Maui Real Estate Blog

Maui Market Musings Volume XXV

Welcome to our 25th edition of the Maui Market Musings. This latest edition focuses on the market activity during March, and the resulting levels of inventory at the end of the month. Being that these are long posts, I will skip the pleasantries and cut straight to the numbers.

March Market Activity

The tables below show new Inventory, new pending sales and closed transactions for the month of March. The previous five years are shown for additional context. One thing to note, we started adding these charts just a few months ago. This is the first time the charts will start capturing data from the very start of when the pandemic started to influence the market. The influence will be particularly pronounced with next month’s charts.

March 23March 22March 21March 20March 19March 18
New inventory during March over the last 6 years

Maui entered the month of March with a shortage of inventory and it left the month of March with even fewer properties for sale. The 70 homes listed is 41% below last year. The closest March for new inventory in the previous five years is March 2020, and there was still 25% more inventory that month. Keep in mind, listing activity for homes dropped to next to nothing in the second half of March 2020 as stay at home orders went out and tourism closed.

The 99 new condos that came on the market in March is 47% below last March. The next closest recent March was in 2019. The 157 condos listed that month is 59% higher than this month. As a side note, March 2020 was a big month for condo listings. While people were reticent to list their homes, many opted to list their now vacant vacation rental condos.

March New Pending Sales

March 23March 22March 21March 20March 19March 18
New Pending Sales in March over the last six years.

While new listing activity is slow, buyer demand also remains slow. New home pendings came in 30% lower than last year. They are 34% lower than March of 2019. They only exceed March of 2020 when pending sales dwindled to a trickle in the second half of the month. There were also quite a few pending sales that cancelled.

March Closed Transactions

March 23March 22March 21March 20March 19March 18
Closed Transactions in March over the last six years.

The gap in closed home transactions with the previous five years wasn’t quite as extreme. Home sales were about 27% behind last year. They came in 20% and 28% behind March of 2018 and 2019 respectively. They were closest to March of 2020, albeit some of that is due to transactions that either delayed closing or cancelled at the onset of Covid.

The closed condo sales came in 37% behind March of 22. The gap with pre-covid years was not quite as substantial. This March’s numbers came in 24% and 9% below 2019 and 2018 respectively. That 2018 year was particularly slow for condo sales. It is notable that the March 2023 sales received a boost from 14 new developer closes at Paradise Ridge Estates. These closes came from contracts written between 2018 and February of 2021.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Maui Real Estate Market Musings Volume XVIII

Maui Market Musings Volume XVIII tackles the notable numbers from August 2022 Real Estate Sales on Maui. It even delves into a nuanced discussion of the (spoiler alert) decrease in median home prices on island and what it may mean. This edition originally included a discussion of Kapalua 2022 market activity, but I am not sure anyone would make it through the two subjects together without consuming dangerous levels of caffeine. Look for that post early next week. Without further ado…

Notable Numbers from the August Home Sales

With Labor Day passed, It’s a good time to took a look through the August Home Sale numbers. The numbers below are the most noteworthy with August 2021 and August 2019 data points provided for comparison. The numbers are different from the Realtor’s Association of Maui numbers because they exclude the islands of Molokai and Lani.

  • Maui Realtors reported 82 homes sold in August of 2022. That is 32% lower than the 120 homes sold in August of 2021. It is 15.5% lower than the 97 homes sold in August of 2019.
  • Of the 82 homes that sold, 14 or 17.07% sold for over asking price and 37 or 45.12% sold for asking price or higher. That is well below what we saw during August of 2021 when 40.83% sold for over asking price and 61.67% sold for asking price or higher. It’s still well above what the market was like in August of 2019. At that time, 11.34% of sales closed for over asking and 28.87% sold for asking price or above.
  • Of the 82 homes sold, 21 or 25.6% of buyers reportedly paid cash.
  • The median price of the homes sold in August is $1,037,500. That is down 2.4% from the August 2021 median of $1,062,500. The August 2022 median is 27.6% higher than the median price in August 2019.
  • The average price of homes sold in August 2022 is $1,537,666. That is 10.9% lower than last August’s average sales price of $1,725,993. The August 22 average is 23.67% higher than the August 2019 average of $1,243,316.
  • The lowest priced home to sell in August closed for $230,000. That is also the lowest sale on the island of Maui all year. The off market sale involved a 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom home with 1,012 square feet of living space on a 7,658 square foot lot. There were no photos or details on the condition of the home.
  • The highest priced transaction in August closed for $7,900,000. The home in the Pineapple Hill subdivision of Kapalua has 6 bedrooms, 6.5 bathrooms and 7,784 square feet of living space.
  • The home in Pineapple Hill was one of three sales over $5,000,000 and one of fourteen that closed for over $2,000,000.

