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356477 Views 1,450 Replies Latest reply: Jan 13, 2014 6:49 PM by grace300 RSS Go to original post 1 2 3 4 5 ... 97 Previous Next
  • New Member 4 posts since
    Feb 19, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    30. Feb 20, 2012 1:15 PM (in response to jwe)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    This is not a politically motivated "rant" it is about people, (not

    necessarily you) that are not obeying the rules of the State of Hawaii

    regarding Taxes.....Our state is losing between 35-50 million in revenue

    that we need.   It also levels the playing field.   I am not being

    negative...just telling it like I see it.    There are VRBO owners that

    have gotten into the rental business that don't operate as you have....you

    have done it for many years.  I live in an area on one of the resorts and

    am constantly having to help renter that can't get a hold of the people

    they rented from, or fielding questions from the Association Manager when

    something goes wrong in the houses and he tells them to call me to see if I

    can help....I'm tired of doing my job for people that don't want my help

    originally but will take it when it doesn't cost them anything, and then

    not continue to use my services.

     

    So if I support your desires, you won't use my services anyway....you said

    you have in the past and they didn't meet your standards...sorry that you

    didn't find the right company.   I work with VRBO owners and haven't lost

    one in the last 5 years except to foreclosure because they bought at the

    peak of the market and were in way over their heads.  I charge them a

    nominal fee and take excellent care of their guests.  But I am not

    interested in doing it for free, which is what most of the VRBO owners seem

    to want me to do, and make money from tips, and commissions for

    activities.   You should hear the screaming when I have to charge for

    paying invoices on their behalf because the vendor has been stung so many

    times by nonpayment for services rendered in an "emergency", and they won't

    do the work unless I guarantee the payment. Not all VRBO owners are

    reputable, and not all of them are Cheapskates, and in financial

    difficulties, but the ones that are seem to scream the loudest when you

    might have to charge them for taking care of a problem they couldn't

    possibly handle from the mainland....The Vendors are also tired of getting

    the calls to go over and take care of something that is a minor issue, and

    the VRBO owner doesn't want to pay for the trip charge to take care of it

    because it only took 10 minutes to fix.

     

    We all have opinions and you are entitled to yours, and I respect that,

    please respect mine, based on my experiences with multiple VRBO owners.

     

    It's interesting to hear the guests that say...it's so expensive to visit

    here what with the cost of gas, food, lodging, utilities etc.....then I say

    I know it...... I have to pay the same prices year round not just for a

    week or two.  I am just trying to make a living providing a service that is

    needed, I've heard it so often that the last time they can an visited they

    didn't have anyone like me to take care of them and the house was not

    nearly as clean, and they had no one to ask questions about the local area,

    and where are the farmers markets etc. etc.  They will more often choose to

    stay in homes that have service like mine provided.  It costs very little

    over the month but makes a big difference to the guests.

  • jwe Contributor 284 posts since
    Feb 18, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    31. Feb 20, 2012 1:30 PM (in response to aurorasands)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    Thanks

     

    We are working on it.  Right now it is considered a closed group so we can

    hopefully avoid having folks to keep out folks who do not support our cause

    and may become a distraction.

    We may need to open it up so it is easier to find.

     

    John

  • jwe Contributor 284 posts since
    Feb 18, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    If you believe you provide a necessary service, simply state what services you provide and what it costs.

     

    We are all entitled to our opinion as to which group of individuals are more trustworth or more conscientious - non-resident property owners, on-island realtors or politicians.  That conversation is best to have over a beer and not on this site.

     

    I doubt that non-resident property owners are costing tax revenue.  (In fact I have not even seen that the State of HI Dept of Taqxation make that argument so it seems to be without foundation)

     

    Non-resident owners are great ambassadors for the State and enhance the number of visitors to the islands.  All their revenue is received in the form of credit cards and checks, so relatively easy to verify.  If tax avoidance by a small percentage of folks is the argument for taking away the property rights of all non-resident owners, then we can use a similar argument to say your driving privledges should be suspended because one driver ran a red light.  I believe  that the compliance level of non-resident owners is very high and that could be easily verified by random checks and enforced.

