Maui Real Estate Blog

Unofficial March 2013 Maui Real Estate Statistics

How is the market? That’s a question that Realtors are asked frequently. I know I hear it when I am in Mana Foods, walking down the street, out socially and even when I am in the lineup surfing. The unofficial Maui Real Estate statistics are my place to provide market numbers and a little bit of context as to what they mean. In other words, they are my way of speaking to current market conditions. March is typically a busy month for real estate activity both in terms of properties going under contract and properties closing as this is Maui’s busy season for visitors and real estate. This March was no exception. Without further ado, here are the numbers followed by my thoughts on what it all means.

A Comparison of the March 2012 and March 2013 Real Estate Sales Volumes for Maui County, Hawaii
A Comparison of the 2012 and 2013 Maui March Real Estate Sales Volumes

I counted 78 homes sold in March at a median price of $509,500. By comparison, there were 82 homes sold in March of 2012 at a median price of $435,000. That is a 5% drop in sales activity and a 17% increase in median prices when comparing this March to last March.

There have been 101 condo sales reported thus far for March of 2013 with a median sales price of $375,000. The March of 2012 numbers were 130 sales at a median price of $368,043. That is approximately a 22% drop in sales volume and a 2% bump in median prices when comparing this year and last year.

There have been 25 land sales reported for March of 2013 with a median price of $535,000. In March of 2012, 22 sales were reported at a median price of $467,500. That is a 13% bump in land sales volume and a 14% bump in median prices.

Here were some other interesting numbers that I came across while compiling the sales volumes and medians.

  • The highest single family home sale was an oceanfront home on an acre of land in the Kuau area of Paia.
  • The Paia sale was one of six closes over $2,000,000. Those included two sales in Wailea, two in Paia, one on Lanai and one in Kaanapali
  • The high condo sales was $3,100,000 for a three bedroom/four bath unit at Wailea Point
  • This was a good month for luxury condo activity with 11 sales over $1,500,000. Ka’anapali Ali’i saw the most high end activity with four sales over $1,500,000 during March.
  • There were 13 bank owned (REO) closes last month. There were 40 bank owned sales during March 2012. That is a 68% drop in bank owned activity for this year.
  • There were 19 short sale transactions that closed last month. There were 28 short sale transactions that closed in March of 2013. That is a 32% drop in activity for short sale closes.
  • The 25 land closes was the second busiest month for land transactions in the last five years. The only month with more activity was December of 2012.

Last month’s numbers on the surface appear to be a mixed bag. General economic news has featured headlines proclaiming a strengthening real estate market. The general buzz on the street locally is that the Maui market is coming back. So why did we see the dip in activity in the home and condo market? The answer lies with the inventory. Plain and simple, there are buyers in many segments of the market who are having a tough time finding property. This is especially true when you look at properties for sale under Maui median prices. I looked at the number of homes that came on the market under $500,000 during the first quarter of 2013 compared to the first quarter of 2012. There was 40% less new inventory in the first quarter of this year. There was 56% less new inventory under $400,000. Looking at the condo market, there was 22% less new inventory under $300,000 in the first quarter of 2013 vs the first quarter of 2012. If you look at new inventory under $200,000 the decrease in inventory is more pronounced. You are looking at 45% less new inventory under $300,000.

Decreasing inventory is a factor in the increasing median prices as well. The effect is two fold. First, there are fewer lower priced properties on the market and consequently lower priced sales. With fewer lower end properties, the median sales price is going to be higher. Second, values are increasing modestly in many parts of the market. The rate of increase is varying widely based on the type of property, price range and geographic location. Lower priced condos are seeing the strongest increase in values. As you get to higher price points and greater inventory, the increases in value are more modest. At the highest price points in the market, values are flat with some segments potentially still decreasing

As I mentioned previously, land and luxury condos were two segments that stood out this month. The land market has been sputtering for the better part of six years on Maui. That being said, three of the last five months have seen more than twenty closings. While it is clear that we are not seeing a linear recovery in the Maui land market, the dynamics are in place for more months of better sales. Low housing inventory is drawing more buyers to look for alternatives in the vacant land market. The luxury condo market was relatively slow through much of 2012. Sales volume decreased at the high end while the overall condo market increased. While it was just one month of activity, it was encouraging to see a higher number of closes in the luxury condo market.

