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Old 12-31-2011, 01:05 AM
 
Location: K.T.
433 posts, read 1,000,648 times
Reputation: 215

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Wow....$750/mo in electricity is pretty extreme. Doesn't quite make up for the basically free property tax, but it definitely cuts into it with bills that high. And Hawaii gets no break from the heat...it's still in the 80's even at New Years. I will have to run some numbers and calculate all my normal expenses and compare them.

Water, trash, electricity, gas, lawn care, internet, etc...
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Old 12-31-2011, 01:27 AM
Status: "80 and heavy rain! 12/22" (set 21 hours ago)
 
Location: Kailua
5,427 posts, read 4,552,788 times
Reputation: 2153
Quote:
Originally Posted by lane_change View Post
Wow....$750/mo in electricity is pretty extreme. Doesn't quite make up for the basically free property tax, but it definitely cuts into it with bills that high. And Hawaii gets no break from the heat...it's still in the 80's even at New Years. I will have to run some numbers and calculate all my normal expenses and compare them.

Water, trash, electricity, gas, lawn care, internet, etc...
Yep, the AC is on right now. You can of course mitigate that expense with a smaller property, solar, or using a fan - the windward side is a little cooler with more of a breeze - where I'm at, I need AC. Solar isn't an option for me but maybe others can share experiences of how the electric went down with panels - and a 3,000+ sq ft house is above average in Oahu.
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Old 12-31-2011, 01:45 AM
 
1,356 posts, read 981,951 times
Reputation: 1019
The question is, do you really need AC in Hawai'i? None of my family or friends who live there, have AC. They just open up the windows!
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Old 12-31-2011, 02:02 AM
 
Location: Maui County, HI
4,134 posts, read 3,274,164 times
Reputation: 3212
Quote:
Originally Posted by lane_change View Post
Wow....$750/mo in electricity is pretty extreme. Doesn't quite make up for the basically free property tax, but it definitely cuts into it with bills that high. And Hawaii gets no break from the heat...it's still in the 80's even at New Years. I will have to run some numbers and calculate all my normal expenses and compare them.

Water, trash, electricity, gas, lawn care, internet, etc...
When you're used to 80 it's not hot, unless it's also humid. The only time I wish I had central air was on the hot humid nights with no breeze. Otherwise it normally gets cool at night... usually high 60s or low 70s. But I'm on the leeward side of Maui. Honolulu is wetter and more humid. Like I said, it's like Houston.
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Old 12-31-2011, 07:17 AM
 
Location: K.T.
433 posts, read 1,000,648 times
Reputation: 215
Well I know in Houston I live with the A/C on most of the time because I want to house to feel comfortable since it is always hot and humid outside. In San Diego, the A/C is much less required throughout the year, only on hot summer days, but the breeze and the cooler 70 degree climate with low humidity keep the need for A/C to a minimum. The only reason I asked about the sq/ft was to get a comparison dollar for dollar against Houston. I think we would end up in a house smaller than 3000 sq/ft in Hawaii...probably closer to 2000sq/ft, which would be half of what I have now. Plus I would assume a 1 story since it is much more efficient to cool than a 2 story with lots of vaulted ceilings and dead air above you to cool down.
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Old 12-31-2011, 12:32 PM
 
Location: Maui County, HI
4,134 posts, read 3,274,164 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lane_change View Post
Well I know in Houston I live with the A/C on most of the time because I want to house to feel comfortable since it is always hot and humid outside. In San Diego, the A/C is much less required throughout the year, only on hot summer days, but the breeze and the cooler 70 degree climate with low humidity keep the need for A/C to a minimum. The only reason I asked about the sq/ft was to get a comparison dollar for dollar against Houston. I think we would end up in a house smaller than 3000 sq/ft in Hawaii...probably closer to 2000sq/ft, which would be half of what I have now. Plus I would assume a 1 story since it is much more efficient to cool than a 2 story with lots of vaulted ceilings and dead air above you to cool down.
Since the temperature is usually good outside, you want airflow not dead air. My ohana (that is what they call the little guest houses people rent out here) has a solar powered fan that keeps air moving through the space under the roof. I think that helps a lot. You also want more windows that open as big as possible... tilting or louvred vs sliding. I'd rather have 2 story because that way you can have more window area per unit of volume, plus relatively less roof area being heated by the sun.
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Old 12-31-2011, 12:39 PM
 
Location: Maui County, HI
4,134 posts, read 3,274,164 times
Reputation: 3212
I guess Honolulu isn't any more humid than where I live

Honolulu:




Kihei:
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Old 12-31-2011, 03:27 PM
 
Location: Maui County, HI
4,134 posts, read 3,274,164 times
Reputation: 3212
My brother in Houston asked me if the low property tax offsets the state income tax, so I did a little math and told him this:

If I was making $60k I'd be paying like $2665 state income tax, and if my house was worth $400k I'd pay only $250 prop tax. On a $200k house in Texas I'd be paying $6000 prop tax. So the total tax is twice as much in Texas, and that's for a cheap house. It's a myth that Texas is a low tax state
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Old 12-31-2011, 03:53 PM
Status: "80 and heavy rain! 12/22" (set 21 hours ago)
 
Location: Kailua
5,427 posts, read 4,552,788 times
Reputation: 2153
Quote:
Originally Posted by winkosmosis View Post
My brother in Houston asked me if the low property tax offsets the state income tax, so I did a little math and told him this:

If I was making $60k I'd be paying like $2665 state income tax, and if my house was worth $400k I'd pay only $250 prop tax. On a $200k house in Texas I'd be paying $6000 prop tax. So the total tax is twice as much in Texas, and that's for a cheap house. It's a myth that Texas is a low tax state
Good news, I just saved you $1,700 in property taxes - the Harris County calculator at $4,280 a year. Still ridiculous - but you can deduct the taxes from your federal income tax.

The biggest difference I see for you wink is you could probably make $60,000 a year in Houston and that is not likely for you in Maui. And that $200K house in Houston is like a $500K house in Maui.

Harris County Texas Property Taxes - 2011

Last edited by whtviper1; 12-31-2011 at 04:02 PM..
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Old 01-01-2012, 02:11 PM
 
Location: Hilo
97 posts, read 141,308 times
Reputation: 94
Costs like property tax and electricity vary from island to island. On the Big Island, property tax is $5.55 per $1000 of value for residential and electricity averages about 46 cents per kwh. We have a 1900 sq. ft. house in Hilo with an average electricity bill of $75 - just 2 of us but we're home all the time as I work online. No heat, no AC and hot water from the sun makes a huge difference. Along with a few lifestyle changes, we've gone from using an average of 1000 kwh per month on the mainland to 163 kwh per month in Hawaii.
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