Hula Mae Loan Program – A Unique Opportunity for Hawaii Residents

Hula Mae Loan

The Hula Mae Loan – Not this kind of hula!

Have you heard of the Hula Mae loan?  The  program is unique to the State of Hawaii and is intended for low- to mid-income families.

This program seems to be a great opportunity for prospective homeowners. For your convenience, we’ve put together a quick summary of the program, as well as some of the advantages and disadvantages.

Summary of the Hula Mae Loan Program:

  • Must be a Hawaii resident and US citizen
  • On Oahu, must have a combined household income of $97,920 or less if a family of two. If a family of three, you must have a combined income less than $114, 120. Income limits are lower on the neighbor islands.
  • 30-year fixed rate mortgage as low as 3.65 percent
  • On Oahu, the price of the home being purchased cannot exceed $723, 417

Pros:

  • Great for first-time buyers intending to be long-term owner-occupants
  • Only a 3% down-payment on a home purchase is required. If you cannot come up with 3%, there is down payment assistance available (however at a 4% APR and 1.25% is charged as a point).

Cons:

  • This loan program is not for investors. You must intend to live in the home and cannot rent it out.
  • If you owned any real estate in the past three years, you are not eligible
  • If you sell the home within the first nine years, you might owe more in taxes. (Basically, the difference between the savings you received and what the loan would have cost if you took a normal loan. They really want you to be in the home for the LONG term.)
  • Cannot be used to refinance existing mortgages or lease-to-fee conversions

Check out this brochure from the HHFDC for more info, including a list of local lenders who are offering these loans.

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