Aloha Everyone, hope 2017 is moving along! It feels like the sun is finally starting to shine in Hawai‘i, and it’s a welcome respite after some torrential rains this Winter. On the Real Estate front, the market continues to have low inventory numbers, while median prices rise. Let’s take a look at some specifics and see what February looked like.
The biggest and most popular number on that board is probably the $755,000 median price for single-family homes, up 4.2% year-to-date. The biggest reason for this jump over last month has to be the inventory in the market, which is down 2.2% versus last month.
With only 1,012 total homes on the market, it’s one of the slimmest times if you’re looking to buy a house. Brokers here at the office are saying it might even drop below 1,000 next month, especially if new listings stay low. Multiple Listing Service (MLS, or our Realtor database) shows only 372 homes came on the market in February, while 423 went into Escrow. Negative net housing will continue to push the inventory down and keep demand high.
On the Condo end, it seems that more deals are closing due to the higher median single-family home prices. As those prices rise, Homebuyers are turning to condos as affordable alternatives. However, even condos are facing negative net housing as more move into Escrow.
Finally, an interesting quote came out of the newspaper yesterday (subscription required) from Carl Bonham, executive director of the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization and a UH professor of economics. He says he expects the growth rate in home prices to slow from now through 2019 due to higher mortgage interest rates and slower job and income growth projected for the state. Other experts in local market economics were predicting median prices to hit $800,000 by the end of 2018, but he doesn’t see that happening till 2019. There will certainly be upward pressure as long as the inventories remain low, but we will also keep an eye on how markets react to other factors as well.
ALOHA FOR NOW!