Oahu home sales leveled out in August amid uncertainty

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Honolulu
Oahu home sales leveled out in August amid uncertainty


Oahu home sales were flat year-over-year in August with properties remaining on the market longer.

Previously owned single-family homes sold for a median price of $790,000, down 2.5% from $810,000 in August 2018, according to resales figures released Friday by the Honolulu Board of Realtors.

There were 360 sales compared with 354, a 1.7% increase. Houses stayed on the market for 27 median days, up from 15 a year earlier.

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“Part of the reason for the slowdown has to do with the political situation,” said Ira Gordon, owner and principal broker of Aloha Homes. “The stock market took a big drop, and a lot of people, they have their equity in the stock market. Then the trade deal with China, a lot of them are worried about how that’s going to affect the economy. Whenever there’s uncertainty, people aren’t that crazy about investing in real estate.”

Home sales typically pick up in the summer as people move to the islands during the break, Gordon said. But this summer started off slower than usual and started picking up only in recent weeks, he added.

Condominium sales were also relatively unchanged last month with 512 sales at a median price of $419,500, compared with 521 at a median $427,000 in the year-ago period. They stayed on the market for 22 median days, up from 18.

For the first eight months of the year, single-family home sales totaled 2,427, down 0.7%, while total condominium sales were 3,608, down 6.4%.

The island’s home prices hit record highs in July, with single-family homes selling for a median $835,000 and condos rising to $461,500, partially due to lower mortgage interest rates that may have enabled buyers to pursue more expensive properties.

“Overall, August was a quite stable month for Oahu’s residential real estate market compared to last year,” said Jenny Brady, president of the Honolulu Board of Realtors, in a news release. “Sales were at about the same level as 2018 and prices have been steady as well, with the majority of single-family homes and condominiums selling within a narrow price range. While properties have remained on the market a little longer, the median days on market is still under a month. We continued to see double-digit increases in active listings for both single-family homes and condominiums throughout this year.”

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