Vulture Buyers on the Way!

I have been expecting it and now it’s happening. THE VULTURES ARE ARRIVING! These are the buyers who’ve been on the sidelines waiting for the pricing to come down to their acceptable level and when they preceive that to have happened they sweep down out of the sky and pluck up those bargains before anyone else has a chance.

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Now don’t get me wrong, this is not meant to be derogatory at all. In fact, I see it as a good sign because it marks a turning point in the real estate market, a very critical paradigm shift. Meaning?? Well most of us agree we’ve been in a buyer’s market for quite some time, several months at least, but until the Sellers are on board as far as pricing goes, there really isn’t much market activity, and we have seen that. (“Ho-hum, I think I’ll go to Italy for a year or so” as a fellow Realtor expressed to me recently).

It is happening now -just starting, so you could be on the leading edge if you wanted, either as a buyer or a seller -although it’s going to be much more fun for buyers. Anyway, I believe we’ve reached that tipping point. One seller in a particular market decides it’s over, no more fooling around, it’s time to cut losses and move on. They demonstate this new attitude with a drastic price reduction. Most likely preceeded by smaller, incremental price drops, but this is the BIGGIE, they are through messing around.

The example I witnessed in our market this week was a NEW house- new construction, never lived in, that plummeted $145,000 from it’s previous price, and $185,000 from it’s original price. Now at $380,000 it’s a new low in the Waikoloa market.

Doing what any self-respecting Realtor would do, I made a few calls to see if I could drum up any interest.

This house is going to sell this week and don’t even think about less than FULL PRICE because very likely there will be multiple offers.

Well, one party was game but before I could get a return call from the listing agent to even show the house, they had 4 offers on it! Two she said, were cash offers, and at least one was over asking price!

So how do sellers take part in this paradigm shift? Well if they can see the writing on the wall, they will quickly follow suit, but ahead of the pack and do the BIG price adjustment, gulp down their lofty expectations (yes, even losses), and get it sold. Once our example house sells it becomes the newest, most recent comp for appraisers and buyers, and then guess what? Prices will have to fall to sellable levels.

Before things stablize, Buyers can jump in for the really good deals, but don’t expect to be successful if you are not prepared. Prepared with cash (or at least an impressive down payment) or darn good supporting documents to demonstrate that you can pull it off. As for sellers, who knows, maybe if you are one of those akamai sellers willing to jump in (or I should say jump “out”) ahead of the pack, and you have other assets you may even be able to turn around and scoop up a bargain yourself! It could ease the pain, you know, sort of like going out to buy a new puppy after losing your favorite pet. It could be therapeutic.

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But like it or not, play or not as you choose, it is happening. The Vulture Buyers are here, ready willing and able to turn this market around! I am more than ready to see it happen.

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
On Hawaii: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com
http://www.WestHawaiiBlog.com

New Statewide Building Code

Well as in all things Hawaii (read: on Hawaiian time) and especially when it involves the government, passing a law and implementing it are two very different animals, but the state legislature this last session passed a law requiring the Dept. of Accounting and General Services to establish a Statewide Building Code Council and implement a uniform statewide building code.

I guess the theory is that architects, builders, contractors, designers, etc., doing business on more than one island would find this an improvement over the current practice of the individual counties establishing their own building codes. Additionally, building inspectors and other enforcers would be required to apply consistent standards. I guess so, but I’m sorry, it still sounds like another committee set up to study something to death and it may be a long time before it comes to fruition, if ever. And we all know government involvement doesn’t necessarily make things better. Witness the $1.1 Billion (with a capital B) in farm payments sent to more than 170,000 dead people over a seven-year period, according to congressional investigators!

In any case, stand by to stand by!

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Aloha, Mike

On Island: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com
http://www.WestHawaiiBlog.com

Roasted Brown Rice

How many ways can you cook rice? One or two I figured, but that was before I saw a cookbook devoted entirely to rice recipes! A whole book, I couldn’t believe it. And there were some good recipes and ideas -ways to make ho-hum rice more exciting. I thought this is a good thing with everyone trying to eat more healthy and all. Okay, maybe not everyone, but a lot of people.

Anyway, this is one of the recipes I just tried for roasted brown rice.
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I hope you like it!

