Monday, July 28, 2014         

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Maui single-family home sales rise while prices drop

By Andrew Gomes


Sales of Maui single-family homes rose strongly last month, though prices were lower than a year earlier as the market continues to go through a recovery phase.

The Realtors Association of Maui reported that 81 single-family homes were sold on the Valley Isle in May, up 35 percent from 60 sales in the same month last year. The median price, however, was down 8 percent to $442,000 from $482,500 in the same period.

"The market is starting to turn, indicated by the recent increase in unit sales," Terry Tolman, Realtors Association of Maui chief executive, said in a statement.

Typically in a housing market's recovery phase, the number of sales rises before prices.

During the first five months of this year, Maui single-family home sales are up 49 percent while the median price is down 9 percent at $460,000 from $507,000.

In May, Maui's largest submarket for single-family homes, Central Maui, accounted for 30 sales at a median $408,450 compared with 24 sales for a median $461,000 in the same period last year.

The next-biggest submarket, Kihei, accounted for 15 sales at a median $501,000 last month compared with 10 sales for a median $568,000 a year earlier.

The median price is the point at which half the sales are for more and half for less, and the measure can be influenced by the mix of homes sold, especially when there are relatively few sales in the calculation.

In Maui's condominium market, sales jumped by 100 percent to 104 last month from 52 in the same month last year. The median price was up 3 percent to $412,500 from $399,000.

Tolman said the dramatic surge in condo sales and increase in median price was due in large part to the sale of 29 new condos by developers at prices ranging from $339,990 to $3.9 million. Typically, new condos sell for more than comparable older products.

For the first five months of this year, the number of condo sales is up 59 percent, but the median price is down 34 percent to $427,750 from $650,000.

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