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Which is the Best Buy in Puako Beach Oceanfront Property?

It is said in real estate in Hawai’i, “there is only so much oceanfront”…and along the Kohala “Gold” Coast, there is only one beachfront community outside the resorts. Puako: a neighborhood with history and the feel of old Hawai’i; one slow road in, one general store (next to the Hawai’i Life office, in case you’re in the neighborhood), and no restaurants.  

In the past week, there have been two price reductions on Puako Beach oceanfront properties, which begs the question: Which is the best buy in Puako homes for sale on the oceanfront side of the street?

All beachfront Puako lots offer views of the setting sun, whales in season, surfers riding waves…

One answer might be: “Both of these price reductions would be best buys.” That’s because you have your choice between the “before” and “after” versions of a classic Puako beach cottage.

Best Buy: Puako Oceanfront “Fixer”

The “before” version is a lot with a small, older cottage that most oceanfront property buyers would consider a “tear-down.” Two of the six Puako ocean-side listings on the market are in this category. For baseline, an oceanfront Puako lot with a vintage 2-bedroom home of 1,700 sq. ft. sold for $2,125,000 in 2011.

Price reduced to $2,250,000 on this Puako beach cottage (MLS# 247129)

With the asking price reduced to $2,250,000 for a 3 bedroom, 1,550 sq. ft. fixer on the ocean, this owner is signaling “make an offer now”…the only competing listing is a 855 sq. ft. tear down cottage on a smaller lot, asking price $3,000,000. Note this “before” best buy is located next door to a 4,198 sq. ft. home listed for $3,700,000 (MLS# 227015).

Best Buy: Puako Beachfront Home with Guest Cottage

There are currently four Puako beachfront homes for sale that are move-in ready at prices ranging from $3,590,000 to $6,495,000. It would seem obvious that the best buy must be the one listed for $3,590,000, and that is my pick.

Puako Beachfront home with guest cottage now offered for $3,590,000 after price reduction (MLS# 244939)

The original cottage built in the 1950’s was moved to the back of the lot, and a larger home (4 bedrooms, 2,244 sq. ft.) built on the ocean side with a huge deck to enjoy the view. Tastefully updated with top-of-the-line appliances…one might ask why this owner is selling?  

The answer: they aren’t leaving Puako; they bought last year’s “before” best buy down the street and plan to renovate there. Hence, what one might call a “motivated seller” as they have no need for two Puako homes.

Price is only one consideration for the typical Puako beachfront buyer and each of the other properties for sale has qualities that will make it the right buy for a certain set of criteria. For example, you’ll pay more for a brand-new home if older construction is not your style.

Aside from the occasional vacation rental, all of these properties are easy to show, just give me 24 hours notice!

A hui hou,

Beth Thoma Robinson, R(B)
Direct: 808.443.4588  
Email: Beth@HawaiiLife.com

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Katie Minkus, R(BIC)

February 16, 2012

Aloha Beth, great post! You are absolutely correct that price is not the only factor when oceanfront buyers are considering Puako. For example, an oceanfront property located adjacent to a public beach access will command a lower sales price because of the additional car and foot traffic in the area and quite possibly on the beach in front of the property. Puako is so special and quiet in general, it’s easy to forget that all beaches in Hawaii are public, meaning anyone can use the beach in front of a property if they can access it. My personal favorite right now is MLS#248612, it’s a stunning home in an almost perfect location – but asking $6,495,000, certainly not a “best buy!” 😉 A hui hou!!

Katie Minkus, R(BIC)

February 16, 2012

Aloha Beth, great post! You are absolutely correct that price is not the only factor when oceanfront buyers are considering Puako. For example, an oceanfront property located adjacent to a public beach access will command a lower sales price because of the additional car and foot traffic in the area and quite possibly on the beach in front of the property. Puako is so special and quiet in general, it’s easy to forget that all beaches in Hawaii are public, meaning anyone can use the beach in front of a property if they can access it. My personal favorite right now is MLS#248612, it’s a stunning home in an almost perfect location – but asking $6,495,000, certainly not a “best buy!” 😉 A hui hou!!

Pam Deery

February 23, 2012

Beth; I have been showing Puako for the past week and agree; there is some tough competition for the first place in choice properties. My favorite for the price range is definitely the remodeled 1950s house with the cottage; But… I understood an offer is in the negotiation stage..
and that darling cottage the seller’s are moving to..my husband; craftsman furniture & cabinet maker Ken Kauffman, just built new cabinets for their remodel. He calls it the “Pottery Barn” cottage.

As for the upper end.. the $6.4 house rocks! Best quality all around and stunning location on the ocean near the end of the road for less traffic and more ocean sounds! The outdoor kitchen and pizza oven off the pool area are awesome.

Pam Deery

February 23, 2012

Beth; I have been showing Puako for the past week and agree; there is some tough competition for the first place in choice properties. My favorite for the price range is definitely the remodeled 1950s house with the cottage; But… I understood an offer is in the negotiation stage..
and that darling cottage the seller’s are moving to..my husband; craftsman furniture & cabinet maker Ken Kauffman, just built new cabinets for their remodel. He calls it the “Pottery Barn” cottage.

As for the upper end.. the $6.4 house rocks! Best quality all around and stunning location on the ocean near the end of the road for less traffic and more ocean sounds! The outdoor kitchen and pizza oven off the pool area are awesome.

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