Maui Real Estate Blog

Maui Real Estate in the Time of Covid-19

March 26, 2020

With Maui under a stay at home order, I thought this might be an opportunity to get back into the swing of things with the blog. It is only appropriate to start these efforts by looking at the current impact of Covid-19 on Maui and the Maui Real Estate market.

What is the Current Impact on Maui?

As mentioned above, the Mayor of Maui County issued a stay at home order. The order closed non-essential business. Schools are shuttered through April 30th. Tourism is for all intents and purposes shut down. Last week, the governor requested that vacationers postpone their visits to Hawaii. Hawaiian Airlines made plans to stop long haul service to the islands. As a result, there was a substantial drop off in passengers flying in to Hawaii. The governor now requires residents and visitors flying from outside of Hawaii to quarantine for fourteen days.

This week, a number of the island’s large resorts announced that they would be closing their doors through the end of April. The fields of unused rental cars outside the airport are a surreal byproduct of the drop in visitors. Needless to say, the closures also idled a substantial chunk of the local workforce. This will be a tough time financially for quite a few Maui residents.

Fortunately, Covid-19 is not widespread on the island at this time. Local authorities reported the first case on island on the 14th of March. On Monday, the district health office began drive through testing in Wailuku. As of today, Civilbeat is reporting 14 cases on island. At this time, none of the cases locally stem from community transmission. Hopefully, the stay at home measures keep those totals low going forward.

What is the Impact to Date on The Maui Real Estate Market?

Needless to say, the Maui Real Estate Market has not been immune to Covid-19. On February 26th, there were 630 properties under contract on island. That was the highest number yet for this market cycle. As of today, the number of pending sales stands at 497 properties. This drop can be attributed to a variety of reasons.

This chart shows pendings vs sold on a monthly basis for Maui since January 2019. The number of pending sales dropped substantially this month due to the impact of Covid 19 on Maui.

First and foremost, a number of the properties under contract in February have since closed. There are still properties going under contract, but those numbers have dwindled. New pending sales are happening at a much lower rate than closed transactions. Last but not least, we are seeing some deals cancel. I don’t have accurate numbers, but anecdotally I am seeing a couple of cancellations happen on a daily basis.

Are We Showing Property Right Now?

Real Estate agents are deemed non-essential workers under the current stay at home/ work at home decree. While our local Realtor association has not mandated that we stop showings, they did recommend that all open houses, in person showings and caravans cease.  Even prior to the stay at home order, some sellers were opting out of showings. The best bet for those who really want to see a property is to inquire as to whether the property has a good video or 3D tour. For examples, check out our 3D tour of the Cottage by The Sea in Wailuku or this video tour of the Haiku Sanctuary.

Are Buyers Still Submitting Offers?

As mentioned above, we are seeing properties go under contract. Our office put one of our listings under contract today. There are some buyers putting in sight unseen offers. Our office received a sight unseen offer on a listing a couple of days ago. It will be interesting to see how much the stay at home order impacts additional contracts going forward. I have seen quite a few sellers decide to pull their listing off the market. Some of that may be due to the lack of opportunity to show their property. Some may stem from general concerns about showing their property.

During this period of social distancing, contracts can be put together without a face to face meeting. Docusign was already a key part of our day to day business prior to the pandemic. Buyers and sellers should be aware that they may also need to sign a Coronavirus Addendum. There is no standardized Coronavirus addendum for purchase contracts as of yet. That said, individual brokerages are creating their own addenda. Most of these addenda are a variation of a force majeure clause that allows for extensions or cancellation due to circumstances out of a buyer or seller’s control.

What About Deals That are Under Contract?

As mentioned above, we are seeing both cancellations and sales. While there are additional challenges, it is still possible to close a transaction. The biggest hurdles involve any contingency or contract term that involves visits to a property. A transaction typically includes a visit from a home inspector, an appraiser, and a termite inspector. Home and land sales will typically include a surveyor.

An unoccupied property is going to have fewer issues than an occupied property for third party visits. I have seen one e-mail from a home inspector this week indicating they are still doing inspections. That said, the inspector outlined new protocols including one that prohibits the buyer from attending the inspection. Title companies are trying to do as much of the signing as possible via docusign. In person signings that require wet ink signatures include social distancing measures. One local title company is even offering a drive through signing process.

Future Impacts and Updates

At this point, I think it is far too early to begin prognosticating about the overall impact that Covid 19 will have on the Maui Real Estate market. A lot of really smart economists are scratching their heads as to what the future holds. For that matter, there are a lot of really smart medical professionals and researchers trying to wrap their arms around controlling this pandemic. There is just a whole lot of uncertainty in our world.

I will try to take advantage of my time at home to keep providing updates on events on the island, the local real estate market and the overall real estate market. Contact the Maui Real Estate Team if you have any questions on the Maui Real Estate market. We are here to help. Until the next update, I hope everyone stays safe and healthy. Stay home and flatten the curve!

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Ultimate Waterman’s House in Spreckeslville

This home is Spreckelsville would be a dream property for a water person. The home’s deeded beach access to Spreckelsville Beach is ideal for windsurfers, stand up paddlers or those that just enjoy an afternoon dip or feeling the sand beneath their toes. There are neighborhoods where people own golf carts due to the proximity to the local golf course. While this home is close to the Maui Country Club, residents of this neighborhood own their golf carts to haul all of their water toys to the beach. The video below featuring Kai Lenny illustrates the home’s convenience to the beach.

The allure of Spreckelsville goes beyond the beach. In addition to access to water sports and the aforementioned Maui Country Club, it is 5 minutes to downtown Paia, five minutes to the airport and 5-15 minutes from the medical facilities, the Maui Arts and Cultural Center, the University of Hawaii Maui College, shopping and other amenities of Central Maui.

The single level, four bedroom, two bath home itself is impressive in its own right. The home features a big open floor plan with ten foot ceilings. It has extensive covered lanai space that is well suited to enjoying the indoor/outdoor lifestyle of Hawaii. The builder incorporated quality materials and features including granite counter tops, stainless steel appliances, crown molding, central a/c, a security system, a 4.2 KWh photovoltaic system, solar hot water and a hot tub. In addition to the main home; there is a detached, 899 square foot, 3 car garage with an upstairs 797 square foot bonus room. There is also a 600 square foot stand alone yoga studio. The .9 acre lot is beautifully landscaped and kept green via an automatic irrigation system.

This home is co-listed with Big Wave Realty with an asking price of $2,895,000. Check out the 1050 Kapukaulua listing page for additional photos and details. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team to arrange a preview of the property.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

The Numbers-A Rundown on the 2014 Maui Real Estate Statistics

Today’s blog is a look at the numbers for the 2014 Maui Real Estate Market. We give you the total sales volumes and the medians by property types. We also delve a little deeper looking at notable sales, communities that saw more activity and other noteworthy numbers from the past year.

This chart compares the Maui Real Estate Sales Volumes for Homes, Condos and Land in 2014 and 2013.

There were 941 homes sold in Maui during 2014 with a median sales price of $570,000. In 2013, there were 983 homes sold with a median price of $530,000. That is roughly a 4% drop in volume and roughly an 8% increase in median price.

There were 1,197 condos sold in Maui County during 2014 at a median price of $414,750. By comparison, there were 1,339 condos sold in Maui during 2013 with a median sales price of $374,000. That is an 11% drop in volume and an 11% increase in median price.

Maui Realtors reported 166 lots sold in Maui County during 2014 with a median price of $520,000. Last year, there were 219 lots sold at a median price of $399,000. That is a 24% drop in volume and a 33% increase in median price.

There are other notable numbers that are worth sharing from the 2014 Maui Real Estate Sales. Here are some of the highlights.

    • The highest priced home sale this year was $9,300,000 for an oceanfront estate at Makena Place. This beautiful home has four beds, four and a half baths and over 4,000 square feet of living space.
    • That was one of 61 homes sold over $2,000,000 in 2014 and one of 15 sales over $5,000,000. In 2013, there were 47 sales over $2,000,000 with 12 of those sales priced over $5,000,000. That is an increase of almost 30% on homes over $2,000,000 and 25% for homes over $5,000,000.
    • The Wailea and Makena area was the busiest market for high end sales with 14 closes over $2,000,000.
    • On the other end of the spectrum, the lowest priced transaction in 2014 was $1 for a leasehold bank owned home on Molokai. The lease for the home was set to expire in December.
    • Kihei was the busiest community for home sales in all price ranges. There were 171 homes sold by Realtors in Kihei during 2014.
    • The total dollar volume of homes sold was $818,163,161. In 2014, there was $773,479,738 of homes sold in Maui County. That is roughly a 6% increase in the total value of homes sold when comparing this year to last year and the highest dollar volume over the last five years.
    • The 941 homes sold was the second highest annual total sales volume over the last five years behind 2013.

This chart compares the annual volume of homes sold in Maui County over the last five years.

    • The highest priced condo sale was $8,250,000 for a four bedroom, four and a half bath unit at the Montage Residences Kapalua Bay. That condo has an impressive 4,050 square feet of living space.
    • That was one of 83 condos sold over $1,500,000. Of the 83 condos sold, an impressive 13 were over $4,000,000 in price. In 2013, there were 76 condos sold over $1,500,000 with 9 of those sales over $4,000,000. That is a 9% increase in condos over $1,500,000 and a 44% increase in condos over $4,000,000.
    • Honua Kai saw the most high end sales activity with 27 closes over $1,500,000. It also led the way for overall sales with 73 total transactions for 2014.
    • The lowest priced condo sale on Maui in 2014 was $39,500 for a two bedroom, one and a half bath condo at Harbor Lights.
    • The town of Kihei saw the most condo sales activity with 428 total units sold.
    • The total dollar volume of condos sold in Maui County during 2014 was $751,850,728. That is down from the $764,301,283 worth of condos sold in 2013. That is roughly a 2% decrease in dollar volume. The 2014 total was the second highest dollar volume over the last five years.

      This chart shows the volume of Condo Sales in Maui County during the last five years.
    • The 1,197 condos sold in 2014 was the third highest annual total over the last five years.
    • The highest priced land transaction of 2014 was for a parcel of beachfront land in Ka’anapali. The .87 acre lot sold for $6,900,000.
    • That was one of 25 parcels of land sold for over $1,000,000 in 2014. In 2013, there were 28 parcels of land sold for over $1,000,000. That is an 11% decrease.
    • Wailea and Makena had the most activity with five sales over $1,000,000.
    • The lowest priced land sale was $35,000 for a 1/4 acre lot on Molokai.
    • Ka’anapali had the most land sales activity with 27 total lots sold in 2014
    • The total dollar volume for =lots sold in Maui County during 2014 was $119,330,445. That is down approximately 23% from last year’s total of $155,596,747. The 2014 total was the second highest total dollar volume of the last five years behind 2013.
    • The 166 lots sold was the third highest annual total in the last five years.

      This chart compares the last five years of land sales volume in Maui County.
  • There were 115 bank owned properties that closed in 2014. That was down 5% from the 121 bank owned properties that sold in 2013.
  • There were 97 successful short sale transactions completed in 2013. That is down 56% from the 220 short sale transactions that were completed in 2013. This isn’t a big surprise with the equity position of more and more sellers improving.

That’s it for the notable numbers from the 2014 Maui Real Estate market. If you missed it, you can check out our post “Four Trends That We Saw in the 2014 Maui Real Estate Market.” We still have more 2014 year end stats posts coming with additional numbers and analysis of individual condos, neighborhoods and communities from around the island. Stay tuned…

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Four Trends That We Saw in The Maui Real Estate Market in 2014

With the year coming to an end, I wanted to take a few minutes to highlight four trends that I saw in the 2014 Maui real estate market. I also wanted to give a few thoughts on what was the driving force behind those trends and my predictions on what trends may continue or emerge in 2015.

