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  • Ryan O.

September Updates



 

How did we get to record high inflation? During the start of the pandemic, there was an increase in the money supply since millions of people received stimulus checks. Some can argue this was needed since people were unemployed. However, what Fed overlooked was the sharp increase in money supply was going to cause inflation.


Although many were more concerned about surviving the pandemic, many of us forgot that inflation was slowly working its way into our economy. To amplify things, the Fed kept printing more money in 2020 and 2021.


The second mistake was the Fed's slow response to fight inflation. The first rate hike to fight inflation was in March 2022. Perhaps the Fed should have started to increase the rate in 2020. The Fed has kept increasing the rate to aggressively fight inflation.


Although a soft landing could be possible, the Fed is now trying to achieve a neutral interest rate. A result of the the neautral rate is when the economy is not growing or shrinking too quickly.

Inflation has shifted our housing market. Like prices at the grocery store and gas pumps, housing prices have soared too. During 2020 and 2021, we saw many homes sell for record prices. What was the driving force? Low mortgage rates.


With mortgage rates now in the 5-6% range, there has been a significant decrease in mortgage applications. The uptick in mortgage rates is being felt by some buyers since they cost to borrow money has increased.


For years, mortgage records were low. During the start of the pandemic, some buyers were locking in rates in the 2% range. Until late last year, you could still get a sub 4% mortgage.


What do you do?


If you are buyer, you might want to buy something soon. The Fed plans on increasing the rate to fight inflation and this will mean mortgage rates will go up too. As I mentioned numerous times, owning real estate is actually a hedge against inflation.

Another option is looking at an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM). An ARM could be a better product since the rates are initially lower for a fixed period of time. You are basically hoping the economy drastically improves so you can refinance into a conventional rate. The dangers with an ARM happens if inflation remains a probably after your fixed rate period expires.


If you are seller, you need to price well. Due to inflation, there is a smaller buyer pool. Gone are the days of properties selling much higher than list price. Matter of fact, we been seeing a lot homes sit on the market. Had these homes been listed in 2020 or 2021, they probably would have sold a lot quicker.


RECENTLY LISTED

Greg, Austin, and I recently listed a property at 91-444 Pohakupuna Road. Within a few days of being listed, our seller accepted an offer! This charming detached, single-family home is located a block away from the beach and near golf courses, parks, schools, retail, and more! The subject property consists of 3-bedroom, 1-bathroom.


JUST SOLD

Terra and I recently sold a 2-bedroom/1-bathroom fee simple condo unit for $435,000 at 1634 Makiki Street Unit #205 ("Consulate"). Despite rising mortgage rates, we were still able to find a buyer. From start to finish, the transaction went smooth. Although the maintenance fee is slightly above $1 per living SF, the Consulate recently had some large common area projects -- roofing, plumbing, and elevators.


IN ESCROW

Please let me know if you are interested in viewing our Crown Thurston #101 listing.


Home Maintenance

Every year countless homeowners make repairs to their roof. Here is a short maintenance checklist:


1. Check The Roofing Shingles Routinely


2. Hire A Professional Roofing Vendor To Inspect The Roof


3. Look For Leaks In The Attic


4. Clean Your Gutters


When gutters are not cleaned, debris will buildup and water can seep under the roof.


5. Trim Any Overhanging Branches


Tree branches can be a problem for a few reasons. First, large and heavy branches could cause damage if they fall on the roof. Second, branches and leaves can collect water and stagnant water can cause damage to the roof.


If you are looking for a roofing vendor, I would highly recommend Rocky Rivera of Leeward Roofing. Leeward Roofing is locally owned and operated; they have been in business for 50 years. They specialize in residential and commercial roofing. Also, they are a general contractor too. You will not regret using Leeward Roofing. They have outstanding customer service, high quality of work, and have competitive pricing.


Ramblings


Notorious Crime

A few months ago, a person was murdered at their Hawaii Loa Ridge home. Hawaii News Now recently reported that this property is for sale. Would you buy a home if a notorious crime occurred in it?


Affordable Housing

Pacific Business News recently reported that the Department of Permitting and Planning released the 2022 affordable housing income limits. Income limits increased, on average, 8.1%, a move that reverses a 4% decline from 2020 to 2021, according to DPP officials. The 2022 limits are 3.7% higher than those in 2020, which DPP said is a "typical year-to-year increase."


You can view the limits here.


Will You Marry Me?

According to Hawaii Public Radio, the wedding industry is getting back to pre-COVID numbers. Last year, there were nearly 18,500 marriages and 2022 seems on track for about 19,000 based on numbers through June. Per State Department of Health, there were just over 20,000 weddings in 2018 and 2019 respectively.


Stay safe and healthy.

-Ryan