     

    If you want to increase tax compliance you should look at all the cash businesses - but then you may not be able to gain personally from that, so you may not intersted in really helping the problem.

     

    So please market your services in a positive way -  not by trying to take away the rights of others.

  • Contributor 34 posts since
    Feb 19, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    33. Feb 20, 2012 2:24 PM (in response to jwe)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    Hi John,

     

    I have sent a join request...

     

    Meera Kohler

    Sent from my iPhone

  • kristin.r Contributor 116 posts since
    Jun 1, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    Struggling,

    Look you came on here with an argumentative attitude insinuating that we "out of state owners" are the problem.  I am personally  against not having choices.  If I relied solely on my management company my condo wouldn't be rented enough to pay the bills.  I would love to see the proof that Hawaii is losing 35 -50 million in revenue because of us bad out of state owners.  If these so-called findings are true then you must know who these people are, right?  Then they are tax evaders and it is against the law.  Everyone is struggling, homeowners are struggling, you are struggling, the state is struggling.  If you think its bad now just wait.  I have sometimes struggled with my management company and their fees. My management company is the $100.00 club, kind of like costco.  After I bought all new furniture I asked for my photos to be updated on their website.  That'll cost $100.00 for each photo. I asked can I use my own photos.  NOPE. Yep you bet I was deducted from my rents $500.00.    Advertising $100.00 per month.  I have asked where do you advertise for me? Thats what we charge. 

    I want to have the choice in the future as to whether I want to use a management company or not.  For now, it is my  choice to have a management company.  This is the way it should be.

    Good luck to all of us.

  • New Member 11 posts since
    Feb 11, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    35. Feb 20, 2012 2:39 PM (in response to cruisin9)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    Here is the link to the House Of Representatives website. Here you can track the progress of HB1707 as it goes through committee meetings. You can find the huge amount of testimony that was submitted to the hearings last week. Many are very well written and argued and over 90% are against the bill. The Committee still voted 10 for the Bill, 0 against and 5 excused. The next step in the Financial Committe. Write and make your feelings known. There is a handy link to submit testimony.

    http://http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/measure_indiv.aspx?billtype=HB&billnumber=1707

  • jwe Contributor 284 posts since
    Feb 18, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    36. Feb 20, 2012 2:44 PM (in response to tman5)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    That link does not seem to work

     

    John

  • kazoom Contributor 40 posts since
    Feb 20, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    37. Feb 20, 2012 2:51 PM (in response to jwe)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    It worked for me, John.  Try copying it and pasting it into the search box on FB.

  • kazoom Contributor 40 posts since
    Feb 20, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    38. Feb 20, 2012 2:52 PM (in response to kazoom)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    Whoops, I just realized you weren't talking about the FB link.  Sorry.

  • jwe Contributor 284 posts since
    Feb 18, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    39. Feb 20, 2012 4:29 PM (in response to tman5)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    For everyone -

     

    Here is the link to the Facebook Group "Stop HB 1707".

    http://www.facebook.com/groups/194035220703875/

     

    This group is meant only for individuals who support our goal.  It is not a

    productive use of anyone's time to debate the issues on this Facebook Group

    page if your mind has already been made up to see this bill passed.

     

    You are entitled to disagree with the goals of the group, but if so, please

    find a web site or group sympathetic to your views or relocate somewhere

    that advocates restricting property rights and freedom of choice  (Russia,

    Cuba and China come to mind)

  • Contributor 93 posts since
    Feb 20, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    40. Feb 20, 2012 5:15 PM (in response to jwe)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    It is so encouraging to hear someone in Hawaii understand the truth of the matter. If the reason for this legislation is because the state Hawaii believes non-resident vacation home owners are not paying taxes, that is not what the statistics show. And with today's technology, there certainly are ways to know who is and isn't paying their taxes. Most non-residents are in compliance from what I have read. Are there any other states that have such an unfair law? Why on earth are they singling out non-resident vacation home owners to have to through a realtor, but not resident home owners??? I wish someone could explain why they are going for just non-residents. If it's so that the management companies can take over our properties, they certainly aren't thinking this through clearly. There are so many repurcussions if the bill passes - foreclosures, lower property values, and a lot of people that love Hawaii now won't be loving Hawaii so much any more! Please, for the economic safety of the islands, do not pass this bill!!!

