March 2010

Found 12 blog entries for March 2010.

I just saw this article in the Star Bulletin, and WOW I am impressed.  This is written by the director of the Hawaii Tax Department, and it is awesome! Some excerpts:

"The proposed tax hike is one of the largest in state history. Raising the GET from 4 percent to 5 percent would significantly impede Hawaii's economic recovery because of the GET's broad reach. In a nutshell, this proposed tax increase would remove roughly $500 million from Hawaii's economy every year. As the saying goes, the GET taxes "anything that moves" — including rent, food, clothing, gas, nonprescription medicine and doctor visits"

"The poor, who have the least ability to pay the tax on

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PBN reported this morning that Honolulu residents are No. 1 in the use of energy-saving appliances, according to a Scarborough Research survey of 81 U.S. cities.

Forty percent of Honolulu households use “green” appliances, the study found. Nationally, about a third of households use energy-saving appliances.

Next highest were Portland, Ore., (39 percent) and the San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose area (38 percent).

Related - Hawaii home owners love Solar Energy.  I have 18 Photovoltaic panels and 2 solar hot water panels.  See my solar energy system here. 

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Next week the government will stop propping up the mortgage-backed securities market.  I posted about this a few weeks ago, citing the article in the Washington Post  which explains that the government is about to stop spending billions of dollars buying its own bonds. 

The Treasury spent about $220 billion, and the Fed pledged $1.25 trillion, the largest foray the central bank has made into the markets since the onset of the crisis, which they brought upon themselves through the "community reinvestment act" of Carter and later Clinton.

The Fed has been printing money and funneling it to people looking to buy a house or refinance an existing mortgage.  Most certainly treasury prices will fall, and rates will go up at least a little, if not a lot,

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I have a better way to predict the real estate market than any economist on Earth.  It's more accurate than anything that a group of Ph.D.'s can come up with by crunching numbers and data. It has nothing to do with stocks, economics, currency markets, the price of oil, or the price of anything at all.  It doesn't even have to do with the inventory of homes. I have a data set that, when it's all said and done, is the only set of 'data' that matters.  This magical predictor is called - clients. 

By about this time each year, I already know who about 70% of my buyers and sellers are going to be. I've been talking to them for months, some of them years, searching for properties, finalizing moving plans, and setting dates to go home shopping. Some of them

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We were (and are) in escrow on the house dsc_0347_400at 1816 Kilohi st, but the buyer is getting cold feet.  So we have put the house back on the market at a price that is $30k higher - $580k!

Why so much higher? Simple, we had tons of interest,  received multiple offers, and they were up to $580k! 

So if you missed out the first time, here it is again.  I looked through all the listings in Honolulu, and let me tell you, this is the best house for the money out there! 

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I'm tired of my buyers missing out on houses they want to buy.  I'm tired of being outbid, being the 4th offer in, being the one that missed out.  

I have decided as of today, I am no longer going to be the no-pressure-buyer's agent.

From today on, if a buyer tells me they want to buy a house, I will say it up front - You need to move fast, maybe offer above asking, and do it TODAY. You need to stop delaying, stop making excuses, stop living in fear, and ACT NOW! 

  • Last week a client of mine missed out on a beautiful water front house for $1.3 million. It sold that night, all cash, full price.
  • 3 weeks ago a client of mine missed out on a bank owned property for $575k. She hesitated, wanted to offer below asking price (against my advice,) and
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Some excerpts from a very interesteding article in the Advertiser this week below.  Basically, The market is on its way up and the median single-family home could be more than $1 million by 2020, said renowned Honolulu economist Paul Brewbaker.   He has been right on the money on every prediction he has made about our market in the last decade. 


 Last month, single-family home sales rose 21.7 percent to 157 from the year prior's 129.  Condo sales soared 44.4 percent to 231 from the 160 in February 2009. The median price paid for a condominium rose 0.3 percent to $298,000 from the last year's $297,000.

Oahu's housing market bottomed out in 2009 with prices for homes around $560,000 last May and condo prices around $300,000 last August.

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Good news as the economic world didn't collapse as much as people thought it would in 2008-2009. From today's PBN: Hawaii hotel occupancy grew 3.4 percentage points to 66.5 percent in January — the fourth occupancy increase in the past five months.

However, as compared with the same month last year, room rates continue to slide — down $21 to average $176 a night.  That meant a $7 drop to $117 in revenue per available room. Overall, statewide room revenue in January fell by an estimated $9.3 million to $206.7 million.

"The positive January 2010 results reflect a continuation of the recovery trend that began during the last quarter 2009,” said Joseph Toy, president and CEO of Hospitality Advisors. “Preliminary February results also appear…
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UPDATE: This house in Kalihi valley that I listeddsc_0347_400 last Monday had about 25 showings in 1 week and is now in escrow well over the asking price of $550k.  Most of the offers were above asking, and none were very much below the price.

Before listing it, we had the house painted and cleaned, and installed new fixtures, new toilets, new lights, and some new flooring.  We also had all the rubbish removed. 

Then we had the survey done, ordered a permit package, and completed the seller's disclosure. 

Doing all the hard work up front means the sellers can now relax and wait for the closing date (read: check.)

Congrats to my sellers on getting their home sold quickly and above the asking price!

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Great news for the tourism industry in Hawaii!  According to the Advertiser today, Continental Airlines will launch three new flights from Honolulu and Kahului on Maui to the West Coast starting Sunday.

The flights will be from Maui to Los Angeles and Orange County and a flight from Honolulu to Orange County.  Continental will operate the flight with a Boeing 737-800 with 160 seats.  They will start a second daily flight between Honolulu and Los Angeles on Sunday.

The new Maui-Orange County flight will operate four times a week.  Continental will use a Boeing 737-700 that seats 124 passengers on the new route and plans to increase the service to daily during the summer.

Continental also will use a Boeing 737-700 that seats 124 passengers on the route.

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