Real Estate News

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There are 2 types of properties in Hawaii - fee simple and leasehold.  It is very important to know the difference.  You are familiar with fee simple as its probably what you own now. This means you own your home/condo and the land under it.

Leasehold is a bit more complicated.  In a condominium complex that is leasehold you own your unit, others in the complex of course own their units, and collectively you own the building.  However, you don’t own the land under the building.  Someone else owns it and each month you pay that owner a lease payment.

Over the term of the lease your monthly lease payment is usually renegotiated every 10 years.  There will be terms in the lease that describe how and when the lease payment amount is to be renegotiated.

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In Hawaii AOAO fees - (also know as maintenance, strata or HOA fees) are a part of condominium life.  AOAO which stands for Association of Apartment Owners.  In Hawaii, every condominium development is required to have an AOAO (Association of Apartment Owners).  The association is comprised of the condo owners who are responsible for running and maintaining the condominium complex.  So, when you become an owner, you get a vote in how the complex is managed and you have some responsibility for maintaining the property.

With AOAO fees, you need to know not just how much you have to pay, but what do you get for your money, i.e., what is paid for by the AOAO, what are the extra costs that come out of your pocket, are there any assessments pending (and how

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One of Wailea Golf Estates’ finest homes has sold for $4 million.

Island Sotheby’s International Realty agent Ryan MacLaughlin represented the sellers of the three-bedroom, three-bathroom home. Located in the heart of Wailea, the 3,400-square-foot single-level home looks out to panoramic views of Maui’s azure south coast.

“It boasts unobstructed 180-degree views,” said MacLaughlin. “The lot was chosen by the original owner specifically because of those views.”

With seemingly endless vistas of the clear, blue waters of the Pacific oceans and colorful South Maui sunsets, the indoor-outdoor floor plan leads residents from the comforts of the indoors to spa and pool surrounded by tropical foliage. Perched directly atop the  17th

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For some Maui locals, this may come to no surprise: Kula has been named the best place to escape to in Hawaii.

The travel website Expedia recently published a list of the best places in each state that offer peaceful retreats and great places to relax. From quaint small towns to nature preserves, the travel site picked its favorite places where people can go to enjoy tranquility and quiet while being surrounded by pristine nature.

The travel site emphasized locations where visitors can go to recharge and escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. In Hawaii, Expedia’s top pick was Kula, a rural town that sweeps across the slopes of Haleakala.

This Upcountry ranch spans 3,285 acres over some of the most pristine forests and rollings

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The holidays aren't just about the decorations, but all the lights and life-sized gingerbread houses certainly make Maui a little more magical this time of year.

With just five days until Christmas, you may have noticed the neighborhoods aglow with strings of lights and life-size reindeer, while soaring Christmas trees tower in the lobbies of Maui's finest resorts. If you’re planning to spend this next week on Maui, it’s definitely worth making the time to visit some of the island’s most decked out businesses, neighborhoods and Christmasy attractions.

To make it easier on you, we made a list of our favorite places to enjoy the holidays with cheer and Aloha.

Photo by Thad Zajdowicz.

THE LAHAINA BANYAN TREE

Nothing quite compares to

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Traveling down the carriage driveway to H.A. Baldwin’s Olinda vacation home is truly like going back in time.

Perched atop the slopes of Haleakala, this historical 60-acre estate was once the vacation home for one of Maui’s most influential families. The home was built in 1912 by Henry Alexander Baldwin, a sugarcane plantation manager and politician who served as congressional delegate during Hawaii’s territorial era.

“When you walk in, it's like you're stepping back into the 1920s or the 1930s,” said Wendy Peterson, the Island Sotheby’s International Realty agent who’s representing the seller.

This timeless property looks as if it’s out of a storybook, with 6,000 square feet that includes spacious living areas, verandas, six bedrooms

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It’s not even into the busy winter season for Maui’s real estate agents, but sales prices are rising and demand is growing.

Compared to last year, the median sales price for all properties is up 9.5 percent, according to  recent data from the Realtors Association of Maui. At the same time, homes for sale are down 17.3 percent compared to last year.

“We have limited inventory, even the new developments are selling out,” said Island Sotheby’s International Realty agent Volker Weiss.

Live beachfront at Maluhia at Wailea.

The busiest time of year for agents usually starts in January when visitors flock to the islands to avoid chilly temperatures. But even a month before the busy season kicks off, new developments are almost sold out, said

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year - especially for Maui’s real estate professionals.

Each winter, thousands of visitors flock to the islands’ warm weather and white-sand beaches to flee chilly temperatures on the mainland. And some of those visitors - particularly ones that return year after year - decide to invest in vacation properties of their own. 

This Wailea Elua unit is situated one of South Maui's most elite condominium complexes.

Over the last year, condominium sales on Maui soared - even before winter, which is by far the busiest sales season. Now, Maui’s real estate professionals are gearing up for could be some very successful winter months.  

“It’s starting to get cold on the mainland so they come to Maui to enjoy our

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After 22 years, Van Halen’s Sammy Hagar has decided to part ways with his oceanfront estate.

“It’s like island living inside the house,” Hagar told the Los Angeles Times. “This place is like a painting.”

Situated atop the azure waters of Waipio Bay in lush Haiku, Maui, the 9.8-acre, cliffside retreat is being offered for $3.299 million through Island Sotheby’s International Realty agent Becky Hanna.

“It can be the most perfect place on earth,” said Hanna.

The three-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath villa is situated on one of Maui’s most sustainable properties, equipped with solar-powered electricity, a private water well and water catchment. There’s also a tilapia pond, fruit trees and a terraced vegetable garden, allowing for

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Its very important to know your credit score and obtaining a recent copy of your credit report.  You want to make sure all the information listed on your report is accurate and work to correct any mistakes. The higher your credit score, the more likely you will be to receive a better interest rate for your mortgage, which will translate into more ‘home for your money.’

Many potential buyers believe that they need a 750 FICO® Score or higher to be able to purchase a home. The truth is that according to Ellie Mae’s Origination Report, over 53% of loans were approved with a FICO® score under 750 last month!

Here are some tips for improving your credit score:

  • Make payments, including rent, credit cards, and car loans, on time.
  • Keep your
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