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Earth Day Tribute to Maui

To celebrate Earth Day, I wanted to post a tribute to the natural beauty of Maui. This is a compilation of 10 photos and videos from around Maui and its surrounding ocean waters. I have also included links to five organizations that are working to protect and preserve the environment of Hawaii through conservation and education.

Where jungle meets the ocean along the Road to Hana
The East Maui coastline where Jungle Meets the Ocean

Haleakala Crater
Haleakala Crater

Rough seas along the Hana Coastline
The rough and rugged coastline just south of Hana

West Maui Mountains on a clear day in March 2013
The view from a North Shore tide pool looking towards the West Maui Mountains

Close up of a rainbow off the Maui coast
A rainbow and a passing rain squall along the North Shore of Maui

The view looking up Waihee Valley from the Waihee Ridge Trail
The Waihee Valley in the West Maui Mountains

Humpback whale tail off of Maui
The tail of a humpback whale offshore from Lahaina Maui


The Waters around Black Rock in Ka’anapali


Honolua Bay Marine Preserve near Kapalua


The waters off of Palauea Beach in Makena

Here are the five environmental not for profits that work in Maui County that would welcome your support on Earth Day!

Donate to the Hawaiian Island Land Trust to support their efforts to preserve land around Maui and the rest of the Hawaiian Islands.

Support The Maui Forest Bird Recovery Project and their efforts to preserve Maui’s Native Bird Species and their native forest habitats.

Join or donate to The Maui Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation for the preservation of local surf breaks, clean ocean water and beaches.

Help the Maui Huliau Foundation with their environmental education Efforts for Maui Youth.

Support The Nature Conservancy Hawaii and their projects that preserve, protect and restore the Natural Environment of Hawaii.


Haiku Tropical Estate

You can sense time slowing down as soon as turn in to the driveway of this Tropical Estate property in Haiku on Maui’s North Shore. A lava rock entry way greets you as the driveway meanders among palms and tropical foliage. The main home is spacious with four bedrooms and three bathrooms. Highlights of the home include extensive covered lanai space, a spacious kitchen with Koa cabinets and a mango breakfast bar, and a river rock fireplace with a Koa mantle. There is opportunity for additional renovation or upgrades to truly make the home shine. The pool area is great for entertaining friends and family or for a quiet dip in the moonlight on a warm Maui night. The grounds feature a variety of fruit trees and ornamentals. There is still plenty of open space for extensive additional gardening, or an orchard. The zoning provides the potential for an ohana.

Dusk at the Haiku Tropical Estate

the master suite of the Haiku Tropical Estate overlooks the pool

The living room of the Maui Tropical Estate in Haiku

Pool of the Haiku Tropical Estate

The property is in a convenient Haiku location within ten minutes of the world renowned, water sports play ground Ho’okipa Beach Park. Good restaurants are within a five minute drive at the Haiku Cannery. Paia town is 15 minutes away and the airport is within a half hour’s drive. There are a number of good schools within a short drive as well. The Haiku Tropical Estate offers plenty of seclusion and privacy without being too far off the beaten path.

The Haiku Tropical Estate is offered by the Maui Real Estate Team for $1,495,000. You can check out the Haiku Tropical Estate listing page for additional photos and details on the property. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team today to arrange a showing.


By » 4/16/2014 » in

Kula Koa

We are pretty excited to bring this spectacular property to market. Kula Koa is 52 acres consisting of two separate parcels of 38 and 14 acres. The owner had a massive well installed and a water system that delivers water from the top of the property to the bottom. There is a an oversized garage on the property with an attached ag work shop. The garage offers lots of space for toys, farming equipment and more. The two bedroom custom cottage is well designed and features high end appliances and a fireplace for those cool Upcountry nights. The existing structures are powered by a 6 kilowatt photovoltaic system with battery and generator back up. The seller installed a septic system and graded a building pad for a main home to be built.

The setting of Kula Koa is tough to beat. The property runs from Haleakala Highway down to the top of the Kula 200 subdivision. This is an ideal climate zone with just enough rain, plenty of sunshine and crisp nights. The views from the property include big vistas of Haleakala, the West Maui Mountains, both the North and South Shores of Maui, Molokai and Lanai. The property offers plenty of privacy and seclusion, but you are still less than 10 minutes from downtown Makawao and you are just over 20 minutes from the airport.

