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What's Really Happening in the Oahu Real Estate Market Mid Month Report

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Oahu Single Family Home inventory has risen in the past two weeks by +7% which is to be expected this time of year as demand drops, sales drop and inventory increases as we head into the Holidays.

The Average Sold Price is $973,358 while the Average Price in escrow is $846,659. This suggests that prices are still very negotiable for Oahu Single Family Homes.

Sales are off for the first two weeks of October by -14% which is a pretty steep decline. I expect this to continue the rest of the month and for this number to increase.

The amount of Expired and Withdrawns continues to increase and will most likely come in around 200 by the end of the month.


Just like SFH’s the inventory increase so far for the month is coming in at +7% so far, but I expect this percentage to increase by the end of the month as we head into the Holiday Season.

The Average Sold Price is $452,810 while the Average Price in Escrow is $401,913 which, just as in the case of SFH’s, suggests that there is plenty of room for negotiation on prices for condos all over the Island.

The amount of sales is on par with the number of sales turned in for the first two weeks of September. So not much change here.

The good part is that Condo Sales are still very strong as approximately 18% of all inventory is currently in escrow with Just Accepted Offers. The percentage for SFH’s is at 15% and dropping. So in essence the demand for SFH’s is slowing but the demand for Condos is still doing relatively well for this time of year.

The amount of Expired and Withdrawn listings for Condos is very excessive so far for the month of October. It is already at 152 and might possibly come in at or close to 300 which would be the largest amount of Expired and Withdrawns for the year.

Other Areas of Oahu




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Mike’s Hot Button

I would like to thank many of you who have taken the time to email me a word of thanks for the monthly columns. Thank You! I enjoy doing it and while many of you probably still have many questions that are unanswered in this Real Estate Market, please do not hesitate to send your questions to me.

We have all seen a heck of a year so far in this Real Estate Market and good times just keep on rolling! High sales, low inventory to slow sales, high inventory, to mortgage crisis, to long Days On Market numbers and finally …the end of the market is in site for this year.

One of the most popular questions I receive from folks is “When is it the best time to buy?”
This is a fair question as many do not realize that Real Estate Sales is Seasonal.

Most sales occur from late March, early April and continue to be increasingly stronger till the end of July. Then from July till Feb. of the following year the demand is at it’s lowest. In my thinking the best time of year to buy is April because all the new inventory that will hit the market. You might want to be one of the first to see the inventory and buy it before someone else does.

Now if you are ‘bargain shopper’ you want to buy from October to the end of Feb of the following year as the sellers that are still on the market at this time usually mean business and really are motivated to sell. This usually means they will be negotiable on price.

The answer really is “there is never really a bad time to buy. Please see the below graph for a case in point. A buyer should be able to look at the whole market with it’s ups and downs as a natural occurrence and be prepared to deal with it or accept it. You really want to be a long term investor and not in the market for a quick turnaround. Statistically there is data out there that will show that the return for long term investors is higher than the short term investors.

Of course long term investing is not for everyone and everyone’s situation is different or simply your life changes so you are forced to become a short term investor. At least from the graph you can see both points in this argument. You will see that if you hold onto the property for the long term you make mega bucks. You will also see that if you are a short term investor you will see that there is a minimum number or years to hold the property for maximum profit from equity. Anything less and you will loose money.
If you ever wondered as a buyer how to get the best price for a property you want you need to get with an experienced realtor from a reputable firm that has had a large number of transactions. Transactions is the key. It denotes experience.

You also need to do your own research and be able to look at Sold data for the same Condo Building or same, ‘like kind’ Single Family Homes in the same Neighborhoods and produce a C.M.A. or Comparative Market Analysis. This report will give you like kind properties based upon your choices and allow you to evaluate price per sq. foot for each property. This is the same general guideline Appraisers will use in valuing a property for a buyer’s lender who is in escrow.

Your agent will be able to do this for you too, but again, remember go for an experienced agent as many newer one may not how to do this. It takes a period of time for an agent to properly learn how to do this C.M.A.