Directions:

You’re going to cook the rice the same way you do any rice with a couple variations:

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Place rice on a flat pan or in glass cooking dishes -something you can spread the rice out one-layer deep
  • Set timer for 3 minutes, 3 different times, turning rice each time so you get all sides of the kernels to a light roasted brown
  • Remove from oven and cook in a rice cooker or the pot you normally use by the same method you use, except half way through the cooking process you are going to add 1/2 cup chopped onion and 1/4 cup minsed parsley to the rice (or any other tasty ingredients, like red peppers, raisens, corn, etc.) and allow rice to finish cooking as usual

The main thing I noticed when I tried this recipe is that it comes out with a slightly toasted flavor and it’s more fluffy that brown rice usually is. But we liked it and, I always make more rice than I need for a particular meal, then use the left-overs for another meal since rice reheats so easily in the microwave with a dampened napkin over it to re-moisturize it after being in the frig. So it made a great, healthy side dish for dinner Thursday night and it was a good start to fried rice for Sunday morning breakfast! (I know, only in Hawaii would you eat fried rice for breakfast!)

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
On Island: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com
http://www.WestHawaiiBlog.com

Hawaiians Live Longer & Love Better

Okay, now that I have your attention! I don’t know about being better lovers, but the first part is true, Hawaii has the nation’s highest life expectancy! How good is that? Well, it’s wonderful if you live in Hawaii but if not, that’s where we come in! Go to: www.MikeSells.com . . . ; >)

But kidding aside it’s true, life expectancy in Hawaii is 81.3 years whereas the national average was 77.5 as of 2003. For more current longevity information go to: http://www.fox50.com/news/trends/7649502.html

One possible bump in the road for this very good news according to Sylvia Yuen, director of the University of Hawaii Center on the Family, http://uhfamily.hawaii.edu/ “is that Hawaii may not remain among the leaders in life expectancy in coming years because of the growing number of obese residents who don’t take care of their health”. Me, I’m thinking maybe too many plate lunches; loco mocos, 2 scoop rice and macaroni salad?

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In any case, there’s no doubt about it, there are a ton of food choices in Hawaii -not all of them healthy, but with our excellent weather, so many outdoor activities available year round and an abundance of fresh fruit and vegetables, there’s no reason not to be healthy and live a long, long life. I sure intend to!

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
On Island: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com
http://www.WestHawaiiBlog.com

Yin & Yang of Prices – Monthly Update

Here we go again with this month’s Yin & Yang comparison of property prices. To see the changes or to note the trend check previous monthly posts in “The Least & Most Expensive” category and in the Archives.

TODAY IN WAIMEA:

  • 82 homes on the market
  • 26 are less than or equal to $500,000
  • The least expensive = $370,000
  • The most expensive = $35,000,000

IN WAIKOLOA:

  • 86 homes on the market
  • 24 are less than or equal to $500,000
  • The least expensive = $419,000
  • The most expensive = $895,000

IN KOHALA:

  • 55 homes on the market
  • 7 are less than or equal to $500,000
  • The least expensive = $334,000
  • The most expensive = $25,000,000

This is what $334,000 buys you today in Kohala (Kapaau)
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And for just a little more ‘do-ray-me’ (like $24.7M more) you can have this at Puakea Bay Ranch just outside Hawi!
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For more information on any of these areas or to fill in the blanks between the least expensive and the most expensive, just call or email me!

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
On Hawaii: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com
http://www.WestHawaiiBlog.com

Small Town ~ Great Shopping

Will Travel to Shop! Believe it or not some of my favorite places to shop are located about 20 miles north of my home in a sweet little town called Hawi. It’s a quiet & pleasant drive through Kawaihae along highway 250 which runs alongside the ocean. If you’re lucky you may even see a whale or two or witness an incredible sunset which will leave you wanting more.

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Once you get into town make sure to abide by the speed limit as you may miss the whole darn thing! Just kidding….but it’s small and quaint and you’ll have to park the car & walk in order to get the full effect of your travels.

Need a little pick me up? Head straight for the KOHALA COFFEE MILL and sample some of the greatest coffee ever. Don’t be shy to order some of their wonderful & affordable “eats” or the best locally made ice cream ever Tropical Dreams Ice Cream, www.TropicalDreamsIceCream.com.

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Next, head down to my favorite shop, which is also locally owned and operated, The Persimmon Boutique (www.PersimmonBoutique.com). They carry a great selection of trendy women’s clothing for almost every style. Selections include everything from everyday wear such as blue jeans and t-shirts to even more sophisticated styles and nighttime wear. Don’t overlook their accessories and assortment of cool greeting cards and stationary.

