Buying Real Estate in Hawaii

What do you need to know about buying real estate in Hawaii?

Buying Real Estate in Hawaii

The Right Agent

One of the dilemmas you may face when buying a house in Hawaii is whether to have a local real estate agent represent you or to hire the listing agent of the property that represents the seller. Not every real estate agent in Hawaii knows all of the neighborhoods on each island, and listing agents typically need to attend showings in different parts of Hawaii anyway. 

It is generally a good idea to have your own representation during the homebuying process. Given Hawaii's distance from the rest of the country, you may have to rely on your agent a lot more than you would when purchasing a house on the mainland. For example, you might have the agent do the final walkthrough of the home before closing if you're living on the mainland while buying a home in Hawaii.

As you consider different properties, here are some topics to discuss with your agent, the listing agent, or both. Some are typical topics to consider as part of the home buying process, while others are unique to buying a house in Hawaii.

Buying Real Estate in Hawaii

Why is the Seller Selling?

You may need to get information about how the seller is treating upgrades to the home and negotiate for terms that are more favorable to you. Sellers are known for trying to get back the full price of any improvements they make. In reality, that may not happen. 

By having your own agent rather than hiring the listing agent used by than seller, you're more likely to get terms favorable to you.

Furnished?

Many homes and condos in Hawaii come furnished so it's important to know what comes with the property. 

Separately, you may also need to negotiate furnishings and appliances. You will not be able to haul a sofa or other big furniture on a plane with you to Hawaii. Shipping is expensive, as are the local prices for furnishings (the cost of island life, where so much has to be imported). Negotiating for furniture and commodities to be included in the purchase price is not uncommon.

Related: Cost Of Living In Hawaii

Buying Real Estate in Hawaii

Hawaii HOA

If you're moving into an area with a homeowner's association (HOA), try to get a complete understanding of how it operates. Use the information you discover to inform your decisions.

Many homeowner's associations in Hawaii have restrictions on what owners can and cannot do. For instance, they may have rules about pets, rules about what plants are allowed, and rules about what color your property can be painted.

HOAs also provide benefits to owners. For instance, in condominiums, these associations are often responsible for maintaining the exterior and front yard of the residence. They may also handle maintenance issues. If not, you should make sure to line up the needed services to help cover you if you're not planning to live on the island full-time.

Check out the newest developments on Oahu

There are a few different factors to consider when buying in Hawaii vs. the mainland. The key is using and enlisting the help of a qualified, full-time Oahu Real Estate Agent that knows all the details to the transaction. Contact me below at any time!

More Tips for Hawaii Home Buyers:

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Browse the Newest Listings

209 Properties
Page 1 of 18
$1,170,000
Neighborhood: Ocean Pointe
4
Beds
3
Baths
1,695
Sq.Ft.
1999
Year Built
1
Day on Site
202411504
MLS
Open 5/19
45-528 Pahia Road #B Kaneohe,  HI 96744
$1,225,000
Neighborhood: Kaneohe Town
3
Beds
2
Baths
1,190
Sq.Ft.
1955
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202411079
MLS
$489,000
Condo: Punahou Regency
3
Beds
2
Baths
1,032
Sq.Ft.
1980
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202411003
MLS
$375,000
Condo: Trump Tower Waikiki
1
Baths
486
Sq.Ft.
2009
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202411413
MLS
Open 5/19
92-1159 Palahia Street #C203 Kapolei,  HI 96707
$540,000
Condo: Westview At Makakilo Hts
2
Beds
2
Baths
742
Sq.Ft.
1993
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202411408
MLS
Open 5/19
492 Mananai Place #13S Honolulu,  HI 96818
$624,000
Condo: Crosspointe B-1
2
Beds
2
Baths
848
Sq.Ft.
1985
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202411093
MLS
Open 5/19
45-701 Keneke Street #1 Kaneohe,  HI 96744
$1,290,000
Neighborhood: Kapuna Hala
5
Beds
3
Baths
2,339
Sq.Ft.
2022
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202411217
MLS
Open 5/19
92-804 Opalipali Place Kapolei,  HI 96707
$1,175,000
Neighborhood: Makakilo-Kahiwelo
4
Beds
2F11/2
Baths
1,722
Sq.Ft.
2014
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202411247
MLS
Open 5/19
920 Ward Avenue #4G Honolulu,  HI 96814
$575,000
Condo: Royal Court
2
Beds
2
Baths
1,073
Sq.Ft.
1970
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202411350
MLS
Open 5/19
120 Lakeview Circle Wahiawa,  HI 96786
$849,000
Neighborhood: Wilikina
3
Beds
1
Baths
854
Sq.Ft.
1952
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202406753
MLS
Open 5/19
5180 Likini Street #1201 Honolulu,  HI 96818
2
Beds
1
Baths
677
Sq.Ft.
1972
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202407862
MLS
2
Beds
1F11/2
Baths
717
Sq.Ft.
1989
Year Built
2
Days on Site
202411355
MLS

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