What does it all mean for buyers and sellers? Buyers looking at the lower and middle parts of the market will find a very competitive market place. Well priced properties can attract multiple offers and above asking offer prices. Buyers who require financing in this segment are advised to get pre-approved for their purchase prior to beginning their search. As you progress higher in the market, the breadth of inventory increases. Some parts of the luxury market have abundant inventory. That being said, don’t expect to find many distressed sellers in the luxury market. Sellers who have equity in their home, but have been waiting for market conditions to improve may find that now is a good time to enter the market. Strong buyer demand and limited inventory make for improved sales conditions. Sellers should be mindful though that not all parts of the market are behaving the same. You may contact The Maui Real Estate Team for a free consultation to discuss local market conditions and how your property might be received by buyers. We would welcome the opportunity.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Maui 2012 Year End Market Report

We wanted to take a little bit of a different look at the 2012 year end statistics for Maui County. While we will give a brief look at the broad view. I wanted to hone in on the distribution of sales. While 2012 was a stronger year for sales overall, not all price ranges in the market performed equally. We want to show how different segments of the market performed and compare those segments to the current inventory. That may help us get a better sense of the 2013 outlook for the market. Without further ado, here are the numbers.

A comparison of real estate sales volumes between 2011 and 2012 in Maui County, Hawaii

There were 933 home sales reported in Maui during 2012 with a median sales price of $470,000. By comparison, there were 901 sales in 2011 with a median sales price of $432,500. That calculates to a 4% increase in sales volume and a 9% increase in median sales price.

During 2012, there were 1,248 condo sales reported on Maui with a median sales price of $358,995. By comparison, the 2011 numbers were 1,157 units sold with a median sales price of $310,000. That calculates to an 8% increase in volume and a 16% increase in median price.

There were 173 land sales reported in Maui County during 2012 with a median price of $350,000. In 2011, the numbers were 134 lots sold with a median price of $310,500. That means that the 2012 land sales increased 29% over and the median increased 13% over 2011.

While the overall market showed improvements in volume for all three types of property, market performance on Maui varied by price point. The chart below compares the sales volume of homes at various price ranges during 2012 and 2011.

A Comparison of The Sales Volumes of Homes in Different Price Ranges in Maui County During 2011 and 2012

There were a few things that I found noteworthy about the chart above. First and foremost, luxury sales activity decreased in 2012 compared to 2011. There were 41 sales over $2,000,000 in 2012. There were 61 sales over $2,000,000 in 2011. That is a 33% drop in volume. On the other end of the spectrum, it was noteworthy that the activity dropped below $300,000. The reason for the drop in activity at the low end isn’t due to a lack of buyer interest. With record low interest rates, first time home buyers were very active. Instead, we are starting to see the impact of reduced inventory. Prices began to rise at the bottom end of the market and there were fewer bank owned properties in that price range. The middle of the market saw greater variability in performance depending on price range. Some slices of the market saw more activity in 2012 while others saw less. That being said the overall trend in the middle was an increase in activity.

The chart below compares the distribution of sales for condos between 2011 and 2012.

A Comparison of The Sales Volumes of Condos in Different Price Ranges in Maui County During 2011 and 2012

While condo sales were up overall in 2012, we also saw variability in performance by price range. Some of the same trends that were evident in the home market also appeared in the condo market. As with the home market, luxury condo sales were down. There were 46 condos sold above $1,500,000 in 2012. There were 65 sold over $1,500,000 in 2011. That is approximately a 29% drop in volume. The lowest price ranges in the condo market also saw a dip in inventory and a subsequent drop in sales volume. Sales under $200,000 were off 18% below 2011 levels. As with the home market, this wasn’t due to lack of demand. We just saw a shrinking of entry level condo inventory during 2012 due in part to price increases and a big reduction in the number of bank owned listings.

