Oahu's Real Estate Market

Buying real estate on Oahu is the one sure way to remain in paradise forever. Imagine owning property overlooking the sparkling Pacific, surrounded by the spirit of Aloha and being the envy of so many of your friends. You have to be prepared to pay the big bucks for your slice of paradise. But if you can afford it, buying a house on Oahu will guarantee you a permanent holiday!

Oahu is about 600 square miles in size - much smaller then the Big Island and Maui, and yet has three quarters of the state's population. This of course means that Oahu is the most popular place to live in Hawaii. With this type of competition and demand there is little wander why the price of real estate is so high.

The Federal Government owns vast expanses of land on Oahu. Most of this area is used for Military bases and other military activities, for example the area around and including Pearl Harbor. The State of Hawaii also owns many acres, particularly the mountain sections of the Koolau and Waianae ranges. There are two Hawaiian Home Land sections on Oahu which are home to many Native Hawaiians. One is situated in Waimanalo and the other on the Waianae Coast in Nanakuli.

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The vast majority of the land on Oahu is controlled by the large 'land-owners'. These owners include Bishop Estate, Castle and Cooke and the James Campbell Estate. However, a large portion of land is owned by smaller landowners.

More then any other state in the United States of America, Hawaiian land owners tend to lease land rather then sell it, which makes it increasingly difficult to possess land. You will find many privately owned homes on rented land. As land prices continue to rise, only rich land developers are able to buy long-term leases, resulting in the people of Hawaii becoming land poorer.

However, if you are lucky enough to afford a land lease or to find a piece of land for sale consider where on Oahu you would like to live. The Honolulu / Waikiki area is by far the most expensive, but closer to all conveniences.

If suburban living appeals to you, consider moving to one of the following districts: Hawaii Kai in southeast Honolulu ; Kailua or Kaneohe on the cooler, windward side of the island; Kapolei or Waikele on the leeward coast; or Mililani in central Oahu. These areas offer good parks, schools and nearby shopping and hospitals.

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