The year was 1795 and the war was for control of the Hawaiian Islands. The lone holdout was Kalanikupule, king of the island of Oahu. The Big Island's King Kamehameha I landed his war canoes on what is now Waikiki Beach and led his soldiers more than six miles inland into what would become the bloodiest and most decisive battle in the war, the Battle of Nu'uanu. To the victor went the spoils and Kamehameha relocated his royal court from the Big Island to Honolulu to realize his dream of uniting Hawaii's tribes under a single ruler.
What a difference 220 years makes. Today, the word "Honolulu" conjures images of the ultimate tropical paradise, even for the more than 400,000 residents who call it home. Easy access to a plethora of fun activities (e.g., surfing, kayaking, outrigger canoeing and a myriad of other water sports), a laid-back urban culture, delicious Hawaiian cuisine, superb arts and entertainment and, of course, proximity to stunningly beautiful nature make Honolulu perhaps the most unique of the 75 Rental Ranking Report metros.
Downtown Honolulu, located a stone's throw away from the Pacific Ocean, is both Hawaii's financial and economic center and home to the state's capital. Fewer than four percent of the city's population actually live downtown and instead live in the surrounding neighborhoods of Manoa, Wilhelmina Rise, Kaimuki, Kahala, Hawaii Kai and others.
Unfortunately, living in paradise isn't cheap. The city's high cost of living - 50 percent higher than the U.S. average - prompts many residents to hold down two jobs and it's not uncommon to find entire families in the same household doing so.
Q2 2015 Honolulu Rental Market Update
Honolulu is unfortunately currently anything but a paradise for rental property investors. True, Honolulu rents are high and growing ever higher; its annual rental price appreciation was a whopping 8.57 percent in Q2 2015, 72 percent higher than the national average for that metric. However, Honolulu's relatively low capitalization rate, 5.35 percent (about 20 percent less than the national average), indicates that to reap high Honolulu rents, rental property investors must pay exorbitantly high prices to acquire rentals.
It's also concerning that Honolulu has a relatively low job growth rate of 1.76 percent (about 13 percent less than the national average for that metric) and a relatively high vacancy rate (about 12 percent greater than the national average). Both these statistics indicate that demand for Honolulu housing might fall in the near future, which would have a negative effect on the returns rental property investors will be able to get there.
All real estate statistics taken into account, Honolulu was found to be the 14th-best market for rental real estate investment in the Western U.S. and 34th-best in the U.S. overall in the Q2 2015 Rental Ranking Report. This is a big improvement over last quarter; Honolulu jumped one spot in the regional rankings and 26 spots in the national rankings.
Q1 2015 Honolulu Rental Market Update
Honolulu's high cost of living greatly impacts its attractiveness for rental real estate investment, as evidenced by its low 15th place ranking in the Western U.S. and 60th place ranking in the U.S. as a whole in the Q1 2015 Rental Ranking Report. Honolulu's cap rate of 5.74 percent was significantly lower than the national average of 7.18 percent last quarter, and median rental prices actually fell 0.56 percent in the year ending in Q1 2015. Honolulu's year-over-year job growth rate, 1.16 percent, was about half that of the national average. Worse still, our Job Availability Index ranked Honolulu 71st in the U.S. out of the 75 Rental Ranking Report metros, indicating that future job growth, a key indicator of future rental housing demand, will also be low in the future.
Despite these harrowing statistics, Honolulu rental property owners can still get solid returns on their investment. Its cap rate of 5.74 percent, while solidly below the U.S. average, is still respectable (especially given Honolulu's high rental prices). What's more, Honolulu's equally-respectable year-over-year property value appreciation rate of 5.53 percent makes it an attractive market for long term gain.
What data is this Rental Ranking Report based on?
To calculate the statistics found in the Q2 2015 Rental Ranking Report, All Property Management gathered data, including the most recent government housing and jobs data, for 75 metros across the United States. Specifically, we looked at home vacancy, capitalization, home value appreciation and job growth rates, changes in rental prices, and the median number of days properties have been on the market to determine which U.S. metros will give investors the highest returns on rental investments. Click here to learn more about the Rental Ranking metrics.
Should I invest in Honolulu rental property?
Thinking about renting out a property in Honolulu? Save time, avoid hassle and maximize your rental income by having a professional property management company operate your rental property for you. Click here to get a free quote from a local property manager or call 877-780-4510 to have the All Property Management staff get quotes for you.
All Property Management specializes in connecting rental property owners with professional property managers in communities across the United States. These property managers help set rental rates, advertise properties, screen and manage tenants, collect rent, manage vendor relationships and ensure compliance with local, state and federal housing regulations. They take the hassle and worry out of managing rental properties - all while maximizing rental property owners' rental incomes.