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Proposed Vacation Rental Legislation in Hawaii

If I may put my two cents in? It’s apparent to me there are two driving factors in the proposed legislation in Hawaii to force vacation rental owners to use a licensed property manager. Right now they are only required to have an on-island contact.

The first is the State of Hawaii, who rightly wants their General Excise and Transient Accommodation Taxes paid. I agree! Too many off-island owners feel they can just skip this step. The second driver is the Rental Management Companies who want to control the industry and are using the tax issue to drive their cause. This I don’t agree with.

The Real Estate industry faces the prospect of civil war over this. Those who sell vacation rental units vs. those who manage them.

I don’t see a reason to inhibit owners right to manage their own units per the requirements of the law, but to make management companies the State’s tax collector opens the way for price gouging. This should NOT be allowed to happen!

The solution proposed so far that I like is the mandatory posting of the owner’s GET license number on their rental listing. This makes it easy for the State to check up on VRBO.com, HomeAway.com and other rental outlets. I also know in the County of Maui, owners are to state their property’s use for tax purposes, which is a cross-check if the State had permission to use it.

Other arguments by the management companies about guests getting what they paid for when they arrive, is way over-blown. Every guest writes their comments on that owner’s listing during or after their stay, so if they get a bad review, or no reviews, they don’t get another booking! Simple as that. Self policing and market controlled. Guests don’t need to pay management companies up to 50% more for their stay for police work and tax collection. Many of these companies certainly don’t provide any better cleaning or repair than individuals do, in fact often the quality is worse because owners are not involved.

Keep government out of this and don’t provide management companies the windfall that guests and the industry will ultimately pay for.

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This entry was posted in Hawaii Real Estate, Maui, Real Estate Information, Real Estate Taxes in Hawaii, Taxes and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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