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Monthly Newsletter Archives: July, 2011

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We would like to express our heartfelt thanks for your assistance in the purchase of our new condo in Kona. Your diligence, negotiating skills, thoroughness, prompt communication and market knowledge were matched only by your kindness and caring for us throughout the process. You made the entire experience very enjoyable as well as very efficient. Many mahalos! Bruce & Leslie (read more)

West Hawaii Real Estate Update

July, 2011: Volume 8, Issue 7

Half-way thru the year in Kona we are holding our own against ’10 sales and making a little progress but not as much as I had hoped. As of the end of June we have sold 217 houses, 170 condos, and 50 pieces of land… or 13 more overall than in ’10 at this time. We closed out June with 74 overall sales, good enough to qualify as the 3rd highest month of ’11.

Inventories continue to decline and one issue I’m starting to hear from agents is that the quality of the inventory is also declining. Some of you might recall I suggested that this was coming… well it appears to be here. This will put a damper on sales until buyers are convinced that they need to move up to the next price bracket to get what they want and then we will see some overall sales price increases.

Pending sales in Kona are the least of the year but still good at 172 up over June ’10.

The huge change in the 2nd quarter has been in condo sales under $200,000. This range is on fire and has less than a 4 months’ supply available. It had 70 sales in the quarter and has 34 pending sales as well… wow! Call me today to get yours before they are all gone!

Luxury Real Estate

Luxury sales in Kona were off in transaction volume for the first half of  ’11 when compared to ’10… BUT Kukio sold 11 more lots last year accounting for almost the complete difference in overall sales… 51 for ’10 and 39 for ’11. Land sales for this year were much tamer with 10 so far (half at Kukio), compared to 22 last year at this time, of which 16 were at Kukio.

I speculated last year that with all of the land sales luxury construction was likely to start back up and it has, there are at least 7 houses currently under construction at Hualalai and I heard that one oceanfront owner at Kukio had just moved into their new place… and I’m sure there is more.

Price wise the highest sale so far this year has been $16.9 million followed by a $14.4 million, both at Hualalai, and an $8.7 million at Kukio.This is up slightly from ’10.

Out in Kohala the sales are off just slightly in transaction volume, 27 vs. 29, but the price point is off dramatically. The highest sale this year is $2.9 million, compared to last year with a $12.9 million, a $5.9 million and several $4 million sales by this time. Surprising given the inventory seems to be available for the higher sales… just no takers.

I’m sure there are some great buys, especially in Kohala where it would appear the larger properties are being overlooked… so if you are in the market for a bargain luxury property, give me a call today!

Hula Dancer

Economic News…

  • TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Best U.S. Vacation Cities included two Hawaii locations… Honolulu as #2 and Kailua Kona as #6… wow! Huge honor for those of us here… keep spreading that aloha!
  • Location, location, location… a recent state article noted that sales overall were down on the Big Island for residential properties for the year… but if you check Kona and Kohala they were both up! Kohala’s was up by 41% in houses and 51% in condos for the year! Real estate is a location business so national or even island-wide news may not apply to your location… check it out before you put to much “stock” in it.
  • Tourism… hotel occupancy is up along with visitor spending through May even with the decrease in our airlift seats out of Japan… things are slowly getting better! Let’s hope the price increase for fuel for the planes doesn’t slow it down!

Notes From Gretchen

The market is really very active here, with most listing agents telling me that they are very busy. I would hope that this turns into some quality well-priced inventory for our buyers!

Statistically speaking… our little office is still ranked 13th in the Kona/Kohala area in sold properties. Considering some of those ranked above us have 30+ agents, I think we are doing great! For me personally, if you take out the developer and foreclosure agents I’m ranked 4th in closed transactions so far this year.

What this means to buyers and sellers is that we understand the market and can get properties sold! Call us today to get more info on the West Hawaii market!

Kohala Market

All cash sales in Kohala continue to be strong and rising at 54% of all sales for the first half of ’11… ’10 saw only 48%. Inventories continue to decline, down over a 100 properties since this time in ’10. Pending sales are off of their highs but still holding over 100, which is a good sign.

The real story is in condo sales in Kohala. The $200,000 to $299,999 range doubled with sales of 18 in the 2nd quarter. And every other price bracket from there up to $800,000 had more sales in the 2nd quarter than the first. The lower end, under $200,000 saw a decrease in sales and I don’t think that was the buyers as much as it was the available inventory… the choices just weren’t that good. Call for details!

Market Snapshot

Closed in
June, 2011
For Sale in
July, 2011

40 Homes
31 Condos
3 Land


17 Homes
6 Condos
4 Land

295 Homes
219 Condos
239 Land

For Sale

175  Homes
165  Condos
85  Land

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

Broker of the Year – 2000
Direct (808) 329-5667

75-170 Hualalai Road, D-115

Kailua-Kona, Hawaii 96740

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