Tiare Fullerton, President, Hawaii Association of Mortgage Professionals
Tiara Fullerton is a Branch Manager and Senior Loan Consultant at Mortgage Associates of Hawaii, a division of American Pacific Mortgage, and President of the Hawaii Association of Mortgage Professionals (HAMP). National Mortgage Professional Magazine recently spoke with her regarding her work with the Aloha State’s mortgage trade group.
Tiare Fullerton, President, Hawaii Association of Mortgage Professionals 

How did you get involved with HAMP, and what was the path that led you to your leadership position within the association?
I got involved in 2007. As a member, I wanted to give back to the industry. It was a long journey to get to the position I’m at now. I started with the Membership Committee, because that’s how you get to know your members. I moved from there to the Legislative Committee, then the Seminars and Events Committee. I served as Treasurer because I thought it was a great idea to learn what our expenses were. I served as President for 2014, 2017 and 2018, and my current term runs through Dec. 31 of this year.
Why should mortgage professionals in Hawaii become a part of HAMP?
We currently have approximately 120 members and we try to protect the livelihood of mortgage professionals in Hawaii through education and the monitoring of legislative issues. The collective strength of the association helps to provide the best for its members and for the consumer.
We also encourage communication within the mortgage industry, not only amongst Mortgage Loan Officers, but with escrow and title professionals as well. We want to keep those relationships growing.
What is the association’s role in the state’s legislative and regulatory environment?
We keep in touch with the State’s Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) and maintain close communication with the Department’s Commissioners. We have a local law firm that monitors upcoming bills and they let us know if there is anything we need to know about. I’ve met with our state legislators and it is a great experience—you get to see how the system works and how you can make an impact for the Loan Officers and the consumer.
I’ve also been to Washington, D.C. on two occasions for NAMB events. That is an experience everyone should participate in, because the more voices we have at the legislative levels, the better opportunities there are for our elected officials and regulators to hear what is important for the industry.
Tiare Fullerton, President, Hawaii Association of Mortgage ProfessionalsWhat is your association’s relationship like with NAMB?
NAMB keeps its state associations informed through monthly calls. We participate in order to represent our state, although it is a big haul to get to Washington, D.C. every year, but we make sure that we are supporting NAMB, and do our best to keep informed.
Do you see a lot of younger people coming out of college and going into the mortgage profession in Hawaii?
We are not seeing that. It is definitely on our radar, and we have talked about how to encourage that. It can be tough with this generation, because they want to see quick growth. We are talking about going into the high schools and colleges, and educating them to understand what it means to be a mortgage professional. They’re exposed to what doctors and CPAs do, but they may not have an idea about what we do.
What is the current state of your local housing market?
It varies by island. Our inventory is low and prices remain high, as the median price for a single-family home is $773,500 and it is $405,000 for a condo. We also have a lot of foreign investors who are moving prices up. As a result, we have a lot of families who are living together.
Phil Hall is Managing Editor of National Mortgage Professional Magazine. He may be reached by e-mail at PhilH@MortgageNewsNetwork.com.

From left to right: Reid Goshi, Dayleen Kai, Steven Tagawa, May Cabusas, Kelsey Weeks, Sean Hashimoto, Craig Fujikawa
Primary Residential Mortgage Inc. (PRMI) is expanding in Hawaii, announcing the opening of a new brick-and-mortar branch located in Kaimuki under the leadership of Branch Manager Craig FujikawaPrimary Residential Mortgage Inc. (PRMI) is expanding in Hawaii, announcing the opening of a new brick-and-mortar branch located in Kaimuki under the leadership of Branch Manager Craig Fujikawa. Fujikawa, comes to PRMI with more than 20 years of experience in the mortgage industry and prior to joining PRMI, he was the Co-Founder and President of Mortgage Associates of Hawaii (MAHi Loans). In his new role, Kaimuki will be responsible for the overall management of the branch, recruitment and assisting individuals with their home loan needs.
Kaimuki will be joined by Sales Manager Steven Tagawa who will be responsible for the PRMI sales team, as well as assisting with recruitment and helping individuals finance their homeownership goals. The PRMI Kaimuki team also includes Senior Loan Officer May Cabusas; Loan Officer Reid Goshi; Loan Officer Sean Hashimoto; Administrative Assistant Dayleen Kai; and Loan Processor Kelsey Weeks.
“There are several loan programs offered to support homebuyers and most people have no idea they exist, especially when it comes to down-payment assistant programs and grants,” said Fujikawa. “Our team is here to give people in our community the tools and resources they need as they make one of the biggest financial decisions in their lifetime. We are here to help every step of the way.”

