Mililani: Hot properties with cool breezes
BY LISA SCONTRAS AND LISA LEE
For many, one of the top priorities when shopping for the right place to call home is finding great schools. That’s why in Mililani – where the focus is on families – the schools are top-notch.
As a parent, Priscilla Walthouse, REALTOR Associate at Prudential Locations, knows how important it is to find a school that is top-rated. In fact, she moved to Mililani Mauka in 2001 because she heard good things about the elementary school.
“Each of the schools in Mililani Mauka has a 10-outof-10 rating, according to www.greatschools.org,” says Walthouse. “My children go to Mililani Ike and they’re getting a great education. It’s my mortgage payment and private school tuition rolled into one! I see people coming here from Town, from Kapolei, who are drawn here because of the schools.”
Mililani Town was founded in 1968, followed by Mililani Mauka in 1990. Together, Mililani is considered one of the most successful master-planned communities in the nation. The diversity of properties fit a diversity of life stages, lifestyles and budgets.
“There is something for everyone,” says Walthouse, “and everything you need is right here: schools, shopping, restaurants, access to freeway, cool weather.”
Mililani has a combined population of almost 29,000, according to the most recent 2010 U.S. Census. The median age in Mililani Mauka is 35 years old, while the median age in Mililani Town is not much higher at 40.5 years.
“The top three reasons why my buyers have chosen the (Mauka) area are: it’s a newer community, the schools are good and they feel the neighborhood is safe,” says Jodie Tamaye, another REALTOR Associate at Prudential Locations and Mililani resident since 1997.
She adds, “The majority of my clients have grown up in Mililani and want to stay here. The rest are from surrounding communities – Pearl City, Waipio Gentry, Wahiawa. They want to move here because they know the community is very family-oriented. Then, their parents want to move to Mililani to be closer to their grandchildren. And Mililani has great resources for all generations, so it works out well.”
Because of its close proximity to Schofield Army Base and Wheeler Army Airfield, Mililani draws a large number of military families to the community, as well.
While buyer demand for homes in Mililani is strong, the available inventory has been shrinking. “The number of properties for sale has definitely dropped in the past year and demand has gone up,” says Walthouse. “After the recent tsunami scares, we’ve had a lot of people wanting to move to Mililani.”
Currently, there are just 22 active listings for single family homes and 10 active listings for condos in all of Mililani. “That’s significantly less than what we had last year around this time,” says Tamaye.
The months of remaining inventory, or the time it would take to sell all the properties on the market, is a very low 1.3 months. (Oahu’s overall months of remaining inventory is 3.1 months.)
Tamaye notes, “It’s also interesting that the current inventory, particularly in Mauka, is either smaller homes or higher-end homes. When anything in the mid-range comes on the market, it sells very quickly because there are so many buyers on the market. If you’re a homeowner who is thinking of moving up or down, now is a great time to do so, while interest rates are still low.”
Mililani has been a stable market historically, and in keeping with Oahu’s overall trend, home prices are moving upward. The median price for single family homes sold in Mililani during the past three months was $600,000, up $10,000 over the previous three months.
The properties in Mililani Town are older but many have been well cared for or renovated. “In the past, it’s been easier to find a larger home at a reasonable price here. If you can find a property that has been well-maintained or updated, you can get more home for the price,” says Tamaye.
Properties in Mililani Mauka are newer and tend toward smaller lots. American Classics is one of the subdivisions in Mililani Mauka with rim lots that look out to ocean or mountain views. Others include Legacy, Pacific Heritage, Pacific Traditions, and Woodcrest, and lots in these subdivisions are typically larger.
“Lot sizes definitely have an effect on value,” notes Tamaye. “Certain subdivisions are more desirable even though they might be older.” Cul-de-sac locations are also popular.
Community pride and association guidelines keep Mililani well-maintained and attractive. Says Walthouse, “You can see that people take pride in their homes and surroundings. They support and take part in civic events. The neighborhoods have been developed to encourage a healthy lifestyle – with sidewalks, parks, dog parks – so people are active.”
“I consider Mililani Oahu’s premier family community,” she concludes.
For more information on properties for sale in Mililani, contact Prudential Locations at (808) 377-4747.