1037 Koohoo Place
4 Beds / 4.5 Baths / 6,036 sqf

Lanikai Resort Style Villa. From to moment you enter the hand carved gates,...

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41-046 Ehukai Street
7 Beds / 3 Baths / 2,970 sqf

Rarely available Waimanalo Beach lots residence. Newer Construction, ideal...

Sunday Open House
1395 Aupula Place
5 Beds / 3 Baths / 2,528 sqf

Enjoy Gorgeous Mount Olomana & Koolau Views from this Custom Hilltop Home. ...

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1273 Ulupalakua Street
8 Beds / 5 Baths / 2,568 sqf

Ideal for multi-family living with a second story added in 2008. Granite co...

1231 Lola Place
4 Beds / 2 Baths / 1,722 sqf

Conveniently located near Kailua town, but "country" feeling. At the front...

983 Alahaki Street
5 Beds / 2.5 Baths / 1,720 sqf

Welcome to 983 Alahaki St, where "back in the day" still exists with longti...

1609 Mokulua Drive
4 Beds / 5 Baths / 3,217 sqf

Nestled high above the turquoise waters of Lanikai sits Wailea Lani, a Bali...

1006 Koohoo Place
6 Beds / 5.5 Baths / 4,342 sqf

Custom built hillside home situated amidst its own tropical forest boasting...

364 Kaha Street
5 Beds / 3 Baths / 2,493 sqf

NEW LISTING! Fantastic opportunity to own this charming 5/3 home! Fine feat...

1320 Kainui Drive
7 Beds / 5 Baths / 4,195 sqf

MOTIVATED SELLER. GREAT LOCATION! 2 blocks to beach & mins to MCBH, shoppin...

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See this spectacular aerial video of homes in Kailua across different neighborhoods and this video of Kailua Beach Park

Kailua News
5/18/2016 - 59 Kailuana Place in luxurious Kailua Beachside sold for $17.4M. 
5/15/2016 - Enchanted Lake Residents Association won a $2.7M settlement for a supposed polution of the lake from a construction company's dumping of dirt & more. 

About Kailua
Kailua is one of Hawaii's classic oceanside communities. Slower moving, quiet - yet lively - and defiantly low-rise in the face of the development that's overtaken so many other parts of the Island. Though there is a central part of town, with a Target, Whole Foods and some small strips of shopping, you'd never mistake this for the built up neighborhoods on the other side of the Koolaus.

Residents are a mix of longtime locals as well as some of the wealthy, and even famous, who love the singularity of this town, along with the absence of anything even resembling pretentiousness.

President Obama makes a point of vacationing here each Christmas and numerous celebrities own, or have owned, homes here. It's not unusual to see a famous face enjoying time in town, dressed in the local uniform of slippers, shorts and t-shirt. They can blend in and, even if they don't, people here give them their space. Star chasing is not pursued in Kailua.

With the perfect weather and some of the best beaches, it's no wonder you'd have more important things on your mind. That 'best beaches' claim is a serious one, considering the stiff competition Oahu has on its shores. It's a legitimate one, though. Kailua Beach famously took the #1 spot repeatedly on Dr. Beach's list of the top stretches of sand. It was finally retired from competition because of its dominance. You know you've got something good when they have to take your name out of contention.

In keeping with the locals' low-rise preference, Kailua real estate are mainly houses, with just a few condos or townhomes in the mix. The lack of upward building and the obvious attractions of the town have raised the pricing on homes for sale in Kailua. Currently, you'd probably pay $500K for a smaller, fixer-upper house on up to $20 million plus for a stunning oceanfront mansion. There's a lot of range there, but the starting point is a higher one.

Let's get to know the Kailua real estate market by taking a look at the neighborhoods that make up this community.

The number of condos and townhomes is smaller than you'd find in the urban Oahu real estate market, but that doesn't mean there aren't any. Some that are available include:
  • Bluestone: This townhome neighborhood lies right along the Mid Pacific Country Club, providing  those clear, green golf course views as well as the ocean beyond. The townhomes themselves are large, providing the kind of space you'll love to fill as you make the home truly yours.  
  • Windward Passage: At 18 floors this just might be the tallest building in Kailua. That status means your condo has nothing to stand in your way as you gaze out upon the ocean. Those views are restricted to one side of the building, but the beauty of the Windward Side is an inspiring sight, too. Either way, you win.
  • Kukilakila: Another townhome community with generous proportions to the floorplans. The setting is lakefront, making for a tranquil backdrop to your days. Needs to be seen to be believed.
  • Ka Malanai: This condo community is more horizontal, than vertical. The newest condo project in Kailua in years, it's made up of 6 buildings, all 4 stories tall. A variety of units from 1 to 3BR, they'll be for sale starting 1/25/2014. Definitely worth a look.