Right next door you’ll find Kiah Surf/808 Printing. Opening just a little over 3 months ago this shop has come out of the shoot running! They house famous surf & island brands such as; “Hinano”, “BillaBong” and “HeeNalu”. They even carry an assortment of island fusion clothing and the always famous “Bob Marley” attire. In speaking with the owners mother I learned that they select small quantities of each item stocked in their shop to make it less likely for you to spot “your twin” walking down the road beside you.

If you’re looking for something even more original make sure you inquire about making and creating your own t-shirts. For one low cost you’re able to put something together just for you! Oh, and don’t forget they can also print larger quantities for family, friends or employees.

Finally, end your shopping extravaganza with an early dinner & cocktail at the famous and well known Bamboo Restaurant (www.BambooRestuarant.com.) Locally owned & operated since 1993 they’ve become famous for their fine island cuisine featuring a fresh catch of the day and specialty drinks as the Passion Fruit Margarita (which they swear they invented) and Mai Tai’s. Plan accordingly though as they are closed on Mondays.

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Well next time you’re in town or looking for something to do, I invite you to explore Kohala…you won’t be disappointed!

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Until next time dream BIG and set goals.

Aloha,
Heidi K. Perreira
RE/MAX Pacific

In Hawaii: 808-885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” phone: 808-987-8299

www.MikeSells.com
www.WaimeaPropertyBlog.com

Hawaii Cat Survives 19 Days in a Matson Shipping Container!

We’ve all heard stories about cats and dogs, but especially cats, finding their way home even from very far away, but how about 3,000 miles?? Yep, that’s right, this cat named “Spice” acidentally got shut up in a Matson container (www.matson.com) when her human family members (the Escamillas from Waikoloa) were loading up the container in preparation for their move back to California.

They were heart-broken to have to finally leave Waikoloa without her, but when she didn’t turn up they had no choice.
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But low and behold and dreading the worst, when they opened the container 3 weeks later and saw bits of cat hair among their packed furnishing they were all shocked to see Spice still alive! It was actually 19 days, shut up in a dark, stuffy moving container. NO FOOD, NO WATER, NO LIGHT and no fresh air, but somehow she made it.

The Escamilla Family were clients of mine who’s spec we sold a few months before they departed for the mainland. Pam said “This cat used up 2 or 3 of its supposed nine lives“, although she said “the cat never was the fu-fu type of cat, she was a mouser”. The family tried to baby her after she regained her strenght, but she wasn’t happy, she wanted back outside running around again. So all’s well that ends well and Spice is glad to be reunited with her family!

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
In Hawaii: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com
http://www.WaimeaPropertyBlog.com

If it’s INCOME You’re After – Look No Further!

This property came to the top for me in last Friday’s Broker’s Caravan without a doubt (for photos + info go to MLS #195155. And I’ll tell you right here and now –it is my listing, but clients and colleagues alike, know that I’ll peddle anyone’s listing and sell any property that fits the goals and criteria of my customers and clients whether it’s my listing or my competitor’s. Based on the “50% of something is better than 100% of nothing” theory, it’s a no-brainer for me!

So with that out of the way, IF IT’S INCOME YOU’RE AFTER, THIS IS IT! This 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo priced at $489,000 and located at THE SHORES at the Waikoloa Beach Resort, is spacious and well laid out with the bedrooms well separated and perfect for extended family or guests. The covered lanai of over 600 sf adds to your living area, and maybe best of all, you can walk to the golf course! There is also a $4,000 buyer credit to be used toward Buyer’s closing costs or for maintenance fees-your choice.

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The spactacular Beach Course at the Waikoloa Resort

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Living room opens onto the lanai as do both bedrooms

People buy property for all sorts of reasons, especially in Hawaii, but if you want a really comfortable, relaxing condo you can use personally for family and friends AND rent it when you’re not using it, this is a great opportunity.
This condo has had over $161,000 in income (NET to the owners) since 2002! Now that’s impressive and goes a long way to off-setting your costs wouldn’t you say? Throw in that you also get to use it whenever you want just by blocking out the days, weeks or months you want it for yourself or your family and friends. And the Shores at Waikoloa has been voted by Hawaii’s travel Agents as “Rendezvou’s Best Condominium on the Island of Hawaii” for the past 5 years in a row (2002-2006).