The Aloha State was home to the 2017 housing market with the fastest luxury price growth
The Aloha State was home to the 2017 housing market with the fastest luxury price growth, according to new data from Realtor.com.
In Maui, led the nation with luxury prices that saw a nearly 33 percent ascent in 2017, closing the year with an average of $2.485 million compared to the previous year. Other Hawaiian markets with aggressive luxury price appreciation were Kauai, which came in fourth place with a 25 percent spike in average luxury price during the year, followed by the Big Island of Hawaii in fifth place with a 24.8 percent.
As for the other top five housing markets enjoying luxury price appreciation, Colorado’s Eagle County, home to the Vail and Beaver Creek resorts, ranked second thanks to prices rising 31.5 percent in 2017 to $2.89 million. The New York City borough of Brooklyn placed third with a 30 percent increase in its average luxury prices.  

The Aloha State was home to the 2017 housing market with the fastest luxury price growth
Simplifile has announced that Title Guaranty has completed the first-ever e-recording of a Land Court document in the state of Hawaii using Simplifile’s E-recording service. The document, a mortgage, was submitted into the public record in late July in a process that took only minutes.
Unlike most U.S. states, Hawaii does not have a county recording system. Instead, mortgages, deeds, and other real property documents are recorded through the State of Hawaii Bureau of Conveyances, which manages two systems of recordation: the Regular System and the Land Court System. While Hawaii has allowed e-recording of Regular System documents since 2010, last week’s achievement marks the first time a Land Court document has been recorded electronically in the state’s history.
“As the first title and escrow company in Hawaii, Title Guaranty is excited to now be the first to e-record in the state’s Land Court System,” said Title Guaranty Chief Operating Officer Mike B. Pietsch. “In addition to the many efficiencies it will create, e-recording will also allow clients much earlier access to their original recorded documents. We are proud to lead the way in utilizing technology to enhance a process that is so critical to real estate transactions in Hawaii.”
Paper-based recording can be especially cumbersome in Hawaii, where documents have to be air-mailed from neighboring islands to the Bureau of Conveyances on Oahu at great time and expense. The move to an electronic process represents a major step up in recording security, speed, and savings for Hawaii’s document submitters and recorders.
“Bilateral e-recording in Hawaii is a milestone we have been working toward for more than a decade,” said Simplifile President Paul Clifford. “After seeing first-hand the challenges document submitters must face to manually record in Hawaii’s island geography, we are extremely gratified to bring the convenience, security and cost savings of e-recording to the Land Court.”
As the pilot submitter for the first Hawaii Land Court recording, Title Guaranty worked closely with Simplifile to prepare for the momentous transaction.
“Our experience with Simplifile was excellent,” Pietsch said. “Their collaborative approach during our initial training on the platform, preparation for the pilot, and first batch of submissions to the Bureau of Conveyances made the whole process seem easy and clear to understand.”

HAMB: The Next Generation 26th Annual Conference & CE Class will be held Thursday, Sept. 14 at the JCCH-Manoa Ballroom, located at 2454 S Beretania Street in Honolulu, Hawaii.
7:30a.m.-8:00a.m. Registration, Coffee & Continental Breakfast
8:15a.m.-12:15p.m. David Luna CE Class (Part 1)
12:15p.m.-1:45p.m. Lunch & Trade Show (No Alcohol Please)
1:45p.m.-4:45p.m. David Lun CE Class (Part 2)
4:45p.m.-8:30p.m. After Dark Party & Trade Show. Prizes, Heavy Pupus and Networking (Alcohol allowed)
David Luna is the President of Mortgage Educators, an NMLS-approved provider. As a mortgage professional for more than 30 years, he has instructed thousands of mortgage professionals through live and online course formats, and is a proven mortgage producer having closed over 7,000 loans. He has held several positions in the industry including being a Branch Manager, Vice President of Production, just to name a few. He has also sat on the board of local and national associations, and served as one of his state's mortgage regulators and is active in developing NMLS education on both the state and national levels.
Click here for more information on HAMB: The Next Generation 26th Annual Conference & CE Class.

When it comes to adding apartments to a local housing market, Honolulu is the hardest metro for new rental units, according to survey commissioned by the National Apartment Association (NAA) and National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC)
When it comes to adding apartments to a local housing market, Honolulu is the hardest metro for new rental units, according to survey commissioned by the National Apartment Association (NAA) and National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC).
In research conducted by Hoyt Advisory Services on behalf of the trade groups, 50 metro areas were studied on housing-related factors including local regulations and the amount of available land to develop. The study concluded with a new ranking called the Barriers to Apartment Construction Index, which issued scores up to 19.5 for the most difficult market to add apartments (Honolulu) down to -5.9 for the easiest market (New Orleans). Boston, Baltimore, Miami and Memphis were among the most difficult markets for the creation of new apartment housing, while Little Rock, Kansas City, Indianapolis and St. Louis were among the easiest.
NMHC and NAA also released Vision 2030, a set of recommendations for the federal government on how to lower barriers to development and better address the current and future housing shortage of all types of apartments and at all price points. The trade groups noted that the last time more than 325,000 apartments were constructed in a single year was 1989, and they added a new wave of apartment construction would boost the economy in the coming years.
“While the number of new apartments built each year has been rising, it hasn’t been enough to meet current demand and make up for any possible shortfall at certain price points in the years following the recession,” said NAA Chairwoman Cindy Clare. “This imbalance between high demand and limited supply options has driven down affordability and reduced housing options for renters. Rents tend to be particularly high in areas with the greatest barriers to new development, such as California, where there’s a significant shortage in available land for building new apartment homes. This makes it more expensive to build.”

