Maui Real Estate Newsletter

Aloha!   

The word is out! Yet another record-breaking year for our tourism numbers confirms that people like to visit Maui! According to the Hawaii Tourism Authority “…records set in 2017 included visitor arrivals, visitor expenditures, and total visitor days, all built on previous (6 consecutive) record-setting years” Visitor arrivals by air exceeded 2.7 million for the year, and that doesn’t count the visitors from cruise ships that may only spend a day or two on the island. Personally, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve said, “I’ve never seen so many people on the island” over the past few months. The handful of vacation rental units I manage for clients who purchased them through me are all booked solid through April already and are beginning to fill up for the summer months as well. So, what does all that mean to you? A) Perhaps it’s a good time to consider owning one of those units, or B) if you plan to visit, don’t wait too long to make your reservations!

While we’re on the topic of Maui statistics, Old Republic Title here in Maui recently circulated a report on the last ten years of Real Estate sales in Maui, broken down by types of real estate (single-family, condos, vacant land), and neighborhoods (West, South, Central, Upcountry—even Hana!). It really is quite comprehensive and particularly interesting to see trends going back to 2008 when our market, like most of the country, was in the very depths of its doldrums. Needless to say, the rebound has been quite dramatic, and barring something major and unforeseen with our economy, appears to be full-speed ahead. Please click the link below to view this report. If you have any thoughts or comments, I would appreciate hearing from you.

Click for 10 Year Statistics

Let’s leave the stats behind for a while and take a look at some Featured Properties. As has been my tradition, these are properties that stand out from the crowd for many reasons—most of all for their stunning excellence!

MLS #376871—Na Hale o’Makena has long been one of my favorites both for the quality of construction, attention to detail, high-end finishes, and out-of-the-way location. A small complex of only 40 units, this particular offering is one of the 2 or 3 most desirable of the top floor ocean view units. $1,850,000!!!

MLS #377432—One of the few new developments in the Wailea-Makena area, Makali’i stands out in many ways, but is creating quite a stir with the design elements created by their Mid-Century Modern approach to architecture. I featured this project in one of my Newsletters some months back, and this unit has one of the best orientations for view in the entire complex. $2,598,000!!!


MLS #376827—The iconic Makena Surf is certainly one of the last of its kind with its on-the-sand proximity to the beautiful blue Pacific Ocean. This unit is special because it was built in the very last phase, has more square footage than prior units, and is a solid concrete building. A recent remodel puts it at the top of my list for Makena Surf. $2,950,000!!!

MLS #377350—Pushing “rare” to the max, this seldom-on-the-market 5th floor Penthouse unit at the fabulous Wailea Beach Villas sits high above even the 36 Villas that stretch between it and the ocean. Be the King of the Hill, the envy of your friends, and even cash big checks should you decide to put it in the rental program when you’re not enjoying it yourself. $4,875,000!!!

And last but not least, you may recall me mentioning the new development in Wailea, Keala o’Wailea, numerous times. Well, the time has come. There is only one Developer unit left for sale out of 70 units, and it is a lovely 2BR/2BA ground floor unit with great canyon and mountain views, priced at $819,900! Units in Phase I, Building 1 and 2, are closing escrow as we speak, and two have been relisted for half again as much as the owners paid for them. Still want in on that?

As for “News Around Town”, the Maui News reported that developer R.D. Olson (Courtyard by Marriott at Kahului Airport and Residence Inn by Marriott in Wailea) is initiating plans to build what is expected to be yet another Marriott franchised property, called “Hotel Ike” (pronounced e-kay) on a small 3-acre parcel across from the Residence Inn in Wailea. This will be a smaller, more intimate 110 room hotel oriented to couples rather than families. Click here for more information.

Thus a great segue into wishing all you lovers (of something!) a Happy Valentine’s Day! Whales are here in numbers these next few weeks and I enjoyed a sunset Whale Watch with Pacific Whale Foundation just last week, replete with live music, dancing, great food, and adult beverages. A good time was had by all!

Thanks, as always, for following my Monthly Newsletter and I hope someday I can make your dream of owning Maui Real Estate come true!

A hui hou,

Michael Blaz

Aloha!   

Welcome to 2018!  Although it’s a topic I have touched on in the past, I thought the start of a new year would be the perfect time to sing the praises of life as it is on Maui.

