City issues dozens of violation notices amid crackdown on illegal vacation rentals

Under the new law, illegal rentals offering stays of less than 30 days face fines of $10,000 per day.
Published: Nov. 17, 2022 at 5:28 PM HST|Updated: Nov. 17, 2022 at 5:37 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Armed with a new law, the city issued dozens of violations on illegal short-term rentals over the last month.

The city pledged a crackdown amid concerns that Oahu vacation rentals have hurt the character of residential neighborhoods.

Since the ordnance went into effect Oct. 23, the city has issued 63 notices of violation.

Illegal rentals offering stays of less than 30 days face fines of $10,000 per day.

Despite injunction, mayor pledges to push forward with vacation rentals crackdown

“It’s a good start and we certainly applaud the city,” said Rick Egged, president, Waikiki Improvement Association.

“This was to win back our communities and to put tourism in places where they were supposed to be rather than every neighborhood on the island,” he added.

During the height of the vacation rental boom, Oahu was reported to have more 10,000 illegal vacation rentals.

“The initial surveys that I’ve seen say 30 to 40% of pre-COVID vacation rentals have now gotten out of the vacation rentals business, so just by math you still have 6,000 out there,” Egged said.

Councilmember-elect Tyler Dos Santos-Tam says the list of violations are all over Oahu, but there are concentrations in Waianae, Kahala and Hawaii Kai.

“We know that these illegal vacation rentals are extremely profitable so if you have the land to do it, these unscrupulous landowners are going to try to rent it out to tourists and do other things the skirt the law,” said Dos Santos-Tam.

One address on Kili Drive Drive in Waianae had more than a handful of violations.

“I think it goes to show that the proliferation is happening all around the island,” said Dos Santos Tam.

“We are really seeing this in neighborhoods where we never saw this before,” he added.

Rentals of 30 days or less are allowed in tourist hotspots like Waikiki, Ko Olina and Turtle Bay, but they need to be registered online with the city.