Financial

Maui Property Tax Deferral

People owning property on Maui will have a little longer to pay their property taxes without penalty. Mayor Michael Victorino has authorized a 60-day deferral of the 10 percent penalty for Real Property Taxes due on Feb. 20, 2021. Assessment of the penalty will be deferred through April 21, 2021, to help with the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Taxpayers may make Real Property Tax payments from Feb. 20 to April 21, 2021, without incurring the 10 percent penalty. However, the standard [...]

Insurance Rate Increase Projections for 2021 and Beyond

Has your property insurance gone up for your association? If it hasn't yet, it may be soon. Many factors go into insurance rate increases. This article provides a good overview. Reprinted from the Community Associations Institute, Hawaii Chapter, Quarterly Newsletter, Oct, 2020. By Joshua German For many community associations, their property insurance has been and will be seeing large rate increases. The biggest reason for these rate increases is the cost of reinsurance. Reinsurance is insuranc [...]

Maui Vacation Rental Occupancy Dismal in November

Even though vacation rentals outpaced hotel occupancy in November, numbers are still low, according to the latest data released last week by the Hawaii Tourism Authority. According to HTA’s monthly Hawaii Vacation Rental Performance Report, vacation rentals throughout the state were just under 32% occupied last month, but Maui County's figures dropped even lower than that. For comparison, rental units were 69% occupied across the state in November of 2019. The occupancy rate reflects a unit supp [...]

Airbnb Goes Public During a Pandemic

It’s been a whirlwind year for Airbnb. At the start of 2020, the home-sharing vacation rental company was sitting on billions in cash and was planning a direct listing on the stock market. The pandemic wiped out 90% of bookings, and many were pondering if the company would survive. But bounce back it did, thanks in part to consumers taking “staycations” over the summer. Airbnb filed for its long-awaited public offering on Monday, revealing its past performance, revenue data and trajectory. Some [...]

The State of Hawaii’s Vacation Rental Market

Mid-October's return of tourism could not happen soon enough for Hawaii's suffering vacation rental market. Hawaii Tourism Authority reports that vacation rental units were only 8.8% occupied during the month of September. With the holiday season approaching, hopefully those with vacation rentals will start to seem some positive returns.   According to HTA’s monthly Hawaii Vacation Rental Performance Report, the September, 2020 figure marks a 61 percentage point drop compared to the same month i [...]

Businesses, Commercial Leases and Hardship

COVID-19 is affecting markets differently. While residential real estate seems to be holding somewhat steady in Hawaii, commercial real estate, and the businesses that lease commercial properties, are not faring so well. On Maui, we've lost quite a few restaurants, along with businesses in other categories. Here's an update from Janis Magin, Senior Editor of Pacific Business News: "More than 80% of Hawaii businesses expect their revenue to decrease this year and in 2021 because of the Covid-19 p [...]

Should HOAs Use Reserve Funds to Fill a Budget Gap?

COVID-19 has brought economic hardships to individuals and businesses across the world. Community associations are no exception. For example, there are increased cleaning and maintenance protocols, and higher expenses along with it. At the same time, dues collection can be challenging. Owners cringe at special assessments. Communities may be looking at reserve funds to cover some of these expenses. Reserve funds are typically set up to prepare for future expenses. However, with hardships occurri [...]

Maui: A Look Back at 2019

While not a full list of the all of the happenings and news on the island in 2019, Here are some of the headlines that attracted the most attention. Blazin’ hot. Even though 2019 was the Chinese year of the pig, the year may be better remembered as the year of fire. Weather, including record breaking heat, combined with fallow fields contributed to blazes across 25,000 acres- more than five times as many as in 2018. Growing green business. Maui Brewing Company was recognized for investing over [...]

Reducing HOA Property Risks

Amenities add value to communities. Having a place to gather, play tennis or other recreation activities can be the centerpiece of the neighborhood on Maui. And since all members chip in through HOA fees, perks can be provided at a reasonable cost. However, amenities are not without risk A Homeowners Association is open to liabilities providing such amenities. It’s important to be fully aware of risks and take appropriate steps to minimize them. It may mean saving a lot of money down the road. [...]

Employers: Are you ready for payroll and related changes in 2020?

There are numerous payroll changes for 2020, mostly on the Federal level. You can toss out the old Form W-4- there’s a new one. 2020 is a leap year, which may throw off payroll calendars. Finally, there are a few interesting state laws taking effect in the upcoming year. While the new Hawaii laws are not directly tied to payroll, they may have an impact on personnel. Federal Changes FICA Taxes Social Security tax For 2020, employers and employees must each pay Social Security tax at 6.2%, up to [...]

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