Oahu single-family homes near $1 million as housing market remains competitive

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HONOLULU (KHON2) — ‘Don’t wait to buy,’ that’s the advice from experts as the Hawaii real estate market continues to heat up with no signs of cooling down.

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Locations Hawaii reports, in May, another record median price for single family homes at $985,000. That number is expected to jump to $1 million by this summer.

“It is mostly local families,” said Jason Lazzerini, Locations Hawaii President and CEO. “I think it’s starting to become more common where you see mainland folks coming in and trying to buy second homes here or trying to work remotely here. That’s definitely true from the west coast, and so you’re seeing now the local market competing with some of the mainland market.”

Neighborhoods that are selling fast include Mililani, Ewa Beach, Kapolei and Waianae.

“I think as people can’t afford, they’re just going to go farther out to get what they can afford in their price range,” said Shannon Heaven, Honolulu Board of Realtors president. “If they still want a single-family home, and they’re in the $650,000 range, well that’s pretty much almost gone even in the Ewa area. So they’re going to have to go to Waianae side to get that price range.”

For many people trying to get their foot in the door, cash offers and bidding wars can make it difficult to seal a deal. Experts say, lottery systems for developments like Koa Ridge and Hoopili may be a solution.

“The lottery affords buyers the opportunity to essentially secure a home at a fixed price,” said Koa Cassady, a realtor associate with Compass Hawaii. “Everybody has the same odds more or less. Right? Versus in the resale market unfortunately, it boils down to who’s swinging the biggest sword.”

To get into the lottery, get pre-approved, then setup a tour of a model home and work with an agent to get all paperwork ready.

“From the time you apply to the lottery, you are more than likely going to be securing a home within that week or signing a contract within two weeks,” said Cassady. “So it is a very quick, it is a seamless process as long as you have your ducks in a row and you have been pre-qualified ahead of time.”

Experts anticipate the hot housing market to stick around through next year. Buyers should hire an agent as soon as possible if they want their piece of paradise.

The Honolulu Board of Realtors has a HOPE program for buyers that can help you prepare for the buying process.

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