The chart below compares the distribution of land sales on Maui during 2011 and 2012.

This chart compares the distribution of land sales by price range during 2011 and 2012 in Maui County, Hawaii

The land market was a little different than the home and condo market in 2012 in that we saw improvements in the vast majority of price ranges. The low end was up and much of the middle of the market was stronger. The luxury market was down slightly with 1 less sale over $1,000,000. The land market was lagging more so than condos and homes going into 2012. It had the greatest inventory and lower levels of demand going into the year. Sales outpaced 2011 levels through much of the year with an added boost in the last couple of months. The lack of interest in this market meant more motivated sellers and comparative values.

While the charts above provide us some historical data on last year’s market, they don’t tell us a whole lot about the current market. I hope the next three charts will help to tell that story. These three charts show the current inventory of properties by price point juxtaposed against the 2012 sales volumes by price point. Assuming that demand is equal to or potentially greater than what we saw last year, this will help to show parts of the market where inventory is really constrained and the other parts of the market where there is a relative abundance of property to choose from. A few things to note about these charts. Current inventory includes active listings as of January 24th. It does not include properties under contract. The active inventory includes all of Maui County including Lanai and Molokai.

This Chart Compares the Distribution of the Current Inventory of Homes for Sale in Maui County Against the Distribution of 2012 Home Sales. The left side of the chart represents units sold. The bottom of the chart represents price ranges by the thousands of dollars.

It is said that a healthy real estate market will have six months of inventory. More than six months supply is thought to be a surplus. Less than six months and you are considered to have a shortage of properties for sale. As you can see from this chart comparing current home inventory against 2012 home sales, the Maui Real Estate market is seeing very different dynamics based on price range. The low end of the market is experiencing extremely low supplies of home inventory. Based on last year’s sales rates, there is about one month of supply of homes in the $300,000-$399,000 price range. The numbers are slightly better under $300,000, but that is somewhat deceiving. The supply on the island of Maui is almost nonexistent. Most of the active homes in this range are located on the neighboring islands of Molokai and Lanai. Supplies are still constrained until you get to the $800-900,000 price range. At that point, the supply is a little more than six months of inventory. As you get higher in price, the tables turn considerably. Once you get over $1,000,000, there is over a year of inventory based on last year’s absorption rates. In the price range from $1,750,000-$2,000,000, the supply of homes exceeds two years of inventory. From that price point and higher, you have anywhere between 2 and seven years of inventory depending on price ranges.

It is clear that home buyers looking at prices below the median price point are going to find that market conditions are tight. Selection is limited and well priced properties are being snatched up extremely quickly. Those that are venturing into this part of the market will need to be prepared to act quickly when well priced properties come on the market. The recipes are in place for price increases to occur on the low end. High demand and low supply will do that. That being said, I think there are some barriers in place that will constrain prices from rising too quickly. The biggest barrier is appraisal. Appraisers are a lot more conservative then when they were in the boom market. We have already seen issues with appraisal on properties that experienced competitive bidding.

The numbers above suggest a buyer’s market for luxury homes on Maui. There should be a few caveats to that statement. Not all communities and price points in Maui have the same level of supply. For example, if you look at a place like Wailea there are three homes for sale between $1,000,000 and $1,500,000. There were eight sales in Wailea at that price point last year. That means less than six months of supply in that price range. Where there is high supply, it doesn’t necessarily mean an abundance of motivated sellers. Many of the luxury home owners have significant staying power and may well be able to ride things out until market conditions improve. While there may be some motivated sellers out there, I think the biggest advantage to being a luxury buyer in this market will be the general quality of selection. Another thing to note is that I am using last year’s absorption rate. We are starting to see some anecdotal evidence of increased activity in the luxury market this year. Luxury markets saw improvement on the mainland last year. Typically, we lag behind mainland trends by a few months. If the luxury market is in fact improving, those “years” of inventory could shrink quickly.

