Kailua-Kona, HI Real Estate News

By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
This thought process is right up the alley of Debbie Gartner, and I thought maybe she had written an article about it but could not find it. It is probably included in something she has done about luxury vinyl plank flooring. Although I don't know why they refer to vinyl planks as luxury vinyl plank. There doesn't seem to be any bargain-basement vinyl plank. It is all "luxury," and seems such a farce.However the thing about vinyl plank flooring is I did not realize it could be installed over ceramic. It is a solution for ugly ceramic floors. Remember how much we used to love ceramic? Now it seems to have fallen from grace. Vinyl plank is waterproof and performs well in humid tropical climates. You can read more in my personal blog today at this link: Installing Vinyl Plank Flooring Over...
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By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
One of the decisions we had to make when we decided to buy a vacation home in Hawaii was not only what island but what side of the island. There is a lot to be said for living on the eastern side of Big Island, a lot more lush vegetation, but it also has an active volcano. Getting insurance for a home is very expensive in Puna. Which is why home prices are so much less.Ultimately, though, for me it came down to the coqui. Too loud. Amazing how such tiny things can produce such loud sounds.That doesn't mean living in Kailua-Kona has no downside. We still get vog. It usually lasts only a day or two and the winds carry it away. But islanders on Big Island have had heavy vog carried over to Kailua-Kona for the past month, and it's not letting up. The difference is literally almost night and...
Comments 15
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
This particular trip to Hawaii I did not make it to the beach. The days I had planned to go, it rained. But there will be other days and other trips. It is OK. I was able to focus on my Sacramento real estate business and missed all of the cold weather and rainstorms in Sacramento. While I initially thought my last 3 weeks in Hawaii were relatively slow in terms of market conditions, I actually accomplished quite a bit.Looking at MLS, I see I listed / relisted 8 homes, put 3 into pending status and working on a couple more offers. Closed about a half dozen, and scheduled a bunch of appointments to visit sellers next week for pre-listing inspections.I only turned down 2 listings. Not because I wasn't in Sacramento but because the sellers were not a good fit for my personality. One guy de...
Comments 6
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
By the time I called the electric company, workers were at my house in mere minutes. I don't know if they have a guy who lives near by or what, but boy was that amazingly fast. When my power went out during a rainstorm in Sacramento, hours passed before anybody stopped by the house, but in Hawaii the service call was immediate.So yeah, this weekend, I had no electricity, and no water and then swarms of gnats later when the power came back. Just to fix a fire hydrant in the street caused a pipe to burst and workers also managed to mess up the electrical. But it's the gnats that were the worst thing to deal with this weekend. For some reason, maybe climate change, Hawaii has a stronger infestation of gnats than usual this year.Every few minutes, while watching TV, I have to jump outta my ...
Comments 10
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
This is one of those blogs that can go on forever, and it sort of does. So many photos to choose from to feature in my blog, and they have to be pretty good before I'll select them. At least you need to be able to see what kind of bird it is, don't you think? Some images I see people shoot are fuzzy and blurry, but then again I tend to be more of a perfectionist about these things.I've uploaded a new handful of photos of birds in Hawaii that I think you will enjoy. I know not everybody thinks they are a birder but when the bug hits, look out. You can read more and see more photos in my personal blog today at this link: More Photos of Hawaii Birds on the Big Island.
Comments 10
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
Obviously, I cannot shoot a photo of every single type of lizards and geckos in Hawaii. But there are common types you will see almost everywhere. Ordinarily, you do not see them at a resort. I stayed at and visited almost all of the resorts north of Kailua-Kona and you don't run into a lot of lizards and geckos on the beach. ūüŹĖ I imagine the grounds maintenance workers dispose of the lizards and ūü¶é¬†. This was the one adjustment that took a while to become accustomed to when we bought a house on the island of Hawai'i. I've stopped shrieking, so that's a good thing. You can see a ton more photographs and read more in my personal blog today at this link: Photos of Hawaii Lizards and Geckos From Kailua-Kona.
Comments 18
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
We have certainly no shortage of photographic opportunities on Hawai'i Island. You never know what you might see when you are alert and holding a camera. In future blogs, you will see more photos. I'm trying to group them into categories, as I see recurring themes in my photos. Like boats, including a submarine. Or birds. Let's not forget geckos and lizards.So on Easter Sunday it seems appropriate to post religious looking sunsets. As I don't have any sunrises. That would entail getting dressed, not to mention getting up when it's still dark and driving up Mauna Loa.You can see more photographs in my personal blog today at this link: Easter Week Sunset Photos from Hawai'i Island.