Let’s Talk About Median Prices and Home Values

I would imagine the fact that this August’s median is lower than last August’s median raised a few eyebrows. Does mean that we may be seeing values decrease? I think this merits some discussion.

If you are a long term reader of this blog, you will know that I am wary of tying shifts in median price to shifts in home values. The composition of sales can be a big driver of month to month shifts in median prices. A lot of lower priced homes selling in a month could drive down median prices while more high end sales may drive up median prices. Maui’s not the easiest real estate market for tracking changes in price. The volume of sales is relatively low and the inventory is heterogeneous. Even some of our more cookie cutter subdivisions have variability in views and location that can impact value.

I like quantitative evidence a lot more than anecdotal evidence. At this point, I can’t point to any clear numbers that support price drops. That said, a case can be made that some homes on Maui that sold during the first five to six months of this year would sell for less now. Competition remained fierce in the first quarter and bidding wars were common. Borrowing costs were still a lot lower than they are now. Investors were still active. FOMO or fear of missing out on low borrowing costs and limited inventory meant buyers bid aggressively pushing up prices.

Fast forward to this summer and the dynamic changed. The pool of buyers is significantly smaller due to higher borrowing costs and an absence of investors. We are definitely past the FOMO phase of the market. With a lot less buyer demand, we are starting to see some properties struggling to sell. While I know this is speculative, I surmise that some of these properties that are sitting would have attracted multiple buyers earlier in the year. The competition would have pushed prices upwards. Without competition, some of these are sellers are needing to reduce prices.

Now, does this mean home prices are going down across the board? Absolutely not. At this point, I would argue that this is a phenomenon limited to lower price points in the market. In particular, it is confined to lower priced properties with flaws that FOMO buyers forgave, but current buyers are less willing to accept. There are other market segments where inventory is starting to build. I could see those parts of the market start to see drops in value, but we aren’t there yet. It is also worth pointing out at that this market is incredibly variable. Above asking price sales are still higher than they were pre-Covid and there are still still homes closing for all time neighborhood highs.

Will we start to see more broad based decreases in value? That’s tough to say. We share one attribute with some of the markets that are seeing downward pricing pressure and that is we had a high number of work from anywhere relocations. What differentiates us from the markets that are seeing price decreases is our current lack of inventory. We are still well below 2019 inventory levels with no clear relief in sight. Ultimately, the balance between supply levels and demand will dictate our price trajectories. It’s also likely that this balance will continue to vary by community and by price point.

Notable August Condo Sales Numbers

I present the condo numbers with the same framework as the home sale numbers. They differ from the Realtor’s Association of Maui statistics because they exclude the islands of Molokai and Lanai.

  • Maui Realtors reported 103 condos sold in August 2022. That is a 44.9% drop from the 187 sales in August 2021. It is 13.45% lower than the 119 condos sold in August of 2019.
  • Of the 103 condos sold, 21.36% sold for over asking price and 45.63% sold for asking price or above. In August of 2021, 27.81% sold for over asking and 66.84% sold for asking price or above. In August of 2019, 12.5% sold for over asking price and 39.17% sold for asking price or above.
  • Of the 103 condos sold, 52 or 50.49% paid cash.
  • The median price of the 104 condos sold last month is $820,000. Last month’s median is 26.15% higher than the August of 2021 of $650,000. It is 60.78% higher than the August 2019 median of $510,000.
  • The average price of condos sold in August 2022 is $1,233,249. That is 30.88% higher than the average sales price of $949,939 in August of 2021. It is 40.09% higher than the 2019 average sales price of $887,539.
  • The lowest priced condo to sell in August of 2022 closed for $150,000. The 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom unit is located in the Harbor Lights Condominium in Kahului.
  • The highest priced condo to close in August of 2022 sold for $9,200,000. The 4 bedroom, 4.5 bathroom condominium with 4,817 square feet of living space is located in the Kula Villas complex within the Makena Golf and Beach Club.
  • The Kula Villas sale is one of five transactions that closed for $5,000,000 or higher and one of seventeen sales that closed for more than $1,500,000.

