Top Menu

Monthly Newsletter Archives: August 2010

To receive our monthly newsletter, please Click Here to enter your mailing address.

View our Archived Articles Here


Short sales, unlike traditional sales, require different terminology, strategy, and lots of patience for all parties involved. I can’t say enough about how Gretchen handled the sale of our unit encompassing all of her knowledge in this specific area and used her inside connection with our lender. This process could have ended is disaster, but Gretchen pulled us all together and we avoided foreclosure. I can’t thank you enough!!! (read more)

West Hawaii Real Estate Update

August, 2010: Volume 7, Issue 8

Ahh, those slow days of summer… fun for kids but not great for real estate sales!  As expected in July Kona turned in very low closings with only 45… many closed in June to qualify for the tax credit and we always have fewer buyers in summer.

The good news is that pending sales are up again to 177 giving us hope for the rest of the year. Houses are extra high at 104 and condos are good at 67.  Land stayed down off of recent high double digits again with only 6 pending.  However, short sale pendings have been steadily growing and are now sky-high with 85 out of the 177 or 48%, this could be an issue so stay tuned.

Inventories went up slightly with fewer sales to absorb the new ones coming on the market.  We are seeing an inventory shift from short sale to foreclosure as bank’s ramp up taking possession of properties.   Foreclosure inventory in Kona had been consistent at around 25-30 total each month but that bumped up to 50 in August and short sale inventories dropped from around 100 to now 75. (See Graphs)

Sales were down slightly for both short sales and foreclosures with 11.  Call for more info…

Luxury Real Estate

Distressed inventory in luxury  has been increasing as represented by this USA Today report that “jumbo prime loans foreclosures have increased 600% since 2008 and are typically over $729,750”… wow!

Currently the MLS for Kona/Kohala is only showing 3 short sale listings and 2 sales in 2010 over a million.  The foreclosures show 2 listed and 1 sale.  But this is somewhat deceptive since  some luxury distress inventory gets sold at auctions like the ones below.

Hualalai Resort will have a foreclosure auction on August 24th for a 4/4.5, 6,502 sf under roof house.  It has a guest house along with an ocean view, pool and all the other fabulous finishes resort homes offer.  Suggested bid $4.5 million.  Click here to see it.

At Kukio Resort their bank-owned foreclosure auction is set for September 3rd and there is no minimum bid required!  This is a great opportunity for the highest bidder to acquire an exquisite residence in an exclusive private community!  They are hopeful it will go over $3 million.

It is a 4/4.5 with 5,795 sf under roof, including lanais and garages and sits on just under 2 acres.  It has drop away ocean views, and of course the requisite infinitely edged pool.  Built by one of Kona’s leading contractors it is a beautiful home with unique wood finishes… click here to see it!

If you are interested in either property make sure you are represented at this auction by calling or emailing me today!

As Seen In The News…

Islands magazine recently ranked the Big Island as the number one in its top-20 survey of islands in the world to live on… yippie!  We knew it was good here but that is just amazing!  If you love islands… check out this great magazine at

Two Hawaii beaches made the top-10 list for Dr. Beach this year.. Hamoa on Maui and Kahanamoku on Oahu… nice to see others think we are great too!

hula girlHualalai Resort (Four Seasons) on the Big Island was named the number one honeymoon and wedding resort for celebrities and it was the only Hawaii venue on the top-10 list by TripAdvisor.  Its “low-key elegance” seems to have made it so popular.

And speaking of honeymoons… Hawaii had 175,092 honeymooners so far in 2010, up 2.9% from 2009… yeah!

Notes From Gretchen

I was reminded recently that telling a friend about a great Realtor before they need one is one of the most caring things you can do.  Letting someone use trial-and-error with one of their biggest lifetime transactions is scary!

Most of us don’t try out a new doctor or buy a car without a recommendation but people select an agent all the time without any knowledge of their expertise… yikes!  So spread the word about great Realtors now since you never know when they might need one.

My newsletter is available via email and I’ll send a $5 Starbucks card to anyone who signs up on my website in by 8/31… and if you refer a friend I’ll send two, one for each of you! Just click here to subscribe and in the comments tell me who the referring person is… make sure to include both mailing addresses.

And More News…

  • Hawaiian Airlines reported a $9 million dollar profit for the second quarter of 2010… great news since so many other airlines are struggling!
  • Hawaii tourism officials say that their mainland ad campaign is working… arrivals are up 13.6% for June ‘10 compared to June ‘09.  The better news is that they are spending more, up 7.8% so far this year.
  • Bankruptcy filings were down again in May for the 3rd consecutive month with 336 but this is still higher numbers than summer ‘09.
  • The Big Island’s unemployment rate is still over 10% even though new jobs were added since more were lost… darn!

Market Snapshot

in July, 2010
For Sale
in August, 2010

22 Homes
20 Condos
3   Land


15 Homes
17 Condos
4   Land

336 Homes
263 Condos
255 Land

For Sale

171 Homes
241 Condos
128 Land

Gretchen L. Lambeth

Hawaiian Isle Real Estate, LLC
Principal Broker|/ Owner

Office (808) 329-5667
Cell (808) 987-1012


This newsletter is available via monthly email. Subscribe here.
Search all available Big Island homes online at