I’m sure most if not all of you have had thoughts about what it would be like to live in Hawaii, either full or part-time.  So to start, here’s a very brief overview of the other three habitable islands, acknowledging that the climate and sunsets are spectacular on all the islands:

Oahu—World-class International shopping destination!  Great golf courses, lots of nightlife, lots of people, military bases, freeways with traffic like the mainland.  Most expensive Real Estate in the state.

Hawaii (the Big Island)—so called because it is literally larger than all the other islands put together.  It is the youngest of the four main islands and is still forming with its continuous active volcanos.  Like all the islands, the east/windward side (Hilo) is lush and rainy; the west (Kona) side is warm and dry.  You’ll experience lots of wide open spaces--but not many sandy beaches considering the size of the island--with vast miles of black volcanic rock landscape.

Kauai—The Garden Isle—with 65,000 people, Kauai is the oldest and least populated of the islands.  It is referred to as one of the wettest spots on Earth based on average rainfall in the central part of the island.  Kauai has a very small-town and rural feeling with a fair amount of sandy beaches, adequate facilities (shopping, entertainment, activities, etc.), and a laid-back Hawaiian lifestyle.

Then there’s Maui.  The mantra on Maui is Maui No Ka Oi, which translated means “Maui is the Best!”  Admittedly, that was no doubt coined by someone living on Maui, but the inference is that Maui has the best balance between civilization and facilities while retaining its unique sense of Hawaiiana and stress-free lifestyle.  Here are 10 reasons why you might want to consider Maui as your island destination of choice:

1. Communities—Although Maui is a relatively small island the fact that it is divided into 5 very distinct communities gives residents lifestyle choices to suit their personal preferences.  Each one of the 5 communities is divided by a 20-30 minute scenic drive and boasts their own micro-climates.  Central Maui (Kahului, Wailuku), to south Maui (Kihei, Wailea, Makena), West Maui (Lahaina, Kaanapali, Kapalua), Upcountry (Makawao, Pukalani, Kula), and East Maui (Haiku out to Hana) all have their own special appeal.

2.  Beaches—With over 30 miles of sandy beaches on Maui, many of which have been named in Conde Nast travel magazine as some of the best in the world over the years, there’s something for everyone.  Whether you like to surf, wind or kite sail, snorkel, stand up paddle, kayak, spearfish, or just lather up the sunscreen and relax (like me)—it’s all there for you.

3.  Places to stay—Needless to say, there is no shortage of lodging choices on Maui.  From the numerous World-class hotels that line the shores of Wailea and Kaanapali, to the 100’s of private condominiums of all sizes, shapes, and price ranges, you will have more than ample choices.  Many of my clients have rented condos for 3-6 months to get acclimated while they search for their perfect Maui home.

4.  Dining—Whether you’re looking for a burger in paradise or a 5-course elegant dinner with the perfect wine pairing, Maui is known for its fine array of great restaurants.  And don’t forget those yummy Costco hot dogs—one of my favorite bad habits!

5.  The Arts/Entertainment—Live amateur theater is alive and well on Maui and of a surprisingly high quality.  One of the too-well-kept secrets about Maui is that for a small population we have a high number of very talented people who have long-time backgrounds in theater from the Mainland.  Art galleries are abundant in every community on the island, even Hana!  We attract many big-name musical acts to our outdoor concert venues, some of whom have become residents of Maui after having performed here!

6. Health Care—If you are a “maturing” Baby Boomer like myself, or a family with kids or just someone concerned with their personal care, our state-owned Maui Memorial Hospital has recently partnered with Kaiser Permanente to provide more and better health care services than ever before.  As with our Performing Arts and artists on Maui, many very qualified healthcare professionals have made Maui their home over the years.  I feel like I receive excellent healthcare here.

7.  Education—The state of Hawaii continues to put great emphasis on school accountability in our public school system on the islands for all grades kindergarten through 12th grade.  The “Strive HI Performance System” recently implemented helps quantify and evaluate each school’s curriculum to make sure it meets the state’s very high standards.  Our Maui Community College is a satellite of and operated by the University of Hawaii and offers many relevant career-oriented programs using cutting-edge technologies.

8.  Activities—Of course, no shortage of golf courses, tennis courts, and leagues, water sports, hiking, off-road biking, Cross-fit facilities, gyms and aerobics classes, yoga everywhere—even an outdoor batting cage!  And the best part is—these are all year-round activities on Maui!

