Big Island

Big Island Condos for Buyers Who Do NOT Want a Short-Term Rental

It seems I have written ad nauseam about existing and proposed regulation of Big Island short-term vacation rentals (Transient Accommodation Rentals). Across Hawaiʻi, as in other real estate markets where there are many second home and investment buyers, governments are seeking to impose higher taxes and more stringent regulation of these visitor accommodations (often referred to colloquially as “Airbnb”).

Curiously, I am currently working with several buyers who plan to use their Big Island property only for themselves as full-time residents or to stay part-time and invite family and friends to join them now and then. Some current buyers are looking for a property with two homes, one of which they can rent long-term to a caretaker. So letʻs start with Big Island condo properties that have CC&Rs (covenants and restrictions) limiting rentals to 30 days or longer. Then I can write a second post about listings with two homes on one lot.

fluffy cat rolling on carpet

Condo communities with more full-time owners also tend to have more owners with pets – this resident kitty demanded attention at a recent final walk through

Kona Sea Villas versus Golf Villas at Mauna Lani or Waikoloa Fairways or Beach Villas

Kona Sea Villas is a gated condo community in Kailua Kona with ocean views, built by the developer Sunstone. The floor plans are similar to those at the Golf Villas at Mauna Lani or Waikoloa Beach Villas. At the resort complexes, many of the units are licensed as short-term vacation rentals. But Kona Sea Villas has a minimum 30-day rental policy. It is the kind of community where there are primarily full-time or snowbird residents who know one another and socialize together. In our post-pandemic world, a sense of real community is what many buyers tell me is one of their search criteria, as important as the number of bedrooms, pet-friendly policy or ocean view

sitting area in big island condo with ocean view

The view from the Kona Sea Villas condo home my clients will close on this week – pretty easy to wake up to this view, or to watch the year-round sunsets from your lanai.

By the time my clients close there will be one three-bedroom Kona Sea Villas unit in escrow, and one two-bedroom active listing. With over 12 acres in the condo complex and lot of central open space, Kona Sea Villas actually feels lower density than some single family home communities!

Other Prime Kailua Kona or Keauhou Options With Only Long-Term Rentals Allowed

  • Alii Park Place is another condominium complex with a 30-day minimum rental policy. Located right on Alii Drive, units that are set back on the property feel protected from the bustle, and yet are close to the ocean and Konaʻs small beaches. Two condos currently listed at under $800,000.
  • The Villas at Keauhou Estates are at a sweeping view elevation about Keauhou Bay and the shopping center with minimum rental of 180 days. Single-family homes in the area (at Bay View Estates or Keauhou Estates) are listed at $2.5 – 3.5 million.  The most recent sales of Villas at Keauhou Estates were $1,525,000 to $1,650,000. No active listings, but let me know if you want to be alerted when there are
  • The Pines at Kailua Kona is off the tourist path. Condos in this community tend to sell quickly, especially those with ocean views. Prices under $800,000 – if there were an active listing.

Waikoloa Village – Not Waikoloa Beach Resort – Condominium Options

waikoloa village condos community pool

Community pool at Waikoloa Village is shared by single-family home and condominium residents – along with tennis courts, pickleball, golf course and community rooms

By definition, the resort lifestyle caters to visitors, and the zoning is appropriate for short-term, transient accommodation rentals. Not to be confused with Waikoloa Beach Resort, Waikoloa Village is six miles straight up the hill, with two shopping centers providing supermarket, hardware store, banking and restaurant options. Most Waikoloa Village condominium complexes allow long-term but not short-term rentals. As with single-family homes, Waikoloa Village condominium owners pay dues that include access to the community tennis and pickleball courts and swimming pool.

makana kai condo in waikoloa village big island

Makana Kai at Wehilani is a condominium complex in Waikoloa Village, just six miles from the beach and resort amenities

I have always been partial to Makana Kai at Wehilani, a more recently built condominium complex with steel frame construction. There are currently two active listings, asking $515,000 and $554,000 with low HOA dues. These are highly desirable investment properties as well, with a pool of stable long-term renters who work in the nearby resorts.

If you have specific criteria for a primary residence or second home condominium in a community without short-term rentals, or pure investment property that you do not intend to occupy, I would be happy to discuss these and other options to find the best fit.

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Phoenix Kim

March 21, 2024

Looks wonerful! Send me updated infors.

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