Maui Real Estate Blog

The May 2014 Maui Real Estate Statistics

June is the middle of fruit season on Maui. Local mangoes, lychee and lilikoi can all be found in farmer’s markets and grocery stores. June is also a month of Festivals and celebrations with the Wailea Film Festival, the Kapalua Wine and Food Festival, The Slack Key Guitar Festival at the MACC and more. The start of June also means that it is time to take another look at the performance of the Maui Real Estate market. We take a look at last month’s sales volumes, median sales prices and a few other notes and numbers from May sales activity. Sales are a lagging indicator that don’t reflect current demand so we also wanted to take a look at the number of properties that went under contract last month. Without further ado, here are the real estate sales numbers for May on Maui.

A Comparison of Real Estate Sales Volume in Maui County during May 2013 and May 2014
This chart compares real estate sales volume on Maui during May 2014 and May 2013

By my count, there were 85 homes sold in Maui County last month with a median price of $540,000. By comparison, there were 109 homes sold in Maui County during May of 2013 with a median price of $549,000. That is a 22% drop in sales activity and a 2% drop in median price compared to last May.

There were 116 condo sales reported in May of 2014 with a median price of $476,000. Last May, there were 139 sales reported in Maui with a median price of $380,000. That is a 17% drop in sales activity with a 25% jump in median price when comparing this May to last May.

There were 20 land sales reported in May at a median price of $575,000. In May 2013, there were also 20 sales with a median of $267,500. That is a 215% increase in median price.

While compiling the numbers above, I came across some more numbers and data from the May Maui Real Estate Sales that I thought were worth sharing.

  • The highest priced home sale last month was $3,150,000 for the Rainbow House in Ka’anapali Coffee Farms.
  • That was one of five home sales over $2,000,000 last month. The other four sales were geographically diverse with closes in Haiku, Launiupoko, Wailea and Maui Meadows.
  • The highest priced condo transaction was $5,000,000 for a beachfront unit at Coconut Grove in Kapalua.
  • That was one of 15 condo sales over $1,500,000 last month. Honua Kai Resort led the way with seven sales over $1,500,000. There were also two sales at The Whaler, one sale at Ka’anapali Ali’i and one sale at Ka’anapali Shores. The Ka’anapali area condos were a hot ticket for luxury buyers. The other big sales occurred at Kapalua Bay Villas, Wailea Point and Na Hale O Makena.
  • The highest priced land sale last month was $1,600,000 for 42 acres on the ocean between Wailuku and Kahakuloa.
  • There were only 8 bank owned closes all of last month. That is down 50% from the 16 bank owned closes we saw last May. Buyers looking for bank owned bargains will find that the pickings slim.
  • There were 10 successful short sales last month. That was done 58% from the 24 completed in May of 2013.

The thing that stands out most to me about this month’s stats is the drop in sales activity. As noted in the April stats, there was a drop in the number of properties that were pending in April as compared to the same time last year. That makes the drop in sales a little less of a surprise. We are also mirroring some trends that have been occurring on the mainland. The National Association of Realtors Reported that April existing home sales were down 6.8% compared to the same time last year. It is hard to pinpoint all of the factors that have led to the drop in sales activity in Maui County. That said, I think a significant driver has been the lack of inventory. The decrease in homes and condos at lower price points in our market has meant not enough supply to meet demand.

There were a few other things worth noting about the stats. The median sales price was down a little from last year. That seems counter intuitive with less low end inventory and clear signs of price reductions. The bigger driver may be a little less activity on the high end of the market. There were 7 fewer sales this May compared to last May over $1,000,000. On the other end of the spectrum, the condo medians were way up this month. Some of that gain could be attributed to price increases. The rest is due to shifts in market activity. Less inventory on the low end plays a part as does a big increase in activity on the high end. There were 26 condo sales over $1,000,000 this year compared to 12 last year. That is in spite of a 17% drop in overall condos sold. The huge jump in land medians can be attributed to a decrease in low end sales, an increase in high end sales and modest price increases. The small sample size for land sales contributes to big fluctuations in medians.

Does it look like the slow down in sales activity will continue into the summer? Right now, the numbers are mixed. The chart below compares the number of properties that went under contract in May of 2014 to what went pending last year in May of 2013.

