Lahaina has a little bit of something for everyone.

Lahaina is located on the Hawaiian island of Maui.  It has been giving the nickname of “Jewel Crown of Maui,” and is well known for its vast history as previous capital of Hawaii and a headquarters for whaling ships.  Nearly two million visitors come to Lahaina each year mostly for the surrounding beaches which include Baby Beach, Puamana State Wayside Park, and Wahi Kuli Wayside Park.

The main strip in Lahaina is Front Street.  Many of the residents, who are a close knit bunch, throw all kinds of celebrations in this area.  These include the Halloween Parade, Lahaina Whale and Oceans Art Festival, and the Banyan Tree Birthday.  The world’s oldest Banyan tree is actually located on Front Street, and it is 60 feet high and spreads across two-thirds of the area around Courthouse Square.  This tree is like another valued resident in Lahaina.

Downtown is also home to many art galleries including Lahaina Galleries and Gallery 505.  Many of the festivals in town are centered around the art galleries.  The second Tuesday is a monthly art event called “Friday Night Is Art Night.”  There are also several weekly and monthly art shows that take place in the area and attract not only locals but visitors to the area of the town.

There is a multiple array of available real estate in Lahaina from condos and townhomes to nice single-family homes.  These are also available to rent yearly or seasonally as well as purchasing.  The average price for all homes is around $690K, and the average time spent on the market is 250 days.

One-bedroom condos starting around $100K are available at the resort communities Channel House and Lahaina Shores.  These are both very popular with people vacationing in the area.  Two-bedrooms for around $200K are available at the boutique-style resort Aina-Nalu.  Two newer resorts available in Lahaina are Opukea at Lahaina and Hoonenea at Lahaina.  These are both for long and short time residents and units are between $300K and $500K.  Puamana is an oceanfront townhome community and starts around $650K and can go to over $2 million.

People seeking permanent residence in Lahaina have multiple options for single-family homes to choose from.  These homes can be found for as little as $300K; however, many at this price will be smaller and will need some work.  Some areas such as Paunau have beautiful homes starting around $400K, and another area Wahikuli has an amazing community with homes starting between $500K and $600K.  More exclusive and luxurious estates can be found in Launiupoko and will start well over $5 million.

Lahaina is a great part of Maui and has a little bit of something for everyone.  Many people who visit wish that they could stay, and some end up coming back regularly or buying their own property.  It is a great area that everyone should definitely check out.

The Buena Park real estate market

Buena Park Sign, Orange County, California, USA

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The Buena Park real estate market, part of the generally upscale and affluent Orange County housing market, faced declining home sales and home prices in the most recent period for which statistics are available. According to figures provided by DataQuick and the Orange County Metro, the end of 2010 saw a decline in median sales price and the quantity of purchases. The median price for Orange County was $410,000 in December 2010, representing a decrease of just less than six percent relative to year-ago levels. This drop was also a decline of about six percent compared to November 2010. Relative to the rest of Southern California, Orange County fared particularly poorly – the six Southern counties saw a slight increase in median price, while Orange County fell. This weakness can be attributed at least partially to the weakness of the regional and national job market as well as the hesitancy of lenders to extend lines of credit. There were fewer properties sold in Orange County in December 2010 compared to year-ago levels, although there were significantly more compared to month-ago levels. DataQuick’s statistics indicated that there were 2,739 residential properties purchased throughout Orange County during December, representing a decline of approximately five percent compared to December 2009. However, this number did mark an increase of more than twenty-one percent compared to November 2010. One expert noted that a November to December sales increase is expected, although the increase seen in Orange County was larger than average.

There were an inordinately large number of properties seized in 2010, marking the third-highest quantity of delinquent residential properties repossessed in nearly twenty years. According to MDA DataQuick, there were approximately 7,900 homes seized in 2010, adding to the cumulative total of almost 33,000 homeowners who have had their properties seized since the beginning of the economic recession. On the bright side, there were fewer foreclosure filings during the most recent tracking period, backing off of the peak figure reached in 2009. However, one expert noted that this slight improvement cannot be entirely attributed to a rallying market, as an alternative to foreclosures – the short sale – has become more popular.

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The San Mateo housing market

The San Mateo housing market, along with the rest of the San Francisco Bay Area real estate market, continued upon a gradual path to recovery in the last month of 2010 and the first days of 2011. According to the San Francisco Association of Realtors, the number of home sales in 2010 improved relative to 2009, while the median sales price and mortgage rates remain relatively low. In addition to a higher quantity of completed home sales, there was a substantial number of pending home sales moving into the New Year. There were a total of 2,295 home sales in the entirety of 2010, compared to 2,184 completed home sales throughout 2009. This represented an increase of almost four and a half percent year-over-year. This increase was accompanied by a boost in the median sales price, which rose by slightly more than four percent to $725,000. There were about a quarter more pending homes sales in December 2010, although condominium sales actually decreased over the same period. There were about twenty percent fewer condominium sales during December 2010, although the number of pending sales rose by approximately twenty-five percent. Over the entire year, the cumulative total of condominium sales totaled above 2009 levels, but well off of sales figures achieved during the peak of the market.

