A small beachfront resort community near the southern edge of the island of Kauai, Poipu, Hawaii, has seen its real estate market rocked by the financial crisis that the U.S. currently finds itself in. The islands, as home to some of America’s highest-priced and most coveted real estate, were ripe for the taking when the recession took effect and began crushing the market.
Though many things have improved, particularly sales volume with the government’s stimulus program of offering homebuyers tax credits worth up to several thousand dollars for buying a home, the Poipu real estate still shows mixed signals about its future direction.
According to statistics from the Kauai MLS, at the end of 2009, there were nine sales of units in Koloa, of which Poipu is considered a part of, in December. This was a great increase from the end of 2008, when December accounted for just a single sale. For the entire year of 2009, there were 66 sales, putting volume in the area up from 2008, when there were just 55 sales, an increase of 20%. Condo sales were up as well, with six in December, up from just a single sale in December of 2008. The year, however, saw an actual decline in condo sales, with just 34 sales this year versus 40 in 2008, a decrease of 15%.
Prices of Poipu homes for sale, however, did not show many signs for improvement and it may be a long time before they ever reach their pre-crisis peaks. In December, the median price for a home sold was just $635,000, down from more than $1.1 million the year before at the same time, a decrease of nearly 50%. For all of the year, the median price was measured to be $507,500, down nearly 35% from 2008 prices, when it was $775,000. Condos in the region also saw their values essentially crash. The year-to-date price of a condo in 2009 was around $460,000, down more than 80% from 2008′s figure of $2.5 million.