HONOLULU – Oahu home and condominium sales saw a significant spike in the luxury market in May, with the strongest movement in the $1 to $2 million range, according to Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties (CBP), Hawaii’s leading residential real estate firm and a specialist in high-end real estate sales.
The figures are based on Multiple Listing Service (MLS) data of all single-family homes and condominiums sold for more than $1 million in May 2014 on Oahu.
Oahu saw 84 luxury sales close last month. Oahu’s housing market is on an upward trend compared to the average number of homes sold in January through April 2014 (56 homes sales per month) and 62 home sales in May 2013.
“The market last year was more of a frenzy, with pent-up buyer demand resulting in many listings with multiple offers,” explained Patti Nakagawa, Previews International Director for Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties. “This year the buyer demand is still strong, but not as intense as last year. Prices are gradually increasing and the number of active listings are increasing, resulting in an increase in days on market.”
The median sales price fell slightly from 2013, at $1.88 million in May 2014 versus $1.89 million in May 2013. The time to sell a luxury home increased just slightly in May 2014, with average days on market at 62 days in May 2014, compared to 54 days in May 2013.
“We had strong escrow activity in the $1 million to $6 million price range since March, with a 32 percent increase in the number of sales for the past three months compared to the same period last year,” said Nakagawa. “The average escrow is 45 to 60 days from the time an offer is accepted to the closing date. We also are seeing more offers that are contingent on the sale of the buyer’s property, as well as offers contingent on the seller finding a replacement property. This lengthens the period of escrow beyond the average period.”
When looking at the upper-end of the luxury market of homes $6 million and up, it is somewhat soft. From January through May Oahu has only seen one sale in this segment. In 2013, five homes sold for more than $6 million in this same time period.
“The softness this year is not for a lack of inventory as there is currently 43 months of inventory remaining, based on the current rate of sale,” said Nakagawa.
Other key findings based on MLS data:
· The $1 million to $2 million price range was the strongest market segment, with 61 sales compared to 52 sales in May 2013, a 15% increase.
· With 11 sales in the $3 million to $6 million price point, Hawaii continues to see expansive interest from non-Hawaii buyers in this segment. More than half the buyers are from the U.S. Mainland, three from Asia with only two from Hawaii. These sales are significantly higher than May 2013, which only saw 2 transactions in the $3 million to $6 million range.
· The most expensive sale recorded during May 2014 was a 7,765-square-foot home in Kailua with five bedrooms and seven bathrooms on a nearly 25,000-square-foot lot, which sold for $5.1 million in 89 days.
The Coldwell Banker Previews International program has been a world leader in the marketing of luxury homes since 1933. The Previews® program was acquired by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC in 1980 and launched as Coldwell Banker Previews International®, the brand’s luxury homes program. The exclusive group of certified Previews Property Specialists make up approximately 8.5 percent of the independent sales associates affiliated with Coldwell Banker worldwide. Coldwell Banker Previews International participated in more than 20,000 transaction sides of homes priced at $1 million or more in 2013. On average, Previews handles $102.7 million in luxury homes sales every day. Coldwell Banker, Previews and Coldwell Banker Previews International are registered marks licensed to Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Each office is independently owned and operated.
Economists predict steady improvement in Oahu's market which means higher prices for buyers who wait. It's a great time for owners contemplating selling, especially those who have more than one property.
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