Fewer San Mateo County homes for sale were the product of foreclosure during 2010, suggesting that the Golden State’s distressed property market may be following the larger trend of the United States. According to a January 2011 report from RealtyTrac, there were 51,525 homes within the San Francisco Bay Area at some stage of the foreclosure process in 2010. Although this figure is substantial, it actually represents a decrease of almost five percent from the previous year. Additionally, there was about a twenty-six percent drop in notices of default. However, one local expert suggested that the decline is most likely only temporary, since the foreclosure process is taking longer for lenders to execute. If the number of foreclosures rebounds in upcoming months, it may result in a further decline in the average sales price of the region.

Carlsbad real estate market

Downtown San Diego
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The Carlsbad real estate market, a primarily residential portion of the larger San Diego County real estate market, continued on a streak of positive indicators, although forecasters warned that market watchers should be cautious. According to a May 25, 2010 article in the San Diego Union-Tribune, “With 11 consecutive months of growth, San Diego County is leading the nation’s largest metro areas in home-price appreciation, the widely-watched Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Index showed Tuesday. In March, the index of San Diego prices was up 10.8 percent from the previous year, the biggest increase since the heady days of mid-2005.” The piece by Roger Showley also noted that “Analysts warned that San Diego’s increase may only reflect a change in market mix, not an increase in value, and that it will likely slow down and possibly reserve as additional foreclosed homes hit the market.”

Foreclosures, which typically artificially inflate the number of Carlsbad homes for sale, were set to decrease in the most recent report. According to a May 24, 2010 article from the San Diego Union-Tribune, “Mortgage defaults dipped in San Diego County last month to their lowest level since January, as distressed-property owners found alternatives to foreclosure, MDA DataQuick reported Monday.” The piece, also written by Roger Showley, went on to say that “Other signs of distress seemed to be easing, as delinquencies stopped growing, banks acted on their foreclosure backlogs, more homes were listed for sale and there were more building permits. Some real estate industry analysts read the figures as another sign the housing market is stabilizing at or near the bottom. But they cautioned the market will remain troublesome for the foreseeable future.”

These tentatively positive trends for Carlsbad real estate also extended partially to the larger Southern California area. According to a May 18, 2010 article from the Associated Press, “Home sales in Southern California declined last month for the first time in nearly two years, as buyers appeared to time their purchases to cash in on a state tax credit and supplies of affordable inland properties dwindled, a tracking firm reported Tuesday.”

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Boulder Creek real estate market

Seal of Santa Cruz County, California
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The Boulder Creek real estate market, in the midst of the hard-hit Santa Cruz County real estate market, started to show some tentative signs of improvement as the nationwide economy seems to be recovering. According to a May 22, 2010 article in the Santa Cruz Sentinel, “The county added 2,000 jobs in April, cutting unemployment from 15.2 percent to 13.5 percent, the state Employment Development Department said Friday, but job growth was less than usual for this time of year. The local jobless rate is higher than California’s, which is 12.3 percent, and the nation’s, 9.5 percent.” The piece by Jondi Gumz went on to say that “The overall number of jobs in the county has been growing steadily, albeit slowly, since January, when the count was 90,000. ‘Couple that with other data, the economic news is hopeful,’ said Bill Tysseling of the Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce. ‘Ag, health and consumer essentials have been less affected by the recession and are improving gradually. Non-essential retail and tourism will require increased consumer confidence and/or increased employment.’”

The average price of a Boulder Creek home for sale increased along with the rest of Santa Cruz County in the month of April. According to a May 24, 2010 article from the Mercury News, “Santa Cruz County saw fewer single-family homes sold in April compared to a year ago, but the median price rebounded from $420,000 to $553,000, the highest in 20 months, as distress sales dipped.” The piece, also written by Jondi Gumz, continued to say that “There were 121 sales in April, with 43 percent selling for under $500,000, compared to a year ago, when 132 homes sold with 57 percent under $500,000, according to Gary Gangnes of Real Options Realty, who tracks the numbers.”

However, the foreclosure rate in the Boulder Creek real estate market and in the rest of the state has been enough to encourage lawmakers to adopt special corrective measures. According to a June 3, 2010 article from the Associated Press, “California homeowners seeking loan modifications would be better protected against foreclosures under a bill that passed the state Senate on Thursday.”

