Number crunching: December and year-end stats

My sub-headline may have been a little misleading: Technically, sales and median prices for single-family homes in 2011 did end up lower than 2010. But if you look closer, the difference between the two years is just 3 percent-not a significant amount that would make us panic or celebrate.

The Honolulu Board of Realtors (HBR) released their annual and monthly resale statistics today and, although the big picture shows this slight decline in median price and sales, there are a few spikes when you look at the numbers at the regional level. (Click here to see the whole report.)

"Although home and condominium sales for December 2011 took a small dip compared to last year, we are seeing prices rise for single-family homes," says Joe Paikai, newly-elected HBR president. "We've also noticed that particular neighborhoods have made significant jumps in sales compared to last year. This is a good sign for Honolulu as a whole; we expect to see this rise in sales spread as the economy continues to recover."

Overall sales for December 2011 compared to December 2010 showed:

  • Single-family home sales for December 2011 decreased 14.1 percent to 268, down from 312 in December 2010. However, 3 percent more homes sold in December 2011 than in the previous month.
  • The median price for single-family homes in December 2011 was $605,000, which is 3.4 percent higher than the same time in the previous December.
  • Condominium sales decreased by 6.5 percent in December 2011; 333 units were sold, compared to 356 in December 2010.
  • The median price for a condo in December 2011 was $285,000, which shows a 5 percent decrease from $300,000 in December 2010.
  • According to the Days on Market indicator, single-family home sales closed at a faster pace last month compared to December 2010 listing for 35 days, down from 38. Condominiums closed at a slower pace last month compared to December 2010 listing for 52 days, up from 43.

At the end of 2011, single-family home sales on Oahu totaled 2,974, which is a 2.7 percent decrease compared to the previous year. Total condominium sales for 2011 increased 1.3 percent over 2010, finishing with 4,029 units sold.

For more information and to see the final report, go to