Author Topic: any mustachians living in Maui?  (Read 2583 times)

evme

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any mustachians living in Maui?
« on: April 28, 2018, 02:38:10 AM »
I recently returned from a trip to Maui and loved it so much that I am looking into the cost of living and whether it would make sense to move there. I am financially independent but work part-time 20 hours/week as I still enjoy my work and can do it from anywhere. My main concern with Maui is the high COL. I currently live on about $30,000/year (own primary residence, no mortgage) in a relatively low COL area (Southern Arizona). How can I figure out what the comparable COL would be in Maui?

P.S. - I am not sure if this is the best sub-forum to post this question under -- if you think it should be under a different category please let me know and/or move the topic, thanks!

dude

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2018, 07:56:35 AM »
amen!  Loved Maui, too!  And want to go back asap. Thought about trying to figure out a way to spend maybe 3 months there, but haven't given it much serious research. But with FIRE coming in a year, I'll probably start digging soon.

acroy

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2018, 08:17:59 AM »
There's a couple MMM's living in the Island. clarkfan1979 is on Kauai
I plan to FIRE to the cheap part of the big island!
good luck!!

evme

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2018, 03:45:46 PM »
amen!  Loved Maui, too!  And want to go back asap. Thought about trying to figure out a way to spend maybe 3 months there, but haven't given it much serious research. But with FIRE coming in a year, I'll probably start digging soon.

Nice, please post again if you find any good numbers on the COL and related info.

chasesfish

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2018, 08:52:22 AM »
I don't live there (yet), but rented a one bedroom place in a residential neighborhood of Kihei for just under two weeks to get the experience and analyze this.  Its on my consideration list, especially if we have kids and when they get near school-age and have to settle down and set roots somewhere.  I like Maui because its a bit more developed (and probably less isolating) than the Big Island or Kauai, but is not the urban sprawl and expense of Oahu.

Here's my analysis:

- Housing is the biggest expense, $800,000 will get you a nice, newer 3bd, 1500sqft home.  "Average" house prices are a little overstated because many of those include an Ohana or part of the home that gets rented out.  If you're willing to deal with being a short-term landlord or sharing a portion of your property, the housing cost can drop.

- Refrigerated/Frozen Food items probably come next in cost.  If it 1) Has to come from the mainland and 2) Requires refrigeration/freezing, its extremely expensive.  Outside of that, I didn't find food to be all that expensive.  Kihei has a Safeway and many of the prices (outside of refrigerated/frozen food produced on the mainland) were not all that different than our Safeway in Dallas.  They also ran the loss leader sales.   Costco seemed to be the same price as Dallas + the cost to ship.  So lightweight/small items were barely noticeable on price, heavy/bulky items cost more.   Adjust your diet accordingly.

- Fuel/Electricity is more expensive, it all gets brought in by tankers.  Costco wins again for gasoline.  You then have to be okay with a temperature that moves around, if you want to A/C your house to 68 degrees all the time, live in Arizona.  Most people had shaded areas outdoors they used and windows on all four sides of the house.   We were staying probably 50ft above sea level, some of the most popular housing developments in that area were a couple hundred feet up with more wind exposure.

- Travel back to the mainland will be costly.  Maui is a little better than the Big Island or Kauai in that it has more flights direct to the mainland vs. having to pay Hawaiian air to take you to Honolulu then fly back.  Travel hack for airlines miles.  Maui has direct flights into DFW and American miles are one of the easiest to accumulate.

- You always have the option to go do something part-time, there are lots of lowish-paying tourism gigs that'll hire you if you can speak professionally to someone and show up on time.   Its amazing how much $10,000 or $15,000 in earned income can tilt the cost of living analysis. 

I hope that helps.




WalkaboutStache

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2018, 08:16:45 PM »
There's a couple MMM's living in the Island. clarkfan1979 is on Kauai
I plan to FIRE to the cheap part of the big island!
good luck!!

That is a good Hawaiian plan, but don't go too cheap.  Lava zone 3 is ok (Mountain View, Kurtistown, the former cane plantation communities along the Hamakua coast are ok).  The folks who went really cheap and into lava zones 2 and 1 are the ones who got literally burned this week.  Actually, even some relatively wealthy communities on the waterfront are gone as of yesterday.

Kona condos might work too - I never really looked into that.  Hilo condos are dirt cheap and safe, albeit fairly run down.

I agree with you.  You get much of the nice stuff from the other islands, minus the traffic and the COL.  Still not LCOL, but reasonable. 

Telecaster

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2018, 09:09:59 PM »
Posting to follow.  It is my secret dream to become a gentleman coffee farmer on Hawaii. 

secondcor521

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2018, 09:11:45 PM »

chasesfish

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #8 on: June 06, 2018, 09:01:44 PM »
Posting to follow.  It is my secret dream to become a gentleman coffee farmer on Hawaii.

I shared this dream as well.  I think lack of advanced healthcare on the big island will keep us away from this now unfortunately

Nords

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2018, 01:17:14 AM »
@Nords ?
Thanks, 2Cor521!

