Kona Real Estate Video Blog: Client Testimonial!

Nothing says “job well done” like a client endorsing the professional services I  provide.

West Coast buyer Haze Moss, recently went on camera to speak about his positive experience in buying his family’s “dream home” in the Holualoa area of Kailua-Kona Hawaii.

Haze shares details on the buying process, comfort level throughout the transaction, the impact of being out of state purchasers and his positive experience in working with me.

Mahalo Haze Moss, it was an absolute pleasure working with you! 

I strive to provide excellent service to my clients! For Kona real estate assistance, questions or advice contact me anytime!

Purchasing Now: Your Property As A Kona Vacation Rental

One of the great options home buyers in the Kona real estate market embrace is the popularity and ability to rent their properties as vacation rentals. People come from all over the world to enjoy our wonderful climate, pristine beaches and relaxed island lifestyle.

Some wonderful clients, who I sold the below home to, have done just that! This is their retirement dream home, that they absolutely LOVE. Since they aren’t planning to retire for another 10-15 years, they are offering the home as a vacation rental. What an awesome opportunity for families vacationing on the Big Island!

http://www.vrbo.com/398178

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The property is meticulously landscaped, with lush garden areas, producing fruit trees and plenty of yard room for outdoor games and activities. Of the many highlights of the home, the pool is an absolute favorite!  The privacy afforded in the pool and sunning area is something one can only dream of.

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The main house is a 4bedroom/2 bath home completely outfitted for your convenience, with a delightful chef’s kitchen, breezy screened in lanai area, and a pool table for entertaining.

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Below the main home is the completely self contained “ohana” unit, that is furnished with a king size bed, mini-refrigerator and offers a great escape for visitors seeking a little more quiet and privacy away from the main group!

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This property is quiet, extremely private and offers all the amenities of a high end resort, at a fraction of the price!

Click the Vacation Rental By Owner link below for more property information and to view rental availability!

http://www.vrbo.com/398178

Kona Market Update: Inventory Down, Sales Up!

Kona’s real estate market continues to gain momentum, as reduced inventory levels and aggressive buyers continue to take advantage of fantastic market pricing.

Our most recent market update via The Griggs Report, shows us that in North Kona’s residential market priced to 4 million,  inventory levels have been reduced 19%  when compared to the same time in 2011.

In the same market, during the same time frame that inventory has decreased, pending sales have increased by 16%.

Decrease in inventory, increase in sales…..you know quite well what is coming next. Increased pricing.

Many Realtors can attest to the fact that we don’t have the inventory we used to. It simply isn’t available. Well priced properties fly off the shelf, and my Alii Lani #F101 unit, currently in escrow, was a great example of this.

I listed the below Alii Lani #F101 condominium Friday August 3, 2012 at 8:11 a.m. Before the end of hour, I had a request for showing. Then a second showing to that same buyer by mid afternoon. The next morning, we had an offer. All parties came to terms Sunday, and we opened escrow Monday morning.

If you are a Buyer in Kona’s current real estate market, DON’T WAIT. Recovery is happening this very moment, and concrete numbers are supporting that.

Don’t be left behind!

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New Listing: Video Tour, Alii Lani #F101!

I just released this great offering in the Alii Lani condominium project this morning! This unit has been wonderfully reappointed by the sellers, talk about NEW, NEW, NEW!

There is new paint, flooring and fixtures throughout the entire unit. New air conditioning units in the living, master and 2nd bedroom. New stack washer/dryer,  new kitchen appliances, and custom closet built ins!

If that wasn’t enough, the unit is being sold furnished! That is right, turnkey furnished! There are a few personal exclusions, and an inventory will be provided. Enjoy the tour!

Alii Lani #F101, MLS 26537, Offered Furnished $189,000

SOLD! Pualani Estates Short Sale

Blog Update 12/10/12 – We closed on this transaction 12/5/12! See my blog post update to read more!

Pualani Estates’ resale market continues to be red-hot! As of July 25, 2012, there are 8 resale homes currently listed for sale. Of those 8 only 1 is currently available, the rest are in escrow!

Pualani Estates is a very popular single family home development by builder DR Horton in Kailua-Kona. Owners appreciate the central location, being in the Holualoa elementary school district, and the wonderful Pualani Estates community park!

Offering multiple floor plan and upgrade package options (central air, landscaping, appliance, security, flooring, etc) along with competitive price points, currently $300K-$430K, people LOVE Pualani Estates!

The developer is currently in the final, third phase of home building. The majority of resale homes we see coming to market are in the first two phases of development, and are typically short sale or bank owned properties. 

For example, I listed this short sale property in early July and within 21 days we had received multiple offers and put the home in escrow.

 75-6133 Haku Mele Street, MLS 255608, Offered at $352,000

This is the very well-kept 4bed/3bath,  Melia model home, that has a wonderful wrap lanai area with ocean views, central air, mature landscaping in place, and has additional storage area off the garage.

Currently we are in escrow, awaiting lien holder’s short sale approval.

Back up offers are being accepted, please contact me if you would like to arrange a viewing!

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Kona Westwind #2 Video Tour!

I’m very happy to share West Hawaii Real Estate’s inaugural, high-definition, property video tour!

My sellers now have the benefit of HD video tours showcasing their properties, WOW!  Property video tour demand is tremendous right now among buyers, and this is another great sales tool I am able to bring to my clients!

This Kona Westwind unit is an updated 2bedroom/2bath offering that has an expansive lanai area, ocean view, and is just minutes from town.

