Updated: Feb 17



We get a lot of calls and emails from those who are thinking of buying properties and moving to the peaceful Big Island from crowded cities on the mainland. Many of them can keep the same job working remotely, but some of them are looking to find new jobs here. And of course, many retirees want to move here for the great weather and fresh ocean breeze, and the feeling of security of being in a place with relatively few COVID cases.


The historically low mortgage interest rates encourage them to search for properties on the Big Island now. But then the realization sets in that there are not many single-family homes available. In most areas, the number of properties for sale is less than the number of properties in escrow.


When they find one and decide to submit an offer, pretty often they have to compete with other buyers. Reasonably priced homes go very quickly.


Some of the off-island buyers are buying Big Island real estate without physically viewing the properties.


The following statistics show that the number of single-family home sales in October 2020 on the Big Island is up 28.1% vs 2019 according to Statewide Housing Statistics. Similarly, November sales increased 27.6% over last year according to Residential Sales Report.


In contrast, there are many available lower-priced vacant lots in Pahoa which are mostly purchased by cash buyers, so the historically low-interest rates are not a factor in spurring sales. Additionally, those who want to move here from the mainland don’t find these lots fill their needs as building a home takes time and quite a bit of effort. So those parcels are not actively selling.

Updated: Feb 17




This was an email sent to all notaries in Hawaii regarding remote notarization during the COVID-19 emergency. Please see the email below for details on this topic.


Dear notaries,


Yesterday, Governor David Y. Ige issued Executive Order Number 20-02, which includes changes to the Hawaii Notary Public laws and allows for social distancing and waives the requirement of in-person notarization of documents, thereby authorizing use of audio-visual technology in notarial acts during the COVID-19 emergency.


To perform remote notarization, you must comply with the procedures and requirements in the Emergency Rules relating to Notaries Public, which is located on the Department of the Attorney General’s Notary Public website.


Please note that the Executive Order affects the Chapter 456, Hawaii Revised Statute (HRS) and related administrative rules only to the extent necessary to suspend any requirement that would require close physical contact to accomplish notary functions. All notaries public are still required to comply with any other requirements under the Chapter 456, HRS.

Thank you, Notary Public Office

Updated: Feb 17



Here is an example of “flipping” a house in Hilo, Hawaii.


This house was listed as a short sale on 6/12/2015 at $225,000. An offer was accepted on the same day. But it took about 11 months to close because of the short sale process. It was sold at $195,000 on 5/18/2016.


Then, the buyer renovated the house, and put it on the market for sale at $320,000 on 12/7/2016. Within a week, an offer was accepted. It’s still in escrow. I’ll report how much it’s actually sold when the sold price becomes public.


In Hilo, whenever a house in good condition and released on the market for sale at less than $350,000, buyers who’ve been waiting for such an opportunity rush to see the property.


The house was refurbished with new hardwood bamboo floors throughout the home, new granite countertops, and all new stainless steel refrigerator, range, range hood, dishwasher, microwave and kitdchen sink. All the walls in and out were freshly painted, kitchen cabinets and doors were refinished. The roof was cleaned and painted, and the yard was nicely landscaped.


Please be aware that a higher capital gain tax will be applied for transactions owned for less than a year, and usually you can’t use the 1031 exchange program to defer the capital gain tax for flipped properties.


#shortsale #hawaiihomeflip #bigislandrealestate #realestateflip #flip #investment