A Comparison of the Current Inventory of Condos for Sale on Maui Against Last Year’s Condo Sales at a Variety of Price Points. The left side of the chart represents properties sold. The bottom of the chart represents price ranges by the thousands of dollars.

Looking at the chart above, the condo market is seeing some similar dynamics to the home market. There are tight inventories on the lower price ranges and robust inventories in the luxury markets. Currently, there is less than six months of inventory below $400,000. The inventory is even tighter than it appears below $200,000. A third of the properties listed in that price range are leasehold. There are also quite a few properties from Molokai and Lanai included in that inventory. The market dynamics change quite a bit as you go higher in price. Inventory between $400,000 to $1,000,000 range from a little over six months to a little over a year of inventory. Once you get over $1,250,000 and up into the luxury market, the inventory well exceeds last year’s demand. While there are more condos to choose from in this range, it can be a little more challenging finding motivated sellers. Again, many of the high end condo owners have the deep pockets that allow them to hold out for longer on pricing.

This Chart Compares the Current Inventory of Land for Sale in Maui County vs Last Year’s land Sales by Price Point. The left side of the chart represents units sold. The bottom of the chart represents price ranges by the thousands of dollars.

The land market has been far weaker than the home and condo market since 2007. Limited demand has allowed supplies to stay high. That is reflected in the chart above. The only price range with less than six months of inventory is below $200,000. Once you get above $300,000 there is more than a year of inventory. When you get over $500,000, you have two years of inventory or more depending on specific price points. That being said, November and December of 2012 were the two best months of sales since 2007. If the market were to sustain itself at that level, inventories could start to shrink quickly. I would not be surprised if that happened as buyers have started to explore the land market with fewer options available among the inventory of homes for sale. The other thing to note is that scarcity and abundance vary by community.

In general, the charts above suggest that we will have an interesting 2013 for Maui Real Estate. The limited supply at lower price points in the market may lead to a decrease in sales volume. The tight supply also is creating a dynamic that will result in price increases. Tight supplies and high demand are leading to a lot of bidding wars at the low end. As you go up in price, the overall supply of properties should limit the potential for any price increases. That being said, supply and demand in specific geographies may allow for price increases at higher prices. While the sheer volume of inventory suggests that there may be plenty of opportunities for luxury buyers, I would argue that their biggest advantage is going to be the selection of properties to chose from rather than highly motivated sellers. If you are interested in entering the Maui Real Estate market during 2013, we would welcome the opportunity to discuss your needs. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team today to arrange a free consultation.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Unofficial November 2012 Maui Real Estate Statistics

It’s the most wonderful time of the year according to Andy Williams. I can’t argue with Andy. December is off to a beautiful start on Maui with sunny skies, calm winds, glassy waves, more whale sightings and clear views of Haleakala and the West Maui Mountains. That also means November is done and it is time for me to crunch some numbers and come up with our unofficial November Maui Real Estate Statistics. November was another surprisingly busy month for island real estate. While the fall months are typically the slowest for real estate activity, that hasn’t been the case this year. Here are the numbers I came up with after looking through the sales data followed by some context and analysis of the current Maui Real Estate market conditions.

A Comparison of Real Estate Sales volumes during November 2011 and November 2012 for Maui County, Hawaii
A comparison of real estate sales volumes for Maui County during November 2011 and November 2012

By my count, there were 83 homes sold this November at a median price of $470,000. Last November, there were 76 homes sold at a median price of $422,500. That calculates to a 9% increase in volume and a 13% increase in median prices when comparing the two Novembers.

