Maui Real Estate Blog

December 2015 Maui Real Estate Statistics

If prompt and punctual blogging was my New Year’s resolution were my New Year’s resolution, I would have already failed. I am a little slow out of the gates this year. The good news is that the delay is due to a busy start to the year with clients. If you have already seen the December Maui Real Estate stats elsewhere, there is still reason to keep reading. We report on a few things that other outlets don’t, and we don’t treat fluctuations in median prices with breathless hyperbole. Without further ado, here are the December 2015 numbers.

December Maui Real Estate Sales Volumes and Median Prices

This chart compares the Maui County Real Estate Sales Volumes in December of 2014 and December of 2015

There were 93 homes sold on Maui in the last month of 2015 with a median sales price of $550,000. By comparison, there were 63 homes sold during the last month of 2014 with a median sales price of $565,000. That is almost a 48% increase in sales activity and a 3% decrease in median price.

There were 101 condos sold in December with a median price of $410,000. Last December there were 125 condos sold with a median price of $380,000. That is roughly a 20% drop in sales activity and an 8% increase in median prices.

There were 16 lots sold with a median price of $281,750 in December of 2015. In December of 2014, there were 12 lots sold with a median price of $650,000. That is a 33% increase in sales volume and a 57% drop in median price.

Notable Numbers from the December Maui Sales
While compiling median prices and sales volumes, I came across some other notable numbers from the December Maui Real Estate Sales activity.

  • The highest priced home sale was for an oceanfront property on Front Street in Lahaina. The 3 bedroom, 3 bath home with 3,747 square feet of living space sold for $4,375,000.
  • That was one of four home sales over $2,000,000 in December. The other three sales included another oceanfront home on Front Street and two closes in Kula.
  • The highest priced condo transaction was for a three bedroom, three and a half bath unit at Montage Kapalua Bay. That 2,789 square foot condo sold for $4,625,000.
  • That was one of eight total condo sales over $1,500,000. The other closes included one sale at the the Ritz Carlton Residences and two sales each at Wailea Point, Wailea Beach Villas and Puamana.
  • the highest priced residential land transaction was $1,100,000 for 67 acres in lower Kula. There was also a commercial land transaction that closed in Kahului for $1,510,000.
  • There were 18 REO or bank owned transactions that closed in December of 2015. That was up from 13 REO sales in December of 2014. There were only 2 short sale transactions in December compared to 4 last December.

December Maui Pending Real Estate Sales
December is usually a pretty quiet month for properties going under contract. Many buyers will put their home buying on hold while they negotiate the already hectic holidays. Maui tends to see a slight uptick at the end of the month when an island filled with holiday visitors means more potential buyers.

This chart compares the number of properties that went pending in Maui County During December 2015 with the number of pending sales in 2014.

This December, we saw a little more home buying activity. I would surmise that there are two factors at play. Buyers trying to lock in rates at the beginning of the month before the fed rate increase, and buyers who kept their focus looking for new listings in an otherwise limited inventory.

This is another shorter than usual stats post. I want to save the analysis for some forthcoming 2015 overviews. Stay tuned for those posts in the next week. In the meantime, please contact The Maui Real Estate Team if you have any questions about the stats or buying and selling Maui Property. We would welcome the opportunity to sit down with you and learn more about your real estate needs for 2016.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Maui Luxury Condo Market Update

Earlier this month, we took a look at Maui’s Luxury Home Market. Today, I wanted to turn my sights towards the high end condominium market. This post will include totals on all of the condos sold for the year to date (as of September 20), notable numbers from this year’s sales, and market conditions specific to the three resort areas of Wailea/Makena, Ka’anapali and Kapalua.

When we have discussed luxury condos on our blog, we have used the $1,500,000 and above price point as the threshold for pricing. When we first started to look at the luxury condo market, that was something of a starting point for some of the really high end condos. To be clear, there are some very nice condos below this price point. That said, we want to be consistent with our methodology. So all properties discussed in this particular blog sold for $1,500,000 or more.

Maui Luxury Condo Sales Volume and Median Price
There were 69 condos sold thus far this year as of September 23, 2015. The median price for those sales was $2,250,000. Between January 1, 2014 and September 23, 2014, there were 63 sales at a median price of $2,575,000. That is roughly a 10% increase in volume and a 13% decrease in median price.

Notable Luxury Condo Sales Numbers for the Year to Date.
Here are some of the most noteworthy numbers from the luxury condo sales this year.