Shrinking Inventory at The Entry Level
Housing options at the lowest price points of the market have been steadily shrinking over the last 18 months. There are fewer lower priced distressed properties and rapid appreciation during 2013 meant a lot fewer options for buyers interested in getting their foot in the door. For those looking for a home, inventory under $400,000 is becoming exceedingly rare with limited options all the way up to $500,000. In the condo market, the options under $200,000 are becoming increasingly scarce. It is getting harder to find vacation rental condos under $300,000.

Slowing Condo Sales Volume
The total number of condos sold this year is going to be down roughly 12% below what we saw last year. After a couple of particularly slow sales months earlier this fall, I took a look at what may be driving the drop. In my September Maui Real Estate Statistics, I analyzed the distribution of sales via price point and found that the biggest drop in sales was occurring at the bottom of the market. This would appear to suggest that the drop in sales activity has been largely driven by an absence of inventory.

Slowing Rates of Price Appreciation
During 2013, the Maui Real Estate market saw segments that experienced extremely strong rates of appreciation. There were some entry level condos that rose in value as much as 80% over bottom of the market prices. Entry level homes saw more modest appreciation, but there were some communities that saw prices jump 20% or more in 2013 alone. With the last downturn still fresh in many buyers minds, I think some buyers are wary the market won’t be able to sustain the same levels of appreciation. I also think the jump in values of 2013 pushed the market beyond some buyers means. That makes it not much of a surprise that we saw slower rates of appreciation this year. That was most evident in entry level condos where prices have seen very limited increases in value this year.

Continued Strength in the Luxury Market
The luxury home and condo market saw continued improvement in 2014. Condo sales over $1,500,000 were up 9% over 2013. The luxury condo market was bolstered by heightened activity at the Honua Kai Resort and the popularity of the Montage Residences on Kapalua Bay. Luxury home sales over $2,000,000 had an even stronger year with roughly a 30% increase in sales activity. Another strong year in the stock market and overall improved economic conditions helped bolster luxury market activity.

Now that we have covered the four major trends that I saw in 2014, what trends do I expect to see in 2015? I expect all four trends noted above continuing into 2015. Entry market buyers are unlikely to see an influx of new listings to satiate the considerable demand for more affordable housing options. I would imagine that limited entry level inventory will keep continue to impact condo sales volumes. I am not sure if that will result in a continued decrease in activity or similar demand to what we saw this year. I would lean towards the latter. I don’t expect 2015 to be a year of double digit price increases. The one X factor could be the introduction of a broader pool of buyers due to lowered down payment requirements by Fannie and Freddie. That may boost demand a little which in turn could impact pricing.

I would expect that the luxury market will continue to perform well based on positive economic forecasts. Luxury buyers should have lots of new inventory to choose from with more units available at Montage and Honua Kai. There are two new condo developments expected to hit the market in Wailea. Last but not least, Discovery Development should be starting sales of their properties down in Makena.

One last thing that I think will be worth watching in 2015 is the impact of foreign buyers on the market. In particular, I suspect that we are likely to see fewer Canadians buying in the Maui market. Maui has been an extremely popular locale for Canadian second home buyers due to the recent strength of the Canadian Dollar. With the Looney slipping in value and the Alberta oil economy slowing due to shrinking gas prices, I would expect we may see a few less Canadian buyers.

It will be interesting to take a look back at the end of 2015 to see if my predictions come to fruition. In the interim, stay tuned to the Maui Real Estate Blog. I will have a whole lot more stats and market analysis for the island as a whole, specific communities and even neighborhoods. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team if you have questions about the market or you would like to discuss your real estate needs.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Maui Real Estate 2013 Midyear Update

We have just passed the midway point of 2013. Thus far, this has proven to be a busy year for the Maui Real Estate market. I give a few thoughts on the first six months of the year as well as some thoughts on what we may see during the second half of 2013 in my video commentary below. Below the commentary, you will find specific details on the midyear Maui Real Estate stats.

This Chart Compares Maui Real Estate Sales Volumes for Homes, Condos and Land during the First Half of 2013 and the First Half of 2012

By my count, there were 479 homes sold in the first six months of 2013 with a median price of $542,000. In the first half of 2012, there were 439 homes sold with a median price of $450,000. That is a 9% increase in sales volume and a 20% increase in median price when comparing the first half of 2013 to the first half of 2012.

