Chapter 21 – Joe Kaniaupio
To Kihei from Haiku
How long have you lived in Kihei?
I’ve lived here for seven years in my single family home.
Where is Kihei, and what’s it like as a community?
I live in upper Kihei, on the mountain side. The area is called Maui Meadows and it’s a high-end area of Kihei, which means there are more custom homes up this way.
Did you have your heart set on Kihei or did you consider buying in other neighborhoods in and around Maui?
As far as Kihei goes, this would be the best part of Kihei. The area I’d like to be is in Kula, which is up higher and has a better view. There you can have a lot more acreage where you can farm and stuff like that.
Is Kihei more of an urban or suburban environment?
The homes around here are on about an acre a lot. Each house has a bit of space. You do have some home that are next to each other, but in general the area out here is mostly spread out.
Do you worry about crime in Kihei?
There have been a few up here. It’d be a small percentage in Maui Meadows. It’s mostly mailbox stealing or small thefts. This year I haven’t heard anything about any crimes.
Was it hard to meet people when you moved to Kihei?
My next door neighbor is a block away, so we don’t see each other much. My neighbors are nice, but we don’t see each other around because we are so spread out.
What’s your commute like?
I do construction– concrete work. I’ve worked on every corner of the whole island. It takes about 45 minutes to get from my area to the west side. The commute is pretty smooth.
Would you have any advice for the newcomer regarding transportation or traffic in Kihei and Maui?
Driving is like any other place. You as the driver need to be respectful to the next driver. You have double lanes on main highways and single lanes on interior roads, and traffic just flows. The worst traffic would be like 20 cars in a row. It’s never going to be bad. When everybody goes to work in the morning, the worst traffic will be like a line of 30 cars.
How has the real estate market changed in the time since you’ve been on the island?
When I first got to this island, it was slow. Since then construction has been booming off and on for years. From then to now the real estate has really gone up. We had the recession but things seem to be back now.
Do you like the quality of life in Kihei?
Oh yeah. Compared to Oahu, Maui is a slower pace. Business-wise the area where I’m at is laid back. There’s no pressure unless you put pressure upon your own self.
What surprised you most about moving to and living in Kihei?
I’m a fisherman by hobby, and I like fishing and Maui has lots of good spots to go fishing. That was one of the best surprises for me. I do mostly shoreline fishing, but I do sometimes go out on charters.
What would you say is the one “can’t miss” event or place that a family living in Kihei and Maui should be sure to experience?
Maui has several things that you have to do. You have to go to Hana, that’s for sure. It’s more like a laid back area. You have to go to ponds, waterfalls, hikes, rainforests. The beaches are great. The scenery is nice. The other place would be Haleakala (House of the Rising Sun). The sunrise is beautiful there.
What places should you avoid if you don’t want to see a lot of tourists?
This island has built itself up for tourism business, so I’m not sure where you can go. There’s so many businesses here—tour guides, tour vans; they overrule everything around here. They take people to private spots and if you don’t want to see tourists you just go to your backyard.
Is there anything that you don’t like about living in Kihei or living in Hawaii?
It is expensive. I wish the wages would go up with the cost of what you buy. It is expensive to buy groceries here.
What advice would you give people who are house hunting in Maui and especially in Kihei?
I would say check out your neighbors. Try driving around midday when everyone is out working so you can travel more quickly. Everyone wants a good view, so go higher for better views. In Maui everyone wants it to be private.
How’s the weather?
Maui is supposed to be the friendly island, but to me it’s more like the windy island. There is a lot of wind. We have some beautiful weather, even when it’s windy. You prepare yourself for where you are going. Lahaina is always hotter, but then some areas are wetter. Mostly it’s always sunny, of course.
“I purchased my first home with Team Lally. Cathy was an absolutely fantastic agent and I would recommend her to anyone! We had very specific needs for our home, and Cathy helped us meet every single one of them. We also were in the need of moving in within 45 days of moving to the island. Cathy made that happen! Team Lally is fantastic. Buy a house!”
“We used Team Lally for BOTH Buying and selling our home, and without a doubt, would use and recommend them time and time again! They made each process easy and enjoyable, and was always there to answer any and all questions or concerns we had. Can’t give a stellar enough review to the excellent Team. Above and beyond, definitely customer service orientated! Thank you guys for all you have done for us!”
“Aloha! Calen at Team Lally has worked with my husband and I since day 1 of our search for our home. She was always so prompt with emails, house listings and also giving us an unbiased and honest opinion. She’s extremely knowledgeable about real estate and was constantly patient if we had any questions. She would always make sure that we could get the most bout of our money and would constantly be negotiating for us with our best interests at heart. She was on top of things and I didn’t have to go hunting for her or feel alone in this process. Our experience with working with Calen at Team Lally has been such a pleasant and personal experience that anyone should be blessed with! Elizabeth and Justin Munson”
“We had a friend that asked who could help their move to paradise. It sounds cool however they were stressed. After making a couple of calls, I knew who they needed to call. Team Lally exceeded their expectations and after the first call the stress level went way down. Thanks for your help. We can’t wait to make our visit and give you a hug in person.”
“Team Lally did a wonderful job selling our home and answering all of our questions and concerns! Howard and Christopher have been there for my every need even after the sale of my home! A wonderful crew over there!”
“First conversation with Attilio Leonardi was a no pressure sales call. He was patient with all my questions, not hurried, and very knowledgeable about the short sale process. That helped establish trust and confidence in hiring their team. Other members of the team, with special mention to Howard Nett, all contributed to the successful negotiation. The short sale process was all together long and tedious; but as long as you commit to your part as a seller (i.e. providing necessary paperwork in a timely manner), team Lally will make the process as smooth and painless as possible with their professionalism.”
“Team Lally is an excellent team! They know their stuff, they are true professionals, and they care about their clients needs before they care about making themselves that extra $$$$. They treat you like family even after the sale of you home!”
“When my husband and I got transferred here with the Coast Guard we were interested in purchasing our first home. We found Adrianne through other military members that she had helped. Adrianne and her team went above and beyond to help us find our first home. She took out all the stress and helped us every step of the way, from finding a home to finding a lender to get a loan. We found a short sell and she helped us get into our house and close within a month! Adrianne and her team has made us feel like family the way they take the time to call and check on us throughout the years and through their client appreciation events. Thanks again Adrianne and Team Lally!”
“Working with Team Lally was fantastic! Celeste helped us to buy a new home and Adrienne and Atillio helped us to sell a home. Team Lally was responsive to all of our needs and questions. Team Lally exceeded our expectations!”
“Aloha, I am in the Coast Guard and my husband is a self employed landscaper, together we are very hard workers, but we aren’t the only ones. Team Lally is a hardworking real estate team who deliver exception customer service, care about their customers needs, remain patient and cater to customers ultimate desire. We purchased a beautiful home in Makakilo August 2012. When Team Lally showed us the house for the first time, we said “this is the one we want and we will wait a year if we have to.” Team Lally understood our end desire, accommodated us, and didn’t try to detour us into another purchase. They remained patient and informative through the short sale process and in the end, six months later, we got the house we wanted and felt relieved that we had an outstanding team who assisted us in making our dreams come true. Thank you Team Lally, I will always refer your team and I hope others will trust in your team as we did. Mahalo Crystal & Sandro”