As a full time Realtor on Maui, Hawaii I get questions all the time as to why the values on oceanfront and beachfront condos have huge variances. One can find prices anywhere from approx. $830 per sq. foot to over $4000 per sq. foot. Why? Well, I thought I would venture to answer this question for you-my loyal readers. For this article, I am going to only refer to condominiums in Wailea/Makena.
Wailea/Makena is the premier Oceanside resort community in South Maui. It is blessed with typically sunshine and dry weather. Located with a shoreline filled with crescent shaped sandy beaches. Beaches so alluring that the top world class Hotels such as The Four Seasons, The Andaz, The Grand Wailea and The Fairmont Kea Lani call it home. Amongst those luxury hotels are condominium resorts.
Vacationers and buyers flock to our beaches year round. Since we are near the equator but in the "sub-tropics" you can pretty much find your ideal temp and weather any time of the year. Most want to take in Maui's sandy beaches framed with the Pacific blue ocean. Wailea came about in the early 1970's. One of very first planned resort community in the US. Homes and condos were built, continuing on in the 1980's and the boom from the Japanese. The most recent beachfront condos built is Wailea Beach Villas in 2006 and the Andaz Residences in 2013. So turning back to our original question; why the huge price differences in the oceanfront and beachfront condos in Wailea/Makena?
The rationale I will give below can be applied to many areas of Maui but particularly acute for luxury resort areas of Maui:
- Oceanfront VS Beachfront-There is a difference. All beachfront properties are oceanfront but not all oceanfront properties are beachfront. Beachfront properties simply are just that-beachfront. Step outside your front door or lanai and within a few steps or short stroll you are on one Maui's fabulous sandy beaches.There are approx. 120 Miles of coastline on Maui-not a lot of shoreline that is available for development and with more stringent building codes and shoreline setback rules, it makes building on the water challenging and very costly.
- Beachfront condos are: Wailea Beach Villa, Andaz Residences, Wailea Elua (but only ones close to the beach garner price of beachfront, some upper units a bit of a walk to the beach) , Wailea Ekahi (but only the units close to the beach as the upper units are a bit of a walk to the Keawekapu beach), Polo Beach Club and Makena Surf (same applies to Makena Surf as with Wailea Ekahi and Wailea Elua. Some units at Makena Surf are a bit further from the beach)
- Oceanfront condos are Wailea Point I.II.III Front row units or units with panoramic ocean views garner higher price points.
- How big is the ocean view? The bigger the better with no obstructions. Buyers pay premium to get just blue ocean views. Nothing standing in the way of seeing the Pacific. The wider the better. Seeing the sunsets mostly year round is great.
- Does the master bedroom and master bathroom have an ocean view? This is a definite plus for buyers.
- Remodeled or not? - As I mentioned before many of the condos were built in the 1970s and 1980s. Wailea Ekahi (1978), Wailea Elua (1976-1989), Wailea Point (1987), Polo Beach Club (1982), Makena Surf (1984 ). Some of the units resemble a bygone time. Tastes have changed quite of bit since then- the less a buyer needs to do to remodel the better. Especially since most buyers don't live on Maui full time, they prefer not to remodel without overseeing the project.
- Is it vacation rentable or not? This is an interesting question. There are pros and cons to this. All of the condos mentioned above allow vacation rentals. However, Wailea Point restricts the rentals to a min. of 30 days. This makes for a less busier complex due to less influx of vacationers. Many of the units at Wailea Point are second homes for owners and not rented. Wailea Beach Villas has an front desk concierge.
- Gated or not? All complexes are gated with the exception of Polo Beach Club and Wailea Ekahi. Wailea Beach Villas, Wailea Point, and Wailea Elua have gated with security personal at the gate. Andaz Residences is essentially part of the Andaz Hotel so it is not gated.
So lets look at average price per sq. foot SOLD at each complex going back to January 1, 2014 to November 18, 2014.
Wailea Ekahi $1120.12 psf
Wailea Elua $1839.26 psf
Wailea Beach Villas $2173.91 psf
Wailea Point $ 1698.62 psf
Polo Beach Club -no data- so sales to date in 2014
Makena Surf -no data- so sales to date in 2014
Andaz Residenences $2078.29 psf
I need to add a qualifier here. If you have a condo complex that has units further back from the ocean with diminished ocean views and they are sold-then this will most likely bring down the average price per sq. foot. We deal in small quantities therefore one large sale and one very low sale can skew the results and not give true market value. Call your trusted realtor to offer you a qualified and detailed market analysis should you be interested in selling or buying. The data above are general and are meant to give a broad snap shot view only.
I will be writing about each complex much more in-depth in near future articles, offering historical data and graphs important should you consider purchasing one for your own use and investment. So please subscribe to our blog in order to not to miss upcoming valuable information.
Call me today for Wailea Point #2303 for sale. One of the lowest priced units with ocean views and privacy from main gate area and road. Wailea Point #2303 is a very good value and offers a great opportunity to be part of the seaside community of Maui, Hawaii. Also go to www.WaileaPoint2303.com for more information.
Aloha and a hui hou..
Jeannie Kong REALTOR (S)
All information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed.
Stats are gleaned from RAM MLS.