Comments 18
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
In my circle of friends are a couple of missionaries from Canada who volunteer at the University of Nations here in Kona. Two of the nicest, sweetest and most caring individuals I have ever known, but then again, I can't say I know any other missionaries. Also, just because I am not a spirtual nor religious person myself, does not mean I do not enjoy learning about other religions. People from different faiths make the world go around.So I was excited when my friends showed up yesterday to take me to lunch. Because it was a surprise location. An experience, they said. And they were right. This is an enormous campus in Kailua-Kona. Students come from all over the world to study there. I even got to shake hands with some of them. You can read more about this and see more photographs in my...
Comments 11
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
Even my hairdresser installed a Ring doorbell. She was very excited to show me videos of UPS guys dropping off packages on her cellphone. This seemed like an odd reason to fork out two hundred bucks for a video doorbell. But then, when you think about it, it's not the UPS guys you're worried about. It's the guys walking by your house who spot a package on your front porch and decide they should swipe it.But I don't worry about that at my house in Sacramento because we have a spot on our porch where passersby cannot view from the street. Now, in Hawaii, though, you could have all sorts of things going on long distance when your home is vacant. Even that was not the reason why I changed my mind about the Ring doorbell. My next door neighbor finally blew a gasket that must have been simmer...
Comments 9
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
While an iPhone will work in a pinch to snap photos of flowers, people and other stationary things, wildlife is a whole 'nother story. I mean, I can sit on my lanai for hours and watch the geckos but try taking a picture of one. They won't wait for you to get close enough. Zooming doesn't really work well on an iPhone, nor does cropping in Photoshop, especially when the photo isn't clear enough to start with. This trip I brought my Canon Sureshot. It's got the most fantastic zoom lens I've ever seen. You can read more in my personal blog today and see a bunch more photographs I shot at this link: Why Shooting Photos of Geckos in Hawaii Presents Challenges.
Comments 10
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
When you buy a new car, most people would test drive the vehicle prior to purchase, right? So, I think it only makes sense to try out a new paddle board before buying. All paddle boards are not the same. When you don't really know anything about a paddle board, you might not realize you should demo. I surely did not.Further, when you notice paddle boards on the water, most of them are a certain length, and rounded at the front, a typical width, and those would be the types of boards available at many rental places and resorts. My distant goals, ever since I first climbed aboard a paddle board, was to buy an SUV to transport the board and to buy my very own paddle board. Little did I realize at the time I formed that vision this would happen in Hawaii.It's an experience, however, I plann...
Comments 7
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
It seems that everything we have at our house in Hawaii is so much nicer than the stuff at our house in Sacramento. But that's probably because it's newer. My husband keeps telling me that I live in Hawaii now, but I really don't. Just part of the year and a few weeks here and there. OK, maybe a couple of months at a time, but I still live and work in Sacramento.Although I do list homes in Sacramento while I am in Hawaii. I sell and close them from our house in Hawaii. So maybe I do live here part-time. Which is why I decided we needed to buy a gas grill. Hey, if I have to cook for myself. I dragged my husband off to Lowe's. You can read more in my personal blog today at this link: The Charcoal vs Gas Grill Debate Comes Home to Roost. 
Comments 7
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
One of my team members shared the theory that when people get older (much older than me, for example), they are prepared to die. We engaged in this discussion because a client had told me his mother, who passed away last November at age 99, constantly complained every time she saw him, "Why am I not dead yet?" My grandmother was like that. She was totally ready to go and wished for it every day.I, on the other hand, am not prepared to die. If it happens, OK, I'll go with it, but I am not prepared. I have way too much living left to do. I'm just getting started, at my age, which is 65. But what would you do if you woke up to your cellphone sending you a government emergency alert that you're about to die?You can read more in my personal blog today at this link: Ballistic Missile Threat I...