A Few Comments on the Condo Numbers

Since we broached the subject of home values, I might as well go down the worm hole of discussing condo values. There is a pretty clear contrast in this month’s median home and condo prices. While median home values are below August 2021, the median condo value is well above August 2021. Again, changes in median prices don’t always reflect changes in values.

However, the condo market remains more resilient than the home market on island. I am continuing to see upward pressure on prices in the vacation rental and second home condo market. Demand for the limited inventory remains strong. Some of the condo properties geared toward island residents like Kihei Villages and Southpointe seem to be losing the steam that they had earlier this year. Plain and simple, this part of market is cooling faster than other parts of the condo market due to affordability. If borrowing costs remain closer to 6% or higher and inventory grows at all, this part of the market could also start to see decreasing values. Like the home market, this ultimately depends on the balance between supply and demand.

Some Maui Beauty to Brighten This Post

Contact The Maui Real Estate Team

Contact The Maui Real Estate Team with questions, comments or feedback or if you need assistance buying or selling property on Maui. Market conditions on island are varied and dynamic. Now more than ever, it’s important to have experienced and savvy representation. We look forward to hearing from you to answer questions and learn more about your real estate needs.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

Maui Market Musings Volume VII

This week’s market musings takes a look at one sign of resilience evident in the market and the latest Redfin report on the second home market. Without belaboring the intro, here are the latest market musings.

Anecdotal Signs of Market Resilience

Entry level condos in Kihei experienced some of the steepest declines during the last real estate crash. I remember the turning point for that market pretty well. During the Summer and fall of 2005, places like Southpointe, Kihei Villages and Keonekai Villages experienced rapid price increases. Condos in these complexes jumped in value 25% or more in a span of about 6 months. The rise in prices occurred during a period of low rates (for the time) with rates forecast to increase. Inventory during this period was low.

A pretty drastic shift occurred in the market in early 2006. A number of the buyers who purchased the condos in the second half of 2005 were pure speculators. They planned to make some very rudimentary improvements prior to flipping the condos. In some cases, they were just naked flips where they purchased the condo and flipped a few months later with no improvements made. By early 2006, the inventory ballooned from a handful of listings in entry level complexes to as many as 25 units in a single development. A rate increase between .5% and .6% caused demand to cool. Sellers who didn’t have the reserves had to adjust their prices. Thus started a precipitous decline that grew worse as a number of sellers found themselves underwater.

The contrast with present conditions is pretty significant. Recent mortgage rate increases are far more drastic. We are looking at an increase of 1.5% in the span of less than 6 months. That said, inventory levels remain low. At the time of this post, there are only 4 active listings in the “entry level” condo complexes in Kihei. Buyer demand continues for the limited inventory. Four non-vacation rental condos in Kihei went under contract within the last few weeks.

While market conditions may continue to shift depending on further rate increases and/or the overall economy, this segment of the market isn’t the house of cards that it was in the mid 2000s. There are fewer speculators and the financial position and loan terms of borrowers are stronger. The market conditions that caused the calamitous collapse in values just aren’t present currently. That’s why we continue to see buyers despite the significant rate increases and much higher prices.

The Second Home Market Slows Nationally

Recent data presented by Redfin indicates that second home demand hit its lowest point since May of 2020. While it is still up from pre-pandemic levels, the decrease in demand is notable. Redfin cites affordability as one factor in the decreased demand. Some of that stems from price increases and some from rate increases. The Federal Housing Financing Agency also announced an increase on upfront fees on second homes starting on April 1. The fee increase is between 1.125 percent and 3.875 percent, tiered by loan-to-value ratio. That’s a pretty hefty number for those borrowing substantial sums.