There have been 96 condos reported sold this November at a median price of $390,945. By comparison, 77 condos were reported sold last November at a median price of $265,000. That is a 25% increase in volume and a 48% increase in median prices between this November and last November.

I counted 22 land sales in Maui county during November of 2012 with a median price of $455,000. By comparison, there were 9 land sales during November 2011 with a median sales price of $505,000. That calculates to a 244% increase in sales volume and a 10% decrease in median prices.

There were quite a few other numbers that I thought were worth sharing from my research compiling these statistics.

  • There were 21 bank owned sales last month. Most of those sales were single family homes, but surprisingly 9 of the 21 were land sales. By comparison, there were 39 bank owned sales in November of 2011. That is a 54% drop in bank owned sales. The lower number of bank owned sales should be a continuing trend with limited numbers of bank owned properties coming on the market.
  • There were 24 short sales that closed successfully last month compared to 22 sales that closed in November of 2011. We are continuing to see a steady supply of short sale closes as banks are working more proactively with homeowners who are delinquent with their mortgage payments.
  • The highest sale for the month was over on the Island of Lanai. A buyer paid $4,150,000 for a 5,227 square foot ocean view home in the Manele Bay area of the island. I will have a little more on Lanai’s market in the discussion below. Last November, the high sale was $3,000,000 for a home in the Pineapple Hill area of Kapalua.
  • There were two homes sold over $2,000,000 in Maui County including the one on Lanai. There were 10 condos sold in Maui County over $1,500,000 this November. By comparison, the November 2011 numbers were 2 homes sold and 4 condos sold above those respective price points.
  • Buyer activity remained strong with 249 properties going under contract during the month of November. This means November 2012 trumped October 2012 for the title of busiest month for new escrows this year. This is actually one of the busiest months in several years. As discussed in Part II of our Unofficial October Stats, this increased activity is a reflection of a shift in the market.

There are quite a few things worthy of discussion in this month’s Maui statistics. First things first, I want to provide a little context on some of these stats. The increase in condo medians is a number that jumps off the screen. This is a dangerous stat that is easy to misinterpret. To be clear, condo values on Maui have not increased by 48%. This is a classic case of medians changing due to big shifts in sales activity at different price ranges. In November 2011, there were ten sales under $100,000. This November, there was only one sale under $100,000. Shrinking inventory at the lowest price ranges combined with modest price increases translates to far fewer sales below $100,000. Conversely, there was an increase in luxury condo sales this month with ten sales over $1,500,000. That compares to four sales over $1,500,000. More high end sales and less low end activity means a bump in median value regardless of what is going on with property values. While there have been some price increases between this year and last in segments of the Maui condo market, those increases in value have been far less than 48%.

The land market is another place that produced eye catching numbers with a 244% increase in sales volume. It is important to keep in mind that part of the reason for the dramatic increase can be attributed to the low number of sales in November 2011. There are some other factors in play as well. We have seen a few small spikes in land market activity over the last couple of years. Most of the spikes could be attributed to buyers responding to values in the market. There were a total of nine bank owned sales in the land market last month, and it can be argued that each of these sales were good comparative values. If the market stays true to recent form, we might expect to see land sales volume dip again next month. That being said, there is a part of me that wonders if we might see more sustained activity in the land market in the coming months. With inventory shrinking on the home market, there may be more buyers looking for alternatives in the land inventory.

As noted above, the high sale of the month for Maui County occurred on the Island of Lanai. In addition to that home sale, three of the ten condo sales over $1,500,000 were in the Manele Bay area of Lanai. When it was announced that Larry Ellison had purchased the island of Lanai, I speculated that there may be an uptick in the Lanai second home market. It appears that this may be coming to fruition and there is something of a Larry effect in play. In the first six months of the year, there was only a single close over $1,000,000. After Mr. Ellison’s purchase, there have been five sales over $1,000,000. Overall, there were 14 properties sold in the first six months before the Ellison announcement, there have been 18 closes in the five months after the announcement with a healthy volume of properties under contract.

