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Big Island’s real estate outlook looking sunnier

April 17, 2014 - 9:55am

North Kona home and land sales have remained relatively stable during the first quarter of 2014.

Housing prices in Kona increased as well, with South Kona home sales dropping 31.3 percent when compared with a year earlier, while prices spiked 73.7 percent, according to a press release from the Hussey Appraisal Group Hawaii Inc.

The number of vacant parcels sold in the area doubled and the average price of vacant parcels sold dropped 28.4 percent.

Ka‘u vacant land prices dropped in the first quarter, as well. There was a 33.3 percent increase in the number of homes sold in Ka‘u when compared to a year earlier, while the average price of houses sold in the district fell 13.2 percent.

The number of vacant parcels sold in the first quarter rose 9.5 percent, while the average price of land sold in the region dropped significantly, falling 42.9 percent when compared to the first quarter of 2013.

Real estate sales are increasing in the Puna district and decreasing in South Hilo, according to the press release.

The statistics show residential home sales in Puna increased by 27.5 percent in the first three months of 2014 when compared with sales during the same period last year, and the number of vacant land purchases in the district rose 46.1 percent during that same time period.

The increase in activity pushed Puna home prices up 21.2 percent and prices for vacant land remained unchanged, with parcels in the district averaging $20,000 each.

The South Hilo residential housing market, by contrast, saw a 14.8 percent drop in the number of homes sold in the first quarter of 2014, while the number of vacant land sales remained mostly unchanged. According to the press release, prices of South Hilo homes sagged 9.5 percent in the first three months of 2014, while average prices for vacant land in the district increased 17.5 percent.

Susan E. Lee Loy, president of Hawaii Island Realtors, said that overall, the market is “stabilizing.”

Stewart Hussey, president of Hussey Appraisal Group, agreed that the real estate market is improving.

“There’s more light at the end of the tunnel. Definitely the market is getting stronger,” he said.

“Most of the charts about the Big Island show we reached the bottom and are experiencing a general movement upward in volume and price levels,” he said.

The Hussey Appraisal Group Hawaii released the information Wednesday. The team collected the data from Hawaii Information Systems. According to a press release, the Hussey Appraisal Group is a team of certified and licensed real estate appraisers specializing in the valuation of residential, commercial, industrial, agricultural, vacant land and mixed-use properties in the islands since 1989.

Email Megan Moseley at mmoseley@hawaiitribune-herald.com.

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