Buying Advice

Tips for First Time Hawaii Home Buyers

Being a professional realtor has a real sense of pride and accomplishment. One of the best parts of the job is the ability to help clients get into a home. If you have never purchased property, the concept can be challenging and create fear for a potential buyer. Most people understand renting a property — they pay a certain amount each month to the landlord and if something breaks or goes wrong they simply call the owner. This is obviously different when you own your own home as there is nobody to call if something breaks or needs repair. However, this is simply not a reason to avoid home ownership. The process can be complicated and have lots of steps, but this is where a great agent comes in to help navigate the steps.

Navigating the Loan Process

I have had the pleasure of working with many first time or young homeowners. Many of which have been VA buyers and stationed in Hawaii for the military. As a proud member of the Hawaii Life MST (Military Specialized Team), I am in a unique position to help. The VA process can also be confusing and present some challenges in the buying process but is absolutely one of the best products available. Using a VA loan can save the buyer tons of money by not having to come up with a large downpayment, having potentially lower interest rates and potentially having the lender pay the closing costs. I have some amazing local sources for lending that handle VA and conventional loans. They work with the agents and help get to the finish line and closing as easily as possible.

Making an Investment

Many might be hesitant because they don’t know how long they will be living or stationed on the island. Nobody has a crystal ball or the ability to predicate the future with respect to housing in Hawaii, but historically, it has been a very profitable investment. Real estate has risen on average 4-5% island wide for the last 5 years in a row. Even during the financial collapse and meltdown, the state faired better than most. Of course, the values took a dip as did everywhere in the country but not as severe as most states.

This has also led to healthy gains for those who bought at the right time. Most of the young, VA, or first time homeowners see the value in ownership versus renting. The current low interest rates have made owning many times less costly than renting. Rents are on the rise and now are outpacing mortgages. You can strive to build wealth when you invest in Hawaii real estate. Even in a worse case scenario and you make no profit, you still are improving your credit and showing financial stability by holding a mortgage. Most homeowners will make a profit if they are buying a good property and don’t have to worry about breaking even, but again you just never know what will happen tomorrow.

I have had great satisfaction knowing that the clients that I have helped really see the value in homeownership. They feel empowered each month that they own versus rent. Obviously not every person should or can own a property, but it’s certainly worth exploring. The lenders I use can quickly and painlessly help determine if the time is right. They can also compare using a VA loan or a conventional to see what makes more sense. If you are using your VA eligibility, it just makes good sense to buy in a higher priced area such as Hawaii versus using the benefit in a lower costs state. There are certainly lost of conversations to be had about the right decisions. It’s with great satisfaction that I can check back in with a buyer who is seeing the values of their property rise and know they made one of the best financial investments possible.

Make a Plan for the Future

Please reach out with any questions or simply to explore the possibility. It might now always be feasible to buy today, but setting a plan in motion and thinking about the future is always a great course of action.

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