  • The highest priced condo to sell thus far this year closed for $8,500,000. This is a three bedroom, three and a half bath, beachfront unit with 2,919 square feet of living space at Wailea Beach Villas.
  • Including the sale at Wailea Beach Villas, there were a total of 12 condos sold over $4,000,000.
  • Honua Kai saw the most sales activity of any condo complex on the island. There were a total of 20 sales at Honua Kai over $1,500,000 including 11 new developer sales.
  • The Wailea and Makena Market saw the most sales activity over $1,500,000 with a total of 28 sales. Kaanapali saw the second most activity and Kapalua was third.
  • In addition to the sales activity in the major resort markets, there was one sale in Lahaina, one in Kihei, one in Spreckelsville and two on Lanai.
  • There were no bank owned condos or short sale transactions among this year’s sales

Wailea and Makena Condos
Wailea and Makena have had a good year for sales to date. The 28 sales reported exceeded last year’s total of 20. That is a 40% increase in activity. Much of that increase in activity occurred in Makena. While there was only one sale in Makena during the same period last year, this year there were 6 sales. Five of the six Makena sales were at Makena Surf. The remaining sale was at Na Hale O Makena. This was a particularly busy year for Makena Surf with the five sales reported thus far more than any year since 2004.

The Wailea sales over $1,500,000 were spread out among a variety of complexes. There were 7 sales at Hoolei, 1 at Andaz, 2 at Kai Malu, 1 at Papali, 1 at Wailea Ekahi, 3 at Wailea Elua, 3 at Wailea Beach Villas and 3 at Wailea Point. Hoolei continues to lead the way in high end sales in Wailea. The size of the condos combined with their price point and the potential to access amenities at the Grand Wailea continues to be an attractive option to buyers. While Wailea Beach Villas did not have the same sales volume, it was noteworthy for the fact that it had the top two highest priced condo sales on the island thus far this year.

This chart compares looks at the sales in Wailea for the year to date compared with the current active inventory on the MLS.

It will be interesting to see what happens in the Wailea and Makena market for the rest of the year and into 2016. There is still a good selection of variety to choose from on the MLS. There is plenty of active inventory on the MLS with 40 condos on the market. There are unlisted properties available at Andaz and the new Keala O Wailea development. There is also a chance that we might see pre-construction sales at Makali’i at Wailea before the end of the year. You can see all of the current Wailea and Makena Condos listed on the MLS on Contact The Maui Real Estate Team if you have questions on any of the unlisted properties.

Kaanapali Condos
The Ka’anapali Condo market has also had a fairly strong year with 26 sales reported to date. That is down 7% from the 28 units sold during the same period last year. The Ka’anapali market has been buoyed over the last several years by activity at the Honua Kai Resort. Honua Kai has been a big draw as the first fee simple whole ownership new development along this stretch of coast for over 20 years. Of the 26 condos sold in Ka’anapali for $1,500,000 or more, 20 were at Honua Kai. Ka’anapali Ali’i has had 5 sales thus far this year. There was also one sale at the Masters.

This chart compares the year to date sales in the Kaanapali area with the current inventory of Kaanapali listings on the MLS.

The Ka’anapali luxury condo market is starting to see shrinking inventory with only 20 active listings over $1,500,000. A big part of that stems from Honua Kai. The developer is getting close to selling out their remaining units. There are only 3 new developer listings left on the MLS. I believe there are still a handful of additional new developer units in addition to those posted on the MLS. There are only three units active at Ka’anapali Ali’i with the remaining listings located at Ka’anapali Shores and the Whaler. It will be interesting to see if the dwindling inventory at Honua Kai will have an impact on places like the Whaler and Ka’anapali Shores. Buyers have shown a preference for the newer Honua Kai Condos leading to depressed sales at the other places. Will some of the older condos nearby start to see an uptick in activity? You can see the full inventory of Kaanapali Condos listed on the MLS via

Kapalua Condos
The Kapalua Market has seen pretty similar activity levels to what we saw last year. There have been 10 sales reported in the year to date this year. There were 9 sales reported over the same period last year. The focal point for luxury condo sales in Kapalua has been the Montage Residences on Kapalua Bay. Montage came on the market last June. This property was formerly the Ritz Carlton Residences. The Ritz Residences went into foreclosure and the property was purchased by Lantern Capital. Lantern appointed Montage to manage and revamp the property. Montage has seen steady sales since it has come on the market despite pricing that starts in the mid three million dollar range. There have been 8 sales reported at Montage thus far this year.

The other notable sale was at Ritz Carlton Residences. To be clear, this is a different animal from the Ritz Residences Kapalua Bay that was previously foreclosed upon. These condos are part of the Ritz Carlton Hotel. The Ritz condos had been on the market closer to the downturn and weren’t getting as much traction. They are back under the market with a new sales team. It will be interesting to see how these condos are received by the market going forward. From what I have heard, they are getting a pretty good response.