From here we move onto Kailua's mid to upper range neighborhoods, made up completely of homes. Though they're not the top level of Kailua's real estate market, you'll still find ocean views and some very attractive beach access:
  • Kailua Bluff: The houses here are more contemporary in style, with a more uniform look than other areas. Significantly, it has underground utilities, uncommon here, so there's a clean, uncluttered look overall. There are a few duplexes, found on the  western end of Kahako St.
  • Enchanted Lake: Well-known neighborhood encircling a fresh water lake. The lakefront houses look out on the calming waters, which, though a smaller body, can accommodate some boating  usage.
  • Kailua Estates: If you like space, this is the place. Most lots are in the 10,000 to 16,000 sq ft range. Those generous proportions extend to the wider streets as well. Kakahiaka and Awina Streets are especially notable, because of the canal that runs by  them, giving some homeowners a backyard vista of flowing waters.
  • Kawailoa Kailua: Small collection of homes whose selling points must begin with the fact that they're right next to Kailua Beach Park! Some are built against the hillside, high enough to have incredible views of the Pacific Ocean and that #1 beach. Lots generally are 4,500 to 6,000 sq ft in size. Don't confuse with North Shore area that uses the same name.
  • Hillcrest / Keolu Hills: These 2 areas are very close together, both being hillside communities found east of Keolu Dr, above Enchanted Lake. Up here the breezes are cool and plentiful. The views are good, too, looking towards the town side of Kailua as well as the ocean.
  • Kalama Tract: If you know the area, you know that Kalama Tract's location along N Kalaheo Ave puts it just one block from Kailua Beach! That makes for not only perfect access, it's also the kind of Oahu real estate that pays back its investment. As a  place to live, you'll enjoy a quiet, serene place where you'll brake often for ducks crossing the road. Everybody goes to the beach here.   
  • Kaimalino: We travel to the north side of Kailua Bay, near Kaneohe MCBH, to find these large lots starting at 10,000 sq ft. The beaches are a little rockier, but that makes for a quieter ambience, and more privacy, with less outsiders coming to use the sands here. Some houses lie along the canal, while others sit directly on the oceanfront itself.
  • Maunawili: The dominant hue in Maunawili, unmistakably, is Green. You live in the lushness of the mountains where life grows freely all around you. The cooler climes also bring more precipitation, which falls regularly, something locals love because  it makes for crisp, fresh air and the rich, emerald green flora. Come here to live on your own large country estate, which range from 10,000 sq ft on up to 2 acres.

Now we step up to Kailua houses at the top end of the market. These are the upscale properties, the ocean & beachfront Kailua homes that occasionally are even occupied by a President:

Beachside: The name alone tells you what you've got here – beach estates. Even better, they line some of the most magnetic sands in Hawaii - Kailua Beach. These are some of the most expensive beachfront properties on Oahu and they justify every penny.

Lanikai: Exclusive beach side community just south of Kailua Beach, its homes made even more valuable because there are so few of them. As you can imagine, both the sands and the ocean views are unforgettable. In keeping with its exclusivity, the  streets are narrow, with just one that gets you in and out of the neighborhood.

Kailua has successfully maintained its genteel, small town feel despite the overwhelming growth in development almost everywhere else on Oahu. While this has raised home prices, it has preserved a special character that evokes the Old Hawaii where life was taken in stride. There's an understanding that a faster pace doesn't necessarily improve the quality of the day.

Although Kailua faces continued challenges ahead about its future, with so many developers eager to enter the city limits, if one had to place a bet, it would be that this town would be the one to stand firm. From a real estate perspective that will raise the home values, but, more importantly, it would prove that a special neighborhood like this one can be protected and preserved. Sounds like a great place to buy a house.
  • Kailua Houses - Trends & Statistics

