Falling in love with a sunny island like Oahu is easy to do, but buying a home in Hawaii can be daunting for those who want to live here. And with the rise in remote work, living in Oahu is possible for many more people than ever before. But many would-be buyers wisely choose to rent in Hawaii before they purchase property since a 30, 60 or even 90-day rental can provide potential buyers with insight into an area that can only be discovered by living like a local. If you are planning on renting in Hawaii before buying your dream island property, renting a property in a neighborhood that you might want to live in permanently can be a great idea. You might love the area and be ready to purchase your dream home after renting, or you might discover that another area is a better fit for your lifestyle and needs. But finding a rental you love is a great starting point for buying a home in Hawaii so follow these tips to make the most of your rental home.
Decide What Matters Most
Before signing on the dotted line with a rental property, make sure you know what type of environment is important to you so you can secure a property that meets your needs.
- How close is the beach? Although the ocean is never very far away no matter where you live in Hawaii, you may prefer for your rental to be right by the beach, closer to town or something in between. Choosing a rental that meets this preference can help you decide on the right property for you when buying a home in Hawaii.
- How close are the schools and businesses I need? Your rental should be convenient to the life you plan to live, so checking out the schools your kids will attend as well as the proximity to grocery stores, restaurants and other businesses you will need regularly is important.
- Do nearby roadways cause noise? If you are seeking a Zen-like living experience, be sure to consider the impact of nearby highways or other trafficked areas on a potential rental. Visit the area during peak traffic times to discover if you can live with the regular noise level of a rental neighborhood.
- Can you live with the weather? Everyone thinks of Hawaii as perpetually sunny, but the truth is that some areas are damper and experience more rain than other parts of the state.
- Are the services you need close enough? Renting in Hawaii might mean living in a more remote area, a good distance from hospitals, clinics and emergency services. Make sure you are comfortable with how far away your rental property is located if you need these types of services.
- Does the neighborhood meet your expectations? Decide what you want – or are willing to compromise on – in your dream rental neighborhood. Some people don’t mind having neighbors close by while others want to live with a little bit of space between homes. Another neighborhood factor to consider is if the land is sloping or flat since that will affect not only the look of the home but how easy it is to access during all weather.
- Do any other outside factors affect the neighborhood? You may also want to think about the proximity of a potential rental home neighborhood to waste pumping stations or other types of locations that might impact how it smells in the neighborhood. Check out maps to see where the nearest locations are to your potential rental and ask your real estate professional to verify if any are nearby if you suspect a potential smell issue that will affect your home.
Try Before You Buy
While this may seem obvious, make sure that your rental experience helps you to narrow down where you look for homes to purchase. Finding a rental property with qualities you can live with in a neighborhood that mirrors the kind of area you hope to live in will give you a good idea of what to expect when you commit to buying a home in Hawaii. So while you may have to compromise on some home details when choosing a rental, keeping in mind the key elements that make a neighborhood feel like home to you will help you later on when you are ready to buy a home. You may have always imagined that you wanted a home with a distant view of the beach but living in your rental home helps you to see that you really longed for a home just steps from the sandy beach. Or your idea of living in a neighborhood far away from the hustle and bustle of businesses and restaurants wasn’t quite as tranquil and a little bit more inconvenient than you had expected. Renting in Hawaii gives you a chance to learn what you need and want in a home on the island as well as a chance to find the perfect spot to call home.
Finding Your Own Personal Hawaiian Paradise
With so many stunning properties around Oahu, it is tempting to jump right into buying a home. But one of the biggest perks of renting before buying a home in Hawaii is that you don’t have to make a permanent choice about your home right away. Working with a trusted real estate professional can help you find the right rental property and eventually the perfect home to call yours forever.