The island of Kauai is westernmost and oldest of the Hawaiian islands. It is known as the Garden Isle, and is home to a population of around 60,000. When the U.S. stock and housing markets began their slide and the country entered into a recession in 2008, Kauai real estate felt the effects personally as values plunged and a number of residents found themselves unable to pay for their homes and forced to turn them over as the number of foreclosures in Kauai rose.

Nearly two years have passed since the market first began to fall, and things have begun to pick up a bit for Kauai homes for sale, particularly in terms of volume if not in terms of price. In July, the most recent month for which statistics are readily available, there were 25 residential homes sold in Kauai, which actually represented a slight decline of 7.4% from a year ago. But year-to-date figures are still strong and are up on last year's figures by more than 56%. Condo sales were slightly stronger. In July, there were 18 condos sold, up 20% from last July, when only 15 were sold. And so far in 2010, condo sales are outpacing 2009 by more than 56%, with 134 sold in the first seven months of the year.

Sales prices have been quite volatile. One month, the median price may be up by several thousand dollars only to fall the next month by even more. In July, residential homes sold at a median price of $450,000, up 4.6% from a year ago, when that figure was just $430,000. So far this year, however, the median price is down about 0.75% to $446,500 from the median through July of last year, $449,750. The condo market has also suffered continuing price declines. In July, the median price for a condo sold was $395,000, down more than 25% year-over-year. So far this year, condos have also seen an overall price decline. In the first seven months of the year, the median condo sales price was $353,875, compared with a figure of $400,000 in the first seven months of 2009.