We Have Our Fingers on the Pulse of Real Estate

Latest News and Articles from Harcourts Island Real Estate

Oct. 30, 2020

Happy Halloween from Doctor Strange

Doctor Strange in Aspen, Colorado shares info. on Listings by Harcourts Island Real Estate

Steven Strange here... It's been a strange year in 2020. I took a time warp here to Aspen, Colorado. What I'd like to share with you is what some of my Marvel friends have been doing, Captain America last year and Wolverine in the past, talking about some really cool properties with Harcourts Island Real Estate in Honolulu, HI.

Mid Century Modern Home on the Slopes of Diamond Head

Mid Century Modern Home on the Slopes of Diamond Head

The first property is a beautify mid century modern home on the slopes of Diamond Head. It's a 5 bed, 4 bath mid century modern gem. I wish I could take this time stone and go back in time to see it when it was built in 1966. You've gotta see this property. It's something else.

Kaneohe Custom Home with Kaneohe Bay Views

Bayview Haven Place Custom Home in Kaneohe

The next home I'm going to tell you about is in Kaneohe. It's a custom designed home by Geoff Lewis. With 3 bedrooms and 2.5 baths, there are sensational views of Kaneoha Bay. It's a must see that's been launched by Harcourts Auctions this past week. So, you have to go and check it out.

Waipahu Bank Owned Property

Waipahu Bank Owned Property

The third property I'm going to tell you about is a bank owned property. It's situated in Waipahu with 11 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms. It's an investor's delight. You've gotta get out there and see it.

Vintage Bungalow Home in Kalihi

Kalihi Bungalow Home

The last home I'm going to tell you about is a vintage 2 bed, 1 bath bungalow home in Kalihi. Also, marketed through Harcourts Auctions on November 19th, Get out there because we've already got a lot of interest on this one.

2020 Has Been a Strange Year

Just to summarize, that was 4 great listings you've gotta get out to see from Harcourts Island Real Estate. Wishing everyone a Happy Halloween. It has been a strange year... We've seen all kinds of things from Tiger King to COVID. Just get out there and have a safe Halloween this weekend. Aloha!

Doctor Strange in Aspen Colorado

Oct. 26, 2020

Local Neighborhood Update for September, 2020

Local Update for Single Family Homes

We saw the largest increase in the number of sales from Moanalua-Salt Lake, where there was a 200% jump over the previous year. There were 2 sales in September of 2019 and this year we saw 6 sales. Slightly behind Moanalua-Salt Lake the next runner up for the increase in sales traffic was Downtown-Nuuanu. There we saw 160% increase in sales, where there were 5 sales last year and now this year there were 13 sales. This was definitely an increase in buyer traffic in those 2 neighborhoods. 

As far as prices go, we saw the largest increase from Moiliili-Makiki and that was a 44% increase over the previous year. In September of last year, the median sales price there was $987,500 and it's bumped up to $1,417,500! Once again that was a 44% increase there. Shortly thereafter, there were 2 neighborhoods tied with a 37% increase and that was Kalihi-Palama as well as the Windward Coast of Oahu. Right behind that was Hawaii Kai, which saw a 36% increase. Definitely showing strength in numbers and buyer demand in those neighborhoods.

Local Update for Condos

Two weeks ago we reported that the condo market on Oahu seems to be strengthening a bit after 6 months of sluggish performance. Which neighborhoods do you think are performing the best? More than half of the 21 neighborhoods we follow posted an increase in closed sales in September, 2020 compared with the same month last year. One of the top performing neighborhoods in September was Pearl City-Aiea where the number of closed sales was up 56% this year and the median price at $415,000 was up by 8% compared with September 2019.

The Ewa Plain had the largest number of sales in September 2020 with 66 closed sales, an increase of 25% compared to September of last year. The median price in Ewa of $569,500 is up by 11%. Waikiki lags behind other neighborhoods with less than half as many sales in September 2020 compared with September 2019. Waikiki's median price of $417,000 is up by 5%. As we welcome more visitors back to Honolulu, we'll keep an eye on Waikiki to see how the market changes as more visitors arrive.

Looking ahead, 6 of the 21 neighborhoods we follow show an increase in the number of listings at the end of September, 2020 compared to September last year. Ewa and Kailua are the leading neighborhoods in terms of new listing growth. Despite the challenges we've seen this year, there are opportunities for buyers and sellers in today's market. We're here to talk with you anytime about your real estate questions.

As always, be well, take care of each other and keep washing your hands. Aloha!