Aloha, Mike
RE/MAX Pacific

On Island: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
MikeSells.com
WestHawaiiBlog.com
Mike@MikeSells.com

Rotary is a Big Player in North Hawaii

If you’ve been on the Big Island long and especially in North Hawaii (comprising the communities of Waimea, Hamakua, Waikoloa and Kohala) you may have noticed over the years many activities the Rotary Club of North Hawaii www.north-hawaii-rotary.org/ of Rotary International) has been involved in.

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More likely however, is that you are unaware of more projects and activities than you are aware of. I have been a member of the local club for at least ten years, so I’d like to highlight some of what our club accomplished locally just this past year.

  1. Raised funds and organized permitting and construction of a $60,000 open-air, covered pavallion which we then donated to the local YMCA as a gift to the community

  2. Donated tools, materials and funds ($1,500) to erect a greenhouse and permanent irrigation system for Mala’ai, the culinary gardens of Waimea Middle School

  3. Helped ($1,000) replace worn out camping gear for the Boy Scouts of America, Troop #27 for a program supporting boys from 11-18 years old, emphasizing basic values of trust, respect, duty to family, God and country

  4. Donated funds ($600) to North Hawaii Hospice to redesign office space to comply with HIPPA privacy laws

  5. Donated $1,000 to Brantley Center, Inc., to establish a native Hawaiian plant nursery as part of a vocational training program to the disabled in Hamakua, North and South Kohala

  6. Donated $1,000 to North Kohala Community Resource Center to provide support to its earthquake related projects

  7. Donated $1,000 to VASH (Visitor Aloha Society of West Hawaii) supporting its volunteer response program to visitors victimized by crime, medical emergencies, death or other problems during their stay on the island

  8. Donated $300 to West Hawaii Dance Theater for dance scholarships in programs for children in the programs at Hualalai Academy and Waikoloa Elementary School

  9. Donated $1,000 to the Carlton Cherrigan Youth in Sports Memorial Fund for youth sports equipment and higher education scholarships in Hamakua and Kamuela

  10. Donated $1,900 to Good Beginnings Alliance program for abuse recovery women

  11. Donated $1,000 for Earl’s Garage, a Friends of the Futurewww.tutushouse.org/linkshawaii.html educational program where studens learn to stategize, design and build robots, gaining a better understanding of science, math and problem solving

  12. Donated $1,000 to The Pacific War Memorial Association to help develop a portable, interactive photo display for schools and libraries statewide telling the story of Hawaii’s role in World War II

  13. Donated $1,000 to the Hawaii Wildlife Center (to be located in North Kohala) toward the design and construction of a facility to care for sick, injured and orphaned endemic and indigenous wildlife

  14. Sponsored five 10th & 11th grade students to Rotary Youth Leadership Camp

  15. Donated materials, labor and $1,900 for Waimea’s West Hawaii Mediation Center for its peer mediation program for grades 3 and up

  16. Donated $700 to Ka Hale O Na Keiki Preschool in Honoka’a for materials and for its playground renovation project

  17. Provided $700 to the YWCA Hamakua Youth Center to help with operating costs for its after school programs and activities for the Drop-in Center

  18. Provided Honoka’a High School with a Basics of Financial Management curriculum

  19. Coached Family Support Services Waimea’s after school youth programs on voacation selection, hiring tips and the hotel business

  20. Distributed more than 300 dictionaries to 3rd graders in most of the areas public and private schools as well as to home schoolers in North Hawaii

There were many more accomplishments through Rotary International’s matching grants program, but too many to inumerate here. I’ll cover those in an update to this blog at a later date.

If you are a Rotary member planning to move to Waimea, Waikoloa, Kohala or Hamakua please contact me about membership in our club! If you’re not a member but would like to consider joining, likewise let me know.

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
In Hawaii: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com

Only 5 Percent Zoned for Urban Use

There is a common misconception I encounter frequently as I squire clients around my area of the Big Island looking for property – either homes or vacant land. It is that since there is so much wide open space on the Big Island (especially compared to Oahu, Kauai or Maui), people just naturally think there must be lots of land available and it must be cheap.

Wrong on both fronts!

The fact of the matter is only about 2.5% of the total landmass of Hawaii is zoned for urban use.

For more information on the State Land Use Commission and land classifications in Hawaii, go to: luc.state.hi.us/about.htm.

That’s today’s real estate factoid!
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Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
In Hawaii: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com
http://www.WaimeaPropertyBlog.com

Good & Good For You!

This is one of my favorite recipes and my husband even eats it! (Mickey likes it!).

