Kiawah Island Real Estate has had the most real estate sales for the first half of a year since 2007, buoyed by a strong second quarter, the company reported.
From January through June, 147 properties were sold on Kiawah Island, for a total of $188 million. In the first half of 2007, 155 properties were sold for $222 million, according to Kiawah Island Real Estate President Chris Drury.
Ninety-seven of the sales this year occurred in the second quarter, including 42 homes, 39 cottages and villas, and 16 lots, according to the Kiawah Island Real Estate report (.pdf)
Though total property sales through the first half of the year are up 6% compared with 2017, median sales prices have declined. The median for homes was down $150,000, or 10%, in the first half of the year compared with 2017, and the median price of lots was down $255,000, or 39%.
Drury said the market has taken time to recover after the Great Recession, which caused people to view discretionary purchases — such as the second homes sold on Kiawah Island — “very different after suffering through that downturn.”
“It’s taken people awhile to get comfortable, especially as large as these discretionary purchases are,” he said.
In addition to real estate sales, the Kiawah Island area has also experienced a surge in capital improvements, with over $1 billion currently committed to projects. The investments come from a variety of projects, including $200 million of amenity improvements at Kiawah Island Golf Resort, $125 million in a senior living facility and $75 million in the new Timbers Kiawah Island Club and Residence.
“That is a huge investment for any community, but especially one that is as mature as Kiawah,” Drury said. “I mean, Kiawah is 40 years old. So when you think about a community that has been through that life cycle and still is seeing the kind of investment we’re talking about here of a billion dollars, that, I think, is unheard of.”
Drury said he expected that the increase in investment would eventually lead to an increase in real estate sales, comparing it to when the Sanctuary Hotel opened in 2004.
“We can look back at what impact that had on real estate, and it was significant because you’re bringing a whole different level of affluent buyer by way of visitor to the island,” he said.
Drury added, “I could not have written a better script.”