Maui Kai Update 
February 2020
Aloha Maui Kai Owners,  

Okay foodies, you've been feeling a little left out lately ... so here's the latest tummy teasers on the island.  See that mouthwatering picture of Banana Macadamia Pancakes to the left?  You used to have to drive to Kihei Caffe to get it, but now they have a 2nd spot Kihei Caffe Lahaina in the Lahaina Gateway!  No worries, I've got everybody covered ... "OPIHI" will be opening in Wailea Village.  Chef Troy Guard has been recognized as one of the "Great Regional Chefs of America" by the James Beard Foundation. *  You had some great options for Valentine's this month too. "Open Table" announced that "Lahaina Grill" and "Mama's Fish House" were among the most romantic restaurants in the U.S."   Into the Classics? Food and Wine Magazine noted "Mama's Fish House" and "Sam Sato's" in their best of. *  Now fix your gaze to the photo on the right.  This may change the way you think of going grocery shopping forever.  Foodland on Oahu is definitely not your grandmother's grocery store. They now offer cocktails and small plates.  So I'm thinkin' ...  we have 3 Foodlands on Maui and I can see more guys offering to go to the market with their wives ... if they can make a night of it!

Forget Silicon Valley... we are master techies!  Who'd guess that Maui is setting the standard as a place for scientific innovation! Maui's own "HNu Photonics" just sent their Scorpio-V Mobile SpaceLab to the International Space Station to develop and manufacture future medical cures, where there is not gravity to distort DNA and protein molecules.  Their first study: cell functions of neuroblastoma cells - a type of nerve-cell cancer.  These therapeutic interventions may be used to treat neurodegenerative diseases or general cognitive decline for us mere mortal terrestrial human population.

From above the skies to below the seas ... The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration will be adding a new research vessel "The Oceanographer" to be homeported in Hawaii. According to the NOAA, "The Science missions aboard these vessels promise to push the boundaries of what is known about our still largely undiscovered ocean."

State lawmakers are looking to take a federal ban on flavored vaping cartridges one step further. In a bipartisan bill, Hawaii could mark another first in the nation by increasing the minimum age to 25 to purchase tobacco and electronic smoking devices. * From cleaning your lungs - to cleaning the ocean: An innovative pilot project has begun in Maalaea Harbor.  Hundreds of Pacific Oysters (not the kind with pearls, or for consumption since they filter impurities) have been placed in the harbor to make it cleaner and healthier for fishing, swimming, paddling and surfing.

Using Census Bureau data, Zippia listed the top 10 states for population loss ranked by the percentage that moved to another state.  Hawaii ranked #5, with 7,047 who left ... amounting to 0.5% of the population between 2017 to 2018.  Where did they go?  Mostly California, Texas, Nevada, Washington and North Carolina. *  My guess is someone is NOT going to leave, but instead plop down some serious money for the house pictured on the left.  It looks nice enough for a modest little home ... but the asking price is $2.2 million and if you click here, you'll see some pix of a not so grand backyard etc.  So why the steep listing price?  It's all in the name ... you see this was President Barack Obama's Hawaii boyhood home from 1964-1967 starting when he was just 3 years old.
The Magic of Koholas
If getting up close and personal with whales is on your bucket list, this is where you need to be.  This is their peak mating season, so now and next month give you the best chance of witnessing this miracle.

We consider Pacific Humpback Whales (Koholas), "Kamaaina" or locals.  You see, they've been coming to Hawaii from as far back as the ancient Polynesian Era 1 - 600 AD.
If you're at a point in life where you're considering buying a home, today is a better time to buy than 10 years ago.  A strong economy, low unemployment, and low mortgage rates make it a great time to buy.   The amount of income that buyers spent on their mortgage payments also dropped from 2010 through 2019, despite higher home prices.  Homeowners are also sitting on more equity.  In 2012, nationwide equity reached a low of $8.2 trillion.  In 2019, it grew to about $18.7 trillion.

Here on Maui, the median price of homes and condominiums rose by more than 7% in January.  There were 84 single-family homes sold in January, a 33.3% increase from 63 homes sold in January 2019.  The median price of those homes was $782,438 ... an increase of 7.2% from $730,000.

The median price of a condo on Maui in January was $569,000 which was an increase of 7.7% from $528,450 during the same month last year.  Meanwhile the number of sales declined by 2.3% to 127 units sold, from 130 sold in January 2019.  Tight inventory had something to do with that, as the number of new listings for condos dropped by 19%.

Now l et's take a look at the Maui Kai :


Figures from Realtors Association of Maui

airport greeters A recently released report from the Hawaii Tourism Authority shows the Aloha State pushed past the 10 million mark with 10,424,995 visitors to Hawaii last year.   Maui led all the Neighbor Islands.  Maui  surpassed the 
3 million mark for the first time since record keeping began three decades ago.  The 3,071,596 visitors in 2019 was a 5.4% increase from the year prior, and the highest amount since tracking began in 1990.  Arrivals weren't the only increase for Maui.  Visitor spending also hit a new high last year of $5.12 billion, a 2.4% increase over 2018.   For the month of December 2019, Maui visitor spending hiked up 15.4% to $513.1 million, visitor arrivals went up 8.5% to 275,959, and daily visitor spending increased 9.7% to $218 per person.

