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10 Proven Strategies to Save Money When Buying a Home in Hawaii

Updated: Nov 28, 2023

Dreaming of owning a piece of paradise in Hawaii is a goal for many, but the high cost of living in the Aloha State can be intimidating. However, with the right strategies, you can make your dream of owning a home in Hawaii a reality without breaking the bank. In this article, we will explore ten proven strategies to save money when buying a home in Hawaii while ensuring your investment is well worth it.

Research Thoroughly

Before you start your home-buying journey, take the time to research Hawaii's real estate market. Understand the local neighborhoods, property values, and market trends. Knowledge is power, and it can help you make more informed decisions and potentially save money. As a realtor who has helped over 300 buyers find homes on Oahu, I would be more than happy to assist you.

Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

Getting pre-approved for a mortgage gives you a clear understanding of your budget and helps you avoid looking at homes that are out of your price range. It also strengthens your position when negotiating with sellers. It is important to note that not all lenders are created equal! Make sure you do your research. Want to know the difference between a mortgage broker and a direct lender (and which is better for you)? Click here.

Consider Different Locations

Hawaii offers a diverse range of locations with varying price points. While coastal properties are desirable, you can often find more affordable options inland. Explore different neighborhoods to find the best value for your budget.

Purchase a Fixer-Upper

Consider buying a fixer-upper. While these properties may need some work, they often come with a lower price tag. With some sweat equity and renovations, you can increase the property's value over time. Oahu doesn’t have a lot of new development, and so many homes you may be looking at will need a degree of updating. Don’t let that concern you, it can be a great opportunity!

Attend Open Houses

Visit open houses to get a feel for the market and what's available. You might come across motivated sellers or properties that have been on the market for a while, which can lead to negotiation opportunities.

Negotiate Effectively

Don't be afraid to negotiate. A skilled real estate agent can help you navigate this process. Negotiating the price, closing costs, or home inspection repairs can result in substantial savings.

Investigate Government Assistance Programs

Hawaii offers various government programs and incentives to assist homebuyers. These programs can help lower your upfront costs, reduce your mortgage interest rate, or provide down payment assistance.

Avoid High Closing Costs

Shop around for title insurance, homeowners’ insurance, and other closing costs. If you are a nurse, firefighter, police, teacher, military etc, check to see if there are discounts for you!

Shop Around for Insurance and Utilities

After purchasing your home, don't forget to shop around for homeowner's insurance and utility providers. Finding the best rates can save you a significant amount of money each year.


If you are military or a veteran, make sure you understand the enormous benefit of the VA loan. Here is a great overview.


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