Kona Westwind is a low density (15 unit!) project that is pet friendly, and does not allow vacation rentals.

MLS 255244, 77-296 Kalani Way Kailua Kona HI 96740, Offered at $155,000

Want to get a better look at the property? Be sure to mark your calendars, this unit is being held open Sunday, July 15 from 12pm-4pm during Clark Realty’s Summer Sell-Abration extravaganza. Hope to see you then!

New Listing: Kona Westwind #2

I just listed a GREAT condo in the Kona Westwind condominium project!

This is an upgraded 2bed/2bath unit with a fantastic lanai area that overlooks the coastline and the delightful saline pool area!

The kitchen, living room and lanai are tiled, with laminate wood floors in the bedrooms.

Kona Westwind is a low density, 15 unit condominium project that is pet friendly, has elevator access and does not allow vacation rentals.

Want more good news? This is not a short sale or a bank owned property!

If you are looking for a GREAT condo in Kona, you have to see this unit!

Click here for the multiple listing service information, MLS 255244. Offered at $155,000!

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Interest Rates Drop Again, Is It Time To Refinance?

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Interest rates are at unbelievable lows right now and many property owners are taking of advantage by refinancing their current mortgages.

Have you thought about refinancing? Will it help your financial position at this time?

Lenders charge a fee for you to refinance your loan. These fees are known as “points”.  Points are upfront interest paid to the lender, calculated on the amount of money you borrow.

1 point = 1% of your borrowed money.

If you had a loan of $450,000 and you were going to be charged 1 point to refinance, that would equate to $4,500.

1% of $450,000 = $4,500

If you had a $450,000 mortgage, at a current rate of 6%, your monthly payment would be $2698.  If your lender was going to charge you 1.5 points to refinance to the current market rate of 3.5%, it would cost you $6,750.  Once completed, your new monthly payment would drop from $2698 to $2021, a decrease of $677! Wow!

Your monthly savings would be so great, that you by your 10th payment at your lower interest rate, you will have recouped the $6750 it originally cost you to get the lower interest rate, a wise move on your part!

While the refinance did wonders for you, that isn’t always the case. Take the scenario with your neighbor.

Your neighbor can’t believe how much you are saving and wants to refinance as well.

Currently they are paying 4% on their $450,000 mortgage, their monthly payment is $2,148.

Their lender is going to charge them a fee of 1.5 points or $4,500 to refinance to the market rate of 3.5%. After paying the $4,500, their monthly payment has decreased from $2,148 to $2,021, a monthly savings of $127. Realize here that they have just come out of pocket $4500 to save $127 a month. This isn’t anywhere close to the dramatic change you saw in your payment.

By the 36th payment (36 x $127 =$4,572) the monthly saving of $127 will equal the $4500 originally paid to secure the lower interest rate. In essence, it took them 3 years before realizing any savings from their new, lower rate. Possibly not the best use of their money.

A refinance includes an appraisal of the property, and a thorough examination of the borrower’s credit scores and financial strength. Think of it as going through the loan process all over again. As property values have decreased, appraisal value has been problematic at times, although new government regulations have tried to ease this.

Your lender will be able to advise you accordingly, just be sure you crunch the numbers and examine the many aspects a refinance presents.

Best of luck!

Save Kona Coffee! Fighting the Coffee Berry Borer

Our beloved Kona coffee is under attack by a beetle that threatens to decimate our coffee industry if left unchecked.  

The Coffee Berry Borer is a beetle native to Africa that is found in most coffee growing regions in the world. Save Kona Coffee! CBB Information, Fighting the berry borer

First discovered on the Big Island in 2010, the borer has spread throughout the Kona area and has been found in coffee farms in Kau.

Adult berry borers are 1.4-1.77 mm in length, smaller in size than sesame seeds.

Females burrow into coffee beans and lay their eggs. Once the larvae hatch, they then eat their way out, destroying the bean in the process. Save Kona Coffee, CBB Kona, Fighting the Coffee Berry Borer

Destroyed beans are a total loss for coffee farmers. Less production equates to lost revenue while increasing the cost of cultivation. That loss is then passed onto the consumer in the form of higher prices.

This beetle has the potential to cripple the Kona coffee industry. Not just destroying a few beans here and there, but wiping out farms completely. The danger of the this infestation cannot be understated.

Industry wide, it is estimated that the borer does over $500 million dollars worth of crop damage per year.

Howard Dicus, a local television personality for Hawaii News Now Sunrise recently did a morning news piece with Melanie Bondera of the Kohala center. In association with Kamehameha Schools and the Kona Coffee Farmer’s Association, the Kohala center produced an instructional video with tips on combating the berry borer. Howard interviews Melanie on the production in the news clip below.

Howard Dicus Hawaii News Now Sunrise segment 

Staff from the University of Hawaii Manoa – College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources,  U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Hawai`i Department of Agriculture have been working jointly to find the most effective ways to combat the beetle. 

Eradication at this point does not seem likely.  However, if coffee farmers and private citizens are aware and vigilant, the hope is beetle infestation can be kept to minimal levels.  

Please watch the video below and share with anyone who has coffee trees on their property.

Help save Kona coffee!  

For more information on the coffee berry borer see links below.

Coffee Berry Borer Information, University of Hawaii’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources

Department of Agriculture Coffee Berry Borer Page

Department of Agriculture’s Frequently Asked Questions on Coffee Berry Borer

Kona Coffee Farmers Association