  • The price range of houses for sale in Kailua is $239K to $24.98M with a median price of $1.54M, median interior of 2,368sqf and median land size of 9,839sqf.
  • The median price of houses sold in Kailua year-to-date (Jan - Oct 21, 2016) is $1.07M. In previous years it was $1M (2015), $940K (2014), $890K (2013), $794K (2012), $785K (2011), $775K (2010), $760K (2009), $774K (2008), $805K (2007), $800K (2006), $815K (2005), $690K (2004), $530K (2003).
  • 245 houses have sold in Kailua year-to-date (Jan - Oct 21, 2016). In previous years, the total number of houses sold were 280 (2015), 273 (2014), 314 (2013), 291 (2012), 269 (2011), 292 (2010), 239 (2009), 248 (2008), 307 (2007), 312 (2006), 329 (2005), 402 (2004), 447 (2003).
  • On average Kailua houses were on the market for 92 days before they were sold (Jan - Oct 21, 2016). In previous years it was 85 days (2015), 89 days (2014), 67 days (2013), 64 days (2012), 57 days (2011), 59 days (2010), 78 days (2009), 76 days (2008), 70 days (2007), 63 days (2006), 36 days (2005), 39 days (2004), 53 days (2003).
  • The average days on market for Kailua houses before sold were 94 days September 2016 compared to 54 days September 2015.
  • The ratio of Kailua houses sales price vs list price were 97.7% September 2016 compared to 100.3% September 2015.
  • 26 Kailua houses were sold September 2016 compared to 16 houses sold September 2015.
  • The total dollar volume of houses currently for sale in Kailua is $328.14M and the sold dollar volume year-to-date (Jan - Oct 21, 2016) is $336.02M. In previous years sold dollar volume was $351.16M (2015), $357.99M (2014), $362.17M (2013), $293.65M (2012), $255.26M (2011), $279.2M (2010), $226.27M (2009), $275.64M (2008), $322.21M (2007), $320.3M (2006), $356.65M (2005), $328.83M (2004), $277.6M (2003).
  • The most recent sale in Kailua was a house located at 1441 Akamai Place, sold for $990K on Oct 17, 2016. It had 1841sqf of interior. 9 other recent sales include: 605 Kaimalino Place (2,540sqf) sold for $1.5M on 10/17/2016. 558 Ulumu Street (1,430sqf) sold for $1M on 10/14/2016. 665 Akoakoa Street (1,408sqf) sold for $1.21M on 10/14/2016. 711 Kalolina Place (900sqf) sold for $775K on 10/13/2016. 1283 Hele Street (1,644sqf) sold for $779K on 10/7/2016. 889 Akalei Place (1,774sqf) sold for $810K on 10/7/2016. 325 Lala Place (3,540sqf) sold for $1.56M on 10/4/2016. 622 Ululani Street (1,898sqf) sold for $925K on 10/4/2016. (1,272sqf) sold for $818K on 9/30/2016.
  • 43 of the houses have ocean views and 83 have mountain views.
Kailua History
Kailua has been occupied almost from the first arrival of the Polynesian settlers, archeologists believing that this was home to early Hawaiians at least 1,500 years ago. They lived primarily around Kawanui Marsh, subsisting mainly on fish & seafood as the land couldn't be cultivated at the time. The community would remain small until the Ali'i moved their Oahu center here from Waikiki in the 16th Century. The numerous heiau sites that survived are a testament to the importance of the area.

Over the centuries developments in land use and farming techniques occurred, fufilling the area's agricultural potential. Sugar, taro and rice were staple crops, feeding an also growing population. Starting in the 1800's, the focus would turn to cattle raising, which peaked under the ownership of businessman James Castle. His Kaneohe Ranch dominated the Windward Side of Oahu, covering a vast territory that was all pasturelands. In the 1940's, though, his son Harold would make a move that would change Kailua real estate forever.

In 1942, Harold Castle closed down Kaneohe Ranch, recognizing the change coming to the modernizing and emerging Hawaii. This freed up thousands of acres of land that developers would build today's town upon. The Castles also donated large tracts of their land to schools, hospitals and churches to serve this side of Oahu, many of which still bear their name today.

Kailua homes, especially in the post-war years, sprung up quickly, which created a large community around the existing small town. This only accelerated once the Pali Highway and Tunnels were finished in the 1950's, linking Metro Honolulu to the Windward Side like never before. Previously motorists had to take a slow, winding road over the Koolaus to reach the other side. Now, commuting was possible on a large scale so houses in Kailua were newly available to those working in the city and they took advantage.

Kailua is still going through growing pains today as they try to preserve that small town feeling in the face of development and tourism. Having the 'Best Beach in America' doesn't help, either. Changes may come, but there will always be something uniquely its own present. That is the fact that life is just taken a little differently here than it is on the other side of the Koolaus; and that makes all the difference.
The MLS properties are based on information from the Multiple Listing Service of Hicentral MLS, Ltd. Listings last updated on October 21, 2016. Information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed.