Though the population of Hawaii is currently in a decline, it’s still an incredibly popular place to live. In fact, over 50,000 people made a new home in Hawaii in 2018 alone.
If you’re considering moving to Hawaii, it’s essential that you know what you’re getting into first. Yes, the weather is gorgeous, the ocean views are endless, and the smell of tropical flowers fills the air year-round. But island life, and real estate, are much different than they are on the mainland.
That’s why we put together this guide compiling everything you need to consider before making your move across the ocean. Read on to learn more.
There Are No Mainland Banks
If you’re expecting to find a Bank of America in Hawaii, think again. There are no major mainland banks on the Big Island, and while you can make wire transfers, these are notorious for delaying transactions.
Before you start house hunting with your real estate agent, check with your bank to discuss financing options.
Look for Lava Zones
When you’re shopping for homes for families on the mainland, lava is probably pretty far down your list of worries. On the islands, however, it’s something that will make a major impact on your home search.
In Hawaii, lava zones are given a rating based on location and frequency of eruptions, both prehistoric and historic. For example, East Hawaii is an active lava zone, which can make getting a mortgage far more difficult. Meanwhile, the other side of the island (West Hawaii), is in Lava Zone 4, meaning it hasn’t seen an eruption in a long while.
The higher the rating, the easier it will be to find funding for your home, and the less worried you have to be about a volcanic eruption.
Large Homes are Virtually Non-Existent
Though Hawaii is home to its share of mansions, the cost of living is almost twice as high in Hawaii as it is on the mainland. This means the landscape of the real estate market is vastly different.
More often than not, people interested in living in Hawaii find that not only can they not find a home as large as they hoped for but even when they do, it’s not in their price range.
The Hawaiian lifestyle is one that is outdoor-centric. Rather than spending the majority of their time inside their homes, Hawaiians prefer to enjoy the great outdoors and the company of others in public spaces.
Ready to Make a New Home in Hawaii?
Though a tropical vacation is enjoyable for all, making the move from the mainland to the islands isn’t for everyone. That’s why it’s important to know what to expect when you’re beginning the process of choosing a home in Hawaii.
Your life is going to be completely different once you move. But if you know that going into the process, you can get the most out of the experience and your new life in the islands.
Interested in learning more about buying a home in your dream location? Take a look at our blog!