By Jo Dorner
Maui was hit hard when the real estate market crashed. In the news we heard over and over about home owners underwater on their mortgages, but now that that market has stabilized. Home and condo sales are growing all over the country and Hawaii, prices have leveled off and are starting to climb again. All of this is great news for Maui County and especially premier real estate markets like Kapalua.
However, another segment of the real estate market is still recovering from the collapse: commercial real estate development properties. Because of the large amounts of capital involved, the complexity of zoning and permitting laws, and the knowledge and skill required to manage these projects many are still being held by lenders months or even years after the owners defaulted. However, even these large, complex properties are finding buyers now.
The auction for the Ritz Carlton Hotel was on May 5, 2011. Lehman Holdings and Sasco bid $75 million and were the highest bidders at the time. The court will finalize the sale in 45 days, unless another party offers a bid of at least $78.75 million and can produce a 10% deposit immediately.
The Jewel at Kahana auction by Concierge auctions has gotten a lot of interest and the actual auction date has been pushed back to the 27th of this month. There will be another auction at Honolua Ridge on June 3, 2011 and interested prospective buyers can begin viewing the property on May 28th. The residence project at Kapalua Bay is still in the process of foreclosure as part of the Lehman bankruptcy but we are hopeful that interested buyers will be able to start making offers for that project shortly.
Most sellers so far have chosen to work with Realtors to find an auction company and market the properties. This is a smart choice for sellers as Realtors have the industry contacts and marketing experience necessary to promote these properties to buyers world wide. I will be watching these two upcoming auctions with interest--how these property sales do on our island will no doubt affect how other holders of distressed properties on Maui choose to proceed.
The general recovery of the real estate market has certainly encouraged action by sellers, especially of higher end properties. One Plantation home recently sold for $14 million and now one listed at $11 million has had all contingencies removed and will close also. Oceanfront homes have been especially popular with buyers. Our high end condos in Kapalua have been slower to recover, however, when prices on ocean front homes and secluded estates have recovered, the condo market will certainly pick up again.
Financing for these properties can still be difficult for some second home buyers. Lenders require these buyers to pay 35% down and there is lots of paper work to qualify for the loans. However, once you've established that you qualify, the money is available.
Another good sign for Maui real estate is the improving tourism market. The number of visitors and the amount of money they are spending is up for the first quarter of this year. More Maui visitors means more potential buyers learning about the lovely island lifestyle we appreciate here in Kapalua.
By Jo Dorner
The Xterra Outdoor Extravaganza, the world championship Xterra triathlon will be held at the Ritz Carlton Kapalua for the very first time this October 23, 2011. So far the organizers say 3,000 people have signed up. In the past this race has been… Continue Reading
By Jo Dorner
Maui was hit hard when the real estate market crashed. In the news we heard over and over about home owners underwater on their mortgages, but now that that market has stabilized. Home and condo sales are growing all over the… Continue Reading