With a singular purpose of protecting the American Dream of homeownership, over 50 REALTORS® from Hawaii (including seven from our local trade association) joined over 13,000 REALTORS® from around the country as they rallied on the lawn of the Washington Monument on May 17th.
Many impassioned speeches were given including one by a Hispanic REALTOR® from California who discussed his family’s journey as immigrant tenants in a new country. “Nobody dreams of being a tenant!” he said. Mealoha said that it’s a statement of simple truth that was so profound she will remember it forever. During that same mid-year conference, Lawrence Yun, NAR’s Chief Economist, said that despite the economic downturn, the average American homeowner still has a net worth of approximately $60,000 while the average renter has a net worth of just over $4,000. This is a true testament to the importance of making homeownership a reality for Americans.
It is sometimes difficult to believe in today’s market which still seems filled with as many negative reports as the press can fit into their daily reports. It does, however, serve as a clear reminder that homeownership puts many on the path toward financial stability and success. When it comes to locating your piece of paradise, there are two keys to success. The first is to team up with as busy an agent as you can find (busy agents are busy for a reason) and to understand how simple locating property can be.
Our real property tax system is based on a simple numeric system that makes it easy to locate property. It’s so convenient that it is commonly used in every facet of any real property transaction. When you own property on Hawaii Island, it’s the Tax Map Key (TMK) number that you’ll want to memorize. TMK numbers are a series of 5 numbers. If you live on Hawaii Island, you are in tax division 3. (Oahu is Div 1, Maui/Molokai/Lanai are Div 2, Kauai is 4). Each island is further numbered and divided in a logical sequence. For instance, properties located in Hilo are zone 2. Kaumana is either Section 3 or 5. The Plat (vs. plot which is a plan showing the proposed location of property improvements) is next, followed by the specific parcel. Kaumana City, for example, contains Plats 28 to 32. A TMK in that subdivision might read 3/2-5-28, followed by the parcel number. You can download current plat maps from our county website (www.co.hawaii.hi.us). Remember, the underlined number on a Plat map is the Parcel number, which is the last number of the TMK number. The circled number is part of the legal description (the lot number).
Just like finding your agent can be as simple as interviewing the busiest agent possible, finding your parcel using our simple TMK system can make your property search a piece of cake!
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