Will we start to see this reflected in the Maui market? I haven’t seen signs of a clear decrease in the second home market on Maui. Demand appears to remain strong with inventory limited. We also have a lot of cash in the market. Of the vacation rental condos that sold over the last month, 44% were cash transactions. That might be a low number as it doesn’t include 1031 exchange purchases using cash. The lack of inventory may also make it harder to detect changes in buyer demand. If we start to see anything that shows Maui reflecting national trends, we will report it in the Musings

A Little Bit of Maui Beauty to Brighten Your Day

A quick clip from Maui’s North Shore. If you are on twitter, @maui is worth a follow for more local eye candy, travel tips to the island and more.

Contact The Maui Real Estate Team

If you are reading some mixed messages in recent musings, that’s because information on market conditions remains pretty mixed. On the ground, buyers are still facing bidding wars and properties are still selling for premiums. That said, there are more headwinds brewing with the rise in rates. Current market conditions call for quality representation. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team if you are considering entering the Maui market as a buyer or seller.

Pete Jalbert

Maui Real Estate Blog

August 2014 Maui Real Estate Statistics

September on Maui marks the start of the quiet season for visitors. The beaches and restaurants are a little quieter. Most years the real estate market slows as well. September also brings the first Northwest Swells of the season much to the delight of island wave riders. The air also starts to get a little cooler at night. I live Upcountry and I have found myself reaching for a sweater at night over the last week. The start of September also means it is time to look at the August Maui Real Estate Statistics. As usual, this post features a comparison of the number of sales and median prices verses what we saw in August a year ago. I also highlight some of the interesting notes and numbers that I came across while compiling the stats. I give my thoughts on the state of the market and what it means for buyers and sellers. This post also gives some insight into what we might expect to see in terms of sales in the coming months by looking at the pending sales for August. Without further ado, here are the numbers for August.

August 2014 Maui Real Estate Sales Volumes and Median Prices

This table shows the real estate sales volumes in Maui County, Hawaii during August 2013 and August 2014

This chart compares real estate sales volumes in August of 2013 and August of 2014 in Maui County, Hawaii

There were 68 homes sold in Maui County during August with a median sales price of $567,500. Last August, there were 81 homes sold with a median price of $585,000. That is a 16% drop in volume and a 3% drop in median when comparing this August to last August.

During August, there were a total of 94 condo sales reported by Realtors in Maui County with a median price $410,000. The August 2013 condo sales figures were 113 transactions closed with a median price of $420,000. That is a 17% drop in volume and a 2% drop in median comparing this August to last August.

The August 2014 land transactions in Maui County totaled 14 with a median price of $395,000. Last August, there were 25 sales with a median price of $350,000. That is a 44% drop in volume and a 13% increase in median price comparing this August to last August.

Other Interesting Notes and Numbers from the August Maui Real Estate Stats

While compiling these numbers, I found a few other numbers that I thought were worth passing along.

  • The highest priced home sale last month was $2,500,000 for a 5,222 square foot home on 2.58 acres in the Launiupoko subdivision in Lahaina.
  • It was a quiet month for luxury home sales with only one other transaction recorded above $2,000,000. That home was located in Ka’anapali Hillside.
  • Believe it or not, the lowest priced home sale in Maui County for month and this year for that matter was $1. The leasehold home in Molokai was bank owned. Its lease is set to expire in December when the property will revert back to the lessor who owns the underlying land.
  • While luxury home sales were relatively slow, luxury condo sales were strong in August. The high sale for the month was $8,250,000 for a four bedroom condo at Montage in Kapalua. That is the highest ever sales price for a condo in West Maui.
  • That was one of eight condo sales last month priced over $1,500,000. There were three additional big sales at Montage including closes of $7,750,000 and $7,500,000. There is a buzz about Montage and we recently looked at the resort’s impact on the market in our Kapalua Real Estate Update. There were also two sales at Papali in Wailea, one sale at Wailea Elua and one at Honua Kai.
  • There were only 8 bank owned sales this year compared to 14 sold last year. This isn’t necessarily due to a lack of inventory. June and July saw more bank owned inventory hit the market than what we had seen at any time in the last 24 months. However, the banks have different pricing strategies at this stage of the market. Many of the bank owned listings are being priced above market values.
  • There were six successful short sales completed last month compared to 14 completed in August of 2013.
  • While land sales were relatively quiet, there were 2 transactions that closed for over $2,000,000 in Kapalua.