While the two new developments have been relatively well received, some of the older complexes have seen slower activity. High end Kapalua condos like Coconut Grove and the Ironwoods are traditionally condos that see limited inventory and limited sales volume. There was one sale in the Ironwoods this year. Kapalua Bay Villas is a condo that seems to be getting poor market feedback by luxury buyers. There have been 4 sales over $1,500,000 at Bay Villas since 2009. There are currently 7 active listings in the complex with none pending. It appears as if sellers in this complex may need to adjust pricing if they are going to generate interest from buyers.

This chart compares the year to date sales vs the active MLS inventory for condos in the Kapalua Resort.

For the rest of the year, I would anticipate that we will continue to see activity at Montage and the Ritz. Buyers in Kapalua have a good selection of inventory to choose from. You can see the full inventory of Kapalua Condos on the MLS on Contact The Maui Real Estate Team directly if you would like us to assist you with buyer representation at either the Montage or the Ritz. There is more inventory available at both of those condos than what is showing on the MLS.

Other Condo Sales Around the Island
In addition to the activity at the resort communities, there have been a handful of sales from other communities around the island. There was one sale in Spreckelsville at Sugar Cove, one in Lahaina at Puamana and one at the Royal Mauian in Kihei. There were also two sales over on Lanai including one at the Terraces at Manele and the other was at the Palms at Manele. The two Lanai purchases were both Larry Ellison buys as he continues to expand his holdings on the island. We tend to see limited activity on higher priced condos outside the main resort areas not so much due to lack of demand as it is a lack of inventory. There are only a handful of condos outside the resorts that can sustain prices of $1,500,000 or greater and they tend not to have a ton of inventory.

Overall Thoughts on the Maui Luxury Condo Market
Buyers still have a great collection of condos to choose from around the island. There are both new development opportunities and condo resales in more established condominiums. While the depth of the inventory may provide options, sellers in this price range tend to have more staying power. The challenge is finding potentially motivated sellers who might want or need to redeploy their money elsewhere.

I would expect that the luxury condo market will continue to be perform at or near the levels we have seen for the year to date. While interest rate increases have been postponed, this isn’t a part of the market that is as interest rate sensitive. The bulk of the buyers are using cash or private banking. The biggest potential impacts to the market come from the greater global economy. Poor performance in the stock market is a potential threat. There seems to be something of a correlation between the DOW and high end sales on the island. We have not seen any significant influxes of buyers from China like some cities in the Western U.S. and Canada. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team if you are interested in buying or selling a luxury condo on Maui. We would welcome the chance to sit down with you for a free consultation and to discuss your interests and needs.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

May 2015 Maui Real Estate Statistics

Needless to say, this month’s stats post isn’t a sneak peek. We are over halfway through the month and just getting around to our May stats. Sometimes blogging has to take a back seat to other parts of the business. The good news is that I have been having a tough time carving out time to blog due to obligations with buyers and sellers. Enough about me and on to the stats. This post includes information on sales volume, median prices, notable sales and pending sales. I also give a few thoughts on what it all means for buyers and sellers. Without further ado, here are the May 2015 Maui Real Estate Statistics.

May Maui Real Estate Sales Volumes and Median Prices

The chart compares the real estate sales volumes in Maui County during May 2014 and May 2015.

There were 88 home sales reported in Maui County last month with a median price of $607,097. Last May, there were 86 sales reported with a median price of $537,500. That is roughly a 2% increase in sales volume and a 13% increase in median price when comparing this May to last May.

There were 108 condos reported to have been sold in May of 2015 with a median sales price of $469,500. In May of 2014, there were 117 sales reported with a median sales price of $472,000. That calculates to an 8% decrease in sales volume and just under a 1% decrease in median price.

There were 12 land transaction reported by Realtors in Maui County during the month of May with a median sales price of $563,750. By comparison, there 20 sold last may with a median price of $575,000. Those numbers calculate to a 40% drop in sales activity and a 2% drop in median price.

Other Notable Numbers from The May Maui Real Estate Sales Activity
While compiling the sales volumes and median prices, I came across some more notable numbers that I thought were worth sharing.

