Maui Real Estate Stats, July 2011

66 homes sold in July at a median price of $404,500. By comparison, 61 homes sold in Maui last July at a median of $500,000. That is approximately an 8% increase in sales volume and a 19% decrease in median.

97 condos sold in July at a median price of $325,000.  Last July, there were 69 condos sold with a median price of $390,000. This translates to a 41% increase in sales volume and a 17% decrease in median prices.

There have been 13 land sales for July 2011 at a median price of $400,000. Last July there were 15 sales reported at a median of $400,000.  We saw about 13% fewer land sales this year compared with last July.

Bank Owned Properties (REO) and short sales are still making a significant impact on Maui's real estate market.  There were 37 REO sales and 22 short sales.  Of all home sales, 41% were shorts or REOs.  Of all condo sales, 36% were shorts or REOS. 23% of the land sales last month involved REOs or Short Sales.

Looking at the numbers above, the condo sales stand out the most. For most of 2011, the monthly sales numbers have been below or a little bit above the numbers reported for the same month of 2010. This July’s numbers were far better than July 2010. Overall, the 2011 condo numbers have been pretty solid. For the first half of 2010, anywhere between 15-40 sales were based on new development pre-construction contracts that date all the way back to the 2005-2006 time frame.  Without the high number of new development sales, the comparison between 2011 and 2010 sales becomes more clear. Another factor is that July 2010 was also just a slow month overall for sales. It was the second slowest month in all of 2010. While July 2011 was solid, I don't feel it signifies any indication of a big market resurgence.

While home and condo sales were up, land was down. That being said, the land numbers also come with their own caveat. The Maui MLS does not differentiate between residential land sales and commercial land sales. There were five commercial land sales in July of 2010 and one commercial sale for July 2011. When you take out the commercial sales, residential land sales were higher in July 2011 than July 2010. The Maui land market remains slow and the inventory remains large.

While the housing market posted modest increases in volume compared to July of 2010, the July 2011 market truly stood out due to a single sale. As previously reported in our Wailea midyear statistics, Maui has a new sales record for a home on Maui. Paypal co-founder Peter Thiel purchased a 1.6 acre oceanfront estate in Makena for $27,000,000. This year there has also been a new record high sale for Kapalua ($14,000,000) and as of yesterday the North Shore of Maui, Spreckelsville ($9,650,000). Needless to say, there are still buyers willing to pay an absolute premium for the best properties that Maui has to offer.

While we are seeing new record high prices for luxury properties, median prices continue to fall on Maui. Some of that decrease in median prices can be attributed to price decreases. Some of that decrease can be attributed to where market activity is occurring. The bulk of the REO and short sales are continuing to occur at the lower price points of the market. While there were some big sales last month, they aren’t enough to offset the greater volume of lower priced properties that continue to close.

What does this mean for buyers and sellers? Sellers should continue to keep a close eye on market competition and recent sales when determining how to price their properties. REO and short sales remain formidable competition. While I think we can safely say it is a buyer’s market, buyers should be aware that they face their own set of challenges. Those who are thinking of buying and require financing should make sure to get pre-qualified prior to beginning their search. Strong credit and solid overall financial positioning are necessary to take advantage of the better financing options available. Buyers should also be aware that banks are closely scrutinizing the condition of the properties being purchased. Some of the bank owned properties that require significant improvements do not qualify for financing. While there are some very good values being listed, many of the best values are receiving multiple offers. These properties frequently sell over asking price.       Contact Michele Muir White R(S), ABR, SFR. Coldwell Banker Island Properties, Wailea Gateway, 808.298.8448, with questions or for assistance buying or selling Maui real estate.