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West Hawaii Real Estate Update: December, 2012

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“Words do not express how much we appreciate all you have done in helping us acquire the new house.  You have blessed our family beyond measure with your hard work and integrity. Thank you for your perseverance and determination to stay the course when it didn’t seem like there was hope and the deal was down the tubes… more than once.” D & J Rogers (read more)

West Hawaii Real Estate Update

December, 2012: Volume 9, Issue 12

In Kona in November the sales did not reflect the actual volume of activity in the market with only 49 closings.

Over 70 houses and condos currently have pending short sale contracts stuck in this slow cumbersome process and it is affecting our sales numbers. They represent 36% of the escrows.

That said, how many are available to buy in the distress market? Answer: Not many! In the MLS there are 15 foreclosures and 28 short sales available… and most of these have damage, back maintenance fees or other issues that make only the most risk tolerant buyers consider them. They now represent 6% of the available inventory in Kona, down from over 25% in the recent downturn.

Pending sales are up to 210, a 25 unit increase from last month… and 50 up from this time last year… wow!

The market is strong even with the ‘fiscal cliff’ looming. Email me for more info or check out my website graphs!

Luxury Real Estate

Kona saw only three luxury sales in November… far off the pace of the higher months of 2012. Here is a snapshot of luxury ranges today:

Kona Houses


$1M—$2M 40
$2M—$4M 18
$4M—$6M 13
$6M—$8M 14
$8M—$10M 5
$10M—$20M 8

Pending Sales

$1M—$2M 8
$4M—$6M 1

Sold to Date in 2012

$1M—$2M 27
$2M—$4M 3
$4M—$6M 6
$6M—$8M 2
$8M—$10M 2
$10M—$20M 3

Kona Condos


$1M—$2M 8
$2M—$4M 6
$4M—$6M 13

Pending Sales

$1M—$2M 1
$2M—$4M 2

Sold to Date in 2012

$1M—$2M 6
$2M—$4M 12
$4M—$6M 6

Local Economic News

  • American Savings bank is building a new location to replace their existing one in Lanihau… it will be finished in 2013 and is on the NW corner of Palani and Kuakini Hwy.
  • In the old Ranch House location downtown, Hawaii Radiology is constructing their new office… what a view it will have!
  • The old Chevy dealership at the corner of Kaiwe St. and Kuakini Hwy. has been leased to the Lex Brodie tire dealership that has yet to start renovations but I’m sure it will be in 2013.
  • Starbucks opened their new location at Kuakini Hwy. and Henry St. this month… and closed the one on Palani Rd.

Notes From Gretchen

I attended the Christmas parade in downtown Kona last night and marveled at how great it was that such a thing still thrives in our tiny town.

Huge crowds lined the streets from Palani to Coconut Grove to see young and old alike participate. Large employers, small employers, cycling clubs, banks, churches, nonprofits—all decorated themselves, their animals, their cars and carts to celebrate Christmas.

Our old-fashioned, home-made parade is loved by all and a testament to small town living at its best… we had a fabulous time… all of us!

Hope you can attend next year… it is truly heartwarming!

Out On The Town

Congrats to last month’s winner! The correct answer was Keo’kea Beach Park in Hawi. An eagle-eyed Keauhou Estates owner won and he responded literally within 2 minutes of the email being sent… wow, you’ve got to be fast!

Okay, this month’s should be fairly easy and we had such a terrific time that day. This motley crew was not wearing their finest but we laughed till it hurt we had so much fun. So, for all you great guessers out there, and there are a few of you, where was this photo taken?

As always first correct answer wins a $20 Starbucks card and if I need a tie breaker, whichever one knows the name of the tour is the winner. Good luck!

P.S. Hawaii REALTORS®, and anyone in the photo, are not eligible to win. 🙂

Market Snapshot

Closed in
November, 2012
For Sale in
December, 2012


22 Homes
17 Condos
10 Land


17 Homes
12 Condos
4 Land


245 Homes
174 Condos
235 Land

For Sale

129 Homes
125 Condos
98 Land

Gretchen L. Lambeth
Hawaiian Isle Real Estate, LLC
Principal Broker/ Owner

Broker of the Year – 2010
Direct (808) 329-5667

75-170 Hualalai Road, D-115
Kailua-Kona, Hawaii 96740

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