A New Opportunity For First-time Buyers
Hawaii Realtor Abe Lee has been a specialist in CPR (condominium property regime) development on Oahu for almost 40 years, having completed more than 150 projects. His latest venture, Hauola Hale, is a small CPR community of four one-story, single-family homes in central Wahiawa, which he aimed at first-time buyers wishing to live in a family-oriented setting.
“Wahiawa is a very desirable part of central Oahu where families who have lived in the area for generations, since the pineapple plantation days, still want to maintain ties and move back to this town,” said Lee.
He explained that the homes previously were owned by a single kamaaina family, which had listed the property through Locations LLC. The sellers had already obtained a Condominium Conversion Project letter from the city’s Department of Planning and Permitting, so it was available for immediate condominium development.
“We closed on the four homes in January 2017,” said Lee, whose Abe Lee Development LLC handled the purchase and upgrading of the Hauola Avenue residences.
According to Lee, all four homes were in good condition structurally and needed very little work. After minimal remodeling, they were put on the market at “below market value,” he said, through iProperties Hawaii, where Lee is broker in charge.
“Once the public found out about the project, the demand for these homes was very strong,” Lee said. “Wahiawa is a great location for many families or singles to buy homes that are lower priced than other neighborhood areas.”
Currently in escrow, the houses are situated on 21,780 square feet of land in Wahiawa, which is known for its slightly cooler weather due to its elevated location on the plateau, or central valley between the Koolau and Waianae mountains. Zoned R-5, the site is close to schools, shopping, eateries, public transportation, medical services and more.
Individually, lot sizes within the CPR are 4,042, 4,305, 5,695 and 6,365 square feet, with the homes on each lot selling, respectively, for $485,000, $490,000, $505,000 and $525,000. The homes range from two to three bedrooms with one- and-a-half to two baths, and were built between 1941 and 1995.They include kitchens, living rooms, laundry areas, carports and porch/stair areas, with the two largest ones also offering a covered lanai.
For those not familiar with condominium property regimes, Lee explained that the yard areas for each home are not legal subdivisions, but rather limited common elements, since the houses are part of a condominium project. The future owners will belong to a condominium association, with all being responsible for liability insurance and three also sharing quarterly maintenance fees for their common driveway; the fourth home has direct access to Hauola Avenue.
Lee said his goal as a developer since he started in the 1980s has been “to create affordable housing without government help.
“I have converted single-family homes and low-rise apartment buildings, and built homes from the ground up in my career, and most of my projects are geared toward the first-time homebuyer at market or below-market prices,” Lee continued.
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