Oct. 19, 2020

Regency at Kahala Inventory and Recent Sale

As inventory in the condo market on Oahu has been on the rise during COVID, one building that traditionally has low inventory is the Regency at Kahala. Why? Location, location, location...

Regency at Kahala

Regency at Kahala seen on a sunny October morning

The Regency at Kahala sits on the same block at Kahala Mall and within the same neighborhood of what has traditionally been some of the priciest real estate on Oahu. Kamehameha Schools (who owns just about all of the commercially zoned real estate in Kahala) recently redeveloped the old McDonald's property and adjacent strip-mall in place of where the old bowling alley used to be. Other coming attractions to Kahala are a new Bank of Hawaii and Foodland.

1 Closed and 2 For Sale

In the past 6 months, there's only been 1 sale in the Regency at Kahala which was 15A that closed on September 30th for $1,575,000. Today there are currently 2 available for sale:

Regency at Kahala 11D

Regency at Kahala 11D (MLS # 202024676) is a 2 bed, 2 bath asking $1,299,000

Regency at Kahala 11B

Regency at Kahala 11B (MLS # 202025066) is a 1 bed, 1 bath asking $1,379,000

It will be interested to see how quick these two go with the latest retail gentrification in Kahala. Both have been on the market less than 30 days. If there's anything I can help with in Kahala, feel free to contact me for more information.

Oct. 17, 2020

The Most Important Condo Docs in Hawaii

This past week one of our agents had a question. His client is under contract on a re-sale condo purchase in town. The client was asking him of all the condo docs he's reviewing, what would be considered the most important to review? Well, first off - Here's a spoiler alert - THEY ARE ALL IMPORTANT. I wouldn't discount any one of them.

On a typical resale here in Hawaii, the standard Hawaii Association of Realtors Purchase Contract there's a paragraph M-1. That's where it says the Seller is going to provide all the available condo documents for the property. That includes the last 3 months of board meeting minutes, the annual report, house rules, articles of incorporation and so on... 

Like I said, all of them are important. However, I would have to say probably the 2 most important would be the ones that your lender considers important. Whenever you're in a resale purchase and your getting financing the 2 documents your lender wants to see are:

1. Certificate (Summary) of Insurance. When you think about it, they are the first lien holder on your property outside of your property taxes, so they want to make sure their investment is well insured.

2. The rr105c or often referred to as a "Property Information Form" which is filed out by the property manager for the building. It's kind of like a disclosure statement in a sense and it says how many units are in the building*, how many units are arrears in their maintenance fees, how many are in foreclosure and if there's any litigation in the building. Reading that document will typically provide the lender with enough information to move forward with the purchase and give the buyer the loan.

To recap here, when reading all your condo docs here in Hawaii, they are all important.  The two above would probably be considered the most important. Mahalo

* The term "building" was loosely used in this presentation to refer to a condominium association. Not all are a "building" per se.  You can have horizontal condo properties sprawled out over multiple buildings and/or structures within the same association.

Oct. 14, 2020

New Median Home Price Record of $880,000 on Oahu

Single Family Home Stats

We finished off the month with another strong showing with a record sales price of $880,000. That's a 13.3% increase from just a year ago, where we were sitting at $770,000. The median days on market saw a huge drop. They're down 69% from 29 days last year (which was phenomenal) to just 9 days this year. 

New listings are not really making it to market and that's what's really driving this - is the lack of inventory. New listings are seeing 18% less homes coming to market than we were a year ago. However, pending sales are up 38.3%. So, once again it's super strong for home owners if you price your home well.

On average homes are getting 100% of asking price of those that are selling. The number of homes on the market, which is what Buyers have to choose from is down significantly. It's down 39% from a year ago. If you're a home seller and you're thinking about selling and price your home right, now can be the time.

Another exciting thing I wanted to share with you is the lack of the economy being open here with COVID has primarily being driven by local buyers and working class housing. We might see an uptick with the luxury market. That'd be my prediction because a lot of the buyers that would like to purchase here for a 2nd home haven't come because they've had to quarantine for 2 weeks. Well, that's going to go away come tomorrow. On October 15th, you will no longer have to quarantine for 2 weeks if you text negative for COVID ahead of time.

I just got back from the mainland a few weeks ago and just coming out of quarantine (hence the beard) and I'm excited to get out there and get some real estate sold. I've got a few exciting listings I'm planning to launch this coming week for Harcourts Auctions, so stay tuned... Mahalo.