  • The highest priced home sale last month was $5,695,000 for a 26.8 acre property in Haiku on Maui’s North Shore. The Haiku Farms property included 7 dwellings and 6 county water meters.
  • The Haiku Farms Sale was one of 6 home sales on island over $2,000,000 in May. The other sales included 3 Kapalua homes, a home in Hana and a home in Wailea.
  • The highest price condo transaction in May was for a unit at Wailea Point. The three bedroom, four bathroom oceanfront condo sold for $5,000,000.
  • The Wailea Point Sales was one of twelve total condo transactions over $1,500,000. The other big sales included 6 at Honua Kai, 2 at Kai Malu, a Montage Kapalua, a Puamana and a Papali Wailea.
  • The highest priced land sale in May was $1,425,000 for a 10.2 oceanfront acres in Haiku.
  • There were 12 bank owned or REO sales last month. By comparison, there were 8 REO sales last May.
  • There were only 3 successful short sales completed last month. There were 10 short sales last month. Short sales continue to decrease as appreciation continues.

Some Quick Thoughts on the Maui May Real Estate Sales Numbers
The May Maui Sales numbers stuck pretty close to the script for what we have seen thus far in 2015. Home sales were slightly above last year’s numbers. That is now four months out of five where sales have outperformed the same month from the previous year. Condo and land sales were both down. That makes four out of five months that condo sales have been below the same month the year prior. Land sales have been down three out of five months compared to the same month from the year before.

We typically, don’t spend a whole lot of time discussing change in median prices on the blog. It’s a bit of frustrating subject. All too often, I see discussions of the Maui Real Estate statistics where changes in median are depicted as a reflection of changes in property values. While appreciation can play a part, the biggest shifts in median are driven by the change in composition of sales. I thought this was worth bringing up as home medians pushed above $600,000 for the second time this year. We are seeing modest appreciation, but we are also seeing more activity at higher price points and fewer properties available in the lower price ranges.

Pending Sales in May
The majority of real estate transactions on Maui take 30-60 days to close. With a few exceptions, the sales in May were based on contracts penned in March and April. With that in mind, we wanted to look at buyer demand in May. The following offers a comparison of Pending Sales in May of 2015 and May of 2014.

This chart compares pending sales for homes, condos and land in Maui County during May 2014 and May 2015.

May 2014 and May 2015 were very close to each other in terms of pending sales activity. There was one more home, four fewer condos and three more parcels of land that went pending. This would suggest that we shouldn’t see too big of a difference in between the June 2015 and June 2014 sales.

What Does This All Mean for Buyers and Sellers?
Market conditions remain unchanged on Maui. Buyers interested in the market will find varying market conditions depending upon geography and price point. Homes priced at or below the market medium tend to be scarce and have the highest demand. Well priced, clean properties below the median sales price can attract multiple offers and over asking bids. As you move up in price, demand will tend to go down, but well priced properties can still sell quickly. Before sellers begin to pop the champagne corks, this isn’t an out and out frenzied sellers market. Over priced properties are tending to sit and not all areas of the island are seeing the same levels of demand. Sellers will need to take into account market conditions specific to their town and neighborhood when developing go to market pricing. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team if you are considering entering the Maui Real Estate Market. We would be happy to sit down with you to listen to your needs and give you an update on market conditions specific to your interests.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

January 2014 Maui Real Estate Statistics Sneak Peek!

The first month of 2014 is in the books and Valentine’s day is just around the corner. That means it is time to take the pulse of the Maui Real Estate market and get a sneak peek at the January 2014 Maui Real Estate Statistics. This post takes a look at sales volume and median prices for properties this January and compares them to what we saw during January 2013. I also highlight some other numbers that I came across while compiling these stats that I thought might be of interest. This month, I am opting not to do a video analysis. I will be saving my face made for radio until next month. However, I did take a stab at gauging buyer activity during the first six weeks of peak buyer season. Without further ado, here are the numbers.

This table shows the sales volumes for homes, condos and land in Maui, County, Hawaii during January of 2014 and January of 2013
This chart compares the Real Estate Sales Volume for Maui during January of 2014 and January of 2013

There were 64 homes sold in Maui County during the first month of 2014 with a median sales price of $691,500. Last January, there were 63 homes sold with a median price of $550,000. That is a less than 2% increase in sales activity and a 26% increase in median price when comparing this January to January 2013.

There were 92 condos sold in January of 2014 with a median price of $431,000. In the first month of 2013, there were 63 sales at a median price of $297,000. That means a 46% increase in sales activity and a 45% increase in median prices over last January.

There were 13 land sales in January of this year at a median price of $370,000. Last January, there were 7 sales with a median price of $675,000. That is an 86% bump in activity and a 45% decrease in median. With the smaller sample sizes, the difference in sales and medians can be more dramatic.

In addition to the numbers above, here are a few other numbers and tidbits that I thought were worth sharing about the January Real Estate sales activity.

