Purchasing a vacation rentable condo can be an exciting and lucrative investment. But not all investors realize that the purchase is not just about making a profit, but also about taking care of the residents who live there while vacationing. These tips will help you navigate your purchase of a vacation rental condo in Oahu to get the best experience for yourself and take care of those living in your prospective property. It is essential to do your research before you make an offer on a property. Even if you are purchasing a condo that is already proven as a successful rental, it still pays to find out some history before buying. Find out how long the property has been rented, what the previous owners did to market the unit, and what amenities have been added. It is essential to be aware of the local market to make an informed decision about the price you will offer for the property.

1. Get Pre-Approved by a Local Mortgage Broker

One of the things that you will want to do before buying is to have pre-approval from a mortgage broker. A pre-approval is simply telling a lender that you will be able to afford to make payments on a property. It can be done in several ways, but we suggest starting by looking for one on your bank’s website, like Bank of America. Having this in place will ease your mind and allow you access to more lenders. You can shop for the best mortgage from a local lender with your pre-approval.

When shopping around, you need to ensure that the mortgage broker you are working with is licensed and insured by a state agency. It will help ensure that they aren’t trying to sell you something that someone else isn’t interested in purchasing.

After you have found a lender who can provide pre-approval, the next step is submitting information on your rental property and confirming your employment. It means having them look at your potential rental property on Oahu and calculate how much income they would need from the property. Then, once approved, this information can be submitted as part of your application to purchase the vacation property on Oahu.

Some companies will want to verify that there are no liens on your property. It would be done during the pre-approval process and can be completed online or by fax.

It is essential because it allows you to feel more confident about your purchase and will give your potential renters more confidence in you. They do this because they want to ensure that you will be able to meet the obligations of the rental property and keep up with any maintenance issues. It shows them that you care about what happens on the property, which adds value for both parties involved.

2. Filter Out Non-Vacation Rentable Properties in Your Search

When you are weighing your options for purchasing a vacation rental condo on Oahu, there are going to be some that are just not for you. After all, just because it is listed as a vacation property does not mean it will be able to accommodate your needs. Too many people get swept up in what is available and begin building their investment empire. Instead of focusing on properties that can’t meet your needs, start with what you need. Of course, property management companies will play a role here, too; they have people who know their area and can help you find what is best for those living there.

Make sure you know what amenities you need before you begin looking; this will keep you from being confused by the countless properties a property manager has listed as vacation rentals. It is also essential to look for things like a beach location, an ocean view, and number of bedrooms/bathrooms.  

3. Check Out Properties on all Sides of Oahu

North Shore

Oahu is a beautiful island, and it has something for everyone. It’s important to realize that there are different areas you can choose from, each of them having its own benefits and drawbacks. Not only will this help you narrow your options, but it will also show you the difference between the two and help you look for something that best meets your needs and the needs of your future renters. If a property is not in an area that meets your needs (i.e., an unsheltered beach), then pass on it; all properties are not meant to be, so don’t force yourself into making a purchase based on vague feelings. It can help you make a better decision in the end.

It is also essential to know what each area has to offer. The North Shore of Oahu features some of the highest real estate values on the island. So, what distinguishes them from the rest of the island? Here are a few examples:

The North Shore of Oahu is well-known for being a surfing hotspot. Towering waves stretch over 7 miles of magnificent white sand beaches throughout the winter months, claiming iconic surf events such as the Vans Triple Crown, Billabong Pipe Masters, and The Eddie Big Wave Invitational. These competitions grab the attention of the surfing world as they witness the best of the greatest surfers cut the world’s trophy waves. A North Shore beach property with direct access to one of these tournaments might easily cost between $5,000,000 and $17,000,000.

There’s value where there’s a beach! Kailua, Kakaako, and the North Shore of Oahu’s lifestyle villages offer postcard-perfect living with magnificent beaches, mountainous scenery, and little beach towns interwoven with delightful cafés, restaurants, and retail. Houses for sale on Oahu’s North Shore provide lives that extend beyond your four walls.


The majority of North Shore, Oahu condos are in the Waialua neighborhood, with prices ranging from $350,000 to $900,000+. If you’re searching for condos for sale in Haleiwa, HI, the Haleiwa Surf complex will be one of your only choices, but it’s a terrific one because it offers direct access to the beach and Haleiwa Town.

The condominiums for sale at Kuilima Estates are popular with out-of-state purchasers since they are located within the Turtle Bay Resort neighborhood and allow owners to conduct legal holiday rentals on the North Shore. A lot of these North Shore Oahu Holiday Rentals are hosted on Airbnb or VRBO, which had long supplied a good source of rental income prior to 2020, before Bill 89 was proposed to crack down on unlawful vacation rentals.

Waikiki & Honolulu

Waikiki and Honolulu hold all the hustle and bustle of Oahu. Investing in a vacation rental on this side of the island is popular among investors because this area holds many vacationers each year. Waikiki is Hawaii’s liveliest vacation region, offering a fantastic mix of restaurants, entertainment, nightlife, shopping, excursions, and activities, all within a short walk of one of the most popular beaches on the island. This hotspot combines a tropical island ambiance with all of the modern amenities of a city. Everyone here is in vacation mode!

4. Pay Attention to Maintenance Fees

When looking at the different condos on Oahu, you must pay attention to the fees. These fees can add up and place a significant financial strain on those investors just starting out. First of all, have a look at the condo that you are looking at. Look for maintenance fees that range from $100-200 per month. If this is the case, it is essential to ensure that you get one with good management and plenty of space for storing your things. Remember that a condo or house that is well-managed has to be maintained and can cost more than one which is not. That is why this is something that you need to be aware of.

Your second point is what the condo management company does for maintenance. Look for companies that offer things like cable, internet, pool, and new appliances. It goes hand in hand with the first point; if you have all of those amenities included, it will cost less than one that does not have them. It can help you keep your costs down and make your property affordable to maintain.

It would help to compare the cost of a cable and internet package without it. You need to realize that most people want to be able to watch videos, TV, and surf the internet when they are in their condo or rental house. If you need cable and internet services at your property, then this can be an expensive habit to break. Many people request these services when renting a vacation property; make sure that you allow them so that they can get what they need to enjoy Oahu the way it is meant to be.

5. Research an Established Vacation Rental Management Company

Many companies provide management services for vacation properties on Oahu. It would help if you considered those with a history of providing excellent service when renting out an Oahu vacation home and who have been around since the beginning of the vacation property market. These companies will be able to provide a level of expertise that is unmatched by other companies, as well as allow you to get value for your money.

Companies like this are good because they can restructure their fees so that they are competitively priced with other companies yet do not compromise on quality service. They will also take care of any maintenance issues, which again helps give you peace of mind and superior service with a minimal upfront cost.

Finding an established company that can provide you with the type of service you are looking for is essential. They can offer several different services, making vacation rentals on Oahu much easier. 

The world has changed, and your business needs to change with it. How vacation rental properties are marketed and listed is changing, as well as how vacation homeowners take care of their investments. If you are new to this, you may find it rather daunting or suspect something is incorrect. Do not worry because the things that you have learned about in this article will enable you to get started in a very successful manner. Just remember that you need to do your research before you decide on purchasing a rentable vacation home in Oahu or renting out an Oahu vacation home. Not only should you look for something that is in an area that meets your needs, but if it is not, then don’t force yourself into buying a vacation home in Oahu based on vague feelings. If a property is not in an area that meets your needs (i.e., an unsheltered beach), then pass on it; they are not meant to be, so don’t force yourself into making a purchase you aren’t sure about.  Also, be sure to pay attention to what each area has to offer and take the time to compare them with each other.

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