October 2009

Found 7 blog entries for October 2009.

Looks like the first time home buyer's credit will be modified and extended.

According to CNN, First-time buyers could continue to claim up to $8,000. But existing homeowners who have lived in their home for five years could receive up to $6,500 if they trade up to a larger principal residence.

* The full credit would be limited to buyers who earn less than $125,000 a year and for married couples with annual incomes up to $225,000.

* The credit could only be used for homes selling for $800,000 or less.

* Contracts must be signed by April 30, 2010 and sales must close by June 30.

That's good news for home buyers and the market, bad news for our children and grandchildren who will be paying that debt back in the form of super high taxes and inflation.

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This past weekend I had 4 different clients looking at 16 homes in Kailua and Kaneohe, and 2 properties Mililani.  I drove over 500 miles in 3 days, on an island only 50 miles wide. Good thing I have a nice comfortable ride. kailua kitchen

Most of the homes on the Windward side were just ok, with a few nice standouts. This kitchen was at the nicest house we viewed, a 1993 home in Kailue Bluffs for $1.1million.  Very nicely done with black granite, self closing drawers, pendant lighting, Bosch dishwasher, and more.  This is how a kitchen should look for over $1mil.

This is a great house and though my clients aren't ready to buy it today, I'm sure somebody will buy it soon.

I'm writing an offer for one of those clients today, and working on others to come soon.  The

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front_640This beautiful home in Hawaii Kai was listed as a short sale in late July for $700k.  It was just approved as a short sale for $786k by Indymac bank.  Fortunately we had 8 offers all well over asking.  It took just under 90 days to get the approval, which isn't too bad. We are opening escrow today and hope to close in November.  

A few things I learned from this short sale:

  • Short sales can and do close. I just closed another one last week. (See previous posts.)
  • Put together a really good short sale application package, with the loan number on every page, a detailed hardship letter with pictures, and send it with a nice cover letter.
  • Communicate with buyers often so they don't cancel before the approval.
  • Indymac has really good short sale dept
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It took some serious work and it was a nail biting experience, but we got this 5 bedroom, 2600+ sqft home closed today for $600k.  It's in the Woodbridge tract of Ewa Gentry. A great house built just a few years ago.  It was in great condition except the carpet upstairs, which is being replaced now. hoomaalili house

With the seller in a hurry to get the house sold and the buyer under the gun to move out of temporary housing, we worked hard to get the lender's approval on the short sale quickly.  We also had to get an appraisal recertified from a contract that was cancelled by a previous buyer. 

This beautiful house sat vacant for months until my clients closed today. Believe it or not, the house started out at over $700k more than 1 year ago. It was on the verge of

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Earlier this week I drove by the new H1 freeway exit in Kapolei. I didn't think they were going to open that for a couple more months, but it is now open.  It allows people in Kapolei to get off earlier and releives some of the congestion at Fort Barrett. 

That's more good news for the West side, even as traffic in Ewa Beach is also moving much faster.  Now if we can just keep the new construction to a minimum, there won't be as much new traffic in the future.   

Now do we really still need a $5billion Rail ?  I say no, along with many others.  I bet if people on the West Side could vote now that they have seen the difference, the vote would be different.


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1289  and 1864.  That's the number of homes and condos available on Oahu, respectively.  Those are the lowest numbers since fall 2005.  The lowest number of homes available in 2006-2009 so far was 1600.  Perspective - it's only 5.4 months of inventory!

No wonder my buyers have had a hard time finding homes to buy, while my sellers have been selling quickly with multiple offers. No wonder my clients looking for a water front townhome in Hawaii Kai are having a hard time.  Usually there are a dozen to choose from, but not anymore. 

Is it the low rates? The tax credit? The economy bouncing?  Whatever it is, the inventory only proves again that Oahu is the best place to buy and hold real estate!

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Yesterday I showed a few clients 17 homes around Kailua, Kaneohe, Mililani, and Makakilo.  I drove a total of 180 miles from my home in Aina Haina, a small neighborhood in the Diamond Head region.

After viewing all these homes I can say for sure that prices have dropped substantially, but inventory is very low for anything really good.  Any home priced right and in good condition will sell in just a couple weeks.  I say that because I was actually planning to view 20 homes, but 3 of them sold before Saturday.

Plus, 2 of the homes I showed yesterday already had offers on the .  One of them had 2 offers.  The price range? All between $650k and $1million.  Inventory overall is very low, and for a nice condition home, extremely low.

I left my house at

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