Big Island

Hawaii Life Big Island and Concierge Auctions – Both Properties SOLD

I’ve had phone calls, emails, and Facebook messages asking me about the results for the Hualalai Resort and Mauna Kea Fairways North homes listed by Hawaii Life that were auctioned this week by Concierge Auctions. Both properties had a half-dozen bidders; both properties sold. As in any real estate transaction, the contract price is confidential to buyer and seller until the sale closes. I promise to blog again when that happens. But in the meantime, the question always comes: was the auction a success?

Concierge Auction at Mauna Kea Resort hawaii life listing

Auctioneer and buyer representatives working the phones at Mauna Kea resort auction

What Makes a Successful Hawaii Luxury Real Estate Auction?

Followers of my blog posts over the past few years know that I began as a skeptic of the luxury real estate auction process, and have come to believe that-done right – auction is a useful tool in the arsenal of the luxury real estate seller and their agent. These back-to-back auctions at Hualalai Resort and Mauna Kea Fairways North were a success.

Why do I call them a success? Because the Sellers wanted to sell by a certain date. Both properties sold…and there were a half-dozen bidders at each auction, which means there was competition. Moreover, both Buyers were purchasing the homes for their own use. They were genuinely excited about the property as a 2nd (3rd, 4th?) home, whereas some previous auctions on the Big Island have been dominated by investors looking for one of the now-scarce screaming deals to flip as the market rises. (Not that there is anything wrong with being one of those investors, as Pam and I represented one at the auction!)

Master bath Hualalai Resort home

After the adrenaline of the auction, plumeria-filled bath beckons…

Tips for Big Island Sellers

Accept that the market has spoken. As I’ve written in previous posts, the fact that the property is sold via auction rather than through the usual real estate marketing channels and presence in the MLS, does not change the market’s view of value. It simply reveals the market value of a property at a moment in time. That may not be the number in the mind of a seller. It may not even be the number in the minds of real estate agents who are lagging behind the curve in a declining or appreciating market. But in evaluating auctions at Kukio, Kolea, Hualalai, and now Mauna Kea Resort, in every case the auction price is supported by the comparable non-auction sales.

Understand “auction” as a marketing tool. I’ve had experience with several real estate auction companies, and in helping choose one for my clients I would look hard at their track record and the size of their database. How many properties like yours, in a location like yours, have they auctioned? Can you speak to some repeat seller clients of theirs? Get on the mailing lists for several of the companies, follow them on twitter, see how it goes.

The winning bidder at one of the auctions this week heard about the property through the auction company and until coming to see it had never even been to the Big Island! In my view, for property in Hawaii, it is not the fact of it being at auction that is the marketing tool for a seller; it is the fact that the bigger marketing budget and nationwide reach of the auction company can be valuable for an attractive parcel. (On the mainland, the winning bidder may well be the next door neighbor in Telluride or Beverly Hills).

Do Large Parcels of Hawaii Land Sell Well at Auction?

Real estate auction is more suitable for certain types of properties than others. The property is being sold “as is” with no contingencies; the buyer must do all due diligence up front, or trust their agent’s knowledge of the property. That works pretty well with resort real estate in Hawaii. From my own experience, it is tougher outside of the resorts and with raw land. However, we have some examples of where auctions have pushed buyers off the fence on land and non-resort homes on the Big Island.

Paumalu Ranch Oahu North Shore auction

101 acres overlooking Oahu’s North Shore Sunset Beach to be auctioned on March 25th

I wish I had a buyer to represent on the third Hawaii Life/Concierge Auction this month. This one is on Oahu’s North Shore, and when I toured the Paumalo Ranch property last November (two parcels totaling 101 acres on the bluff overlooking Haleiwa and Sunset Beach), it made me think I’d found the perfect spot for some of my clients who love the large land parcels here in Hawi, but wish they could be closer to a beach and upscale shopping (not to mention Honolulu airport an hour away).

The auction is on Monday, but if you wanted to register today, there’s still time!

A hui hou,

Beth Thoma Robinson R(B)
Direct: 808.443.4588

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