California Dreamin’: West Coast Buyers Account for Nearly a Third of Big Island Total Sales in 2021

  • Karen E. Bail
  • 06/3/22

Plenty of sun, warm weather, and a spot right on the ocean. What could be better than living in scenic Southern California?

Why, Big Island Living, of course!

The word is out, and California homebuyers accounted for nearly one-third of total sales volume on the Big Island of Hawai’i in 2021, according to a recent report compiled and released by Title Guaranty Hawai’i.

On the whole, around 60% of buyers were kama’aina on the Big Island, returning similar figures to the island of Kaua’i. In contrast, a little over three-fourths (or 76%) of total home sales last year on O’ahu went to local buyers.

The report also highlighted several other interesting trends from 2021, including:

  • The Big Island’s total sales volume jumped to just under $4 billion, double the sales from 2019, which was the last full year of sales before the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic
  • A total of 5,724 homes (both single-family units and condominiums) were sold, a 47% increase from 2019
  • More than 75% of the Big Island’s total sales volume--$3.1 billion, to be exact—was generated in the highly sought-after Kohala Coast region (including North Kohala). All in all, there were 2,450 sales made along this alluring stretch of coast (side note: remember what we’ve said about how the overall median sales price for the Big Island is so often misleading? This is a big reason why!)

What lies ahead in the Big Island real estate marketplace?

While it’s interesting to comb over all the numbers from last year, it’s even more important to see what they might tell us about the road that lies ahead.

Indeed, the total number of home sales has already been dropping over the past month-plus—though the median sales price has yet to go down. This is likely due to both the ongoing paucity of total available units for sale and rising mortgage interest rates, combined with increases in price points below $1 million. For example, homes that may well have sold for around $750,000 in the past few years are now likely going for more than a million in the current market.

“Going from the high hundreds to $1 million is less significant than doubling the price,” according to sources in a recent article by Hawai’i Business Magazine. “There’s a lot of that happening on the Big Island. Everything is selling immediately. You want [a real estate agent] who sees it coming, or any house that you may want will be sold before you even see it.”

Folks, you heard the man—time to get you a real estate agent who brings experience and connections to the table! If you’re ready to turn those California dreams into a Big Island reality, from Kailua-Kona on through the Kohala Coast and beyond, then give Karen Bail a call today and let’s get started. Aloha, mahalo, and a hui hou 🤙

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Karen provides the most current and accurate market information, tapping into her vast network of industry professionals. She continually draws from her extensive marketing experience to offer creative marketing strategies and produce impeccably high-quality marketing materials.

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