The Island of Lanai as seen from Maui

So what is the big picture on Maui? As it stands, it is clear that our slow season has been anything but slow. We are in a period of heightened buyer activity. Limited inventory, low interest rates and improved consumer confidence have stoked the fires of the market and resulted in increased sales volumes. The tighter inventory and increased demand has also resulted in some modest price increases in a lot of different market segments. Homes and condos priced at or below the median sales price are more likely to have seen some upward price pressure. With December marking the start of our peak tourism and real estate seasons, it would appear that the dynamics are in place for a continuation of current trends. In other words, we should see more sales and modest price increases. That being said, there is a pretty big caveat. While it is likely that inventories will remain relatively tight, consumer demand could shift with any economic challenges. With fiscal cliff negotiations still outstanding, there is an air of uncertainty in the economy.

What does that mean for buyers and sellers? If we see a continuation of current conditions, buyers should expect a competitive landscape. Well priced properties will often attract multiple offers. Over asking sales prices are common. Buyers that require financing should absolutely get pre-approved with a lender prior to looking at properties. That will give you a better sense of your budget, and a pre-approval letter is a big help when competing against other buyers. Many sellers are asking for pre-approval letters with offers. Sellers will find an interesting market place. Well priced, well maintained properties are selling quickly. Overpriced properties are languishing with little interest. Sellers should look closely at recent comparable sales when determining go to market pricing. This type of market demands professional, experienced representation. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team for assistance buying or selling Maui Real Estate.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Unofficial June 2012 Maui Real Estate Statistics

With the Fourth of July holiday upon us, it’s time to look back on the June 2012 Maui Real Estate Statistics. June is a busy month for fun events on Maui with the Kapalua Wine and Food Festival, The Maui Film Festival and the Slack Key Guitar Festival. It also happened to be a pretty healthy month for real estate transactions. Both home and condo sales exceeded the numbers we saw during June of 2011. I will have more details on the statistics and a few thoughts on the state of the market in the numbers below. If you are a first time reader of this blog, I want to note that these are my unofficial sales numbers for Maui. They are a sneak peek so to speak before the official Maui Real Estate Statistics are released by the Realtors Association of Maui.

Maui Real Estate Sales Volumes for June 2011and June 2012
A comparison of Real Estate Sales Volumes for Maui County During June 2011 and June 2012

By my calculations, there were 86 homes sold in Maui during June of 2012 at a median price of $575,500. By comparison, the June 2011 numbers were 81 sales at a median of $429,000. That is a 6% increase in volume and a 34% increase in median price when comparing the two Junes.

I counted 121 condos sold on Maui during June of 2012 with a median price of $373,990. The June 2011 numbers were 102 sold at a median of $294,500. That translates to a roughly 19% increase in volume and a 27% increase in median price when comparing June of this year to last year.

I totaled 13 land transactions in June 2012 with a median price of $310,000. By comparison, the June 2011 land sales numbers were 14 sales at a median of $302,000. That translates to a 7% decrease in volume and around a 3% increase in median prices compared to last June.

Last month saw the purchase of 98% of the land area of the Island of Lanai by Oracle CEO Larry Ellison at an undisclosed purchase price. Needless to say, nothing comparable happened during June of 2011.

The Maui Real Estate market has seen the impact of the real estate downturn through price reductions, decreased sales volume and an increase in short sale and bank owned property (REO) transactions. There were a total of 50 REO and short sale transactions last month. Of the 86 homes sold, 25 were REO or short sales. That is roughly 29% of the sales volume. Of the 121 condos sold, 23 were REOs or short sales. That is 19% of the sales volume. Two of the thirteen land sales were bank owned.

