As prices and sales volume continue to surge, the number of active listings on Oahu was down last month by 39.6% for single-family homes and down 23.3% for condos, as compared to May 2020.

“Typically, we see an increase in listings following large increases in home values,” says Kalama Kim, principal broker at Coldwell Banker Realty. “Which leads us to believe the pandemic is keeping people in their homes.”

Kim goes on to explain, “Sellers in today’s market are, for the most part, those who have decided to buy for the first time, to right-size to a new home, or to move off island.”

The easing of new listings to the market, coupled with the increase in the number of closed sales, has put upward pressure on prices — and added to the competitive atmosphere, bidding wars, and properties flying off the market at an unprecedented pace.

The median days on the market for single-family homes and condos hit new record lows of 8 and 12 days, respectively.

In May, sellers added 430 new single-family listings and 683 new condo listings to the market. Notably, by the end of May, 61% of those new single-family home listings and 51% of new condo listings had already sold or were in escrow.

“The market’s rapid pace is showing no signs of slowing, and buyers entering the market continue to face stiff competition, especially for homes under $800,000,” says Shannon Heaven, president, Honolulu Board of Realtors®. “One property received 60 offers within one week of being listed, which is a clear indication that Oahu is in desperate need of more affordable homes.”

And the fiery pace will likely continue, according to Mike James, president of Coldwell Banker Realty.

“Pending sales skyrocketed last month when we thought the market couldn’t heat up anymore,” says James. “This should result in skyrocketing closed sales as the pending sales close over the next two months, and we still don’t know when the market might slow.”

James advises buyers to be decisive when they find something that meets their needs, and to be patient, as they may have to make many offers before one is accepted.

Heaven encourages buyers and sellers to navigate this unprecedented market with the guidance of a real estate professional.

“Every day, Realtors® are working with buyers to submit their strongest offer and with sellers to secure the best price for their home. As we mark Homeownership Month in June, we encourage anyone thinking about buying a home to work with a Realtor®. No one knows the market better and is uniquely qualified to help you work toward your goal.”

Sales of Single-Family Homes and Condos | May 2021
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

The number of condos closed on Oahu in May more than doubled — from 254 in May 2020 to 598 last month — up a whopping 135.4%. Pending sales soared from 395 a year ago to 1,019 open transactions in escrow at the end of May — an increase of 158%. Heading into the heat of the summer, it’s likely condo sales will continue to sizzle.

Single-family sales volume is significantly up as well — from 248 in May 2020 to 405 last month. Sales pending in escrow are up 80.8% — from 437 to 790.

Of May closed sales, 58% of single-family home sales received over the asking price, while 36% of condos did the same.


Median Sales Price of Single-Family Homes and Condos | May 2021
Source: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data

May 2021 set yet another record MSP high for single-family homes on Oahu, rising to $978,000— breaking the previous record of $950,000 sent in March.

Condo prices also boomed — climbing to $457,750, compared to the MSP in May 2020 of $399,000.

Single-family homes in the $700,000 to $999,999 price range comprised 40% of all closed sales, while properties that sold in the $1 million to $1,999,999 price range captured nearly the same market share, making up 38% of sales in May.



As the median price of a single-family home inches toward $1 million, 10 Oahu neighborhoods are already there. Here’s the list.

Single-family  MSP April 2021 MSP April 2020
Aina Haina – Kuliouou $1,380,000 $1,287,500
Ala Moana – Kakaako $1,057,500 $   927,000
Downtown – Nuuanu $1,115,000 $   927,000
Hawaii Kai $1,460,000 $1,150,000
Kailua – Waimanalo $1,325,000 $1,171,500
Kaneohe $1,050,000 $   860,000
Kapahulu – Diamond Head $1,144,500 $   942,500
Makiki – Moiliili $1,430,000 $1,190,000
North Shore $1,425,000 $1,064,000
Waialae – Kahala $2,541,250 $1,710,000


To see what the MSP is in your neighborhood, ask your Coldwell Banker Realtor®.

SOURCE: Honolulu Board of REALTORS®, compiled from MLS data.