Comments 16
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
When I first began discussions with my husband about buying a house in Hawaii, I bought a few books from Amazon about moving to Hawaii. There were a few horror tales. I'll never forget the story about the woman who could not deal with flying B52 bombers smacking her in the face. And the fact trees can grow 10 feet almost overnight, coupled with the need for constant pest control.One book made it sound like a nightmare with the humidity, limited water, overpopulation of Oahu and sewer problems. It made me decide that Oahu is a fun island to visit, but I leaned more toward living in a city on a quieter island. Big Island has such diverse geography and climate zones, from 80 degrees on the beach to snow on Maunakea. Not to mention, the people are extremely friendly and trusting. It reminds...
Comments 13
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
Most people would find it no trouble at all to go deep-sea fishing in Hawaii, particular with the hopes of reeling in a big fish like a marlin. But it's not as easy as it sounds. It seems even more difficult than fighting a bluefish in Maine. You don't just stand there with a rod and reel, which is what I thought when I first went fishing 7 years ago out of Honokohua Harbor.Nope, they strap you into a chair. That's so you don't go flying overboard when you get a bite and the fish takes off. Your fishing apparatus is also secured so you can't lose it. While I watched the wake behind the boat, my mind began to drift. I started to imagine, to my husband's horror, how a 15-foot marlin would look mounted on the wall over our sofa. You can read more in my personal blog today at this link: You...
Comments 13
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
It did not take me long to figure out why there is nothing growing in several areas of our garden in Hawaii. Of course, like any buyer, I can't help but wonder if this is something the seller knew and failed to disclose or forgot to tell me. I find it really odd that when I dig through the volcanic soil about 6 inches in those areas, I encounter water.These are not big pools of water but it is constant. Maybe there is a reason that Kona has a Water Garden Club, according to the Bonsai Schefflera I found. He said: when you have lemons, make lemonade. Which is the same thing as my motto: When it rains on your parade, parade in the rain. You can read more in my personal blog today at this link: Umbrella Trees are the Perfect Solution to Wet Gardens.
Comments 16
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
Conversation around the dinner table with my neighbors in Kona was quite entertaining this Christmas. One neighbor is building a Tiny House and plans to travel around the mainland, towing her Tiny House, giving lectures to single women babyboomers about realizing dreams. Talk about life-changing events. Even though much of our conversation centered on living in Hawaii, why all of us bought homes on the island, and a little bit about my home state of Minnesota (everybody, except my neighbor's sister-in-law, comes from Minnesota, you betcha), we ended the dinner by turning the conversation to real estate. It always ends up being about real estate. Or, maybe it's just because a Sacramento Realtor is in the room.You know, somebody will say something like: do you think interest rates are goi...
Comments 10
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
When I asked my neighbor, who is also my Christmas dinner host, if I could bring a liliko'i cake as dessert, she was fairly adamant that I not leave the remainder of the cake at her house. First, I think she was assuming I would bring an enormous cake, and second, she apparently has about as much willpower as I do. LOL. None of us really need more sweet things in our life. Too much sugar wreaks havoc when you get older. Not to mention the calories. My neighbor told me she's having another friend over the day after Christmas for leftovers, so I suggested she just give what's left of the cake, if any, to him. You can read more in my personal blog today and see a different photo of how I came into possession of the cake at this link: My Liliko'i Opera Cake Makes a Fine Christmas Dessert.
Comments 11
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
What I've discovered is some people love red ginger and some do not. I've heard some landscapers warn against red ginger because it's so invasive and spreads like crazy. Several I had spoken to suggested planting soap ginger instead. There are not a lot of commercial places to buy plants in Kailua-Kona. It's more about who you know and family nurseries.A family nursery is just what you think it is. You go over to somebody's house in Kona, and they dig up something from their yard.I've been studying the various types of ginger. I'm attracted to it because it flowers for a long time and doesn't require a lot of fussing and because I can't grow it in Sacramento. Something should fill a spot in my garden that seems a bit wet. Sure enough, when I dug down about 8 inches, I found water. Could...
Comments 10
By Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you
(RE/MAX Gold)
The best tip for finding a gardener in Hawaii was right under my nose, and I didn't think of it for months. Instead, I just kept paying the guy who wasn't even the gardener I was supposed to be working with. I only know this because I talked to my neighbor, Don, to tell him I was unhappy with the gardener he referred and discovered it's not the same guy who does his garden.Apparently, the number I called was correct, but another person answered and said he was working for the intended person. He sends over a crew once a month but they always look like they just rolled out of bed. There are no set days or time of month they show up. Although, I have heard from my neighbors that I'm not supposed to let the gardener know when I'm On Island or they'll just come the day before and skip other...
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