Oahu Home Stats September 2020

Condo Stats

Are you ready for some good news for a change? You may recall that condo sales have been lagging behind single family home sales for the past 6 months. This spring and summer while the single family homes market has continued to post strong sales numbers and substantial increases in median sales prices, the number of condo sales in each of the past 6 months has been running 20-30% to even 50% behind the numbers of sales in the same months pre COVID-19.

Well, the month of September may signal a strengthening in the condo market. The number of sales in September of 2020 at 456 was just 2% below the number of sales in September of last year. Another bit of good news is the median sales price was unchanged from last September at $445,000 after bobbing below last years monthly median prices in 4 of the past 6 months.

These trends may continue as we look ahead to the 4th quarter. With new condo listings down by almost 10% compared from this time last year, we may see a bit more heat in the condo market as we wrap up 2020. Each market is different and every home is unique. If you'd like to talk about opportunities we see in our current markets, please contact us. In the meantime, be well, take care of each other and keep washing your hands :) Aloha.

Oct. 2, 2020

Anaha Penthouse Reduced by $2.5 Million

Happy Aloha Friday, I wanted to share with you a special offering that recently came back to market by the Howard Hughes Corporation in Kakaako’s Ward Village:

Anaha Penthouse 3801 Great Room

Anaha Grand Penthouse #3801 (MLS # 202023448) Great Room

Anaha Penthouse #3801 is now priced at $15 million, which is a $2.5 million dollar reduction since it was listed last year!

Anaha Penthouse 3801 Swimming Pool

Anaha Penthouse #3801 Private Swimming Pool

With 5 bedrooms, 6.5 baths, this 2 story penthouse has its very own swimming pool and boasts an additional 915 sq. ft. of outdoor lanais. This is something truly amazing that can be found nowhere else on Oahu. Sit back and enjoy the rest of the video and feel free to contact me for any questions. Mahalo!

Sept. 21, 2020

August 2020 Local Market Report

Single Family Home Local Neighborhood Update

Hawaii Kai and Moanalua-Salt Lake had the largest increase in sales. Both neighborhoods were up 50% from August of 2019. Surprisingly Mililani saw the largest drop in the number of sales, which was down 44%. Military families are still PCSing here during COVID, so not really sure what is happening there?

The largest gain in median sales price was on the North Shore, where prices jumped 58% from $798,000 a year ago to $1,262,500 in August of this year.

Condo Local Neighborhood Update

As we've reported for the last few months, the condo market on Oahu is recovering from the initial shock of the first statewide COVID lockdown. The rate of recovery is slow when compared to the single family home market. When we focus on neighborhood level market activity, there are a few places on the island with noteworthy sales. 

From January-August, Waialae-Kahala had 33 sales this year, 10% more sales than the number of sales through August in 2019. Kaneohe had 136 sales, which was an increase of 11% compared with last year and there were 83 sales in Kailua-Waimanalo, 4% more than through August of 2019. However, median sales prices in all 3 markets were down. Waialae-Kahala posted a median price of $515,000, which was 7% below the median price for the same neighborhood last year. The median price in Kaneohe at $555,000 is down by 4% compared with last year and the median price in Kailua-Waimanalo at $639,000 is 2% below the 2019 median price for the neighborhood.

Waikiki continues to post sluggish sales. There were 432 closed sales in Waikiki year to date, 36% fewer than the number of closed sales in 2019. The median price at $390,000 is down by 2% compared with last year. Inventory was down in August in 13 of the 21 neighborhoods we follow.

Interest rates remain historically low. So, this may be a good time to explore your options if you're thinking of buying or selling a condominium. Take care of each other, be well and don't forget to keep washing your hands. Aloha!

Sept. 16, 2020

Ko Olina Fairways Happy Buyers

Omar DeLeon recently purchased a condo in Ko Olina from Yolanda M. Recinos. Here's a nice testimonial they were kind enough to share:

Ko Olina Fairways Sale by Yolanda M. Recinos, RA

Omar DeLeon, Kapolei, HI

I DEFINITELY recommend Yolanda Recinos and the Harcourts Island real estate team! My wife and I are both in the military, and although we have purchased properties in the past, neither of us had ever been to Oahu, and COVID restrictions forced us to buy the property without first being able to visit. Despite these challenges, Yolanda was terrific to work with during the entire process. She was knowledgeable of the area, listened to our concerns, and found an ideal location for us to explore, which ended up being one that we would never have considered without her suggesting it to us.

Even before settling on this home, which we LOVE, Yolanda was always responsive to our calls and e-mails and never made us feel like we were bothering her. Always friendly and professional, and most importantly, never suggested we go outside our budget as I’ve experienced with other realtors. We highly recommend Yolanda!

