As we look at the Oahu market over the past month, real estate activity and numbers have been remained steady and comparable to 2019. In March, single-family home sales were up, while condo sales and new listings were down. With the stay at-home-order going into effect in Hawaii on March 23, by the end of the month most brokerages had adapted drastic measures to take their businesses virtual in order to keep the housing market moving forward. LUVA Broker Kimi Correa and her team on Oahu mentioned that they have been busy, and while some buyers that were newer to the market have pushed pause, they have had lots of buyers who are pushing forward with properties and buyers that have been in the market for a while who are seeing a potential opportunity, feeling that seller’s may be a little more open to negotiations.
Last month, Oahu saw 303 single family home sales with a median sales price of $810,000. Both of these figures experienced a modest year over year increase when the sales were at 276 and $782,5000 respectively. As mentioned, the number of condo sales were down by 12.2% from March 2019, dropping from 467 to 410 sales. The median sales price for condo sales on Oahu last month was $435,000, which is an increase of 1.4% from last March when the median sales price was $429,000.
The overall effect that the pandemic will have on the Oahu real estate market is still unclear, it will depend on a number of factors including the length and severity of the pandemic, and the resiliency of the state and national economy. Tricia Nekota, president of the Honolulu Board of Realtors, stated that most escrows that closed last month were already in escrow at least 30 days prior to the stay at home orders. She believes that “while the numbers illustrate the market is holding strong, we’re only beginning to see the changes in activity. These stats are likely an early reaction to economic uncertainty and indicative of a shift in market activity due to the impacts of COVID-19.”
The Honolulu Board of Realtors released a market report for March stating that the stay-at-home order has already contributed to a slowdown in the number of listings – with single family home listings declining by 16.7% and condo listings down 14.3% in March. They also reported that “a significant number of active listings have also been moved into a temporarily off-market status, which has resulted in lower inventory levels.” LUVA Agents encourage all clients to discuss with their Agent these market changes, as it is possible other factors may be contributing to price changes and owners removing their properties from the market.