Hawaii Landlord Tenant Rights

Landlords and tenants in Hawaii have specific rights and responsibilities. We've collected the important information that you need to know about the Aloha State.

Landlord Responsibilities

Landlords in Hawaii have the following responsibilities to their tenants:

  • Have the unit ready to move into on time.
  • Provide safe and healthy premises as required by law.
  • Make repairs and other arrangements needed to keep the rental liveable.
  • Maintain electrical, plumbing, and other systems in good working order.
  • Provide, maintain, and arrange for collecting wastebins (except in the instance of single-family homes, where tenants may be responsible for arranging their own waste disposal.
  • Supply running water, except when the rental building is exempt by law.
  • If the rental agreement is in writing, provide the tenant with a copy.
  • Provide receipts for all rent payments.
  • Identify the owner or manager.
  • Provide the general excise tax number if the tenant needs it to apply for a low-income tax credit.

Tenant Responsibilities

Tenants in Hawaii have the following responsibilities:

  • Keep the dwelling in a clean condition and remove garbage.
  • Use appliances and plumbing properly.
  • Comply with property rules, as long as they promote the tenant's wellbeing, safety, or convenience.
  • Keep the rental property from abuse.
  • Pay rent on time.
  • Inform the landlord of repairs that need to be made.

Security Deposit

Landlords can require a security deposit of no more than one month's rent, plus an additional month's rent to serve as a pet deposit if applicable. No additional deposit is required for an assistance animal that is a reasonable accommodation.

No interest will be paid on security deposits. The landlord can allow the tenant to use the security deposit for the last month of rent, but this needs to be agreed to in writing at least 45 days before the end of the lease.

Rent and Fees

No grace period is required by law, but landlords may choose to provide one in rental agreements. Landlords can raise the rent as often as they'd like, but they must give notice to their renters. If the renters pay week to week, they need 15 days' notice. They need 45 days' notice of any rent increases if they're paying monthly.

There is no rent control in Hawaii, so rent can be raised by any amount.

Landlords pay a 4% excise tax on rentals (4.5% on Oahu). This can be passed on to the renter as long as both parties agree to it in the signed rental agreement.

Evictions

If the tenant isn't maintaining the rental unit, misusing it, or negligent in regards to it, the landlord has to notify the tenant in writing. If there's no other way to contact the tenant, the landlord can leave this notice in a conspicuous place on the rental unit. The tenant must be given at least 10 days to resolve the issue. If it's not resolved in that time, the landlord can either sue for eviction or correct the problem and bill the tenant for it.

If rent is late, landlords can demand that rent be paid within five days. If it isn't, landlords can sue to evict. It's recommended that this notice be sent by certified mail or handed directly to the tenant.

Lease Termination Notice

Either party can terminate the lease with notice. Landlords must provide 45 days' notice. Month-to-month tenants must provide 28 days' notice. Week-to-week tenants must provide 10 days' notice. The tenant will be responsible for paying rent through the notice period or until the unit is re-rented, whichever comes first.

Relevant State Agencies

Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

Hawaii Civil Rights Commission

City-Specific Links

Honolulu/Oahu:

Oahu Rental Relief Program

Water

Electric

Gas

Official Rules and Regulations

Chapter 21, Hawaii Revised Statutes