Resource Guide to Make Moving Easier and Getting Set Up in West Hawaii
This resource guide is your Golden Ticket to getting the connections, resources and info you will need to make your dream of moving to West Hawaii happen!
As you consider a move, these are valuable links and info to save you time, money, and energy.
Since we wrote this guide, I would ask that you please contact US, Julie and Eric Ziemelis-REALTORS with the 365Hawaii Group/Keller Williams Realty and founder of the Kona Newbies Group. If we can’t help you, we have partners around West Hawaii that we have vetted who have helped DOZENS of the 365Kona community in purchasing a home successfully. We also can help you connect with our private Facebook groups and free resources and connection to community! Julie@Ziemelis.com
Rentals are notoriously tight in Kona. Here are a few places to look:
CraigsList – I put in the search around Kona parameters for you!
Zillow Rentals: http://bit.ly/ZillowKona
Make sure you know your rental rights before signing a lease agreement. You are moving to a new state. Each state has different rules and regulations for landlord/tenants rights. It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the information before signing an agreement.
Moving Your Belongings
Most residents who move to the Big Island wish they had not brought so much stuff. However, if you plan on bringing everything with you, here are some moving service companies that can help:
Honolulu Freight Services (we recently saved thousands on shipping using this company!)
Royal Hawaiian Movers
Moving Your Car
Here are a few local resources to consider for shipping your car to Hawaii. Remember, you have to ship your car with nothing in it. Depending upon where you are shipping from will be how much you pay, but on average it costs about $1000 to ship your car from the Port of Oakland to Hilo using Matson as a cost estimate.
Hawaii Car Transport
Moving Your Pets
Moving your pets over to Hawaii can be quite process due to the fact that the entire Hawaiian Island chain has been able to stop rabies from occurring here, so they have a strict vaccination and quarantine regimen that needs to be followed. Here are the Hawaii State requirements:
Getting Your Electricity Turned On
HELCO (Hawaiian Electric Light Company) is the main electric company.
Contact: (808) 548-7311
They suggest giving them at least a two-day heads up to get your power turned on. A service establishment charge of $20 is required to start or reconnect electric service to any customer. There is an additional charge of $25 for same-day service requests.
Getting Your Water Turned On
Department of Water Supply, County of Hawaii
Contact: (808) 322-0600
To get your water service turned on or prevent it from being turned off, you will need to give them a $100 security deposit.
Getting Your Cable/DSL
Spectrum is the main service provider for TV, Internet, and home phone.
Supplementary Spectrum page: This additional resource allows residents to compare and contrast services with other providers in the area.
Remember to allow at least a week, sometimes two, for the “cable guys” to show up and connect you.
Getting Your Telephone Land Line
Offers bundles for phone and TV
Toll Free (877) 482-2211
You may think your cell phone is enough. There have been enough cell phone tower and cable issues with weather and accidents that you need to consider having a land line in your home for emergencies.
Mobile Phone Providers
Both your Verizon and ATT services should work fine here in Kona. Sprint customers say they get frequent dropped calls.
Kona Commons Shopping Center
74-5457 Makala Boulevard
Kona Commons Shopping Center
74-5444 Makala Blvd
75-5595 Palani Rd, Ste B-8
Getting Your Driver’s License
Department of Motor Vehicles
West Hawai`i Civic Center, 75-5044 Ane Keohokalole Highway, near the harbor
Contact (808) 323-4800
Stop by Long’s Drugstore and pick up the Driver’s License Manual to take the test (Not everyone has to take the test, read requirements). You can also go to the DMV site to take practice tests online.http://hidot.hawaii.gov/highways/library/motor-vehicle-safety-office/
You will need some form of proof of license eligibility from the last state in which you held a license.
Review this list to prove you live in Hawaii BEFORE you go: http://www.hawaiicounty.gov/finance-dl-hi-legal-presence#HPPR
The wait can be long. Get there right when they open. You may wish to even consider a nice drive up to Waimea to save some time, as well.
Registering your vehicle
Motor Vehicle Registration
Contact (808) 323-4818
While you are at the DMV, register your vehicle too. You can download the forms you will need from here:http://records.co.hawaii.hi.us/Weblink8/Browse.aspx?dbid=1&startid=63777
There is a new vehicle registration inside the Safeway in Kona that you can use to save time, too.
You will also need to have a vehicle safety inspection before they will finalize the registration of your vehicle. Get this done as soon as you get your vehicle on the island. Cost is about $20.
75-5570 Kuakini Hwy, Kailua Kona
75-5756 Hualalai Rd
Kailua Kona, HI 96740
Kona Kwik Lube
74-5590 Alapa St # E
Setting Up Your Bank Account:
There are no mainland “mega” banks here in Hawaii. Here’s a list of some of the more popular financial institutions:
Bank of Hawaii
First Hawaiian Bank
Getting Your Child A TB Test
Before you can enroll your children in school, you will need to get them a TB test. You can do this at the County Health Services or through your child’s own doctor. Here are the locations, times, and phone numbers of the County Health Clinics
If you are considering a move to the island and have school age children, you should know that many charter schools on the island require you to apply for their school admission by February before the Fall semester for their lottery requirements. Check each school’s website for the guidelines. Local charter schools include Kona Pacific Public Charter School, Innovations Public Charter School and West Hawaii Explorations Academy and Hawaii Technology Academy.
Health Care Centers
Major West Hawaii hospitals are located in Kealakekua and Waimea. There is an Urgent Care in Keauhou Shopping Center, which is highly recommended for emergencies. They are open 9am-9pm, 7 days a week, and can be a good alternative to the hospital emergency room.
- Kona Community Hospital (808) 322-9311
- North Hawai’i Community Hospital (808) 885-4444
- Kaiser Permanente Medical Center outpatient clinic (808) 432-3400
- Keauhou Urgent Care Center (808) 322-2544
- Kona Urgent Care Center (Sunset Dr. in downtown) (808) 327-4357
- American Cancer Society, West Hawai’i Unit (808) 334-0442
- Veterans Services (808) 969-3833
Registering to VOTE and how to contact your elected representatives:
A state-by-state guide provides a unique clickable state map with information about voter registration, ways to change a voter registration address, details on how to vote by mail, and absentee ballot deadlines.
Freebie: The Kona Buy/Sell/Trade Group FB page!
I sincerely hope that this resource list makes your move here easier and less daunting! Join us at the Kona Newbies group on Facebook or the Hilo Newbies Group or the Kohala Newbies Group and ask recent residents questions and share your experience, too!
Don’t forget: If you are considering purchasing a home on Hawaii Island, contact me directly at Julie@Ziemelis.com and I will provide you a complimentary copy of my “Insider’s Guide to Buying A Home on the Big Island” . Moving anywhere on the island, I can connect you to a trusted Realtor in our 365Hawaii team!
Julie Ziemelis, REALTOR – Keller Williams Realty-Big Island Division RS-85062