Maui council plans to phase out short-term vacation rentals



MAUI (HawaiiNewsNow) – Maui County Council plans to phase out all short-term rentals in apartment neighborhoods on the island.

“We have far too many tourists for our infrastructure to handle and we are trying to stabilize the situation,” said West Maui City Councilor Tamara Paltin.

If Paltin is proposal happening, this would affect more than 7,000 vacation rentals on Vallée Island.

“It was actually a hotel’s commitment to workforce housing that was ultimately converted to short-term rental,” Paltin said. “So this is also a big part of our problem, these units that were designed as housing for the workforce converting into short-term rentals.”

Paltin proposes to phase out these units as they are sold to create more units available for residential use and generate much-needed affordable housing.

“We really cannot get out of this housing crisis. So part of that could be unlocking houses for locals, ”she said.

Jack Nicoletti is a real estate agent in Maui who works with many vacation rental owners. He says it doesn’t make sense financially.

“The property we owned, when we first bought it, we weren’t residents here, and I was paying close to $ 6,000 a year in property taxes. I’ve lived here for a little over three years and it’s our primary residence, and I’m paying less than $ 1,200, ”said Nicoletti.

“The maintenance fees that we pay alone in these condos are $ 900, $ 800, $ 1000, $ 1100 per month… how can that become affordable housing for someone? “

Paltin says it’s a move the county can afford.

“For years, we’ve invested about $ 4 million a year in the Maui Visitors Bureau, trying to get people to come to Maui. And what we’ve really seen in the pandemic is that we can’t stop them from coming to Maui. So why are we spending $ 4 million telling people to come here? “

Paltin hopes to open this proposal to public testimony in his committee in the coming months.

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