Update On HGTV Episode Featuring Hawi and Waimea, Big Island, Hawaii
New Year’s Day found me at a Halii Kai condo with my clients Annette and Chris Hodges and their children…and about a dozen Big Island friends of theirs. The back story to their HGTV Hawaii Life episode “A View from the Big Island” is that they already own a vacation home here, and the more time they spent on the Kohala Coast, the more they felt ready to take the leap to become full time residents. Armed with an ample supply of Veuve Cliquot and fresh orange juice for confidence-building mimosas, cheered on by the enthusiasm of local friends, we steeled ourselves for the debut of our episode!
A highlight of the lifestyle segments for this family was a visit to Hawaii Paso Finos Ranch–if you look carefully you will see them watching the demo from outside the ring.
To Buy or to Build – That is the Question
The Hodges have three children who will be attending school in Waimea (Kamuela), so that was the center of gravity for our search. We broke the show’s mold of viewing three homes, as their real life decision was whether to buy an existing home and remodel to meet their needs, or buy a vacant lot and build a residence matching their criteria exactly. In either scenario, we would need to live within a budget of $1.2 million. Working backwards from construction costs, that meant we could search for a lot up to about $300,000.
The hardest part with looking at homes on the market was to find one with enough bedrooms for the three kids, plus a separate office for Chris who will be working from home. For that reason, in our decision scene they chose to make an offer on a vacant lot with big ocean views at Kohala Ranch. But they were not the successful bidder for Mala Place lot in the lower Heathers section, which sold to another client of mine for asking price of $280,000 (two other lots also sold in the Heathers last year for $275,000 each).
This active listing has views similar to the Kohala Ranch lot in the episode (MLS 266471)
There are currently 10 active listings of vacant land in Kohala Ranch Heathers, at prices ranging from $299,000 to $719,000. My picks would be the 3-acre listing for $325,000 with similar views to the lot in our episode (MLS 266471) for a best buy and the one listed for $700,000 for privacy and forever views with a building pad already in place (MLS 255820)
Ocean views from one-acre lot for sale at gated Kohala by the Sea, only $235,000 (MLS 245657)
The real buy, however, is the lot on Pueokea Place at Kohala By the Sea, still on the market for $235,000. The lowest priced of the 6 active listings at Kohala By the Sea, the numbers look good for building competitively with the rising prices of residential real estate in the subdivision.
Three-Volcano Views: In Town Waimea (Kamuela) Homes
A “View from the Big Island” means ocean view to some, but to many residents of up-country Waimea, it is the mountain views they cherish. The home the Hodges toured on Pomaikai Place, convenient to the schools, impressed them with its three-volcano view. If you are curious what happened with that home…the Sellers decided they could not find anything they would like better for themselves, and took it off the market!
Entrance to Sandalwood home shows off its mountain views (MLS 270163) listed for $1,167,000
If you were looking for views and proximity to Waimea’s schools, I’d suggest the Sandalwood subdivision in Waimea town. It offers one-acre lots and many homes have those now-famous volcano views. There are three Sandalwood homes currently on the market, priced from $929,000 to $1,395,000.
Ocean Views and Hawi Small Town Life
The Hodges ended their day of showings at Maliu Ridge, located up the hill from the town of Hawi. Maliu Ridge is a subdivision with lots of 1-3 acres, underground utilities, but no HOA dues. While the family loved the big ocean and Maui views from the lanai of the home on Puu Mamo Drive, they felt the commute to school would get a bit long with the reality of three kids and their different after-school activities. If you watch the show and think the home might work for you, it has just come back on the market for $1,100,000 (MLS 269468).
Four bedroom home with a huge deck on 2.5 acres in Maliu Ridge near Hawi
Our inventory of ocean view homes in the Hawi or Kapaau area has shrunk considerably, and therefore prices are creeping up. If we were repeating the search today, we’d either compromise on view or price point.
And the Reality is…
I was happy with our episode because it felt it genuinely conveyed who the Hodges are as a family and the lifestyle and values driving their search. In case you are wondering, their house search continues…
A hui hou,
Beth Thoma Robinson R(B)