroom #2, also with a full mirrored closet and a nice garden view of the complex out the window.

Main Living Area 

As you come back around to the main living area once again, you'll see the TV and cable is included in the maintenance fees as well as water, hot water, commons area (which we'll get to in a second). Here off of the left, you enter the master bedroom.

Master Bedroom

There's a spacious area for a master bed and you can have your night stands on either side. You have a full closet to the left and you also have a walk in closet here, which is kind of used for storage at this point. But, it is a walk in closet as you can see and here' s the master bath.

Cross Ventilation and Lanai

This is one of the big selling points - You get great cross ventilation if you keep that window open there, with the mauka views out that direction. If you keep this slider open, the wind kind of hums right through here. You've got additional storage out here on the lanai and check out this view out the back! These are more of the other buildings at Country Club Village and you've got your cabana and pool down below. Hence its name, Country Club because adjacent to the right is Honolulu Country Club here in Salt Lake. Check out that view! You'll definitely get some sunset view throughout the year facing this westerly direction. The sun will also be coming out of the east in this (opposite) direction.

If you have any questions about Country Club Village, feel free to give us a call. Mahalo!

April 24, 2022

Windward Oahu Condo Prices Soared in March

Well, I hope you're having a great spring so far! This is David Buck with Harcourts Island Real Estate here to give you the local market report for single family homes and condos on Oahu for the month of March, 2022.

Single Family Home Update

First, we're going to discuss the single family homes and Kalihi-Palama saw the largest increase in numbers of sales, which were up 44%, going from 9 sales in March of '21 to 13 sales in March of this year. What was really interesting to see when we were looking at the data, was of the 21 neighborhoods that the Honolulu Board of Realtors tracked, 12 of them (which is over half) were down in the numbers of sales year over year. Only 4 neighborhoods were up year over year with the number of transactions and there were 5 of those neighborhoods which were actually flat with no change in the numbers of transactions. 

Regarding the median price, Moanalua-Salt Lake saw the largest increase year over year. In March of 2021, the median price in Moanalua-Salt Lake (which is kind of in the backdrop behind me with Tripler Hospital) was at $880,000. This past month, it jumped up 61% to $1,420,000. What was also interesting to report was every single neighborhood (but one) that the Honolulu Board of Realtors tracks was up regarding median sales price. The one neighborhood that was down was Waialae-Kahala. People may be getting priced out of there, because that median price was like $3.4 million last year. So, it's not surprising to see that it's not keeping up.

Condo Update

Well, you might recognize the backdrop here. This is the Ocean Villas at Turtle Bay and the reason for that is the North Shore saw the largest increase in the number of condo sales year over year. They were up 125% from March of last year, going from 4 sales to 9 sales this year. Following shortly thereafter was Makaha-Nanakuli, which was actually up 118%. What that's really showing is the rural areas of Oahu are showing a lot of strength in the spring. The metro areas of town haven't bee as strong. We'll see that trend continue shortly when we talk about the median condo price here on Oahu.

Last, but not least, the median condo price on Oahu saw the largest increase by far, up triple digits, up 208% was the Windward Coast of Oahu. My guess or speculation for that was the most affordable product on that coastline was this building behind me called Hanohano Hale (next door to Pats at Punaluu). A year ago in March of 2021 the median condo price on the Windward Coast was $150,860. Fast forward to today and it's now at $465,000. What I'm going to extrapolate out of that was there were probably more trades happening closer to Kaneohe Town, closer to Kaneohe and Temple Valley, where that price point is a little bit higher. However, we are seeing an increase in places along this Windward Coast, such as Hanohano Hale, but even more importantly at Pats at Punaluu. I've got two listings there and everything that's been on the market has been on fire! There's been 1 bedroom trades in that $400,000-$500,000 range. There's one at $550,000 under contract and I've got a few penthouses for sale just under $1 million, which is a great deal to live oceanfront on Oahu!

To learn more about what's going on in your specific neighborhood, feel free to give us a call. Mahalo!

April 14, 2022

Home and Condo Record Prices Shattered in March

Aloha! Well March was another month to shatter some records - both for single family homes and condos here on Oahu. This is David Buck with Harcourts Island Real Estate here to give you the market report for March of 2022.

Single Family Home Stats

The single family homes shattered that record again. So, $1,150,000 is now the new record price for the median home on Oahu. That was an uptick of $25,000 from the previous record of $1,125,000. It's also up 21.1% from a year ago, which is just crazy! The median sales price for a home on Oahu in March of '21 was just $950,000. Fast forward to today and that's a 21.1% increase.

The number of sales, however are down. There's not as much inventory out there. The numbers of trades on the single family home front were down 11.1%. That was going from 361 sales a year ago to 321 sales this year. Days on Market was flat. It was a Seller's market last year with just 9 Days on Market. We're still at 9 Days on Market a year later for March of '22. Stay tuned and I'll be right up to give you an on the condo report. Mahalo.

March 2022 Home and Condo Stats on Oahu

Condo Stats

As I mentioned earlier, the condos also crushed the previous record here on Oahu. So, the new record for condos here on Oahu is at $515,000 for that median price. That was not as much an increase (year over year) as the single family home front, but that was up 14.3%. In March of '21 the median price for a condo on Oahu was $451,000 and now it's $515,000. That's a great bump, going up 14.3%.

Days on Market was similar to single family homes at just 9 Days. It's a phenomenal Seller's Market. A year ago, it was 14 Days on Market. It has gotten even better (for Sellers) which is down 35.7% for Days on Market. I skipped over the sales, but the number of condo trades were up 7.3%. So, the number of transactions were higher for condos vs. the single family homes where the sales slowed down a little bit due to inventory. Those trades were going from 626 sales a year ago to 672 sales this year. 

David's 2021 Sales

Wanted - Harcourts Top Producer

Speaking of sales, I opened up a box from Harcourts North America and unfortunately, I couldn't make the awards program. They had the North American Annual Conference in Scottsdale, AZ and I was pleasantly surprised that I ended up in the Top 10 for Harcourts North America and they sent me some goodies over here, so I just wanted to say thank you to the team at Harcourts North America.

If there's anything we can help with in this market, every segment is different. In general, most places prices are up, Days on Market are down. There's still some good bargains out there, but the market is doing its typical softening going into April, which we're now in. With tax season, we'll see how things will continue into the rest of the spring and into the summer. Mahalo!