Castle & Cooke Mortgage has announced the launch of its new Consumer Direct team
Castle & Cooke Mortgage LLC has announced the opening of its new branch on the Hawaiian island of Maui. This new location will expand the company's footprint in Hawaii, complementing its sister branch in Mililani, with a focus on purchases and refinances of existing homes.
"Castle & Cooke Mortgage has long-standing roots in Hawaii,” said Castle & Cooke Mortgage President and COO Adam Thorpe. “Castle & Cooke was founded in Hawaii in 1851 as a small general store that has since grown into a worldwide leader in the food, transportation and real estate industries. We are very pleased to grow in a place so rich in personal and historical significance to our company.”
The new branch will be led by Ray Beltran and Kara Beltran (pictured right), and will include a team of employees, all of whom are industry veterans with 100 more than years of combined experience serving the homebuying needs of the local community. While based in Maui, the team can assist prospective and existing homeowners with their financing needs throughout the state of Hawaii.
"With low inventory, rising home values and the economy stabilizing in our area, a lot of homeowners will be looking to upgrade this year," said Kara. "With that in mind, we're here to help them get prequalified for their new purchase, as well as walk them through the transition from listing to buying. We have always been passionate about homeownership. We're well-versed in all facets of mortgage financing, from FHA, VA and USDA loan programs to condos to niche programs for buyers with diverse needs. But the one thing we do extremely well is educate and nurture first-time buyers."
Real estate agents looking for the best market to make a living may want to pack their bags and head across the Pacific
Real estate agents looking for the best market to make a living may want to pack their bags and head across the Pacific. According to the 2017's Best Places to Be a Real Estate Agent report from WalletHub, Honolulu is best place for real estate professionals to ply their trade.
WalletHub’s compared 150 of the largest U.S. cities using 14 key indicators of a healthy housing market, ranging from “sales per agent” to “annual median wage for real estate agents” to “housing-market health index.” The conclusion placed Honolulu as the best market for real estate agents, followed by Seattle; Denver; Boston; Aurora, Colo.; Madison, Wis.; Reno, Nev.; San Francisco; Irvine, Calif.; and Austin, Texas. Mississippi’s capital city of Jackson ranked last among the 150 cities in the study.
Among the specific market characteristics studied by WalletHub, Oxnard, Calif., has the most homes sold in the past year per real estate agent (114.09) and the lowest real estate job density 1.28, while San Francisco has the highest median house price ($799,600) and listings with the fewest days on the market (47). Bakersfield, Calif., has the highest annual median wage for real-estate agents ($89,890) and Yonkers, N.Y., has the highest average ratio of home sale price to home list price (2.03), while Henderson, Nev., has the highest home turnover rate (9.87 percent) and Sioux Falls, S.D., has the lowest unemployment rate (2.3 percent).
The Aloha State is in danger of saying “aloha” to housing unless a new wave of units comes to the market

The Aloha State is in danger of saying “aloha” to housing unless a new wave of units comes to the market.

According to an Associated Press report, Hawaiian housing experts are warning that their state will need between 65,000 to 80,000 new units by 2025 in order to keep up with the current demand for new housing. This is especially acute for affordable housing, as single-family homes cost a median of $750,000

“We’ll continue to see increasing median household prices which will continue to essentially squeeze out individual—especially local residents—from being able to afford a home,” said Luis Salaveria, director of the state Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism.

Ramping up home construction would also benefit the Hawaiian economy, according to Carl Bonham, executive director of the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization.

“If we actually built enough houses to satisfy growth in population and existing shortfall, it would add one percent to our total jobs, one percent to our total income over the whole time period, so every year we’d have one percent more jobs than we would otherwise,” said Bonham. “It’s by no means a small issue.”

When it comes to closing costs on mortgages, the Aloha State is also the most expensive state

When it comes to closing costs on mortgages, the Aloha State is also the most expensive state.

According to new data from Bankrate.com that analyzed closing costs on a $200,000 home loan, Hawaii had the highest average closing costs with $2,655—more than a few dollars above the national average of $2,128. The other states with high closing costs were all along the Atlantic coast: New York ($2,560), North Carolina ($2,409), Delaware ($2,358), South Carolina ($2,322), and Connecticut ($2,313).

In contrast, Pennsylvania’s closing costs were $1,837. Low closing costs were also abundant in Wisconsin ($1,863), Kentucky ($1,874), South Dakota ($1,904), Oklahoma ($1,911), and Missouri ($1,926).

“Thanks to the new and improved mortgage disclosures that the CFPB introduced last October, closing cost estimates have become more accurate because they mandate that lenders include all costs ahead of time,” said Holden Lewis, Bankrate.com’s senior mortgage analyst. “This is great for consumers who can now comparison shop with more confidence.”