A comparison between the number of properties that went pending in May of 2013 and May of 2014

It looks like we might see an uptick in home sales. Home pending sales were up a whopping 27% over last May. While condo numbers appear to be continuing their recent drop in activity with a 21% drop in pendings. Land pending sales were down 55% compared to last May. I did a little digging behind that number and some of that difference can be traced to a solid number of commercial land listings that went under contract last May. Commercial and residential land are lumped together in our MLS. It will be interesting to see what happens with activity as we move into the summer months. It is safe to say that Maui is experiencing an unpredictable market.

What does this all mean for buyers and sellers? Buyers will find that prices are still below peak market levels in all but a very few neighborhoods around the island. That said, buyers will also find that we have seen significant appreciation from the bottom particularly at the lower price points of the market. Those that are expecting to find rock bottom deals will be challenged by the limited inventory and the smaller number of distressed and bank owned properties. Buyers should expect that well priced properties will go under contract quickly. If it is in a particularly desirable part of the market, those properties may attract multiple bids. Sellers should expect improving market conditions, but those that are swinging for the fences on their prices may be disappointed. Overpriced properties are sitting. There are also some communities and price points that are softer than others. Go to market pricing strategies should take into account recent sales prices and activity levels. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team for a free consultation to discuss the specific market conditions for the communities and price ranges that fit interests and budget. We welcome the opportunity to be of assistance.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

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 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.

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

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Kapalua Market Report

Kapalua is a beautiful resort community on the Northwest coastline of Maui. The resort boasts stunning natural beauty, renowned beaches, tropical foliage and two great golf courses. One of the courses is the site of the first PGA event of the year. The community is home to beautiful estate properties and luxury condominiums. We wanted to look at how the Kapalua market performed in 2012, how it has done in the first two months of 2013, and the outlook for the rest of the year.

This chart compares the real estate sales volumes for home, condos and land in Kapalua during 2011 and 2012

There were six homes sold in Kapalua during 2012 with a median sales price of $2,880,000. The 2011 numbers were eleven sales with a median sales price of $2,850,000. That is a 45% drop in sales volume and a 1% increase in median values.

The condo market in Kapalua was more active in 2012 with fifty closes at a median sales price of $570,500. There were twenty-seven sales in 2011 with a median price of $830,000. That is a robust 85% increase in activity for 2012, while the median price dropped by 32%.

There were six land transactions in 2012 with a median sales price of $838,200. There were five land transactions in 2011 at a median sales price of $950,000. With sample sizes this small I am reticent to comment on changes in volume and median as they tend to be misconstrued.

Here are some other numbers that I found interesting about the 2012 Kapalua Real Estate Market.

  • The high sale for a home in Kapalua during 2012 was $5,998,000 for a 7,645 square foot home in Plantation Estates
  • All of the home sales in Kapalua were $2,000,000 or higher. Kapalua has the highest entry point of any community on Maui with the exception of Makena.
  • There were four homes sold in Plantation Estates. That was the busiest year of sales ever in Plantation Estates.
  • 197 Plantation Club Drive sold for $2,600,000. That was the lowest recorded sales price for a home in Plantation Estates.
  • The high condo sales price in 2012 was $3,425,000 for a three bedroom, four bath beachfront condo at Kapalua Ironwoods.
  • There were a total four condo sales over $1,500,000 in Kapalua in 2012.
  • Kapalua Golf Villas was the complex with the most activity. There were 25 closes at Golf Villas in 2012.
  • There were seven bank owned sales and five short sales that closed in Kapalua during 2012.

This was an interesting year for the Kapalua Real Estate market. The decrease in home sales follows a market trend we saw with luxury properties around the island. Sales of homes over $2,000,000 were down island wide including other resort markets like Wailea and Makena. For the sales that did close, value appeared to be a driving force among many of the sales. The six sales included the lowest priced sale in Plantation Estates and the second and third lowest sales prices for Plantation Estates. In addition to those three value closes, we also saw the second lowest sales price for a home on two acres or more in Kapalua up in Honolua Ridge.

The Kapalua condo market saw a sharp increase in activity. The focal point for the boost in activity was Kapalua Golf Villas. Last year was a year of transition for Golf Villas. It was discovered late in 2011 that the complex needed to undergo a big maintenance project. That resulted in a significant assessment for all of the owners. The assessment flushed a lot of motivated sellers on to the market. The market absorbed most of these listings in 2012 as buyers took advantage of good values in a complex that should have strong upside with all major maintenance issues in the process of being addressed. Kapalua Ridge was another complex that saw pretty good activity as buyers took advantage of a number of listings offered at good comparative values.

