After The Maryl Group walked away and left Central Pacific Bank holding the bag, Kennedy Wilson, a large real estate investment firm, acquired Wainani at Po’ipu via the court’s foreclosure confirmation proceeding last October. Besides 63 vacant lots, part of the Kennedy Wilson purchase included six standing homes for which they announced their intention to sell at auction last November. After six weeks of big hype, all six of those homes were sold today between $780,000 and $950,000. Along with about 12 on-line bidders there was approximately 50 people (15 bidders and their respective entourages) gathered at the Grand Hyatt Po’ipu hoping to pick up a good house at a bargain price. After about an hour or so all six homes saw a lively auction and six happy bidders are now awaiting the sellers acceptance of their bids. This was NOT an absolute auction but one with an unpublished reserve so basically its a competitive bidding for the right to make the seller an offer which he can then accept, reject or counter. (sounds like regular real estate negotiations to me, non?)
Auctions are not all the same. Many of us conjure the image of a fast talking guy spouting unintelligible lilting encouragement to bidders tweaking their nose or pulling their ears and when the final gavel falls you may have sneezed and bought a house! It was actually well run. I think everyone participating felt like they understood what was about to happen and I was personally pretty impressed with their on line bidding technology. I represented one on line bidder and it seemed “virtual bidding” from the comfort of you own home certainly beats sitting in a ballroom and being herded like cattle!
There have been many opinions and lots of speculation on this new style of real estate sales. Whether you are in the “smoke and mirror” camp or not it certainly feels like the very definition of a free market process and at this point in time there should be far fewer questions about what Po’ipu property is worth these days. You know, what a ready willing and able buyer will pay a ready willing and able seller.
Oh yeah, for the record?….I predicted sales between $795 and $1.1m
Hauoli Makahiki Hou everyone!