Thus far there have been 672 condos sold during the first half of 2013 with a median sales price of $372,990. In the first six months of 2012, there were a total of 668 condos sold with a median price of $351,495. That is for all intents and purpose no significant change in sales volume with a 6% increase in median price when comparing the two time periods.

There were a total of 97 land sales in Maui County during the first six months of 2013 with a median sales price of $450,000. During the first half of 2012, there were 80 land sales with a median sales price of $352,500. That calculates to a 21% increase in sales volume and almost a 28% increase in median prices.

A Comparison of Bank Owned (REO) sales during the first half of 2013 with sales during 2012. You can see a sharp drop which reflects the big drop in bank owned inventory

Maui has seen a big decrease in inventory below the median price points of the market. One of the reasons for decreased inventory has been a reduction in the number of bank owned (REO) properties on the market. That is evidenced by the reduction in the number of bank owned sales that closed in the first six months of the year.

There were 37 REO home sales in the first half of 2013. During the first half of 2012 there were 96 REO homes sold. That is a 61% reduction in bank owned sales.

There were 18 bank owned condo sales in the first half of 2013. During the first half of 2012, there were 72 bank owned condo sales. That is a 75% reduction in REO condo sales.

There were 7 REO land transactions in the first half of 2013. During the first six months of 2012, there were 11 REO land sales. That is a 36% reduction in bank owned land sales.

This chart compares the sales of luxury properties on Maui during the first half of 2012 and 2013. The price thresholds we established for luxury properties are $2,000,000 and above for homes, $1,500,000 and above for condos and $1,000,000 and above for land. We recognize that this is a pretty high standard with quite a few luxurious properties priced below these numbers We may be better served calling this the ultra luxury market.

During 2012, we actually saw a dip in sales activity in the luxury property market. The dip was particularly strong among luxury condo sales. This was a little bit of a surprise in light of an overall increase in home, condo and land sales from the year before. The first six months of 2013 showed renewed interest in the luxury market as all three segments saw improvements over the first half of 2012.

By my count, there were 25 homes priced $2,000,000 higher sold in Maui during the first six months of 2012. That is a modest 4% increase over the 24 luxury homes sold in the first six months of 2012.

There were 31 condo sales over $1,500,000 during the first six months of 2013. That is a 41% increase over the 22 sold during the first half of 2012.

There were 20 land sales of $1,000,000 or more during the first six months of 2013. That is a 122% increase over the 9 lots sold during the first half of 2012.

Here were a few other notes and numbers from the Maui luxury property market during the first six months of 2012.

  • The highest priced home sale was $9,700,000 for an oceanfront estate in Kapalua.
  • The Wailea and Makena real estate market was the busiest area for luxury home sales. There were 8 sales in Wailea and five in Makena. The Wailea Golf Estates neighborhood had more $2,000,000 or greater sales than most other communities on the island with 4 total sales.
  • The highest priced condo sale was $4,450,000 for a 3bedroom/three bath unit at the Honua Kai Resort on the north end of Airport Beach in Ka’anapali.
  • Ka’anapali was the second most active community for luxury condo sales with 12 total closes over $1,500,000. The Wailea and Makena market was the busiest with 16 closes.
  • Wailea Point was the most active individual condo complex with 6 closes followed by Honua Kai and Ka’anapali Ali’i with 5 closes each.
  • The highest priced land sale was $10,000,000 for 159 acres in Makena.

If you have any questions or observations on these stats, don’t hesitate to leave us a comment or feel free to contact us directly. Stay tuned to The Maui Real Estate Blog for midyear market updates from some selected communities around the island.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Sneak Peek June 2013 Maui Real Estate Statistics

The Fourth of July is just two days away. I can already taste the gluten free apple pie, smell hot dogs on the grill and visualize the star bursts of fireworks in the night sky. Of course, that means another month is in the books for the Maui Real Estate market. This month’s sneak peek at the June Maui Real Estate Estate market is coming to you from the mainland where I am visiting friends and family. There is a lot to report this month as the end of June also marks the midway point of 2013. It is a good time to gauge overall market trends. Since I am also trying to balance some vacation time, I am going to break down my commentary into bite sized chunks. Today, I wanted to take a look at the June sales numbers followed by a brief commentary. In the next couple of days, I will take a broader look at the year to date with a video commentary. Last month, I posted my first video commentary on the Maui Market. I had pretty good feedback so we are going to make that a more regular feature on the blog. Without further ado, here is my sneak peek at the June 2013 Maui Real Estate Statistics.