Sept. 11, 2020

Median Sales Price of Homes on Oahu Sets New Record During COVID

Single Family Home Stats

We finished off the month with a record high of $839,000. That's up 6.2% from $790,000 in August of 2019. We're reporting from our new office in Kahala. It's our first forecast from the office after we got out of Kapahulu last week. Outside of the record median sales price, Days on Market were down 44.4% which is another great sign for Sellers. That went from 27 days in August of last year to just 15 days this year.

New listings were down 20% from last year, pending sales were up 24.2% and active listings were down 34.9%. There's just way less homes on the market to sell right now. Last year at this time there were 1568 homes for sale. This year there were only 1021. That's crazy and that's the COVID environment we're dealing with. Last, but not least, Sellers were getting 98.7% of their asking price, which is phenomenal.

August Market Snapshot

Condos Stats

Compared with the single family home market, the condo market is struggling to recover from the 5 months of COVID-19 restrictions. There were 409 closed condo sales in August - 20% fewer than August of last year and 4% fewer than the number of sales last month in July. August is usually one of the most active months in the summer, our selling season. But, this year the number of sales failed to reach 2019 levels and the month to month trend does not show signs of strengthening, like we're seeing in the single family homes market.

The number of new listings is down by 7.6% and the median number of Days on Market is steady at 23 days. The bright spot for Sellers is the median price for condos in August at $430,000 is up by 2.5% compared with August last year. Limited inventory and very low interest rates make this a great time to sell. 

If you'd like to talk to us about your options, we're working from our new office at the Kahala Professional Center and virtually by way of Zoom. Be well, take care of each other and keep washing your hands. Aloha!

Aug. 24, 2020

Rural Oahu Sales still Stronger than Ubran Neighborhoods in July

Single Family Home Neighborhood Update

The strongest sales were in Pearl City-Aiea with a 64% increase in the number of sales. On the flip side of that, Waialae-Kahala saw the largest dip in sales which were down 47% from July of 2019. The median sales price really showed signs of what's been happening on Oahu as well as the rest of the country with COVID where the suburbs are showing strength and the urban areas not showing so much strength.

The Windward Coast showed the largest bump up in median sales price by 46%. The median sales price there was $600,000 in July of last year and it bumped up to $875,000 this year. So, it really appears people are looking to social distance and have a little more privacy and space. On the flip side of that, Downtown-Nuuanu showed the sharpest decrease in the median sales price which was down 26% from last year. Last year, we saw a median sales price of $1,130,000 in July to this year $835,500.

Like I said, we're kind of mirroring the rest of the country. People are getting out of the urban areas and heading more towards suburban areas for a little more space. That's kind of like the macro trend and local trend. We'll if that continues...

Be sure to read to the end here as this may be our last forecast from the office here on Kapahulu. One thing that's constant is change and we may have a new office come this time next month. Mahalo for reading and for your support!

Condo Neighborhood Update

Which neighborhoods do you think had the largest number of sales in the month of July? Of the 21 neighborhoods we follow, it's no surprise to discover that Waikiki posted the largest number of sales with 53 closed sales in July. However that's 36% below the number of closed sales in Waikiki in July of 2019. Like the condo market island wide, the Waikiki neighborhood is showing signs of improving. Sales in July were up 40%, compared with the number of sales in June. The largest increase in closed sales occurred in Kailua-Waimanalo where there were 18 sales in July, which is 156% more sales than the previous July. 

Which neighborhood had the highest median sales price? Surprisingly, Ala Moana-Kakaako recorded the highest median price - $700,000, up by 7% compared to July of last year. Ala Moana-Kakaako and Waikiki are the two neighborhoods with the largest inventory of units for sale. With 728 units for sale and a median price in July of $430,000, Waikiki remains the neighborhood with the largest number of condo listings. Each neighborhood is different and there are opportunities everywhere.

Is it time for you to take advantage of the low interest rates to purchase a condo on Oahu? If you'd like to know more about what's going on in your neighborhood, get in touch with us. In the meantime, be well, take care of each other and keep washing your hands. Aloha!

Harcourts Office on the Move

We're in the process of moving and there's one thing in life is that change is always constant. It was just over 3 years ago we moved into our space in Kapahulu. It's served us well, we've done a great job, but it's time to move on. Our landlord has found a new tenant during COVID. Even though we're having a thriving business, it seems an urgent care business seems to do a little bit better in this COVID environment. We're moving on to a different location, so stay tuned... 

It's been fun at Kapahulu on the outskirts of Waikiki, but we've got something exciting in store coming up and look forward to the next adventure. Aloha!