How to Sell Your Home Faster in Hawaii

How to Sell Your Home Faster in Hawaii

Hawaii is among the top destinations globally, with many people opting to spend their holidays in this tropical utopia. The high demand for vacation and residential homes in Hawaii might be good news for property sellers. However, amid the highly-sought-out real estate market, you should understand several expert tips that put your property above other competing houses on the market.

In Hawaii, proper timing is a crucial determinant of the time it takes to sell and the ultimate price of your property. Below are other tips for selling your home faster in Hawaii.

1. Carefully price your house.

Carefully price your house.

The first tip to shorten your listing period is to price your house appropriately. The real estate market is dynamic, and different factors can move home values up and down. Start by carefully selecting comparable homes (comps), which are similar homes that have recently sold or are under contract within your area.

The more homes that have sold in your area, the easier it will be to find comps. When sales are sparse, you will have to consider carefully that neighborhoods have different amenities and land values.

Your best bet is to hire a local real estate agent who understands the area well. You should engage a real estate agent who combines intuition gained from years of experience in the sector with real-time data from Hawaii’s Multiple Listing Service to provide accurate estimates.

You should also consider beach access and ocean views when pricing your property. The value of your house can increase substantially if you have beach access or an ocean view.

Lastly, you should check whether the property is under a leasehold — a situation that is rare on the mainland but is relatively common in Hawaii. With a leasehold property, you are essentially buying a long-term lease (say, 30 to 50 years); you make a down payment and then pay monthly rent.

Generally, properties under leaseholds are priced much lower, since you don’t get ownership of the land or, in the case of a condo development, the shared portions of the property. Approximately 12% of condos in Hawaii are under leaseholds.

The alternative to a leasehold is a “fee simple” listing — what most think of as a normal listing. It allows you to buy the property (including the land) and own it indefinitely.

How to Sell Your Home Faster in Hawaii

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2. Take high-quality photos

Take high-quality photos

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), more than 97% of home buyers searched for their properties through the internet in 2020. Professional photography was the number one desirable feature of website listings. Professionals have the proper lenses and lighting techniques and know how to make a space look its best.

Great property pictures will capture the attention of potential buyers. The goal of these pictures is to draw buyers in for open houses and private viewings, and ultimately to generate offers. Properties listed with poor photos — or without pictures at all — rarely generate interest.

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3. Get a pre-listing inspection.

Get a pre-listing inspection.

Unexpected issues — especially during the last due-diligence stage, when potential buyers conduct a home inspection — are common reasons for delayed transactions. The NAR estimates that inspection issues contributed to 11% of delayed home sale contracts in 2021. Apart from putting the contract on hold, unexpected problems can be emotionally challenging for the buyers, putting the entire sale at risk.

In Hawaii, foundation corrosion — often caused by faulty drainage systems and excessive moisture — is the main problem affecting homes. You should consider conducting a pre-listing inspection to prevent a drawn-out sale process or canceled contract. Investing a few hundred dollars for inspection and the necessary repairs can eliminate these surprises.

4. Optimize your outdoor space.

Optimize your outdoor space.

While many experts suggest that homeowners should invest in remodeling their bathrooms and kitchens before listing their properties to increase their value, real estate experts in Hawaii suggest otherwise. Even though bathroom and kitchen remodeling are important, prioritize your outdoor living space if you want to sell your house faster.

Hawaii is a tropical region with a warm climate all year round. Therefore, buyers like homes that allow them to leverage this amazing weather. Fortunately, a few basic features can make a significant difference and take your home from good to outstanding. For instance, sliding windows that open completely, a cozy outdoor gathering area, and a creative landscape can make your property more attractive.

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5.  Use a virtual tour to show off your home.

Use a virtual tour to show off your home.

While taking professional pictures can entice potential buyers to take a close look at your listing, a virtual tour can make them feel even more invested. Be sure to stage your home properly before the images are taken.

Virtual tours allow potential buyers, especially those outside the state, to have the experience of moving through the home.

6. Decide when to sell.

Decide when to sell.

The demand for and pricing of homes shift according to the job market, the season and the economic forecast. For instance, high unemployment rates turn the real estate market into a major buyer’s market — when fewer people are unemployed, there is less demand for homes, so buyers can negotiate lower prices.

The Hawaii real estate market slightly varies from that of the mainland. Unlike on the mainland, you can get the best offers and sell faster in Hawaii if you list during winter. Listing from December to February is usually effective, as January is the peak month for home sales in the state.

Generally, it is best to sell your home when the real estate market inclines towards a seller’s market, meaning the demand for homes is increasing.


Selling your house in Hawaii doesn’t have to be a challenge. The best place to begin is by identifying the best time of the year to list your house for sale. You should then stage your property for sale and get ready to work with an agent and a professional photographer. Making your home available for prospective buyers and agents to view and setting an offer deadline for your listing can also help you close the sale faster.

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Neil was born and raised in Arlington, TX and graduated from Texas Tech University with a bachelor’s in Finance. He has a background in construction and insurance adjusting and began investing in real estate in 2007. He has since purchased hundreds of homes throughout DFW and brings years of real estate industry experience to the table. He loves real estate because it allows him to spend more time with his wife and their two young boys.