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Ask the Mayor: Why Are My Condo Taxes So High?

Posted March 12, 2017, 12:00 PM HST Updated March 13, 2017, 12:12 PM HST
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Photo by Wendy Osher.

Mayor Alan Arakawa answers some of the questions submitted to his staff.

Submit your own questions about County of Maui programs, services, operations or policies to Mayor Alan Arakawa at AskTheMayor@mauicounty.gov, 270-7855 or mail them to 200 S. High Street, 9th Floor, Wailuku, HI 96793.

Questions submitted will be considered for inclusion in the “Ask the Mayor” column.

Mayor Arakawa,

Q: I was shocked to open my mortgage bill and find that my real property taxes had increased my overall payment by nearly $100 each month! I’ve lived in my residential condo in Kīhei since 1987 and am dismayed that it costs so much to live here as a full-time, self-employed, tax-paying resident.

After speaking with a county staffer, I learned that I have not had a homeowner exemption on my condo so am being charged at a much higher hotel/resort rate.

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Isn’t the homeowner exemption something I should get automatically as a long-time resident?

A: No, the homeowner exemption is not automatic; even long-time residents such as yourself need to apply initially for the exemption, and provide proof of residency here (at least 270 calendar days out of the year) in order to qualify. This helps weed out the part-time residents who should not qualify for the same tax benefits as full-time residents.

You also need to make sure you file state taxes and keep your real property taxes paid up; if you are delinquent, you could lose your homeowner exemption.

For more information, visit www.mauicounty.gov/RPT and click on “Tax Relief Programs.”

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