Maui Real Estate Blog

Maui Market Musings Volume II

This week’s edition of Maui Market Musings is another grab bag of topics. I look at days on market on Maui, try to get a sense of price increases since the start of Covid and check in on sales activity at Hoku’ula, the new development in Upcountry Maui.

Properties Continue to Move Quickly

One way of gauging the strength of the Maui market is looking at days on market. The local Realtor Association publishes days on market for sold properties. I wanted to use data from recently listed properties for a more current look at market activity. Between February 9th and February 16th, 71 listings came to market. Of the 71 listings, 40 already went under contract. Of the remaining 31 listings, 7 are waiting to review offers until a later date or are in the process of reviewing offers. One bank owned listing successfully completed an auction with the buyer and the bank completing contract paper work. Two additional listings are vacation rentals with no opportunity for showings as of yet.

We are seeing things go under contract really quickly. What does this mean for buyers? Over 50% of properties are going under contract in 10 days or less. Many sellers are setting offer deadlines a week after listing to allow for strong showing demand. Multiple offers are common. Buyers who want to enter the fray need to have pre-approvals and proof of funds in hand. They also need to prepare to write very strong offers.

How Much Have Property Values Increased on Maui?

How much have prices gone up since the start of Covid? This is one of the most common questions people ask about the Maui market. This is a surprisingly difficult question to answer. The Maui market is incredibly heterogeneous. While changes in median price give some indication of changes in value, it isn’t an exact indicator. Changes in median prices aren’t just due to changes in price. Differences in the composition of the market in any one month also contribute to changes in median. For example, if you have a greater proportion of higher end homes selling in any one month, median prices will tend to go up.

With that in mind, I thought I would do my best to try to get a better sense of how much prices changed since early 2020. To do that, I went through the sales over the last month and compared them to sales during the same period of January and February 2020. I tried to find as many like for like properties to compare from each of the two time frames. Truth be told, the list of properties that fit that criteria is surprisingly small. Here are some of the properties I identified, notable differences if any, their sales prices and the percentage change.

Comparing Early 2020 and Early 2022 Home Prices

  • The first example I found was actually a home that sold on January 31st of 2020 and sold again on February 9th of 2022. 24 W Makaukau Loop is located in the Waikapu Gardens subdivision of Wailuku. The seller made one notable improvement during their two years of ownership. They added a photovoltaic system with a Tesla Powerwall. It closed for $731,000 in 2020 and $990,000 in 2022. That is a 34% difference. If you add roughly $35,000 for the improvements, you are looking at a 29.4% increase in value.
  • I found two very similar homes in the Pi’ilani Villages subdivision in Kihei that sold in 2020 and 2022 respectively. 38 Polale and 62 Polale are both three bedroom, two bathroom homes with 1,478 square feet of living space. Both homes have net metered photovoltaic systems. and new flooring. The home at 38 Polale has original bathrooms, while the home at 62 Polale includes nicely remodeled bathrooms. The lot at 38 Polale is 300 square feet bigger. The home at 38 Polale sold in early 2020 for $756,000. The home at 62 Polale sold in early 2022 for $1,100,000. That is a 45.5% difference in value. Regardless of the bathroom improvements, this is a big shift in values.
  • While the next two homes don’t offer a true apples to apples comparison, they are still worth sharing. Both homes are in Kaimana at Kehalani. This is a subdivision with a single developer and a handful of different floor plans. The first home is a 4 bedroom, 3 bath with 2,021 square feet of living space and a Photovoltaic system. The home is located on a 4,500 square foot lot. The second home is 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms with 1,185 square feet of living space. It is also situated on 4,500 square foot lot. The 4 bedroom home sold in early 2020 for $725,000. The second sold for $815,000. That is a 12% higher sales price for a home that is 41% smaller.

Comparing Early 2020 and Early 2022 Condo Prices

  • The first two condos I wanted to compare are located in the same floor of the same building at Aina Nalu in Lahaina. They are both 2 bedroom, 2 bath unit with 832 square feet of living space. Unit C 203 sold in early 2020 for $599,000. The seller did add some new flooring and there was some sort of bamboo ceiling covering added in parts of the condo. Unit C 209 was almost identical minus the improvements. It sold in early 2022 for $766,000. That is a 27.8% price increase. It is worth noting that Aina Nalu was one of a small handful of condos that actually saw prices go down in mid 2020. During that time, second floor two bedrooms went as low as $500,000. The level of appreciation is that much higher if you factor in that price adjustment.
  • Kai Malu is an upscale non-vacation rental condo in Wailea. There is variability in value within the complex based on location and view. I found two condos with the same 3 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom floor plan in different parts of the development. Both are considered to be good locations. They both overlook the golf course with the ocean in the distance. Unit 5A sold in late January 2020 for $1,700,000. Unit 55B is a little more upgraded unit with some more recent renovations. It sold for $2,200,000 in early February. That is a 29.4% increase in sales price.
  • Kihei Villages is an entry level condo complex that prohibits short terms rentals. I found two pretty similar ground floor units for comparison. Both have two bedrooms, one and a half baths and 750 square feet of living space and an enclosed yard area. Unit 10-103 had some improvements in the kitchen, but bathrooms appeared to be original. It sold in February of 2020 for $365,000. Unit 34-103 was well maintained with a nice yard, but no upgrades to the kitchens or bathrooms. It sold for $535,000 in February of 2022. That is a 46.5% difference in value.
  • I compared two one bedroom, one bath listings in building 2 at Maui Vista. This is a vacation rental friendly condo in Kihei. Both units appeared to be in original condition. Unit 2203 sold for $420,000 in February of 2020. Unit 2308 sold for $572,000 in January. That is a difference of 36.19%.

While this is a relatively small sample size, it does provide both homes and condos over a pretty broad area of the island. Overall, here are my takeaways from this number crunching exercise. You are looking a bare minimum of 27% appreciation over the last two years with some properties seeing more significant increases. There is some variability in appreciation around the island. While all these prices are moving in the same direction at this point,some are taking a little longer to get there.

The significant price increases appear to be continuing. Anecdotally, bidding wars feel that much more competitive of late. In turn, it feels as if values skipped up on some of the properties going under contract over the last few weeks. It will be interesting to see if the sales numbers corroborate this in the months ahead.

Hoku’ula Lottery Update

Last week I posted about the lottery for first phase of the market priced listings at Hoku’ula. This development in Hali’imaile is one of the largest developments ever in Upcountry Maui. It will include 196 total homes with 98 work force housing homes and 98 market rate housing homes. The work force housing units are fully reserved. The developer held a lottery for the first phase of the market rate housing at the end of last week. Per the developer’s representatives, 15 homes went under contract as a result of the lottery. That is half of the 30 homes in the first phase. Registrations for the first phase may still be submitted. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team for buyer representation if you are interested in the development.

Final Thoughts

Well, so far so good on making this a regular feature of our blog. We are hoping that this is valuable tool for buyers and sellers trying to get a better sense of the market. Feel free to reach out if there are any specific things you might want us to discuss in future volumes of the musings. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team if you need assistance buying and selling property.

Pete Jalbert

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