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Anaheim Hills Real Estate

A view of Anaheim Hills from the Anaheim Hills...
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Anaheim Hills is a planned community located in the eastern portion of Anaheim the city, in Orange County in Southern California. It lies in the foothills of the Santa Ana Mountains, and because it is in then Southern California area that is highly susceptible to real estate fluctuations, the Anaheim Hills real estate market has seen quite a toll taken upon it since the economy in the U.S. began its downslide in 2008.

The Orange County Register‘s year-end statistical chart showed that 2009 continued to be a year of struggles for those with Anaheim Hills home for sale. The community’s two zip codes both saw declines in median price for the year, which came to $450,000 and $475,000, respectively, declines of 7% and 13%. Despite the bad news in terms of pricing, both zip codes saw increases in sales volume, with 418 and 292 homes sold in each, improvements of 12% and 17%, respectively, from sales volume during 2008.

Latest monthly statistics available on the Orange County Register chart, which provide figures from March, show that the median price for a home in one zip code within Anaheim Hills was $434,000, a 5.65% decline year-over-year. That area saw sales activity of 39 homes sold, flat year-over-year. The community’s other zip code saw a median home price in March of $505,000, a 8% increase from the previous year, while experiencing a 4.5% dip in sales volume, which stood at 21.

Furthermore, the Orange County Register’s real estate blog, which posts sales and price figures every week, showed that in the three-week period ended April 7, Anaheim Hills saw increase in prices year-over-year, suggesting that perhaps the market hit its trough in 2009 and will use 2010 as a recovery year. The two area saw median prices of $455,000 and $505,000, increases of 2% and 15%, respectively. Sales volume was up 18% in the first zip code at 39 sales but down 15% in the second, with just 17 sales.

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Milpitas housing market

The south edge (mostly Monument Peak) of the M...
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The Milpitas housing market, a sector of the larger Bay Area real estate market, rallied somewhat in the most recent tracking period. According to a May 21, 2010 article from the DQ News, “Bay Area home sales fell slightly below the year-ago level and remained well below average last month as increased high-end activity couldn’t offset sales declines in the lower-cost areas and in the new-home market. The continued shift toward a greater portion of sales occurring in higher-cost coastal communities helped the region’s median sale price rise nearly 22 percent from last year, but the median fell from March, a real estate information service reported.” The report, which was also published by the NuWire Investor, continued to state that “Last month a total of 7,003 homes closed escrows in the nine-county Bay Area, up 0.2 percent from 6,992 in March but down 1.9 percent from 7,139 in April 2009, according to MDA DataQuick of San Diego.”

A general sense of stasis for San Francisco and Milpitas homes for sale was reported by a May 20, 2010 blog from the Los Angeles Times. This piece noted that “The Bay Area’s housing market held steady in April, with prices rebounding from year-earlier levels but sales falling slightly, a real estate research firm reported Thursday.” The article by Alejandro Lazo went on to state that “With more sales of homes occurring in pricier coastal areas, the median price was $370,000 for all homes in April, an increase of 21.7% from the same month in 2009 but down 2.6% from $380,000 in March, according to San Diego-based MDA DataQuick. A total of 7,003 homes sold last month, down 1.9% from 7,139 in April 2009 and a 0.2% increase from 6,992 sold in March, DataQuick said.”

Relatively speaking, the sales rate for Milpitas and Bay Area real estate was one of the lowest in recent history. According to a May 20, 2010 article from the Press Democrat, “Bay Area home sales in April reached their second-lowest level in the past 15 years, according to a report released Thursday…That was down slightly from March and from April 2009, but nearly 25 percent lower than the historic average of 9,278 sales for April.”

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Los Gatos real estate market

The downtown area of the town of Los Gatos, Ca...
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The Los Gatos real estate market, a residential sector of the Bay Area housing market, showed signs of recovery in the most recent reports, although some indicators were still conflicted. According to a May 20, 2010 piece from Reuters, “Home sales in the nine-county San Francisco region continued to shift toward its more expensive markets in April, reducing overall sales and lifting the area’s median sales price from year-earlier levels, a report from MDA DataQuick said on Thursday.” The article went on to note that “The region posted 7,003 sales of houses and condominiums in April, up 0.2 percent from March and down 1.9 percent from a year earlier, while the area’s median home price last month of $370,000 marked a decline of 2.6 percent from March and an increase of 21.7 percent from a year earlier, the report by the real estate information service said.”