If you need a C.M.A. please feel free to contact me. If you are a buyer who is spending time going to Open Houses, reviewing a C.M.A. with the D.O.M.’s (Days On Market) on the report prior to making your decision on which homes to visit is absolutely necessary.

Why waste your time going to open houses that are overpriced with short D.O.M.’s which indicate the seller is going to be less negotiable on price since they haven’t been sitting on the market like their counter parts who may be overpriced but have been on the market for three months. Trust me, the three month seller will be much more negotiable on price and terms than the seller who has been on the market for 20 days or less.

Another that is important for real estate Sellers that I almost never get questions about oddly enough is how best to sell your home?

Overall it is always about price but if you want the most money for your property there is certain circumstances that must take place prior to selling:

  1. Staging the home.
  2. Professional Photography
  3. Less Competition

For a more detailed “How to Sell Your Home for More” go to:
in the “Selling” Section.

Now I realize we don’t all have the ‘fashion sense’ or ‘interior decorating sense’ that others may have. If you do, then you are among the few. Speak to an agent who has the experience or a Company who will stage your home for you. It’s really important how it looks and how the home presents itself before proceeding to the next stage…Professional Photography.

Most agents will not want to spend the $1,000 to hire a professional who will shoot in 35mm slides and enhance the shots with a popular program such as Photoshop and render drop dead gorgeous pictures of your home.

Many Professional Photographers have a home decorator sense as they are after all…Artistic people. These same photographers will also have associations with Interior Designers who will prep the home prior to the shoot.

In defense of the agent who does not want to spend this type of money on shooting your home, the price point of your home will become the key factor. If the agent is going to spend their money advertising the return has to be there. Many factors will come into play in making the agents decision to shoot professionally or just shoot the home digitally themselves. All are important, but the most important is the price you are going to sell the home for. Really? YES!

If the home is priced properly to sell it will result in immediate multiple showings. Many showings will result in offers. Without showings you are dead and wasting your time. You will eventually keep lowering your price until the right price is achieved, but the real downside with this is many buyers noting the price decreases and the D.O.M. being high will simply expect you to lower the price again or to just give you a ‘low ball’ offer.

Price the Home Properly!


Hire an Experienced Agent!


Look at the number of Transactions they have had!

Finally, do not bring the home to market when there is a ton of for sale inventory of like kind homes in the same building or neighborhood as yours. Ocean Pointe in Ewa has had a flood of For Sales. I think the latest count was over 50 homes for sale in this relatively small community. This type of competition is going to brutal on your bottom line!

Bring your home to market at a price point that will stand out for those buyers looking on the computer and bring your home to market when there is less competition.


I hope you all have enjoyed this report and found it beneficial in your research of Hawaii Real Estate. As always, please remember to check as many resources that you personally trust to properly arrive at an overall evaluation of this subject matter. All buyers and sellers should draw their own conclusions and conduct their own investigations.

Final Notes

In evaluating Hawaii Real Estate investments you should conduct your research on the data, interview agents and brokerages and consult mortgage lenders. By all means feel free to contact me for your personal questions you may have. I can be reached via the below information:

Mike Gallagher Realtor/Broker/Broker in Charge
RE/Max Honolulu
808-951-3200 Office
My Cell: 808-384-9015
My Email:

I wish you all my Aloha and ‘Good Luck’ in your investigations!
Much Aloha,
Mike Gallagher

P.S.: If you’re viewing this report on the internet please see the New Monthly Feature:

The Honolulu Board of Realtors Statistical Report
An Outstanding Resource for all.

If your property is listed, please disregard. It is not our intention to solicit the offerings of other Brokers. We will cooperate fully. This publication is neither endorsed by RE/Max or RE/Max Honolulu. The opinions and information are only those opinions of the author. Statistics are from the Honolulu Board of Realtors. All material is deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Any copying or distribution of this material herein is STRICTLY UNAUTHORIZED without express written permission from the Author.

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