Thoughts on the August Stats

This was not exactly a robust month for sales on Maui. This is the fifth straight month where condo sales have been lower than same month in 2013. Home sales have been a little stronger than condos, but we have still seen fewer sales overall compared to last year. Land sales are also down compared to last year after two straight months of lower sales. Inventory or lack thereof is clearly playing a part in the reduced activity. Prices are higher and the selection at the entry levels of the market is limited. That is leaving some buyers on the sideline. A reduction in the percentage of cash purchases on Maui suggests that we may be seeing fewer institutional and professional investors buying properties as well.

There are also some sellers who have overshot the market. They are pricing well above what the market is willing to pay. That may also be reducing the volume of sales. Prices in some parts of Maui have surged from market lows at high rates of appreciation. Limited inventory and pent up demand helped bring prices up rapidly. However, the initial rates of appreciation weren’t sustainable over the long haul. The memories of the last real estate bubble are a little too fresh in the minds of some buyers. This phenomenon is apparent in the Kihei entry level condo market. Places like Kihei Villages and Southpointe were selling in the low $100,000s at the bottom of the market with a handful of units in particularly poor shape closing below $100,000. We started to see sales prices as high as the low to mid $200,000s by the second half of 2013. Prices have since held in that range with little or no upward appreciation. Inventory has increased and days on market has gone up significantly. We are seeing this in other parts of the market as well. Kapalua Golf Villas is a nice vacation rental friendly property in the Kapalua Resort. It saw prices bottom out in 2012 when a large assessment was required to address a big maintenance project. Prices began to rise again rapidly in 2013 with the median price rising from $480,000 to $650,000. The median for this year’s sales has pushed all the way into the $700s. Each significant increase in median has been accompanied by a decrease in sales volume.

Are there any other factors at play with the decrease in sales volumes? That is tough to say at this point. The broader economic picture appears to be good at this time. National sales of existing homes continue to increase as of the last National Association of Realtors report in July. However, California saw a decrease in the number of properties sold compared to the same period last year. That is a continuation of a trend for that state. California is far and away the biggest feeder state for Maui Real Estate buyers. Maui tends to follow the same trends as the California market albeit a few months behind.

August Pending Sales

In addition to tracking closed sales. We also like to keep tabs on the number of properties that went under contract during any one month. This gives us some sense of what the stats might look like in the next couple of months.

This chart compares the number of properties that went pending in August of 2014 in Maui County with the number that went pending in August 2013.

After seeing an uptick in land and condo pending sales in July, the pending sales are down again. It appears as if the continued trend of lower sales activity will continue in the September and October sales numbers for Maui.

What Buyers and Sellers can expect under Current Market Conditions

While the market has slowed in terms of sales volume, buyers will find that well priced properties remain competitive. This is particularly true with lower priced homes. Buyers looking in this market should be pre-approved by a qualified mortgage professional as they are starting their home search. When the right property comes on the market that meets their needs, buyers will need to be decisive and act quickly to improve their odds of a successful offer. Sellers can see some of the cautionary tales reflected in the paragraphs above. Buyers are balking at overpriced properties and rates of appreciation appear to be slowing. That makes determining your go to market pricing that much more important. Both buyers and sellers should also be aware that market dynamics vary throughout the island depending on price points and neighborhoods. If you are a buyer or seller interested in Maui Property, we would welcome the chance to sit down with you for a free consultation. Contact The Maui Real Estate Team today to discuss your real estate needs.

Pete Jalbert