Kula Koa North Shore Views at Twilight

The Cottage and the Garage at Twilight at Kula Koa

the cottage, the garage and the building site at Kula Koa

The front porch of the cottage at Kula Koa

The Cottage Kitchen at Kula Koa

North Shore and West Maui Views from Kula Koa

Rainbow over pasture at Kula Koa

This property offers a variety of opportunities for buyers. There is potential to subdivide, enough water to share and a whole lot of agricultural potential. A number of separate pasture areas are ideal for grazing animals or horses. There is plenty of water and a good climate for vegetables and orchards. The setting, privacy and infrastructure are also ideal to create a legacy estate. The choice is yours.

Kula Koa is offered by The Maui Real Estate Team, Inc. for $5,500,000. You can check out the Kula Koa listing page for additional photos and details on the property. Qualified buyers may contact The Maui Real Estate Team to arrange a tour or to discuss the property.

Wailea and Makena Market Report: 2013 Year in Review and 2014 Outlook

Earlier this winter, I decided to do some in depth market reviews on a handful of communities around the island. I was able to publish posts on Paia and Spreckelsville, before getting sidetracked. I have wanted to take on the resort markets of Wailea and Makena for quite some time. This is a post that has been sitting in some form of a draft for the better part of the month. A busy schedule as a Realtor and a new dad, combined with the breadth of this market has made it tough to put the finishing touches on this post. Today, I finally got over the hump.

The Wailea and Makena resort communities are home to some of the more expensive real estate on island. Homeowners are drawn by the weather, the incredible beaches, shopping, dining, resort amenities and golf courses. In this post, we wanted to compare 2013 sales to what we saw in 2012. We also want to provide a few thoughts on what you might expect for the rest of 2014 in the Wailea and Makena market. Since we are almost to the end of the first quarter of 2014, we have the advantage of being able to review some of the initial sales data for the year. Without further ado, here are the numbers for Wailea and Makena in 2013.

Wailea and Makena 2012 and 2013 Real Estate Sales Volumes

A comparison of real estate sales volumes in Wailea and Makena during 2013 and 2012

There were 27 homes sold in the Wailea area with a median price of $2,750,000 during 2013. There were 26 homes sold during 2012 with a median price of $1,387,500. That is roughly a 4% increase in sales volume and a 98% increase in median price.

During 2013, there were 123 condos sold in the Wailea area with a median price of $1,100,000. The 2012 numbers were 114 condos sold with a median price of $757,500. That is approximately an 8% increase in sales volume and a 45% increase in median price.

During 2013, there were 13 lots sold with a median price of $1,225,000. There were 5 lots sold during 2012 with a median price of $875,000. That is a 260% increase in sales volume and 40% increase in median price.

In addition to the numbers above, here are a few other numbers that I thought were worth sharing regarding the Wailea and Makena Real Estate market during 2013.

  • Of the 27 homes sold, six were in the Makena area.
  • The high sale was $9,200,000 for an oceanfront home at Makena Place.
  • The Makena Place transaction was one of 14 sales over $2,0000,000. It was one of 7 sales over $5,000,000. In 2012, there were 8 sales over $2,000,000 with 3 sales over $5,000,000.
  • There were only 2 homes sold for under $1,000,0000 in Wailea during 2013. That is way down from the seven sold under $1,000,000 in 2012.
  • The high condo sale was $11,395,000 for a Villa at The Andaz Residences.
  • The Andaz close was one of 34 condo sales over $1,500,000 in 2012. That was an increase over the 27 sold for $1,500,000 or more in 2012.
  • Kai Malu and the Palms at Wailea were the condos that had the most sales activity with 23 sales and 16 sales respectively.
  • Only 3 of the 123 condos sold were in Makena. There was one unit sold in Na Hale O Makena and two units at Makena Surf.
  • There were only 2 condos sold in Wailea for less than $500,000 in 2013. That was down significantly from the 15 sold under $500,000 in 2012.
  • The high sale for land was $10,000,000 for 159 acres across the street from the ocean in Makena.
  • There were 5 bank owned sales (REO) in Wailea in 2013. That is a 50% reduction from the 10 that sold in 2012.

Looking at the Wailea and Makena sales data for 2013, the big jumps in median prices are arguably the most eye catching numbers. All too often the change in median prices can be misrepresented as a representation changes in property values. While it is safe to say there was some appreciation in Wailea, it is also pretty clear we didn’t see 98% increases in home values, 45% increases in condo values and 40% increases in land values. The big bumps in median come from a decrease in sales activity at the low end of the market and an increase in ultra luxury sales.

The inventory of homes under $1,000,000 and condos under $500,000 decreased sharply in 2013. Buyers searching for lower priced opportunities had options in places like Wailea Fairway Villas and Grand Champions. In 2013, inventory in both of those complexes decreased and prices increased. That pushed prices on all but two sales in those complexes above $500,000. The same trend was evident with Wailea Homes. In 2012, there were quite a few opportunities to get into the market below $1,000,000 in neighborhoods like Wailea Kai, Wailea Pualani and Wailea Kialoa. Those opportunities were far more limited in 2013 with only 2 home sales below $1,000,000.

