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December caps record year for Oʻahu real estate. Home prices expected to rise in 2022

kapolei home housing real estate
Slick Pixels Hawaii

Updated 9 a.m., 1/7/22

For a sixth consecutive month, the median price for a single-family home on Oʻahu was more than a million dollars, according to a new report from local real estate firm Locations Hawaiʻi.

Last month, the median price for a single-family home was $1,060,000 — and condos $485,000. Both are increases of 22% and 7% compared to December 2020.

For Locations senior vice president and principal broker John Connelley, 2021 was unlike anything he's ever seen.

"When we take a look at the number of sales for single-family homes, they were up 18%," he said. "The number of sales for condos was up over 50%. And that doesn't include the new developments. That's just resales."

Connelley says home sales and inventory declined in December compared to previous months in 2021. But he notes that is a typical seasonal trend. Last month, there were 325 single-family homes on the market. In comparison, there were 456 units listed in June.

Despite that, December was still a very strong month.

60% of single-family homes, and nearly 40% of condo units, sold above the asking price.

Units sold quickly. Homes were on the market for a median of 12 days, and 14 days for condos.

Going forward, Connelley expects to see more homes go on the market. But he says he doesn't see competition or prices going down.

"With the interest rates remaining down around 3%, the demand still being very, very high, we expect these trends to continue in the foreseeable future," he told HPR.

This is partly due to the continuing decline in housing inventory.

According to Locations, the number of months remaining inventory (if no new listings go on the market) decreased to new record lows — at 0.8 months for a single-family home, and 1.6 months for condos. Connelley says these factors will drive bids and home prices up in the coming months.

While current conditions continue to be in the seller's favor, Connelley says home buyers shouldn't feel discouraged.

"The way that a buyer is going to get ahead in this market is to do their homework, meet with their realtors, or lenders, ahead of time, get prepared to act quickly."

A previous version of this story misspelled John Connelley's name, and corrections have been made to year-over-year increases.

Casey Harlow is an HPR reporter and occasionally fills in as local host of Morning Edition and All Things Considered. Contact him at charlow@hawaiipublicradio.org or on Twitter (@CaseyHarlow).
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