I’m a busy person, so this is a perfect repeat offender – one that shows up regularly on my menus. It’s so easy, good for you and versatile that I may serve it once a week. It’s baked tofu. I know you’re going to say “tofu –ick”. But it really is good.

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Tofu is one of those things that take on the flavor of whatever you cook it with which is what makes it so versatile. Sometimes I do it with a tomato based sauce, other times I just use olive oil, garlic and shoyu (known as soy sauce on the mainland), or Bragg’s if you’re a health food aficionado. www.Braggs.com.

Baked Tofu

Preparation – drain water from 1 pound of FIRM tofu, then either press gently between 2 plates or place in colander for a couple of hours to get as much water out as possible. Next slice width-wise in about ½” slices and blot on paper towels for about 20 minutes.

Marinade – the blotted tofu slices in a mixture of fresh diced garlic (1 clove, or more if you like it), 2 slices of onion minced, olive oil and soy sauce. This is best done in a closed plastic container you can turn occasionally. Use enough olive oil and soy sauce (more oil than shoyu or it can get too salty) to generously coat both sides of the tofu slices. You can marinade over night or only a few hours. If you want to try the tomato sauce version, mix in a 15 oz can of tomato sauce with the marinade.

Bake – in oven for 15-20 minutes per side at 375 degrees. Use olive oil on a flat pan and leave enough room between to turn the slices. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and don’t over cook as it gets pretty chewy if you do. I actually prefer to cook it in my toaster oven, but it depends on how many servings you need. Each 1-pound block of tofu will feed 2 people and fit into most toaster ovens.

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I serve it with brown rice, salad and whatever other veggies you may like. It presents well with almost anything colorful. The leftovers are great cold in sandwiches too! (a little mayo on bread with tomato, lettuce and pickle -yummy!) Enjoy!

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
In Hawaii: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com

Small Town Blues on the Big Island?

I’ve recounted this several times over the years, but hearing a rumor that Walgreens www.Walgreens.com is moving into the islands and knowing some folk’s resistance to the “Americanization of Hawaii”, I am reminded of it again. (Yeah, it’s funny we laugh when we hear “back in the States” from tourists, but a lot of us refer to the mainland as “America” because we know even though Hawaii is a state, (since 1959 in case you’re not smarter than a 5th grader!) we are unique in so many ways.

Anyway, I digress. When I first moved to the Big Island from Oahu 24 years ago there was only 1 grocery store in Waimea and it closed every day at 5 o’clock! It was called Sure Save, but being the only game in town, you can imagine it was anything but. My husband and I nicknamed it “Sure Spend”. But really, we were glad to have a grocery store period. Otherwise we’d have to drive to Honokaa twenty minutes away to T. Kaneshiro Store or all the way to Kona or Hilo for some real shopping.

That’s another thing. When we left home to come into town from our small rental up on Nob Hill (the familiar backdrop to town also known as Buster Brown), if we turned right we could drive about 45 miles before we hit the first traffic light in Kona. Turning left, it was 65 miles to the first light in Hilo. Having so few shopping choices in town we’d make a list and stick it on the refrigerator for the next time we ventured back to Oahu. Soon, no longer wanting to go back to Oahu, we found ourselves inviting friends and family over here. So the list on the frig became things we would pick up in Hilo or Kona next time we went. Well that got old too, and we finally figured if we couldn’t find it in Waimea –we probably didn’t need it!

We shed a little tear too when we got our first traffic light. We were traveling in Europe when we heard about it on the coconut wireless! Mickey taught at HPA, www.hpa.edu so we often traveled in the summers and we actually spotted it in the USA TODAY section which gives a little blurb about each state. It was right there before our very eyes: Hawaii, Kamuela –“Tiny Big Island town to get its first traffic light”. I was so bummed! I told my husband, “How you like that? We leave town and the whole place falls apart!”

So how does it sit to hear Walgreens may be on the way? Well I admit I don’t want my Hawaii to look like any other place in “America”. And if they make it all just a big parking lot it will lose its allure for you too!

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
In Hawaii: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com

Big Island Fire Update

The morning headline reads:
9,100 ACRES AND STILL BURNING” but at least the main threat has been handled. They classify it as a runaway fire, but because it is burning only grassland and brush it poses no threat at this time to homes or structures. But when the winds shifted Sunday and pushed it suddenly out of control it sure was scary. (see “FIRE, FIRE, FIRE” 7/1/07 for more). For the Civil Defense update go to: http://www.hawaii-county.com/cd/message.htm

Now though taxing everyone, the Hawaii County Fire and Police Depts., DLNR (Dept. of Land & Natural Resources) and the US Army fire-fighting crew from Pohakuloa Training area as well as a fire gang from Whiskeytown National Recreation Area in Northern California, it is more a nuisance than a threat to lives and property.