While there were fewer bargain hunting opportunities, more buyers were willing to dish out a premium for Wailea and Makena Properties. There was a 26% increase in the number of condos sold over $1,500,000 and a 75% increase in the number of homes sold over $2,000,0000. This was part of an island wide increase in luxury sales activity. As we have postulated in other statistics posts on our blog, big years on the stock market tend to make for big years for luxury real estate sales on Maui.

Being that we are almost done with the first quarter, there is more opportunity to comment on current real estate market dynamics in Wailea and Makena. The chart below compares the number of properties sold this year as of March 17th with the number of properties sold last year through March 17th.

Year to date sales volume comparison in Wailea with last year

This chart compares the volume of real estate sales in Wailea and Makena for the year to date up until March 17th with the same period in 2013.

As you can see from the chart, the sales activity looks pretty similar to what we saw during the start of 2013. Home sales are up modestly by 2 transactions, condo sales are the same and land sales are off by 1 from last year’s pace. There were a few other things that I thought were worth sharing from year to date sales activity.

  • As mentioned previously, we saw a decrease in sales under $500,000 for condos and under $1,000,000 for homes in Wailea during 2013. That trend has continued into 2014. There have been no condo sales under $500,000 and no home sales under $1,000,000 to date. There are no homes listed or pending for less than $1,000,000. There are only two pending sales under $500,000 for condos with no active listings in that price range.
  • For the most part, the Wailea market is still trading for less than peak market prices. There is one exception though as Wailea Elua saw its two highest ever sales prices in the last couple of months.
  • The high home sale thus far this year was $9,300,000 for an oceanfront home in Makena Place. As of March 17th, that was one of 4 home sales to date this year over $2,000,000 in Wailea and Makena.
  • The high condo sale thus far this year is $4,450,000 at Wailea Point. As of March 17th, that was one of 9 condo sales over $1,500,000 in Wailea and Makena for the year to date.

What can we expect for the rest of the year in Wailea and Makena? Demand thus far appears to be close to what we saw last year. I would anticipate that to continue if the stock market and overall economy stay the course. We have seen a decrease in Canadian luxury home buyers with the Canadian Dollar off 10% from last year. That has the potential to decrease sales volume. With the exception of lower priced homes and condos, there appears to be a pretty healthy inventory for buyers to choose from. There is over a year of active inventory for homes and land. There is just under a year of active inventory for condos, but that inventory is likely to increase. New developments are likely to have some of the biggest impact on the market. We have seen two new development go to market thus far, with at least one more and possibly three more coming to market before the end of 2014.

The first new development to hit the market was small in listings and big in price tag. Makena Sunset will consist of four condominium homes located directly across the street from Maluaka Beach. The homes will be 4 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms with approximately 4,200 square feet of living space. There will also be an additional 1,400 square feet of lanai space. Each residence has its own private pool. There is a laundry list of additional amenities offered with each of these spectacular properties. One of the four listings is under contract. The remaining three properties are offered for $10,250,000 through Makena Wailea Real Estate. The Maui Real Estate Team may represent interested parties as their buyer’s agents.

The second new development to come to market this year was the Ridge at Wailea. This is a vacant land offering with homes sites up near the Hotel Wailea. Pricing ranges from $1,550,000 to $2,800,000 for the 9 lots that are roughly a half acre in size. This development is being represented by Wailea Realty. The Maui Real Estate Team can represent interested parties as their buyer’s agent. It will be interesting to see how well this development is received by the market. The last land offering in this range was the Bluffs at Wailea. That development came out during the market doldrums of the last real estate downturn and was not well received by buyers. That land is now going to be developed as condos (more on that below).

There is the possibility of one additional land offering hitting the market this year. A second phase of Wailea Golf Estates is planned and that would include 16 additional luxury home sites. The time frame to go to market has yet to be announced.

There is at least one condo development that should hit the market this year as well. Keala O Wailea will consist of 70 condos spread over 7 three story buildings. It will be built next to the Wailea Gateway Center at the site of the aforementioned Bluffs at Wailea. The 70 condos will include 4 floor plans ranging in size from 1196 square feet to 1510 square feet. The top floor penthouse suites will be the largest units. The Keala O Wailea will prohibit vacation rentals. The community will have a nice pool area and should have big views from that location. Pricing for the development has not been announced, but it has been suggested that the prices will be “affordable for Wailea.” To be clear, that doesn’t mean affordable housing by any standard definition, but we should see starting prices under $1,000,000. Additional information on the development and sales reservations should be coming some time around the middle of this year. As with any new development on Maui, it is not out of the realm that those dates could be pushed back. If the pricing holds true to what has been insinuated, I would expect Keala O Wailea will receive strong interest from buyers.

