kauai real estate update
Kauai real estate, like the rest of the housing market in Hawaii, has suffered great lengths since the beginning of the global economic recession years ago. Much of the real estate on Kauai has been affected by an astronomically-high foreclosure rate, reported Allison Schafers of the Honolulu Star Bulletin on September 16, 2009. The article claims that Kauai surpassed the other major islands in Hawaii in terms of outright foreclosures. In fact, “RealtyTrac recorded 212 foreclosures, or one for every 138 households in Kauai.” To make things worse, “there were 175 foreclosures in Lihue in August, an increase of 1,246 percent over the prior month and a 40 percent rise over the prior year.” Realtors who specialize in Kauai properties claim that distressed properties now command the majority of the island’s housing market and make up the largest percentage of Kauai homes for sale.
However, there is a glimmer of hope for a recovering local property market. The Pacific Business News reported on September 8, 2009, that while single-family home sales has slipped, the “sale of condominiums on Kauai picked up in August.” In fact, “the median price of a Kauai condo last month was $300,000, just up from $299,000 in August 2008.” On the other hand, “The median price of a single-family home on Kauai last month was $471,000, down 11 percent from $530,000 in August 2008.”
Janis L. Magin wrote on September 22, 2009 in the Pacific Business News that “Kauai residents overall saw their average net worth go down by 11 percent, the same as Oahu.” This was a direct effect of a significant drop in previous home values. Even some of the island’s wealthiest zip codes experienced significant drops in average net worth. While the statistics may point to drastic changes in the local market, analysts believe that with time and improving home prices, those figures will recover in the coming year.