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West Hawaii Real Estate Update: November, 2014

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“We have worked with Gretchen for many years. At one time we owned three condos in Kona. We asked to meet with her for an overview of the market and then a couple of years later we came to her to sell the first one. It sold during the downturn before it was on the market. A couple years later she quickly sold the second, and she has just successfully sold the third. If you need an agent, choose Gretchen!”

Drucy & Geoffrey

Read more great testimonials on my website!

West Hawaii Real Estate Update

November, 2014: Volume 11, Issue 11


The graph below for Kona is the good news… cash sales are at all time highs. The not so good news is that probably half of those this month were land sales which are predisposed to all cash given that lending is so tight still for land. House sales continue to lag with only 24 closings this month compared to 29 last October, condo sales mimicked last year with 28, and land sales are close with 23 in October.

It is my opinion that this lackluster performance is not signaling a drastic shift in our market, but rather reflecting what we see happening on the mainland. The prediction nationwide is that house sales for 2014 will not exceed last years. In 2015/2016 they are expecting big upticks in sales, let’s hope so!

The good news is we are closing sales and lending is getting better. Our high season is just around the corner and the snowbirds that love our island will be back, hopefully ready to buy in 2015.

Notes From Gretchen

The holidays are here! Thanksgiving is this week! It is a great time of year to be thankful for all of you: faithful clients, friends, and other agents. Your referrals are what make my business the success that it is, thank you!

As we head into the new year and you start making plans, don’t forget to review your property portfolio to make sure the path ahead is a clear one. If you would like a free market analysis of your property to do this planning, please feel free to email or call… aloha!

Economic News

  • The newly released plan for the island’s highways expects significant growth in the next 20 years… an increase of 60%! The current plan has us at 280,000 residents with 2 million visitors a year… I don’t know about you but that sure sounds crowded to me. The silver lining is that real estate is a supply and demand economy so unless some serious building starts really soon I would think housing prices for purchase or rentals are going to keep rising for a long time.
  • Unemployment on Big Island shows 4,500 people still without jobs… however, it has 80,700 who are employed. Ironically I think our population is around 160,000 so that would mean every other person is employed… not bad considering all the kids and retirees we have here.
  • The County recently broke ground on what is to be the completion of the Mamalahoa Bypass Road that currently goes to Kealakekua. This last section will extend it to the junction of Napoopoo Road. This is great news for South Kona!

Kona Cash Sales Percentage – Houses, Condos, Land


Right now all cash sales are at their highest percentage in the last twenty years-53%, signifying great confidence in our market by those that have substantial cash reserves.

Featured Vacation Rental

Our vacation rental division is growing! We added a fun new get-away to our program a few months ago, and so we thought we would share it with you here. We still have dates open for November and December visits, so please check it out on VRBO.

Want to discuss the benefits of turning your Kona home or condo into a vacation rental? Email me to set up a time to discuss!

South Kohala

Kohala has been keeping pace with last year in sales, however the cash sales have slipped slightly to 45% from 47%, still at near record levels though. The one difference is that they sold more houses this October than last by 8 but condos were down by 10 to only 15 last month, an interesting twist.

This area usually takes a break till the first of the year, since it is primarily discretionary spending and the holidays have people busy with parties and shopping. But they better not wait too long, residential prices are already up 10% for the year for listings under $1 million!

Market Snapshot


Closed in

October, 2014

For Sale in

November, 2014


24 Homes

28 Condos

24 Land



25 Homes

15 Condos

9 Land


211 Homes

155 Condos

180 Land

For Sale


115 Homes

162 Condos

79 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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