The big news for June was the the purchase of 98% of Lanai by Oracle CEO Larry Ellison. Lanai is one of the three inhabited islands of Maui County. The island was at one time primarily owned by Dole Pineapple. In 1961 Castle and Cook bought out Dole and unveiled plans to transform the economy from an agricultural economy to a vacation / luxury resort economy.  In 1985, billionaire David Murdock acquired Castle and Cook and continued the makeover. The Four Seasons Manele Bay and the Four Seasons Lodge at Koele are the primary economic drivers for Lanai which has been hard hit by the recession. It will be interesting to see what will happen with the Lanai Real Estate market which has really struggled over the last few years. There are two segments to that market with the residential housing of Lanai City and the resort residences around Koele and Manele. My guess is that the added publicity may help boost sales volume of Lanai’s second home properties. I am not sure if it will be sufficient to generate any price increases until more is learned of Larry’s Plans. The Lanai City market will hinge more on whether the purchase will boost Lanai’s economy over the long run and provide additional buying power to the island’s residents.

The Island of Lanai as seen from Maui

As for the rest of the market, I think it is easier to say what the stats don’t mean verses what they do mean. Looking at the numbers above, we see a pretty healthy bump in median prices across the board. Is that representative of a significant increase in values? Not from what I am seeing. As reported in recent unofficial stats posts, we are seeing some modest increases in the lower ends of the condo market. The rest of the market is more murky. Some segments are clearly continuing to see price decreases. Other segments are neutral on value. While others are seeing a continued slow downward trend, with a smattering of outlier sales that may be above recent comparable sales.

Does this month’s increase in condo and home sales figures serve as a harbinger of future increases in market activity? I think that is a stretch. We have seen a fair amount of month to month to variability. We have also seen a steady drop in the number of properties that are pending over the last couple of months. That would suggest fewer rather than more closes for the rest of the summer.

If there is one dynamic that is having an increased impact on the market, it is a lack of inventory. It has been surmised that the decrease in inventory might lead to an increase in the stability of prices and/or price increases. I think that is part of what we are seeing on the low end of the condo pricing spectrum. As you go up in price range, we aren’t seeing the price increases although it seems to be helping to stabilize prices. At this point, I would suggest that the reduced inventory is having a bigger impact on sales volume. Limited inventory is frustrating some buyers. Buyers are waiting for the right opportunities that come on the market. They aren’t just snapping up anything that goes on the market or reaching on overpriced inventory. In order for sales to increase, we are going to need a broader pool of well priced inventory to meet buyer demand.

The question on everyone’s minds is when and if we may see an influx of new listings. The bank owned, shadow inventory has long been discussed, but yet to be seen. Will we see it this summer? There are a couple of factors that suggest that some of these bank owned properties might come out of the shadows and on to the market. It is thought that the banks will release more inventory this summer now that they have settled on the robosigning issues. Locally, the foreclosure moratorium associated with ACT 48 is also sun setting. Perhaps, one or both may help bolster the number of properties on the market and satisfy some of the pent-up demand.

What does this all mean for buyers and sellers? Buyers can find good opportunities, but patience and preparedness are paramount. If you require financing, get pre-approved prior to your search. That helps you establish a budget that will keep you focused on properties within your means. Even better, it puts you in a position to submit an offer quickly when the right opportunity does come on the market. Sellers reading the paragraphs above might be inclined to think that the market has shifted into their favor. I can’t say that is necessarily the case. Sellers still need to be mindful of comparable sales when determining their go to market prices. If they have the means, sellers may also want to hire home inspectors prior to listing to help identify deal breakers that could scare off contracted buyers. This market now more than ever requires expert real estate consultation. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team for prompt, professional and expert service if you are considering buying or selling Maui Real Estate.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Happy Aloha Friday

It has been a little bit of a showery Aloha Friday over much of Maui. Showers even spilled over into leeward West Maui.

Other parts of Maui remained under sunny skies.

While we always welcome a few showers, it is good to hear that the heavier clouds and showers should dissipate tonight into tomorrow. That should make for better viewing of tomorrow’s Super Moon on Maui. Here is to everyone having a great weekend.

Pete Jalbert