Kohala Ranch Home Sales – 2022 in Review and Current Listings
The pace of sales of Kohala Ranch homes slowed in 2022 compared with the red-hot market in 2021, with only 15 residential sales in 2022 versus 20 in 2021. That having been said, the average price/sq ft rose considerably from $704/sq ft to $853/sq ft last year, and the lowest price and highest price were also considerably higher than in 2021.
Despite being a gated community with architectural control and design standards, Kohala Ranch has a wide range of lot and home sizes, not to mention elevations varying from 200ʻ above sea level to 3,000ʻ above sea level. Traditionally homes in the lower Heathers section where the climate is similar to the Kohala Coast resorts have sold for a higher price/sq ft than similar homes at higher elevations. However buyer preferences that emerged during the pandemic years favor larger homes, larger lots, and newer construction with features like home offices and gyms, pushed up the values in the Meadows and Summit neighborhoods within Kohala Ranch.
Making Sense of 2022 Kohala Ranch Home Sales Statistics and Current Listing Prices
Much as I observed in my report on 2022 North Kohala residential sales in the Hawi/Kapaʻau part of the district, we can see a strong first half of the year and weakness in the second half.
The first half of 2022 saw Kohala Ranch nine sales, ranging in price from $1,750,000 for a 2,594 sq ft home in the Heathers built in 1997 with modest more recent updates, to $4,400,000 million for a Summit home described in detail below. There were only six sales in the second half of the year. We entered 2023 with no properties in escrow, however, one found a buyer last week and there are still six active listings remaining with an average of 131 days on market, double the average days on market for 2022 as a whole.
Two of the homes currently listed for sale in 2023 were purchased by the current owners in 2022. Letʻs look at those two for some insight into the current market.
Case Study #1:
The first home was completed in early 2022, sold to the current owners who barely occupied it. They paid $2,350,000 and are now asking $2,595,000 turnkey furnished. Whatʻs fun is that the home currently in escrow, asking price $2,495,000, was constructed by the same builder.
The home in escrow will give us a perfect comp for the one still available, in a way we rarely see in a community like this where each lot owner designs their dream home. The layout of the bedrooms is flipped in the two homes but you can see it immediately in the kitchen/great room as you enter.
Here is the active listing:
Here is the one in escrow:
See the similarity?
Case Study #2
Now for a more delicate scenario. The highest price sale in Kohala Ranch in 2022 was a Summit home on a double lot, listed by Hawaii Lifeʻs Erika Stuart and sold for $4.4 million, a Kohala Ranch record. It sold in April 2022 in only 16 days on market. That home has 5 bedrooms, 4590 sq ft, 22.6 acres, pool and big ocean views.
I then listed a similar home nearby in the Summit section: 5 bedrooms, 5500 sq ft, 22.9 acres. We listed in May, feeling fairly confident it would sell quickly and near the comparable homeʻs selling price. But within weeks the economic scenario pivoted, with talk of inflation, recession, falling stock markets and higher interest rates. Buyers paused. The Seller then opted for the Sothebyʻs Concierge Auction process to get the home sold in 45 days. Bidding was limited and a very lucky buyer got the whole package for $2.5 million.
Now that property, stripped of furnishings is listed in two parts: the home for $3,495,000 and the lower lot for $495,000, a total of $3,990,000. That might not be a bad price, considering it would be 9% below last yearʻs comp sale.
Bottom line for 2023 seems to be there are definitely buyers out there, for the right property at the right price. Inventory of homes for sale remains low, but sellers cannot count on exceeding, or possibly even matching, 2022 prices. From my perspective it makes it a good time to be a buyer if you are patient about finding the property meeting your needs, and still a great time to be a seller in this tight market.