Makali’i at Wailea is a condominium development that is scheduled to be built across from the Fairmont Kea Lani Hotel in Wailea. This complex is supposed to go to market in the last quarter of 2014 with construction planned to start in 2015 and run through 2017. Preliminary plans for Makali’i call for 68 units spread over 17 buildings of four units each. The condos will feature a modern design with a lot of glass. I saw the preliminary sketches for the condos and they will be very unique from the current inventory in Wailea. It is expected that there will be two and three bedroom floor plans with roughly 1,500 to 1,700 square feet of living space. The condos should have excellent views. The community will have a pool and club house area for residents. Makali’i will also prohibit vacation rentals. I haven’t heard anything regarding the pricing for the condos, but I would expect that they will be at a higher price point than anything at Keala O Wailea.

The impact of the new developments on the Wailea and Makena markets will be interesting to watch. I have found that activity at new developments may mean slower activity at comparable existing condos. I would think places like Kanani Wailea, higher priced units at Wailea Fairway Villas and potentially Kai Malu could be impacted by a place like Keala O Wailea. We may see an overall decrease in sales volume as the new condo developments will be unlikely to see units close until construction is complete.

Contact The Maui Real Estate Team if you are interested in buying or selling property in the Wailea and Makena area. The Maui Real Estate Team would welcome the opportunity to sit down for a free consultation. You can also search the current inventory of Makena and Wailea Condos for Sale and Makena and Wailea Homes for Sale on MauiRealEstate.com.


Nice Price Reduction in Haiku!

Today’s luxury home buyers are more value conscious than ever. That’s why we think our Hawaiian Plantation Style Estate property in Haiku is bound to get strong interest at its new price. This property consists of two fully fenced acres, a spacious and gracious 3,062 square foot home and a one bedroom cottage. The main home has three bedrooms and two and a half baths. Amenities include an open kitchen-living area with a beautiful vaulted ceiling and skylight, hardwood floors, lots of built-in bookshelves, granite and stainless appliances. In 2009, the owners added a dramatic sunken great room and expanded the lanai to enhance the indoor / outdoor living. The lanai areas are a great place to take in a sunset or enjoy the views of the ocean.

Aerial view of a home at 160 Laenani Haiku

The kitchen area of a home at 160 Laenani Street in Haiku

Living area of 160 Laenani in Haiku

Cotton Candy Clouds over the back of the House at 160 Laenani in Haiku

160 Laenani sunset views from the Back Porch

This estate also boasts a convenient location. It is less than five minutes from the Haiku Cannery and Town Center. There you will find restaurants like Colleen’s, Veg Out, Maui Kombucha and Nuka. Other conveniences include the Haiku Grocery Store and Upcountry Fitness. Makawao Town is just over five minutes away in the other direction. Makawao variety of Boutiques, Yoga and Wellness Studios, Galleries and Restaurants. World renowned surf and windsurf spot Ho’okipa Beach Park is just over ten minutes away. Paia town and it’s attractions are less than 15 minutes away. The property is also a short drive to a number of the island’s better regarded schools.

This luxurious Haiku estate home is now offered for $1,750,000. Check out the 160 Laenani Street, Haiku listing page for additional photos and details on the property. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team to arrange a showing.

Sneak Peek at the February 2014 Maui Real Estate Statistics

It was another great February on Maui. It is hard to beat winter on the Valley Isle. Beautiful weather, dramatic waves and an abundance of Humpback whales frolicking offshore make this a special time of year. The end of another month means another opportunity to take the pulse of the Maui Real Estate market. This month’s statistics post includes a look at median prices and sales volumes this February and compares them to what was reported in February of 2013. I provide some additional numbers that I came across while compiling the sales volumes and medians. I am also continuing a new feature to our stats post that I began last month. To get a better sense of current demand, I am providing information on the number of properties that went pending during the month compared to the properties that went pending during February of 2013. Without further ado, here are the numbers.

This table compares the sale of properties in Maui County during February 2013 and February 2014.

This table compares the sale of properties in Maui County during February 2013 and February 2014.

This Chart compares the real estate sales volumes in Maui County during 2013 and 2014

This chart compares real estate sales volumes for Maui County during February 2014 and February 2013.

