POSTED: 11:52 a.m. HST, Mar 28, 2014 LAST UPDATED: 03:45 p.m. HST, Mar 28, 2014
Twenty years ago, sugar cane fields covered most of the Ewa plain between Makakilo and Barbers Point Naval Air Station. Today the West side boasts a new crop: The “second city”.
Drive the streets of Kapolei and you'll find beautiful new homes and townhomes, robust shopping centers, city and county buildings, the department of Hawaiian Homelands, the University of Hawaii's West Oahu campus, and the beaches of Ko Olina, home of Disney's Aulani resort.
“Kapolei began with a master plan to become ‘the Second City',” says Charmaine Quilit Poki, a long-time resident and REALTOR® at Prudential Locations. “The idea was to make a family oriented community, with open space, businesses and jobs, multi-family and single family homes, and affordable prices. To see it materialize has been really exciting.”
Shannon Feliciano, a REALTOR Associate at Prudential Locations, sums up both the lifestyle and opportunity in the neighborhood this way: “Live, work and play in Kapolei! We can do it all here. And it's getting more exciting, as new shopping centers open, new homes are built, and we see the rail development in action.”
Quilit Poki and Feliciano have experienced Kapolei's growth first-hand, not just as REALTORs but as residents. Says Quilit Poki, “I've lived in Kapolei since the first subdivision was built 24 years ago. It was the first house I ever owned. Since then, I've had several homes in Kapolei because here, you're able to move up until you are where you want to be.”
Kapolei offers a diversity of properties to fit people's lifestyles, income and needs. From townhomes to large homes and everything in between, there is something for everyone, including combined commercial-residential properties, such as Nanala at Mehana. Kapolei also has affordable rentals, housing for seniors, and leasehold properties.
Sherrie Akana Kuroda is a REALTOR at Prudential Locations who has helped many military and nonmilitary clients buy homes in Kapolei. She explains that Kapolei works well for her military clients because the newer homes easily pass VA loan requirements, the price points are right, and the commute to the bases isn't bad.
“The best part is that my clients have benefited from owning their home,” she adds. “They build equity for themselves instead of paying out rent and they can deduct the mortgage interest.”
The Kapolei real estate market has been leading Oahu's overall market. Home price appreciation picked up speed in 2013 as a result of strong buyer demand, low inventory, and high rates of bids over the asking price.
The median price for single family homes sold in the last 12 months was $540,000. Single family home prices in Kapolei have appreciated 19% in the past year, and 23% in the past five years. To demonstrate the rate of rising prices, the median price for homes sold in the first two months of 2014 is $627,000.
The price trend has been even more dramatic for condos and townhomes. Condo and townhome prices in Kapolei have appreciated 33% in the past year and 55% in the past five years. The median price for condos sold in the last 12 months was $318,936, while the median price for condos sold in the first two months of 2014 is $413,500.
Months of Remaining Inventory (MRI) is a key market indicator that tells how long it will take to sell out of the current inventory at today's pace of sales. Kapolei's MRI for both single family homes and condos is down to just 2.1 months of remaining inventory, which is lower than Oahu's already-low 3.1 months.
New location in the Kapolei Shopping Center opening in April!