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Take a Deep Dive into the Waikiki Real Estate Market

Waikiki—one of the top tourist destinations in Hawaii—is also home to a thriving residential and short-term vacation rental market. With easy access to world-famous beaches, shopping, dining and downtown Honolulu, Waikiki offers all the perks of island and city living, making Waikiki properties desirable for homeowners and investors alike. Below are five charts prepared by Locations Research that provide a snapshot of Waikiki market activity in early 2024.

Thirty percent of Waikiki condo listings are priced at entry level.

The share of entry-level (defined as less than $400,000) condos for sale in Waikiki is falling as mid-market ($401,000-$999,999) condos comprise a bigger slice of the market. The number of mid-market listings has been increasing since 2021, as the median price has increased by 25 percent. There are currently 20 percent fewer active listings in Waikiki than there were before the pandemic.

Three-bedroom Waikiki condos have appreciated the most, on an average annual basis.

The scarcest bedroom size in the Waikiki market, three-bedroom units have an average annual appreciation of 8.9 percent; that’s about 3.5 percent more a year than Waikiki studios and almost 4 percent more per year than the overall rate of annual appreciation on Oahu. There is almost no difference in the percentage of appreciation for two- and three-bedroom units.

More than half of Waikiki condo buyers in 2022 were local.

While local owners are still the majority in Waikiki, their share has dropped from 66 percent in 2019 to 57 percent in 2022 (the last year of available data). The share of buyers from the western part of the U.S. continent nearly doubled from 2019 to 2022, as the percentage of Japanese buyers in Waikiki shrank by five percent.

Demand for short-term rentals has increased.

Condos permitted for short-term rental (STRs) comprised 30 percent of Waikiki sales in 2020, compared to nearly 50 percent of sales in 2023. Buyer competition for STRs increased in 2022 and 2023 as other segments of the Waikiki market softened. Studios are the most sought-after STR bedroom type, followed by one-bedroom units.

The average monthly rent in Waikiki climbed nine percent from 2015 to 2023.

After dipping slightly in 2020, long-term rent prices have been trending up since 2021. Rental rates typically follow the direction of condo prices, lagging by one to two years.

How to find a Waikiki condo right for you

Whether you're looking for a home of your own or an investment property to generate extra income, your Locations agent can help you find a Waikiki condo that best meets your budget and needs. Locations agents also have exclusive access to detailed, neighborhood-level market data and can help you to leverage this intelligence to make informed real estate decisions.

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