The average sales price of a Los Gatos home for sale or Bay Area home for sale was one of the strongest positive indicators in the market recently, according to a May 21, 2010 article from the San Francisco Chronicle. That piece found that “Median resale home prices in the Bay Area rose 30 percent in April compared with the prior year, in a market that featured fewer foreclosures and more activity in higher end neighborhoods, according to a real estate report released Thursday.” The article, written by Robert Selna, went on to state that “Meanwhile, the total number of homes resold in the Bay Area – that is, not newly constructed – fell slightly year-over-year as the higher-priced sales activity could not offset declines in the more affordable areas, according to data analyzed by MDA DataQuick…”

This shift in Los Gatos and Bay area real estate towards more expensive houses was also noted in a more negative light by a June 1, 2010 article by the San Francisco Chronicle. This piece, composed by Carolyn Said, noted that “Foreclosures are going upscale across the Bay Area. Nearly 1,000 homes valued above $730,000 were repossessed by banks in the nine-county region in each of the past two years, according to a Chronicle review of public records compiled by MDA DataQuick, a San Diego research firm.”

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Granite Bay real estate market

Downtown Fair Oaks, California.
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The Granite Bay real estate market, a small portion of the Sacramento housing market, trended upwards in the most recent tracking period available. According to a May 21, 2010 article from the Sacramento Bee, “More people bought pricier houses in April, signaling the end of Sacramento’s bargain basement-only sales scene. Buyers picked up the pace from last year in Granite Bay, El Dorado Hills and older neighborhoods near downtown Sacramento, researcher MDA DataQuick reported Thursday.” The piece by Jim Wasserman went on to note that “There are fewer available repos after a long blowout sale, market trackers say. There’s also a sense at the higher end that this market is as good as it’s going to get for a while. ‘Sellers are becoming more realistic (about) what they can get,’ said Tim Collom, a Sacramento real estate agent who specializes in east Sacramento, Land Park and Curtis Park.”

The average price of a Granite Bay home for sale rallied slightly in the month of April, according to a May 24, 2010 article from the Sacramento Business Journal. This piece noted that “Sacramento-area home prices are climbing off the mat, increasing 12.4 percent from the bottom reached in April 2009, according to a report released Monday.” The article, composed by Ron Trujillo, went on to say that “The four-county region – arguably one of the hardest hit, with an abundance of foreclosures and 35 percent-plus home price declines – had a median-home price of $188,100 in April, compared to the so-called ‘trough’ price of $167,340 a year ago, according to the California Association of Realtors…Fair Oaks, Galt, North Highlands, Orangevale and Sacramento all reported solid gains in price last month, compared to April 2009.”

The number of homes sold in the Granite Hills and Sacramento housing markets decreased slightly compared to last year, according to a May 20, 2010 article from the Sacramento Business Journal. The piece by Michael Shaw continued to say that “Home sales in the four-county Sacramento region were slightly lower in April than the same month last year, according to figures released Thursday from real estate information company MDA DataQuick.”

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Chandler real estate market

Photograph of the downtown area of Chandler, A...
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The Chandler real estate market, one of the areas included in the greater Phoenix Valley region, showed signs of recovery after a period of economic devastation. According to a May 22, 2010 article from the Arizona Republic, “April figures for existing-home sales in metro Phoenix reveal several promising shifts for those searching for signs of a housing-market recovery. The overall number of home sales in the region continued to hover near record levels last month.” The piece, written by Catherine Reagor, continued to state that “Beneath the sales figures were other encouraging numbers: Foreclosures did not dominate sales of existing homes in the Valley for the first time in more than a year. The number of investors purchasing homes from lenders dropped. More buyers purchased homes with the intent of living in them.”

The average purchase price of a Chandler home for sale also rose in the most recent tracking period, according to a May 27, 2010 report from Arizona State University. This piece found that “For the first time in three years, Phoenix-area housing prices are showing an overall year-over-year increase for the market. A new report from the W.P. Carey School of Business contains positive news for Valley homeowners, who have been waiting for relief from dropping home values.” Professor Karl Guntermann, the author of the report, stated that “This report reflects an important milestone in the recent housing cycle, with preliminary April data showing the first year-over-year increase in house prices marketwide. Also, prices for lower-end houses and the foreclosure segment of the market, which turned positive in March, continued to increase on an annual basis.”

The commercial sector of the Chandler and Phoenix real estate markets may have not yet seen the worst of the economic crisis. According to a May 30, 2010 article from the Arizona Republic, “Arizona’s housing market is deep into the process of flushing out its bad mortgage debt. But lenders and borrowers of troubled commercial real-estate loans continue to live a lie. Commercial real-estate brokers have coined a phrase, ‘extend and pretend,’ to describe lenders’ sluggish response to the billions of dollars in bad commercial mortgages on their books.”

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