Maui County Realtors reported 60 home sales in February with a median sales price of $560,000. Last February, there were 66 home sales with a median price of $537,500. That is roughly a 9% drop in sales activity and a 4% increase in median price.

There were 86 condo sales reported last month with a median sales price of $345,000. The February of 2013 condo sales totaled 101 units with a median price of $360,000. That is a 15% reduction in volume and roughly a 4% reduction in median sales price.

There were 11 land sales reported last month with a median price of $400,000. The February 2013 land sales totaled 14 with a median price of $502,500. That is a roughly 21% drop in sales volume and a 20% drop in median.

Before going further, it is worth noting that the decrease in median for both land and condos is a reflection of the distribution of sales rather than any decrease in property values. I surmise the decrease in condo medians may have something to do with heavy sales activity for entry level condos zoned for owner occupants and long term renters. Ironically, that is one of the parts of the market that has seen some of the strongest appreciation during the market recovery. The lower median for land is due in part to sample size. Median prices for land can swing pretty widely on a month to month basis as the sample of properties is small and often quite heterogeneous.

While compiling the median prices and sales volumes, I came across quite a few other numbers that I thought were worth sharing including information on last month’s Maui Luxury Real Estate sales.

  • The highest priced home sale for the month of February was an oceanfront estate in Spreckelsville. This property consists of 3.42 acres with an exotic 5,409 square foot home and a beautiful pool area. The Seller was represented by the Maui Real Estate Team.
  • That was one of four home sales over $2,000,000 in February. The other three sales were in Wailea, Ka’anapali and Lahaina.
  • The highest priced condo sale last month was $3,850,000 for a front row two bed/two bath unit at Wailea Elua. This was a new all time high sales price for Wailea Elua. It was particularly notable in that this unit has 380 square feet smaller than the previous high.
  • The Wailea Elua close was one of four February condo sales over $1,500,000. There was another high priced Elua sale and big closes at Kai Malu and Ho’olei.
  • The high land sale last month was $895,000 for a 5.45 acre lot in Ka’anapali Coffee Farms.
  • There were 8 REO or bank owned sales in February. That is down slightly from the 10 bank owned sales last year. It is noteworthy that a couple of the REO sales were higher priced transactions. There was a partially finished home in the Honolua Ridge subdivision of Kapalua that sold for $1,700,000. There was also a nice unit at Kapalua Bay Villas that sold for $1,250,000.
  • There were 8 successful short sale transactions down from the 15 that closed in February 2013. Rising prices and the end of short sale tax relief means that we are likely to see fewer and fewer of these transactions on Maui.

Looking at the March stats, the big thing that stands out is the decrease in sales volume. This doesn’t come as a huge surprise to me. Last month, I took a look at the properties that have gone pending since the start of peak buying season. The 2014 peak season activity was running behind 2013. The end of 2013 also saw less activity than the end of 2012. It is hard to give an exact reason why things are slowing, but I would surmise shrinking inventory and rising prices are the two main factors. The lower priced home inventory has been shrinking over the last 6-12 months giving fewer options to a still healthy pool of buyers. I have also seen something of a standoff between buyers and sellers at some of the lower price points in the home market. Sellers have been shooting for higher prices well above recent comparable sales. Buyers are reticent to accept those higher prices with the last real estate bubble still fresh in many minds.

Does the slower start to 2014 mean that we will see a slower 2014 overall? That is a little too early to tell at this point. After taking a look at pending properties last month, I decided that this was a feature we would retain for future blog posts. The table and chart below show the number of properties that went pending in February of 2014 compared to what went pending last February.

February Contracts Table

This table compares the number of properties in Maui County that went under contract in February 2013 and February 2014.

This chart compares properties that went under contract in Feb 2013 with properties that went under contract in feb 2013

This chart shows the number of properties in Maui County that went under contract in February 2014 and compares it to the number of properties that went under contract in February 2013.

As you can see, more homes, condos and parcels of land went under contract in February of 2014 as compared to February 2013. It will be interesting to see how the trends develop over an extended period of time. If we are going to meet or exceed last year’s sales totals, it will be due in part to stronger activity at higher price points. Limited data shows that the high end market is doing pretty well. As we have theorized before, there appears to be a correlation between luxury activity and a strong stock market. After hitting a rough patch earlier in the year, the Dow appears to have regained steam.

What does all of the above mean for buyers or sellers interested in sticking their toes in the waters of the Maui real estate market? Market conditions vary pretty widely depending on the community, neighborhood and price range. The abundance or scarcity of inventory in any one area is bound to have a big impact on pricing and rates of appreciation. The Maui Real Estate Team would welcome the opportunity to sit down with you to discuss the parts of the market that might fit your real estate needs. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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