Makena Project To Move Forward

Maui Planning Commission received just enough votes to move forward with the proposed Makena Resort Project.  The proposed 158 Unit project would include 88 multifamily units, 20 single family cottages, 26 single family customs lots, 10 vacation rentals, and a resort oriented 14 condos and commercial space.

The planning commission has been presented with alternative plans that would include affordable workforce housing in one of the buildings.  Other proposed alternatives would be moving larger structures inward and have smaller structures be road side.

To read this entire article, visit the Maui News website here.

For more information email us at Hansens@MauiReal Estate.Net of Maui Luxury Real Estate LLC, Wailea Town Center, Maui Hawaii.

Fed Likely To Raise Interest Rates This Month

Federal Reserve chairwoman Janet L. Yellen, stated Friday that the Fed was likely to raise the benchmark interest rate this month.  This increased rate is coming sooner than expected.  The last benchmark rate increase occurred in December.  The rate was increased from .5 percent to .75 percent.

With healthy unemployment rates at 4.8 percent the Fed considers inflation rising back to 2 percent to be considered optimal.  Ms. Yellen expects further increases in upcoming years to maintain a neutral stance.

Information provided by the New York Times.  You can read the entire article here.

New Postage Rate!

Don’t forget this Sunday January 22nd the postage rates have increased! New stamp rate is $.49. Other rates for various priority and first class mail services are available to view via the US Postal site here.

Last Day!

Just a reminder…..Last Day to file for property exemption!

The Hansen Ohana wishes you a phenomenal 2017!

Economic News

Housing starts rocketed to a nine-year high, while retail sales exceeded market expectations and layoffs dropped to their lowest point in 43 years.

Housing Starts

Starts on new housing construction hit their highest point since the height of the housing boom in 2007. Starts on private housing in October shot up 25.5 percent, to reach an annual rate of 1.32 million, according to last week’s joint release from the Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Compared to the same period last year, October’s rate for overall housing starts was 23.3 percent higher than October 2015’s rate of 1.07 million. Starts on single-family homes grew 10.7 percent to hit a rate of 869,000.

“Housing starts are being driven higher by improved household growth as the economy promotes further job and income gains,” Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. Chief Economist David Berson told U.S. News & World Report. “With improved employment and income prospects, millennials are an expanding portion of housing demand as they move out of their parents’ homes — increasingly to form families.”

Construction permits issued for private housing ticked up 0.3 percent in October to an annual rate of 1.22 million, which was 4.6 percent over October 2015’s rate of 1.17 million. Permits for single-family homes grew 2.7 percent in October to a rate of 762,000, which was 2.7 percent higher than September’s 742,000 permits.

Retail Sales

Retail sales for October grew 0.8 percent to hit $465.9 billion, beating marketing expectations of 0.6 percent, and sales for the August-through-October period increased 3.3 percent, the Census Bureau reported last week. Compared annually, October’s sales were 4.3 percent higher than October 2015’s and notably sales in October for non-store retailers (such as online businesses or kiosks) jumped up 12.9 percent over their October 2015 sales.

Key performers were sales for gasoline stations, which grew 2.2 percent; sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores, which increased 1.3 percent; building material and garden stores, which gained 1.1 percent; and food and beverage retailers, which enjoyed a 0.9 percent gain.

“The consumer is in very good shape and is poised to continue to lead the economy forward based on rising wages, low unemployment and clean balance sheets,” Amherst Pierpont Chief Economist Stephen Stanley told the Wall Street Journal.

Initial Jobless Claims

First-time claims filed for unemployment benefits by the recently laid off during the week ending November 12 tumbled to 235,000, a decline of 19,000 claims from the preceding week’s total of 254,000, the Employment and Training Administration reported last week. This is the lowest level for lay-offs since November 24, 1973’s total of 233,000.

The four-week moving average — considered a more stable measure of layoffs — fell to 253,500, a drop of 6,500 claims from the prior week’s average of 260,000.

This marked the 89th straight week of initial jobless claims below 300,000 — a level that economists say indicates a growing job market — and the longest streak since 1970.

This week we can expect:

     Tuesday — Existing home sales for October from the National Association of Realtors.

      Wednesday — New home sales and durable goods orders for October from the Census Bureau; initial jobless claims for last week from the Employment and Training Administration; consumer sentiment for November from the University of Michigan’s Survey of Consumers.

       Friday — Wholesale inventories for October from the Census Bureau.

Thank you to Brady Spangler of Axia Home Loans for this information.