Residential Workforce Housing Eligibility Requirements

Residential Workforce Housing (“RWH”) was established by the Maui County Council under Chapter 2.96, Maui County Code (“MCC”). The RWH policy is intended to enhance public welfare by ensuring that the housing needs of the County are addressed. The critical shortage of affordable housing makes the purchase or rental of a home by the majority of Maui’s working residents extremely difficult. As a result, the resident workforce is leaving Maui in search of affordable housing and any incoming replacements are dissuaded by Hawaii’s high cost of living. The purpose for creating RWH is to maintain a sufficient resident workforce in all fields of employment, and to ensure the public safety and general welfare of the residents of Maui. This policy encourages the provision and maintenance of RWH, for both purchase and rental, to meet the needs of income-qualified households for the workforce, students, and special housing target groups.

What are RWH Units?

RWH Units are generally units or lots to be sold or rented first to Maui County residents within certain income groups, as set forth in Chapter 2.96, MCC.

What types of housing will be included as RWH Units in Kamalani?

The RWH Units will be located within a combination of 2- and 3-bedroom condominiums, including 3-bedroom townhomes within Increment 1 of the Project. The 2- and 3-bedroom condominiums are designated initially for the “below-moderate income” and “moderate income” categories, while the 3-bedroom townhomes are designated initially for the “above-moderate income” category. See below for descriptions of these income brackets.

How do I know if I’m eligible for a RWH Unit?

In order to be eligible to qualify for a RWH Unit, an applicant must meet ALL of the following criteria:

  • Be a citizen of the United States or a permanent resident alien.
  • Be a resident of Maui County. Resident means a person who meets at least one of the following:
    • Currently employed in the County;
    • Retired from employment in the County, having worked in the County immediately prior to retirement;
    • A full-time student residing in the County;
    • A disabled person residing in the County who was employed in the County prior to becoming disabled;
    • The parent or guardian of a disabled person residing in the County;
    • A spouse or dependent of any such employee, retired person, student, or disabled person residing in the County; or in the event of the death of the employee, retired person, student, or disabled person, the surviving spouse or dependent of any such deceased person who met the residence criteria above.
  • Be eighteen years of age or older.
  • Have a gross annual family income (not to include the income of minors) which does not exceed 140% of the County’s Area Median Income or “AMI,” as established by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”) for the island of Maui (excluding Hana), adjusted annually. For 2017, the maximum qualifying income is $103,740. AMI information is updated annually at http://www.co.maui.hi.us/1825/Affordable-Sales-Price-Guidelines.
     
  • Have assets that do not exceed 140% of the County’s AMI as established by HUD for the island of Maui (excluding Hana), adjusted annually. Assets shall include the following: cash, securities, stocks, bonds and real property (at fair market value, less liabilities). Assets exclude the following: amounts in a retirement account, the cash surrender value of any life insurance policies, and the amount to be used for the down payment for the RWH Unit. For 2017, total assets after exclusions cannot exceed $103,740.
     
  • For the 3 years prior to the submittal of the Application, have not owned an interest of 50% or more in real estate suitable for dwelling purposes, whether owned in fee or leasehold, in the United States, unless the applicant is selling an affordable unit and purchasing a RWH Unit based on it being more appropriate for the applicant’s family size.

What are the income category brackets?

Your income bracket will determine the type and pricing of homes you will be eligible to purchase.   The income limits for each bracket are determined by County’s Area Median Income or “AMI,” as established by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”) for the island of Maui (excluding Hana), adjusted annually. For 2017, the income limits are:

Income Group

% of Area Median Income

Maximum Income Limit

Below Moderate

81% - 100% $74,100

Moderate

101% - 120% $88,920

Above Moderate

121% - 140% $103,740

See http://www.co.maui.hi.us/1825/Affordable-Sales-Price-Guidelines for AMI information updated annually. 

Once I own a RWH Unit, will there be restrictions on my RWH Unit affecting use, resale or occupancy of the RWH Unit?

Yes. There are restrictions that owners of RWH Units will be subject to during the Restriction Periods noted below, which are based on certain income categories.

Income Group Restriction Period
80 - 100% of AMI 10 years
101 - 120% of AMI 8 years
121 - 140% of AMI 5 years

The following summarizes the restrictions that will be noted on the deed conveying the RWH Unit to the qualified applicant. These restrictions will all apply during the applicable Restriction Period stated above:

  • The RWH Unit must be owner-occupied. Under special circumstances (i.e., assignment to active military duty or short-term contracts for off-island employment), an owner of a RWH Unit may appeal to the Department of Housing and Human Concerns (“DHHC”) for a waiver.
  • The County must be notified by the owner upon a decision to sell.
  • The County will have the first option to purchase the RWH Unit from the owner for a period of 120 days following receipt of the written notification. If the County waives its option to purchase, then the RWH Unit may be sold to the general public, subject to all deed restrictions. The maximum resale price shall be established by the DHHC using the following method:
    1. The appraisal of the property secured by the lender for the initial purchase of the RWH Unit
    2. A new appraisal shall be required upon a decision to sell the RWH Unit
    3. 25% of the difference between the two appraisals, plus verifiable RWH Unit capital improvement costs and costs to sell (i.e., commissions and closing costs), shall be added to the initial purchase price to establish a sales price.

    Example: Owner sells RWH Unit 5 years after purchasing, assuming:

    • The original purchase price was $420,000;
    • The appraised value at the time of the initial closing of the RWH Unit was $460,000;
    • The second appraisal at the time of decision to sell the RWH Unit is $500,000;
    • 25% of the difference between the two appraisals ($500,000 less $460,000 is $40,000; 25% of $40,000 is $10,000) shall be added to the original purchase price of $420,000. Estimated commissions and closing costs are $35,000. The resale price shall be $465,000.

The deed restrictions above shall remain effective from the initial conveyance until the end of the pertinent Restriction Period, even if the RWH Unit is conveyed.