Big Island sees more home sales; Kauai numbers drop

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - In the first home sales reports from January, Hawaii Information Service counts more home sales on the Big Island but a slowing of sales on Kauai.

Realtors closed on 105 home sales in Hawaii County, up from 97 the year before, and 44 condo sales, up from 38, as well as 80 sales of vacant lots, up from 60 a year ago.

Almost half of the home sales came in the Hilo-Puna area, where most sales were under $250,000. The median price in Puna District alone was $120,000, down 22 percent from year-ago levels. The median in South Hilo District, which includes most of Hilo town, was $245,000, up 4 percent from last year.

There were 29 home sales, two more than last year, in North Kona District, which includes Kailua-Kona, for a median price of $375,000, unchanged from a year ago. But the islandwide median price rose 15 percent as a result of higher prices in areas like South Kona District, which includes Kealakekua, Ka'u District at the far south end of the island, and Hamakua, on the north end.

Kauai had 28 home sales, two fewer than last year, and 14 condo sales, seven fewer than last year. The median home sales price in January was $447,500, up 11 percent, and the condo median was $335,500, up 24 percent, compared to the same month last year.

Twelve of the home sales were in Kawaihau District, which includes Kapaa, where the median porice was $405,000. The islandwide median was skewed upward by more expensive homes in Koloa District, which includes Poipu, and Hanalei.

Six of the condo sales were in Koloa, where the median price was $576,500, more than double the median price a year ago. Unlike an average, which can be distorted by a single very expensive sale, the median is the point at which half the properties sold for less and half for more.

Realtors on Oahu and Maui are expected to report January results later this week or next.

Copyright 2013 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.