9.  Farmer’s Markets—I can’t exclude the importance of the many Farmer’s Markets that abound around the island.  Many people are concerned with Cost of Living issues on Maui, and rightfully so, but the accessibility of so many Farmer’s Markets reduces costs while at the same time providing residents with beautiful locally grown and often organic produce, eggs, flowers, and even home-grown beef and dairy!

For a nice overview:  www.gohawaii.com/islands/maui

And last but not least…

10.  Real Estate—Yes, in many cases Real Estate is expensive on Maui, relative to where you live now.  On the other hand, if you live anywhere on the coast of California, SoCal or Bay area, cities like New York, Chicago, Vancouver, D.C., etc., you may not suffer from sticker shock at all!  This year we have seen 11% appreciation across the board averaging condos, homes, and vacant land--more than your money is likely earning in your current passive investments!

Click here for December and Year-end statistics

I do want to leave you with some Favorite Properties; a New Year with some very special homes or condos that have just been listed within the past week:

MLS #376948—This one’s worth getting excited about.  A picture speaks louder than words, so do click on the link, but to find an architecturally stunning home with spectacular ocean views and a single-level floor plan, on a lush, tropical ½ acre of Maui Real Estate like this is very rare.  $1,499,999!!!

MLS #376871—If you like to be a little out of the way, yet within a 4-minute drive to the Shops at Wailea, then Na Hale O’Makena is the place for you.  This laid-back, low density gated community of only 40 units offers peace, quiet, security, and luxury all rolled into one.  One of the better view units in the complex and priced to sell at $1,850,000!!!

MLS #376955—And for the would-be Maui homeowner who has to have the best of everything, look no further than this truly breathtaking 2-story 2,800 sq. ft. residence at the iconic Wailea Point.  Having undergone a complete renovation including kitchen and all four baths this past year, you can acquire this turn-key property for a mere $6,950,000!!!

That’s it for this month!  As always, a big “mahalo” for following my Monthly Newsletter.  It is my fondest wish that this is the year you finally become a neighbor!

Warm regards,

Michael Blaz

Aloha!

With my final Newsletter of 2017, I’d like to start by wishing you all a fabulous holiday season and a most prosperous New Year, filled with good health, family, friends, and a mending of the many wounds our nation has suffered this past year.
If you have been with me since the beginning, hopefully, you have enjoyed the 14+ years of Monthly Newsletters that have reached your email box. If we have connected more recently, please continue to check your emails the first week or so of each month to receive an update on our local and very healthy Real Estate market, information on new developments, and always a taste of Maui lifestyle designed to whet your appetite for becoming a part of this wonderful island community through Real Estate.

To recap, our statistics through October year to year show a 37% increase in closed sales, 9.5 increase in median home prices (including condos and land), and a 17.3% decrease in homes (condos, land) for sale. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that demand is high, supply is low, and median prices are likely to continue to climb for the foreseeable future.

Click Here for complete November statistics.

The year has seen new projects coming online, as well as developments in progress continuing to sell at a consistent pace, and some that are still just a twinkle in the developer’s eye. Here’s a list with a brief description of each:

Keala o’Wailea—Located at the gateway to Wailea, this 70-unit residential condominium complex has nearly sold out, with the first two buildings and Recreation Center ready for occupancy first quarter 2018.

Makali’I Wailea—A bit south and across from the Fairmount KeaLani, these 68 luxury 2 and 3 bedroom units featuring mid-century Hawaiian neo-classical architecture are about halfway through the sales cycle.

Hokulani—As featured in last month’s Newsletter, these well-constructed 2, 3, and 4 bedroom homes are being built as they sell, and entering the last phase of the sales and build-out.

And just starting construction or in the near future, the Flats at Kamalani, Paradise Ridge Estates, and Kahoma Village come to mind.

Most everyone who receives this Newsletter has shared with me their desire to spend more time on Maui and perhaps even call this beautiful island “home” someday. My greatest joy is to help make that dream come true in any way possible. While I have been well-schooled on the art of leaving politics and religion out of my Newsletters, I would like to end by saying God Bless to all, and may our nation remain the greatest country in the world.

Mele Kalikimaka a Hau’oli Makahiki Hou!

Blogs for February 2018

"Is Maui's Visitor Industry Still Viable"?

Posted on February 01, 2018

Aloha!   

The word is out! Yet another record-breaking year for our tourism numbers confirms that people like to visit Maui! According to the Hawaii Tourism Authority “…records set in 2017 included visitor arrivals, visitor expenditures, and total visitor days, all built on previous (6 consecutive) record-setting years” Visitor arrivals by air… Continue Reading