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In Hawaii Real Estate Is Cash Really King?

Haven’t you heard the term before that says, “cash is King?”

I’ve often bought into that theory and do have to agree there’s nothing like doing a cash transaction with a quick closing. We all know that financing these days is not what it used to be. Banks are more stringent on their underwriting. It’s also hard to get comps in slower markets.

I had an interesting discussion with our Kauai Broker in Charge, Anthea Adair, a few months ago. She was asking what percentage of transactions on Oahu are cash. I knew that certain products such as vacant land, construction loans, and condotels were a borrower’s worst nightmare as banks don’t want to touch them with a 10 foot pole. I wasn’t sure off the top of my head, however, had to do a little digging.

As we wrapped up 2010, here are the latest numbers of cash sales on Oahu:

  • 12% (369 out of 3,050) of single family home sales sold for cash
  • 33% (1,293 out of 3,936) of condo sales sold for cash
  • 70% (71 out of 102) of vacant land sales sold for cash

What does this say? It confirms my belief in that vacant land is still hard to finance, however, when I ran this search a few months back, the number came out at 78% of land sales were cash. Buyers are either starting to get loans, or sellers are considering seller financing.

These numbers are also telling me that 88% of home buyers on Oahu are still obtaining some sort of financing for their purchases. It will be interesting to see if the banks ease up in 2011, or will cash remain “King?”

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Katie Minkus, R(BIC)

January 19, 2011

Aloha David. My vote is that cash will remain King! (And probably Queen, too…) I’ll let someone else post Big Island statistics, but what I can tell you is that certainly we’ve seen a very large increase here in seller financing – especially for bare parcels of land. And we have a LOT of bare parcels of land on the Big Island…

Katie Minkus, R(BIC)

January 19, 2011

Aloha David. My vote is that cash will remain King! (And probably Queen, too…) I’ll let someone else post Big Island statistics, but what I can tell you is that certainly we’ve seen a very large increase here in seller financing – especially for bare parcels of land. And we have a LOT of bare parcels of land on the Big Island…

David Buck

January 20, 2011

@Katie- Thanks for the input. It’s amazing how very little vacant land here sells vs. neighbor islands. I know there’s some great land deals over there 🙂 I’d recommend to any buyers that don’t have cash to contact one of our great Big Island agents and have them set up a search for parcels of land where the sellers would entertain seller financing.

David Buck

January 20, 2011

@Katie- Thanks for the input. It’s amazing how very little vacant land here sells vs. neighbor islands. I know there’s some great land deals over there 🙂 I’d recommend to any buyers that don’t have cash to contact one of our great Big Island agents and have them set up a search for parcels of land where the sellers would entertain seller financing.

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Kalen

September 26, 2012

David, how is the market in the past 6 months here in Oahu?

Are there still a good amount of cash transactions going on?

Thanks!

Kalen

September 26, 2012

David, how is the market in the past 6 months here in Oahu?

Are there still a good amount of cash transactions going on?

Thanks!

David Buck

September 27, 2012

@Kalen – It’s been a healthy market here on Oahu lately. Definitely more of a seller’s market. Over the past 6 months, 13.6% of home sales, 36.4% of condo sales and 70% of vacant land sales were cash transactions.

David Buck

September 27, 2012

@Kalen – It’s been a healthy market here on Oahu lately. Definitely more of a seller’s market. Over the past 6 months, 13.6% of home sales, 36.4% of condo sales and 70% of vacant land sales were cash transactions.

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