Region by Region: Most Sales and Biggest Price Gains on O‘ahu

The biggest median price gain in 2022 was on the North Shore; most sales were on the ʻEwa Plain.
01 2023 Haleiwa Neighborhood Gettyimages 1427704181
The annual median price for single-family homes on the North Shore, including Hale‘iwa (pictured), jumped 27% in 2022 from 2021. The median price is now to $1.75 million. If you go back to 2020, the total price jump over two years was 54%. | Photo: Getty Images

Oʻahu’s residential real estate market ended 2022 with the fewest single-family homes sold in seven years. But the median price rose 11.6% and crossed the $1 million annual threshold for the first time.

A total of 3,474 single-family homes sold in 2022, a drop of 23.3% from the 4,526 homes that sold in 2021, according to statistics from the Honolulu Board of Realtors. It was the fewest number of homes sold since 2015, when 3,455 homes changed hands, according to the board.

Of the board’s 21 regions on Oʻahu, the three with the most sales were:

  • ʻEwa Plain: 684 home sales, down 23% from 2021
  • Kailua-Waimānalo: 320, down 20%
  • Mākaha-Nānākuli: 277, down 19%.

The islandwide median price, meanwhile, hit $1.1 million for 2022, an 11.6% increase from $990,000 in 2021. The median price was an increase of 33% from 2020, and up a total of 40% from 2019, the last full year of sales before the Covid-19 pandemic supercharged home sales.

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Only six Oʻahu regions – the ʻEwa Plain, Kalihi-Pālama, Mākaha-Nānākuli, Makakilo, Wahiawā and Waipahu – had annual median prices below $1 million during 2022, compared with nine in 2021 and 14 in 2020.

It’s no wonder then that a national rental affordability report found it’s more than twice as expensive to buy a three-bedroom house on Oʻahu than to rent a comparable home. The report by ATTOM Data Solutions says Honolulu had the largest affordability gap between renters and buyers: Renters typically spend 66% of average local wages on renting their homes, while homebuyers need 140% to cover the down payment, monthly mortgage payment, property tax, homeowners insurance and private mortgage insurance on a comparable home.

The report also ranked Honolulu as the least affordable market in the nation for owning a home.


Other Regional Comparisons

Two rural regions saw the biggest median price gains on O‘ahu in 2022:

  • The annual median price on the North Shore jumped 27% year over year to $1.75 million and 54% in two years, while the number of sales dropped 20% in 2022 from 2021.
  • The Windward Coast median price of $1.2 million was 22% higher than in 2021 and 48.8% higher than in 2020. Meanwhile, the region saw the largest drop in sales islandwide, with 55 homes sold, 43% fewer than in 2021

Three other regions had sales drops of 35% or more: Downtown-Nu‘uanu, ʻĀina Haina-Kuliʻouʻou and Waiʻalae-Kāhala.


Regional Price Increases

Nine regions saw price increases of 11% to 14% last year, and three of those – Kāneʻohe, Kapahulu-Diamond Head and Mākaha-Nānākuli – have experienced increases of more than 35% since 2020.

  • Moanalua-Salt Lake  |  $1.2 million median price in 2022, up 14% from $1.05 million in 2021
  • Wahiawā  |  $888,000, up 14% from $780,000
  • Downtown-Nu‘uanu  |  $1.3 million, up 13% from $1.15 million
  • Kāneʻohe  |  $1.25 million, up 13% from $1.1 million
  • Kapahulu-Diamond Head  |  $1.35 million, up 13% from $1.2 million
  • Makiki-Mōʻiliʻili  |  $1.6 million, up 13% from $1.41 million
  • Mililani  |  $1.09 million, up 12% from $975,000
  • Mākaha-Nānākuli  |  $707,500, up 11% from $635,000
  • Pearl City-ʻAiea |  $1.05 million, up 11% from $950,000

Fran Villarmia-Kahawai, 2023 president of the Honolulu Board of Realtors, says it’s a market in transition.

“While O‘ahu’s real estate market started (2023) strong, the steep rise in interest rates and fluctuation in inventory are shifting the market dynamic,” she says. “Although buyers face higher financing costs, they now have more options to choose from, and competition isn’t as fierce.” ​

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Categories: Real Estate, Trends