Big Island

2022, More of the Same? Looks Like It…

Pictured home: 29-2257 Old Mamalahoa Hwy. Hakalau, HI

As we ring in a new year things are still rolling right along. Prices continue to inch up as inventory remains constrained.

New Construction

Permitting is a huge issue in creating new supply. Our EPIC system may some day offer relief, but for now the backup is forcing contractors to scratch for jobs to keep their workers busy. Some projects are being started while awaiting permits.

big island home sales


Lack of inventory causes upward pressure on pricing causing more and more local buyers to consider outlying neighborhoods where prices are still within reach.

Fewer loan programs and insurance caps in lava zones 1 & 2 also impact affordable neighborhoods. Interestingly, a few of the reported neighborhoods have no active inventory at all.

A few other fun facts: pricing and demand for Hilo is basically the same as HPP. The difference is that the HPP product is newer and situated on a larger parcel. Also, interesting is that pool homes (even above ground) seem to sell faster and for more money, regardless of climate. It makes sense that as prices jump in HPP and Hilo, buyers consider areas such as Ainaloa or even the Volcano subdivisions.

Prices in Ainaloa jumped about 7% this past quarter alone. The same thing basically occurred in the subdivisions near the National Park despite renewed rumbling in the area.

Interest Rates

A predicted increase in interest rates will likely do little to quell activity. Rates are so low that incremental increases won’t be enough to slow activity. With almost 5 years of demand in the most popular areas (barring unforeseen circumstances), sales will remain brisk.


As vaccination rates increase, we are seeing a decrease in sight-unseen purchases but with COVID cases on the rise, the big city exodus will likely continue.

Buying? Selling?

Buyers, remember the best plan of success if you are buying is to contact a busy listing agent. They have pre-market inventory in their pipeline.

Sellers, don’t assume your property will sell by listing at any price. Property prep and pricing consistent with the current market equal success!

Don’t see your neighborhood here? Just contact us at Hawai`i Life – Team Nakanishi and we’ll set up complete and tailored information for any property on Hawai`i Island. Happy 2022!

* Information provided by Hawaii Information 

About the Author

Denise Nakanishi

Denise Nakanishi is a REALTOR Broker with Hawai'i Life. Denise Nakanishi is one of Hilo's most acclaimed real estate agents. She reached the rank of Major in the US Army and is now known by many as "Major Mom." The nickname fits–not only does Denise bring the discipline and mission-oriented attitude you'd expect, she's also caring and compassionate, always looking out for her clients like they're her own family. Having made the Big Island her home since 1987, Denise combines her extensive knowledge of the area with a sharp focus on customer service and the results speak for themselves. She's the recent recipient of the Best East Hawai`i, Best of Zillow, Chairman's Circle Award, President's Circle, Top Producing Agent since 2001, and Realtor of the Year awards. Denise stays ahead of the curve because she's passionate about education–she served as Education Chair for Hawaii Island REALTORS® for many years. She's one of Big Island's best real estate resources, known for her weekly article in the Hawaii Tribune Herald. Denise leads Team Nakanishi for Hawai`i Life, who is committed to their family, work, and community. In her little time away from work, Denise is a committed runner and Grandy. She also devotes many hours to various Veterans' Organizations, the East Hawaii Cultural Center, and the Hawaii Island REALTORS®. You can email me at or via phone at (808) 936-5100.

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