I recently returned from a trip to Maui and loved it so much that I am looking into the cost of living and whether it would make sense to move there. I am financially independent but work part-time 20 hours/week as I still enjoy my work and can do it from anywhere. My main concern with Maui is the high COL. I currently live on about $30,000/year (own primary residence, no mortgage) in a relatively low COL area (Southern Arizona). How can I figure out what the comparable COL would be in Maui?

P.S. - I am not sure if this is the best sub-forum to post this question under -- if you think it should be under a different category please let me know and/or move the topic, thanks!
Scanning the 420 hits on "Maui" in the forum's database, you might try sending PMs to @sixup and @Jester22.  I'm not sure whether either of them still lives there.

On the blogger side, the entrepreneur (and author and speaker) Kimanzi Constable lives somewhere on Maui:
https://kconstable.com/why-i-returned-to-maui-hawaii/

We've spent some time on Maui, as has @englishteacheralex .  Your best option is to move out here for a month or two and visit all the neighborhoods to figure out how to live like a local.  Start with AirBnB and VRBO, upgrade to a small apartment or rental condo, and look at the places off the beaten path like Makawao, Paia, Napili, or even Ma'alaea.

We can all offer plenty of advice on house-hacking, bicycling, Costco gas, and farmer's markets, but it's more crucial for you to see how you acclimate to the culture.  The islands have had plenty of people show up with bright-eyed optimism and live here for a few years, only to return to the Mainland for family or other personal reasons.

Posting to follow.  It is my secret dream to become a gentleman coffee farmer on Hawaii.
I shared this dream as well.  I think lack of advanced healthcare on the big island will keep us away from this now unfortunately
I don't know what type of advanced healthcare you have in mind, but it's worth keeping an eye on the Big Island. 

The VA is slowly planning to build a clinic there.  Telemedicine finally has enough bandwidth, especially for MRIs and CAT scans.  They're easily shared with radiologists at Queens and other Oahu sites.  Another resident on a neighbor island is routinely able to fly to Oahu (courtesy of Kaiser's free plane ticket) for specialist referrals.  And for emergencies, there's a regular air ambulance service from the Big Island to Queens.  They get to practice all too often with the Soldiers & Marines training at the Pohakuloa range.

However there's still an urgent need for more facilities to handle patient dialysis and diabetes monitoring/treatment on all the neighbor islands.

evme

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #10 on: June 07, 2018, 03:07:33 AM »
thanks @Nords -- appreciate your input

chasesfish

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #11 on: June 07, 2018, 06:50:59 AM »
@Nords - Access to a neuroradiologist plus a neurologist with a fellowship in headache medicine right now.   My better half is 10 months into recovery from some complications from a nasty injury.  Access is getting better in Honolulu too due to some programs ramping up their fellowships. 

We've not written off Hawaii, but need to spend 6+ weeks around the winter after we retire before committing.  Advantage of having money and time, there's no rush


Nords

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2018, 08:27:50 AM »
@Nords - Access to a neuroradiologist plus a neurologist with a fellowship in headache medicine right now.   My better half is 10 months into recovery from some complications from a nasty injury.  Access is getting better in Honolulu too due to some programs ramping up their fellowships. 
I understand.  Kaiser flies patients to Oahu because there's just not enough population on the neighbor islands to support specialists... unless they want to live on a neighbor island.

There might not be enough population in the entire state to support some specialists.

chasesfish

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #13 on: June 08, 2018, 06:14:47 AM »
@Nords - One of the medical lessons we got out of this:  Hope you don't get something where two of the three most famous researchers of the medical condition are still alive and teaching!   Its not even about the specialist, its also about how recently did the specialist get out of school, how good is their continuing ed, and where was their post-doc training.

I still want to learn to surf from you one day!  Hopefully my better half will be up for an airplane again soon.

Nords

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #14 on: June 08, 2018, 09:25:24 AM »
@Nords - One of the medical lessons we got out of this:  Hope you don't get something where two of the three most famous researchers of the medical condition are still alive and teaching!   Its not even about the specialist, its also about how recently did the specialist get out of school, how good is their continuing ed, and where was their post-doc training.

I still want to learn to surf from you one day!  Hopefully my better half will be up for an airplane again soon.
Yikes.  Yeah, that would change my plans about where to live.

Otherwise, I plan to be giving surfing lessons at White Plains Beach for the long term, so take your time.

amirh

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #15 on: July 22, 2018, 03:18:04 PM »
I'm here in the summers with my family. I run my business remotely during the morning and evening and surf during the day.

evme

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2018, 03:55:20 PM »
I'm here in the summers with my family. I run my business remotely during the morning and evening and surf during the day.

Nice. Do you guys rent a house/condo/do AirBnb/VRBO/timeshare?

amirh

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Re: any mustachians living in Maui?
« Reply #17 on: July 23, 2018, 01:29:20 PM »
Nice. Do you guys rent a house/condo/do AirBnb/VRBO/timeshare?

First year, we rented via AirBNB. Next year via VRBO. Now we have our own little house which we bought. It was difficult and expensive to rent a good place for several months.

Now that we own a house, we see the flip side of it. When we're here, we live in our house. When we're away, we rent it. Demand for good rental houses is high, so we can pick great tenants.