Bottom line though, WE NEED RAIN!

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
In Hawaii: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com

FIRE! FIRE! FIRE!

8:12 PM. Sunday evening, July 1st.
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My friend Cindy who lives at Mauna Lani just called to say we could come stay with them if they EVACUATE WAIKOLOA VILLAGE! They are sitting on their lanai at the Golf Villas watching the fire which she said she called in to 911 at eight this morning. “Now it’s huge, if you need to come down here don’t hesitate!”

I went out to look, but my husband didn’t want to go, saying he’d seen it earlier from the golf course and he is sure it’s quite far away, “It’s just that you can see it now because it’s dark out.”

“Okay, I’ll go by myself, I’ll be right back”. Well Sh_ _! I walk out my door and I can see a big, bright plume of smoke. I drive to the corner and I can see a monstrous red glow stretching for a long, long way, so I go back to the house to get Mickey, “Hey, Mick you may want to come, I went to the corner and this fire is closer than you think!”
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We went to the main intersection just past the Chevron station and turned right going uphill on Waikoloa Road. I was only able to get one picture before my battery died, so we turned back to the house to get another camera. By the time we got back to the intersection, they had closed it off. Okay, so we headed down Waikoloa Road going makai and you can see a wall of flames stretching all the way down the hill. Fire trucks and ambulances are going past us like crazy. I am sure they’re going to close the road this direction too, so I say,

“We’d better turn back because I don’t want to get stuck and not be able to get home all night when they close this road.”

We’re home now, and another friend just called frantic. “I know you guys go to all these meetings. Who has the key to the gate at the emergency road that they only plan to unlock in case of emergency?”

“Gosh Sue, I don’t know. You could call Pete Hoffman” (our County Councilman and a fellow resident of Waikoloa), but I don’t know if she ever did or not and I think I better shut down my computer, turn on the radio and get ready to split if they tell us to evacuate! I’ll update you later, I promise!

Aloha, Mike

RE/MAX Pacific
In Hawaii: 885-5557
Toll Free: 800-500-4895
My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
http://www.MikeSells.com
http://www.WaimeaPropertyBlog.com

Big Island Drought – We Are Thirsty!

Well, it’s great golfing weather. When you can play Waimea Country Club http://www.waimeagolf.com/ (located on the green side of Waimea) almost every day without fear of getting wet you know something’s up. But our annual rainfall is down severely and those areas on catchment water (rainfall gathered in tanks from roof run-off) mostly in East Hawaii, are in a world of hurt right now. Tanks are critically low or completely dry and according to the Coconut Wireless, water haulers are saying plan ahead because orders are taking up to 10 days to deliver.

Residents of North and South Kohala, Hamakua and Ka’u are under conservation notices requesting a 10 percent water use reduction. From Waimea town to Kawaihae, Upper Paauilo and Ahualoa, residents are under a mandatory order to reduce water usage by 25 percent. The average rainfall for May and the inches actually received this May are as follows:

  • Upolu Point, 1.50 inches/1.07 inches
  • Kamuela, 4.0 inches/.39 inches
  • Honokaa, 5.0 inches/.26 inches
  • Keahole Airport, .60 inches/.23 inches

    In Waimea, no water is flowing into the three Department of Water reservoirs, two of which were damaged during the Oct. 15 earthquakes. These reservoirs would normally supply about 2.3 million gallons of water a day.

    Waikoloa has had numerous brush fires, most starting right along Waikoloa Road or Hwy 190, laying suspicion on careless drivers tossing cigarette butts out the window.
    helicopter-at-fire1.jpg Hawaii County Fire Dept. helicopter- note charred area in background

    It’s definitely a scary situation, so PLEASE, conserve, conserve, conserve and be especially careful with any source of fire; cigarettes, campfires, catalytic converters on cars, etc., etc.

    Aloha, Mike

    RE/MAX Pacific
    In Hawaii: 885-5557
    Toll Free: 800-500-4895
    My “Sell” Phone: 808-896-1943
    http://www.MikeSells.com
    http://www.WaimeaPropertyBlog.com