Maui real estate update

October 31, 2009 by
Filed under: Hawaii 

mauihomes240x200The picturesque island of Maui has captivated tourists and local residents alike for years past.  Today, the beautiful island continues to awe its temporary and permanent inhabitants with its small town charm and spectacular culture.  However, the island hasn’t been immune to the effects of the global economic recession that has depressed property values, affected personal home mortgages, and caused shakiness in the lending and credit business.  These factors have left an indelible mark on the Maui real estate market.  Allison Schaefers of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin reported on October 15, 2009, that “RealtyTrac ranked Hawaii 15th among states for foreclosure activity. Across the state, 969 properties — the second-highest number of the year — received foreclosure notices.”  This number is an increase of twelve percent from the previous month and 63 percent from the previous year.  “Maui’s foreclosure rate surpassed the national level in September and activity on Maui and Kauai overtook the nation during the third quarter, according to data released today from RealtyTrac.”  The article quotes real estate expert Daren Blomquist as saying Maui’s foreclosure rates have risen to almost uncontrollable levels by going from below national average to significantly above the national average.  However, he clarified, “One of the reasons for the gain could be Hawaii’s high percentage of second-home, resort and investment activity.”

Mauikitch3

More bad news for Maui homes for sale came with the publication of Janis L. Magin’s Pacific Business News article that claimed, “the median price of a single-family home in Maui County was $450,000, a 16 percent decline from $537,500 from September 2008 for real estate in Maui.”  However, condominium sales rose by twenty-five percent and the median price increased to $306,250, although this was still a remarkable decrease from the previous year’s median of over $388,000.

To put things in perspective, Harry Eagar of the Maui News wrote on October 13, 2009, that “single-family prices are down nearly 30 percent from 2006, when the average topped $1 million. Last year, the average was down to $877,000, and this year the average is down to $715,000.”  However, some analysts believe that because Maui is such a small market, changes are often magnified compared to relative changes in other housing areas.

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