The island of Molokai, part of Maui County, is one step closer to having no short-term rentals.  Maui County Council passed on first reading a bill to establish a zero permit cap.  If the bill becomes law, when current permits for short-term rentals expire, there will be no opportunities for renewal.

Now Airbnb has begun restricting some bookings from under-25's in an effort to prevent so called "party houses" spiraling into violence.   And I've been telling you for a while about the new bills on Maui being sought to control illegal vacation rentals.  

What you don't want to do, is get caught up in that mess. Listen, if you have guests coming into town, I recommend you check out  M aui Beachfront Rentals .  Don't have friends or family get stuck paying for a high priced hotel, or an illegal vacation rental, when t hey can get a fully furnished condo or home complete with kitchen, laundry, and free parking ... all things you either can't get - or pay thru the nose for at hotels.  And of course they'll enjoy all the amenities of a Resort! 

If you own a property that you'd like to make income on when you're not using it, do what I do and check out  MBR .  They take all the hassle out of it for you like taking care of the taxes so you don't have to worry.  And they market the heck out of your place with extra advertising on sites like VRBO, HomeAway, Flip Key and others ... all at no additional cost. And All Legal!
Dean Rathbun  of  Avis Mortgage  reveals that the number of new mortgages originated in the last three months of 2019 topped all quarters since the 4th quarter of 2005.  More than $750 billion in new mortgages originated in the 4th quarter of 2019.  Compare that to the first quarter of 2019, when there were only $344 billion in mortgage originations.  In total, mortgage origination volume topped approximately $2.1 trillion in 2019.  Despite the increase in originations, credit standards did tighten in the 4th quarter.  The median credit score of borrowers applying for a mortgage rose to 770 ... a 5 point increase over the previous quarter.   The Fed suggested the increase was due to the hike in the number of refinancers.

Refinancing is big right now with mortgage rates hovering near a five-decade low.  In fact refinance applications are surging, rising to the highest level in seven years.  Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell has signaled that the central bank is comfortable holding interest rates steady for now.
 Daryl Hall & John Oates

Maui Sunday Market  Every Sunday - Kahului
(Swap Meet with music, food, crafts etc)

2/29: Annual Great Whale Count  take part
3/01: Maui 5k Run   details
3/07: Volunteer Day at Hawaii Nature Center  info
3/14: West Maui Bike Ride & Brunch  schedule
3/16-20: Hawaiian Spring Vacation Day Camp  for your kids
3/28: The  Great Whale Count (two opportunities for you)
sign up      check both out       volunteer

Maui Arts & Cultural Center  tickets
2/23: Maui Pops Orchestra   Winter Pops
2/27: Goitse   award winning Irish group
2/28: John Craigie   Americana style singer/songwriter
3/01: HAPA  Hawaiian music reuniting after 17 years
3/06: Mrs. Krishnan's Party   interactive comedy - limited seating
3/06: Toby Walker    guitarist, story teller
3/07: Theo Von: Dark Arts Tour    comedy
3/08: Maui Pops Orchestra    the Great American Songbook
3/12: Calder Quartet   classical
3/13: Henry Kapono & Paula Fuga
3/14: Jake Shimabukuro   inventive ukulele
3/18-19: Hawaii Energy Conference
3/20: Four Renowned Poets tribute to W.S. Merwin
3/21: Starr Kalahiki   in concert
3/22: Simrit    Neo-psychedelic world beat band
3/25:  Devising Dance Theater Workshop
3/26: Lucky Plush Productions: Rink Life    dance
3/28: "Proof of Loyalty"   film about WWII Hawaiian Neisi Soldiers
3/29: Daryl Hall & John Oates in concert (#1 selling duo in music history)

Maui Onstage - Iao Theater   tickets
2/28-3/15: Xanadu the Musical
3/7-15: The Ants & the Grasshoppers
3/22: Joan Osborne 7 time Grammy Nominee, tours with "The Dead" (grateful)
4/24-5/10: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
5/16-17: Maui Chamber Orchestra   Spring Concert
7/10-8/2: Priscilla Queen of the Desert   musical

ProArts Playhouse Kihei    tickets
2/28:  "Neither Wolf or Dog" film
3/06:  "Out of Order" political comedy
3/07:  1st Annual Gutsy Women Showcase
3/26:  An Evening with Andrea Razzauti  guitarist
4/3-4: Cabaret & Cocktails presents "The naughty princess and the tease"
4/17-5/03:  "The Odd Couple"  (female version)
6/5-21: "Murder In The Nth Degree"

If you're enjoying my updates and would like to pass it on to a friend, there's a button down below you can click to forward it on.  And never worry about junk mail.  Unless requested otherwise, I only send out these monthly updates.

As you can see above, the real estate gods are smiling down on us.    If you'd like to see what your property is worth in this market, we 'd be more than happy to provide you with a free, no obligation, confidential assessment of your property.  Likewise, if you want to take advantage of these crazy low interest rates, and you're interested in adding to your real estate portfolio, let us know.   As owner of Berkshire Hathaway Maui Properties I have over 35 years experience in the Maui market with sales approaching $2 billion!  We a re the  only  Berkshire Hathaway Real Estate Brokerages on Maui. Our offices are located in Lahaina-Kapalua and Wailea-Makena.  I'm available to you 7 days a week.  


If you are currently listed with another Broker, this is not intended to disturb that relationship
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