It's been a while . . .
April 27, 2007
OK, I keep getting comments about how come no new updates. Well, there is little to update! The real estate situation is relatively unchanged from my last posting. The Puna subdivisions are a still a buyer's market - again unless you are looking right on the ocean. Anything on the ocean or even with a great ocean view is still premium property, and any such properties that are priced even close to reasonably are sold quickly and usually at full price.
Hilo has some curious things going on right now. The homes for sale are in short supply and the prices are holding. Anything ocean view in Hilo is premium merchandise and the prices are basically unchanged from even two years ago when everything was hot-hot-hot. But the curious thing is that where historically there have been few rental in hilo, there are now pages of them.
Same goes for the Puna subdivisions. Lots of rentals means cheap rent, so if you are thinking about spending a little time here before deciding whether or not you really want to move here, now is a good time. And renting first is also highly recommended. Some of the listed rentals are even furnished.
The Kona side prices seem to be holding and even going up. This is happening even in some of the subdivisions up in the hills overlooking the lava flows by the airport. We don't stay on top of those prices like we do on the Hilo side, but we see the listings all the time anyway so we get a good idea of what's going on there. Kona prices are still higher that Hilo side for comparable homes, but once you get that ocean proximity, there are no rules. There are so many very unique properties here, especially the high-end ones, that it is hard to find comparables from which to determine a value. Appraisers have to work on these properties on their own specific virtues.
And of course I can't post an Update without getting on my Living Aloha soap box.
We're still seeing a slow degradation of our once-beautiful aloha spirit on the roads here. There is much being said about that, especially in our two alternative newspapers, but we're still seeing more and more of those new SUVs and other hugely expensive cars, many with California plates, and we're seeing the drivers bringing their California driving habits with them.
Y'know, anyone fresh over here from the mainland might think that new cars delivered in Hawaii come without horns, because you never hear a horn honking. Ever! Well, that's the way it used to be. Only yesterday I heard a long, loud blast of a horn in downtown Hilo. I looked back over my shoulder and it had come from a new, pearly-white Cadillac Escalade. The driver had gotten annoyed with the person in front who hadn't gotten out of the way quickly enough.
Quickly enough for what? To get to the mall four seconds faster? Geez, folks, most of you moved here at least in part because you were blown away by the quiet, gentle and yes - aloha - lifestyle. So please learn from the folks who have been practicing it all their lives. Find the graciousness in yourself and enjoy being one of the aloha folks. We all need to practice living aloha if aloha is to continue to be the way of life here.
Again, my last few updates have gone into this in detail and it is ever more important as more and more people relocate to the Islands. If you would like to read my article on Living Aloha that appeared in the Hawaii Island Journal, please click HERE!
In case you are having trouble relating to all this talk of aloha, please read Affordable Paradise! In addition to making it all very clear, there is also a whole chapter on why Hawaii is clearly not everyone's Paradise. There are many reasons given to possibly reconsider a move to the Islands, and even some tests for your feelings on issues that drive some people nuts here. Relocating to an Island in the middle of the ocean is a tryuly Big Deal, and Affordable Paradise is one of the few reads that will tell you the whole story.
And in the meanwhile, please, please,
Live Aloha!
Mahalo for "listening."
Skip Thomsen & Ohana
Updated 4/29/07