The Kapalua land market saw a very slight uptick in activity during 2012. That is in line with what we saw in general island wide. We did start to see a bigger uptick in land sales on other areas of the island late in 2012, but much of that activity came at lower price points where buyers were looking for alternatives due to a diminished inventory of homes. Kapalua still had a pretty healthy home inventory through much of 2012 as it does during the start of 2013.

What does 2013 have in store for the Kapalua Real Estate market? We have two months of sales / results for some perspective. On the home front, early market feedback shows that buyers are continuing to show a trend towards value purchases among the Kapalua Luxury home inventory. There has been one sale and there are two properties pending. The one sale was $1,795,000 for a home in Pineapple Hill. That is at the low end of pricing for Pineapple Hill historically. One of the pending sales is a short sale up in Honolua Ridge. Construction was abandoned on the home and the price reflects the work remaining to be completed.

In addition to the two properties currently under contract, there are an additional 32 homes actively listed in Kapalua ranging in price from $2,295,000 to $28,000,000. The depth of inventory makes for good selection for buyers. Typically, this type of inventory may create some motivated sellers. That being said, luxury home owners tend to have more staying power when it comes to waiting out the market.

It will be interesting to monitor the condo market in Kapalua during 2013. The initial market data appears to be positive with 10 sales and 4 pending sales to date. Of note, two of the sales and one of the pending were priced over $1,500,000. We are on pace to exceed the ultra luxury sales totals for 2012.

There are currently 60 condos active in Kapalua. The chart below shows the current number of active listings by complex and compares it to last year’s sales by complex.

This chart compares the current active listings of condos for sale in each of the Kapalua Condominium complexes as compared to the 2012 sales at the same complexes.

Looking at the chart above, you can see there are some complexes with a year or less of inventory and some condos that have an abundance of inventory based on last year’s absorption rates. Last year’s busy complex was Kapalua Golf Villas due to an abundance of motivated sellers. The motivated sellers have for the most part sold their properties, and we aren’t seeing the rock bottom prices that we saw just a year ago. I would surmise that Kapalua Golf Villas will see a little less activity as prices return to normal. At the other end of the market, Kapalua Bay Villas has the biggest inventory compared to recent sales. Typically, that type of inventory could result in a few motivated sellers coming to market. That being said, many of the Bay Villas sellers might have the means and inclination to wait until market conditions improve in their favor. Bay Villas will be a place to watch the rest of the year.

A condominium complex that might have the biggest impact on the Kapalua Market isn’t event listed in the chart above. I am speaking of the Residences at Kapalua Bay, formerly known as the Ritz Carlton Residences at Kapalua Bay. The Residences opened their doors in 2009. The developers spared no expense when they built the Residences. Finishing and materials are all top notch. Unfortunately, they had a tough time recouping their investment in a slumping real estate market. The property was foreclosed upon in June of 2012. A foreclosure auction was held in December with a winning bid of $55,000,000. On January 1, Timbers Resort took over management of the property for Ritz Cartlon. On February 1, 2013, a confirmation hearing was held for the foreclosure auction. Two other parties ended up bidding on the sale driving the price up to $100,000,000. The resulting sale should take up to two months to be completed. That means it is likely that at some point later this year, condos at the Residences at Kapalua Bay will be coming back on to the market.

The Residences at Kapalua Bay will have a significant impact on the ultra luxury market place in Kapalua. They will offer significant competition to sellers at places like Coconut Grove, The Ironwoods and other luxury condominium developments around the island. The full ownership condominiums at the Resort include both three and four bedroom floor plans with roughly 3,000-4,000 square feet of living space. The amenities and the physical plant of the Residences are second to none on island. It will be interesting to see how they are received by the market now that their financial future is well defined and market conditions have improved. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team if you are interested in being kept up to date on the latest developments regarding The Residences at Kapalua Bay.

What does this all mean for Kapalua Buyers and Sellers for the rest of 2013? Buyers should find that the Kapalua market has plenty of inventory to choose from throughout this year. The only place with a scarcity of inventory is at the entry level of the Kapalua Condo market. Kapalua condo buyers will find a lot fewer rock bottom price opportunities with fewer bank owned properties coming to market, and the situation at Kapalua Golf Villas stabilized. Sellers will find that there is a fair amount of competition in the marketplace. If they want to sell quickly, they will need to price well compared to the rest of the market. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team today with questions or for assistance buying Kapalua Properties. You can search the current active inventory of Kapalua Homes for Sale and Kapalua Condos for Sale on MauiRealEstate.com.

Pete Jalbert