This Table Compares Real Estate Sales Volumes for Homes, Condos and Land in Maui County During the Months of June 2012 and June 2013

This Chart shows the Relatively Similar Real Estate Sales Volumes During June of 2013

By my count, there were 85 homes sold at a median price of $618,000 during June of 2013. By comparison, there were 86 homes sold at a median price of $575,500 during June of 2012. That calculates to a 1% decrease in home sales volume and a 7% increase in home median price when comparing the two Junes.

To date, Maui Realtors have reported 124 condo sales at a median price of $390,000 during June of 2013. In June of 2012, there were a total of 122 condo sales reported with a median price of $372,990. That equates to approximately a 1.6% increase in condo sales volume and a 4.5% increase in the median condo price.

The June 2013 land sales totaled 17 with a median price of $469,260. Last June, there were 13 sales reported with a median price of $352,500. That calculates to approximately a 31% increase in land sales volume and a 33% increase in land median price when comparing this June to last June.

Here are a few other tidbits I found while compiling the numbers above.

  • The Median Sales price for homes on Maui rose over $600,000 for the first time since 2008. The increase in medians is due to a combination of an increase in home values and a shift in price ranges where sales activity is occurring. With fewer homes for sale at entry level price ranges, it makes sense that the mid-point for sales is that much higher.
  • The higher median sales price came despite a modest month of activity in the ultra luxury home market. There were four sales over $2,000,000 last month. By comparison, last June there were 9 home sales over $2,000,000. I will have more on the Maui luxury home market in the mid-year update.
  • The highest sales price for a single family home in June was $5,790,000 for a luxurious home in Wailea Golf Estates.
  • The highest sales price for a condo was $3,725,000 for a unit at Wailea Point.
  • The Wailea Point condo was one of four condos sold for over $1,500,000. Last June, there were three condo sales over $1,500,000.
  • The high sales price for land was $10,000,000 for 159 acres in Makena.
  • There were only 4 bank owned or REO sales last month. There were 27 REO sales last June. This was the slowest month for bank owned sales dating back to 2008.

After May 2013 clearly outpaced May of 2012, the June 2013 and June 2012 Maui Real Estate Sales volumes were strikingly similar. There were only five more properties sold in June of 2013 than June of 2012. That being said, the market feels a lot stronger now then it did last June. We really didn’t start to feel the market kick into another gear until early fall of 2012. If the market is stronger, why isn’t there more sales activity? The answer lies with the inventory or lack thereof. The bottom third of the market has really seen a contraction of available listings. The combination of owners who are still underwater or have limited equity, the big reduction in bank owned activity and strong demand from both first time home buyers and investors make it a challenge to find homes in these bottom price ranges.

The decrease in bank owned sales has been steady over the last year. That being said, it was still surprising to see only one bank owned home close and three REO condos close in all of June. The steady shrinking of inventory doesn’t necessarily mean that we won’t see future inventory. There are still homes that are going through the judicial foreclosure process that will come to market at some point in the next year or two. The number that will eventually hit the market is something of an unknown. Some owners may resolve their debts with lienholders or complete a short sale. We also continue to hear that some of the bank inventory is being purchased by institutional investors before going to the open market. Buyers who are laser focused on just bank owned properties may find limited options and stiff competition.

Stay tuned to the Maui Real Estate Blog over the next couple of days for our mid 2013 Maui Real Estate market report. We will take a look at the first six months of 2013, compare them to the first six months of 2012 and give a few thoughts on the outlook for buyers and sellers for the rest of 2013. We hope to give a few community specific mid year updates a little later in the month. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team with questions or for for a free consultation to discuss your Maui real estate needs.

Pete Jalbert