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West Hawaii Real Estate Update: February, 2015

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“We have had the pleasure of working with Gretchen on two home purchases in Kona and we will be listing a property with her in the near future. Gretchen and her staff are truly the best team you will find in Hawaii. She has a clear understanding of the market “as it is” and she understands where it is heading, allowing you as a home buyer/seller the clarity to make the best possible decision. She is professional, detail oriented and most importantly, quick to respond to questions or needs. I would not make any real estate decision in the local Kona market without obtaining her perspective. We absolutely recommend Gretchen Osgood and Hawaiian Isle Real Estate.”

David & Danielle

Read more great testimonials on my website!

West Hawaii Real Estate Update

February, 2015: Volume 12, Issue 2

Kona is off to a great start in 2015! We closed 91 properties in January, the first January in eons to do so and the second highest closing since April of last year.

The 40 condo sales really pushed it over the top and the 15 land sales helped as well. House sales were at 36 up from last January’s 28. Most likely this is our winter visitors snapping up properties when they arrive.

Cash sales are still running at 51% of all transactions which is a key indicator that we are still a good buy to those looking at where to put their money. Great news for the non-cash buyers since that should give them confidence that this is a strong market and desirable to those that can afford to pay cash.

There are only 8 houses for sale in Kona under $400,000, if you widen the search to $500,000 you get an additional 26 options. The lowest priced house is $319,000 and is a duplex of sorts. Sure not much to chose from!

Notes From Gretchen

Town has been crowded this winter so without even checking the stats I know we are having a good year… yay Kona!Sales prices are not the only thing going up in Kona, rental rates are as well. With more and more people moving to the island and our very finite rental inventory, prices are being pushed up in dramatic fashion. Condo increases are typically a $100 a month and houses are nearing $200 when they renew annually.

So if you were considering renting the property you own, now might be a good time!

Economic News

  • Wondering why airfares to Kona are still so high? Look no further than the newest tourism report citing a loss of over 19,000 seats on airlines flying into Kona… it is all about supply and demand and our supply is very tight… darn!
  • Exchange rates are going up around the world making Hawaii more expensive for our guests, however, taking money from the US back into those countries is a nice gain for clients when they sell. They say timing is everything!
  • Four Seasons at Hualalai was named 20th top overall hotel in the US by TripAdvisor, as well, as ranked 16th in the luxury division… way to go Hualalai!
  • Interest rates are still below 4%, get them while you can. Last summer the only way you could get under 4% was to take an adjustable rate mortgage, so if you are doing long range planning you might consider refinancing to get more years out of that great rate!
  • HECO the parent company of HELCO has been sold to NextEra Energy out of Florida and is going through the approval process now… that’s a big change!

23-Year History of Kona Residential Pricing Trend

This easy-to-read graph says it all, prices are on their way up still in Kona and are predicted to hit their previous year’s highs.

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Want to discuss the benefits of turning your Kona home or condo into a vacation rental?
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Asset Preservation

Owners sometimes don’t think about what could potentially go wrong with their place in Hawaii. They figure they are buying a condo or home and you just shut off the water and lock it up when you leave… wrong!

In a condo you have neighbors to the side and above you who could inadvertently damage your unit and not even know it. Or your home could spring a leak in a water line or valve. You would only find out when you return next year. To avoid this issue, hire an oversight manager like us to check the property on a regular basis to stop any issues before they get out of hand!

Market Snapshot

Closed in
January 2015

For Sale in
February, 2015


36 Homes
40 Condos
15 Land



20 Homes
7 Condos
7 Land


244 Homes
163 Condos
162 Land

For Sale


118 Homes
193 Condos
74 Land

Gretchen Osgood

Hawaiian Isle Real Estate, LLC
Principal Broker/ Owner
Direct (808) 329-5667

#1 in Kona Transactions – 2013
#16 in State of Hawaii – 2013
Creative Advertising Award – 2012
Broker of the Year – 2010

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