Monday, February 6, 2012

Moving to Kauai

Moving to Kauai

We have been getting a few emails from people asking questions about moving to Kauai, and if we like it. Of course we like it, there is nothing not to like! We do miss friends and family, but all in all it has been a great experience. 

The thought of moving to Kauai can go from exciting and joyful, to overwhelming and stressful in an instant. Stay calm and focused, moving to Kauai, one of the most beautiful places in the word may be a huge decision, but in the end it will all be worth it. If you are relocating for a job, or moving to just get away, there are a few requirements and arrangements that need to be considered prior to your launch into the Pacific Ocean.

Living Expenses

It is always assumed that moving to Hawaii means higher expenses and cost of living. If this is truly a concern for you, just know that if you are willing to make concessions you will find that the cost of living is not much more here then what your used to at home, especially if you have lived in a big city. Renting is going to be more expensive if you don’t look for deals. Expect to pay around $1000/month plus utilities unless you keep an expert eye on craigslist. Your best bet is to buy a home on Kauai. If you can afford the down payment, you will end up paying the same, or less than a rent payment. Invest in your future, and buy a home! With the Kauai real estate about the turn the corner, it is a great time to buy if you can afford it.

Save money on food by shopping at places like Wal-Mart and Costco. Buy what’s on sale. Almost all food is imported, so shop wisely and eat out less often. Food is over all more expensive, but if you are a savvy shopper, and buy sale items, you will only see a marginal increase in your bill.


When deciding on a place to live on Kauai, you will want to ask yourself a few basic questions:

    1. Do you want to live walking distance from the ocean? Or a 5-15 minute drive? 
    2. Do you want to life close to a main town with all your amenities? 
    3. Is your location restricted by a job?These are all things to keep in mind, Here a list of popular Kauai towns that may be of interest to you.

Kauai Real Estate
Search Kauai Real Estate by Town

Important Personal Documents

When you begin packing for your move to Hawaii, you need to be sure that all of your personal documents are placed in a easy to find spot in your carry-on. Make sure you have passports, birth certificates, ID’s, social security cards, medical records, etc. Never put these items anywhere but your carry-on. The loss of luggage is a real problem, and an area of concern especially if you are switching airlines during your flight.

Your old Junk

When moving to Hawaii you should keep in mind that many places here are fully furnished. This does not mean just your couch and bedroom furniture, you can also easily find a temporary place to live that will have everything including cookware, plates, bowls, silverware, towels, etc. If you are planning to buy a home before your arrival, make sure to tell your Kauai Real Estate Agent  that you want to include all furnishings with your offer. State specifically what you want, and you can get it! So, pack light and bring only what you truly need.
You will need to decide what needs to ship, and what needs to be sold or disposed of.  High ticket items can be difficult to part with, but moving half way around the world means a starting over to a certain degree. Don’t let this stress you out. The last thing you need is to be concerned about your JUNK!  Furniture and other bulky items should go to friends and family, or sold. Often, the cost of shipping these larger items is higher than their replacement value. The smaller items you may want to ship, or pay the extra luggage fee at the airport. $30 may sound like a lot for an extra bag on the plane, but if your items are under 50lbs, you will some money on shipping costs.

Transporting Vehicles to Hawaii

If you have a newer vehicle, you are probably going to want to ship if over. Although it is going to cost you about $1000 from the west coast, you will not have to worry about buying a car when you get to Kauai.  Before you schedule your shipment, you will need to get your documents in order.  If your car is not paid off, you are likely to need a letter from your creditor acknowledging that they know the vehicle is being shipped. Be sure to follow all of the shipping company’s requirements. Most require that your gas tank be half empty, and no personal items be left in the car.

Moving to Hawaii with Pets

If your pets are lucky enough to get a plane ticket, and are moving with you to Hawaii, you need to be aware of the strict state law requiring a brief quarantine of your animal. When bringing your pet to the state, you will need to have your pet’s rabies-shot records, and any other documentation you have to minimize the time your pet will be in quarantine. Your pet must have had two shots during his or her lifetime and the recent shot cannot be less than 90 days before arriving on Kauai. Original or certified copies of these records are required. Your pet may also need to be mirco-chipped, but check the Department of Agriculture's website for up to date information on importing a pet into the state of Hawaii.

Cory and Emilie