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Will Hawaii’s Housing Market Stay Strong in 2021?

Do you recall the beginning of 2020? If you do, you’ll remember that it started off bright for both real estate and the economy. But, then we were hit by a global pandemic. We were all surprised and our lives were upended, and sadly, the surprises (not good ones) kept coming — political unrest, an economic recession, tight restrictions, and stay-at-home orders, just to name a few. To say that 2020 was a year of turbulence, hardship, and confusion is an understatement. A big understatement.

Home Sales Hit Decade-Plus Highs

But, in spite of all the chaos, confusion, and casualties of 2020, there were some winners in the economy. Real estate was clearly one of them. The housing market saw both home sales and prices hit decade-plus highs! Sellers reaped the benefits of higher sales prices and buyers reaped the benefits of historically low interest rates.

Will Housing’s Winning Streak Continue in 2021?

According to Danielle Hale, Chief Economist for Realtor.com, “Buyers will remain plentiful, and low mortgage rates will keep purchasing power healthy. Sellers will also be in a good position as home prices hit new highs.”

All real estate is local and there is much we don’t know, but there are trends that lead me to believe that the outlook for Hawaii’s real estate market is favorable. One trend, in particular, involves remote working. In response to the pandemic, working from home has gained momentum. A lot of momentum. And, as working remotely extends into 2021, it seems reasonable that Hawaii will become an even more popular place to live. After all, if you have the ability to work from anywhere, why not Hawaii? The other trend isn’t a new trend at all. But, it’s a big trend. Very big. The largest generation in history — the Millennials — will continue to make their mark on our real estate market. They will trade-up their smaller homes for larger ones, and they will continue their foray into the housing market. In a big way.

Strong Demand for Housing in Hawaii

So, will Hawaii’s real estate market stay strong in ’21? I don’t know what you think, but I think it will. Granted, it might not be as frenzied. The pace may slow. But overall, I think the demand for housing in Hawaii will be strong, and so will our market. There are just so many people — qualified people — who want to buy Hawaii for it not to be. But, even if I’m wrong about 2021, buying in Hawaii is still a sure bet over time. After all, Oahu‘s median sales price for single-family homes has gone up a whopping 397.5% over the last 35 years! That’s good appreciation and good odds. Good enough odds for me to place my bet on a 2021 Hawaii robust real estate market!

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Alexis Buchholz

December 31, 2020

Real estate in Hawaii will see a tremendous price drop just like it did in the late 80s. We are at the beginning of a deep recession that will last at least 5 years. Unfortunately Hawaii has the highest unemployment numbers in the entire country & I don’t see that improving for a while. Once the eviction and foreclosure moratoriums are over, you’ll see a lot more inventory flooding into the market – the overloaded court system will delay this, but I would say we’ll start seeing prices go down starting as early as June 2021…
That being said, I’m sure there will be some great deals popping up for the smart buyer who has lots of patience for the eventual appreciation that will happen once we recover.

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