  • The highest priced home sale for January was $9,300,000 for a 4,000 square foot oceanfront home at Makena Place.
  • That was one of 11 homes sold over $2,000,000 in January. That is a very strong month for ultra luxury purchases. For context, there were only two sales in that price range last January. It was a geographically diverse list of homes sold with big closes in Spreckeslville, Pukalani, Lanai, Ka’anapali, Wailea, Kihei and Makena.
  • The high condo sale last month was $2,600,000 for a three bedroom unit at Hoolei in Wailea.
  • The Ho’olei sale was one of 7 condo transactions that sold for over $1,500,000. There were also high dollar transactions at Honua Kai, Ka’anapali Ali’i, Puamana and the Terraces at Manele over on Lanai.
  • As a quick side note, there continues to be pretty extensive luxury sales activity on Lanai. I did a little digging and the vast majority of the purchases appear to have been made by an LLC out of Walnut Creek, California. I suspect that LLC is owned by Larry Ellison.
  • The high land sale in January was $4,587,999 for 3,455 acres of land in Hana. This is all of the Hana Ranch land on the Mauka or Mountain side of Hana Highway. This was a complex transactions with additional considerations above and beyond the published sales price. This also included the Ranch’s cattle operation and private water system. With the water system comes additional obligations. It is also known that there were quite a few parcels of land included in the purchase that did not have clear title.
  • Bio-Logical Capital was the entity that purchased the Hana Ranch. They plan to keep the land in agriculture and conservation with the hope of boosting the agricultural productivity. It will be interesting to see what changes this purchase might bring to Hana and the Hana Real Estate market.
  • There were only 4 bank owned (REO) sales that closed last month. There were 6 REO sales in January of 2013. At this point, bank owned properties are having a very limited impact on the Maui market.
  • There were 10 short sale transactions completed in January. Last January, there were 14 short sale transactions. It will be interesting to see if the number of short sale transactions will decrease significantly going forward. A mortgage forgiveness tax break expired on December 31st. Sellers may find debt forgiven by banks to be classified as income by the IRS.

There were a couple of things that stood out about last month’s numbers. They are both related. Number one on the list is the high monthly median sales price for homes. To be clear, the drastic increase in medians is not a just a reflection of the increase in home values. It is safe to say that there were price increases around the island, but that wasn’t the only factor that drove up the median. Distribution of sales plays just as big if not an even bigger role than price increases when it comes to changing median sales prices. That brings us to the other number that really stood out this month in the stats. The 11 homes sold over $2,000,000 was significant. When 17% of the homes sold in a month are over $2,000,000, that is going to push up your median sales price. As I have said in other recent stats posts on our blog, I think we can attribute a good portion of this high end market activity to a very strong year for the stock market. There were high net worth buyers who cashed in on their stock returns and made discretionary purchases of Maui luxury properties.

January is typically a slower month for sales to be reported. That is because November and at least the first couple of weeks of December typically see fewer properties to go under contract. That isn’t as busy a time of year for year for visitors and local buyers tend to be preoccupied with other holiday activities to be shopping for houses. While January may not bring a ton of sales, this is one of the three to four months of the year that constitute our peak buyer’s season.

Lately, I have heard some buzz on the street and from other Realtors that the market had really picked up as of late. That didn’t quite jive with what I had observed in my own personal real estate experience. It also didn’t quite reflect what I was seeing with pending properties on our MLS. The market feels like it is humming along at a good pace, but it did not feel any stronger than last season. If anything, I suspected that more limited inventory on the low end was reducing the total number of sales. I wanted to make sure I wasn’t missing something.

While we have our fingers in a broad cross section of the Maui market, maybe there was more activity that I overlooked. The January sales volumes above are a lagging indicator. They don’t show the current market activity. To get a gauge of current activity, I wanted to look at the properties that went pending since the start of peak buying season. The table below shows the properties that have gone under contract between December 20th and January 31st and compares it to the same period a year ago.

This chart compares the number of properties that went pending during the beginning of this year’s peak buyer’s season and the beginning of last year’s peak buyer’s season.

As you can see from the chart above, buyer activity during the 2013-2014 peak buyer’s season is for all intents and purposes mirroring what we saw the year before. Vacant land is the only property type where the number of properties going into escrow is lagging behind what we saw last year.

For buyers considering entering the Maui Real Estate market, the analysis above looks at the market in broad brush strokes. Sales activity and pricing momentum varies around the island by community and price point. The Maui Real Estate Team would welcome the opportunity to discuss market conditions and available inventory for the types of properties that will meet your needs. Sellers will find that market conditions have continued to improve, but there are still places where higher inventory requires thoughtful pricing. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team today for a free consultation to discuss your property and your real estate needs.

Pete Jalbert