Spring is here and our market is definitely picking up. Hooray. There were 49 transactions that either went into escrow or went into escrow and sold in the month of March. That's a pickup in activity for kauai real estate. That is far more volume than we've seen in January or February. Buyers are sensing the good values to be had and are making their moves. Interest rates are still at historically very low levels. This week I heard rates of 4.75% on a 2nd homes (better rate than a pure investor rate), and 5.25 on a jumbo loan with 30% down on the jumbo loan. Jumbo loans(non-conforming) for Kauai are under $722,000.
Of the 53 sales, over 80% of the sales were under $500,000. As our affordability index improves, owning a property in the islands becomes more doable all the time. And with the first time home buyer's tax credits and great FHA programs, first time buyer's have a better chance than in a long time to purchase their first homes on the Garden Island.
Take a look at the chart below which tracks the number of sales of Kauai real estate the first quarter of 2009 as compared with sales in 2008
While the sales volumes are down from 2008, and the prices may still be retracting, it's clear that there are more and more buyers out there when properties are correctly priced. Some listings sit on the market for a year and never sell, but others are sold in less than a week when the deal is attractive. Notice in the graph below that while numbers of transactions are down from last year (when credit was easier to get and lenders were more flexible) there is a spike upwards in March and i suspect April and May will demonstrate more of the same. You may also notice that the residential segment, single family hoes, makes up the largest percentage of sales, while land sales make up the smallest number of sales.
If you've been thinking that the pricing is getting attractive on Kauai, well it is. Let me know what type of properties you wish to monitor and you can receive an update whenever there is a change in the portion of the market that most interests you.
Ron Margolis, RA, CDPE, ABR Hawaii Life Real Estate Services 808.346.7095 email: email@example.com