    I have sent letters to all the senators and representatives and I have received NO response.

     

    Can someone please let me know if there are any other states that have a law like the one Hawaii is trying to legislate where a non-resident homeowner is forced to have a Hawaiian realtor manage their property (collect all money).

  • mauioceanview Contributor 250 posts since
    Jul 22, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    41. Feb 20, 2012 9:38 PM (in response to tman5)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    This bill will have major implications for all of us. My husband and I own four condos on Maui. We live within a 10 minute drive from all of them and we manage them ourselves. Yes, we pay our taxes. All of them. I am repeatedly told by our guests how well-run our condos are and am getting repeat bookings. They love the fact that we are owners (not a management company) and that we live here. As owners we make sure they are in top shape and are able to market them better than any management company could.

     

    I appreciate the State of Hawaii's desire to receive all their tax revenues (as they really should), but doubt that this will get them the results they want. Instead it will line the pockets of management companies, drive many owners to selling and majorly depress an already depressed real estate market. Then of course there are those owners who will just ignore the new law...

     

    I know there are condos that are poorly managed by owners (be they local or non-local), but I also know of many condos that have management companies doing a poor job. We use two management companies to supplement our bookings, one does well (but is located on Big Island - so would their off-island owners legally be allowed to use them for Maui condos??), the other one very poorly. Even with the better of the two, as a non-resident owner I would hate to have to rely solely on them for bookings.

     

    I know this doesn't currently affect me (other than what it will do to condo prices), however, it's just a matter of time until the State of Hawaii would extend it to resident owners as well. There must be a better way for the State to get their tax dollars.

  • New Member 1 posts since
    Feb 19, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    42. Feb 21, 2012 12:07 AM (in response to cruisin9)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    I just had to comment on Struggling, who in his his last post said this bill is about people "not obeying the rules of the State of Hawaii regarding Taxes," which is the purported reason for this bill but no one has been able to produce any documentation that the State is really losing $30-$50 million annually. Then he says "it also levels the playing field" which tells me he wants to go back to being the only game in town, and then he goes on to complain about having to pick up the pieces for bad managers, which I can't figure out how he is getting all the calls for, but this seems to be his major complaint and what he is talking about mostly as the reason for this bill. Struggling is struggling with keeping a line of reason.

     

    As for the future of HB 1707, the Finance Committee is often where the rubber meets the road, and this bill is bad news financially for the State of Hawaii, so hopefully this Committee will take a much more serious look at this bill.  Also, the legislative session ends on May 3rd and it adjourns "Sine Die" meaning that any bill not passed at that point dies--it is not resurrected at the beginning of the next session. The bill could languish in the Finance Committee or not get past the Senate and the House for quite a while. So there is still hope. This bill seems to be moving faster than the Senate bill.

     

    mauioceanview is right--this will drive many owners into selling and depress an already depressed real estate market. I, along with many others, testified that if this bill passed, I would probably have a hard time holding on to my properties. I am not "leeching" money out of the State, as a matter of fact I have to inject a lot of cash into it to keep it running and to pay (promptly and without arguing about it) my bills for service, cleaning, and maintenance, which I do so appreciatively, which also puts money into the economy (oh, and of my GE and TA and property tax bills help pump up the economy, lest I forget...).

     

    jwe is absolutely correct. Merchant credit card companies are required under IRS rules to report payment processing amounts, and that is the preferred method of 99% my clients and I'm not into accepting cash payments.

     

    Please call or fax a member of the Finance Committee--the emails are getting buried. A phone message must legally be logged as an "oppose" to the member. I received this auto-response to my email to Committee Chairman Oshiro:

     

    Thank you for your e-mail.  However, given the volume of e-mail, "blast e-mail," and "junk mail," I am not able to read and respond to each and every one in a timely manner.  For matters that require immediate attention, please call me at 586-6200 or fax me at 586-6201.  Sincerely, it is often easier for me and more expedient for you to have me respond over the phone than through e-mail.

    Representative Marcus R. Oshiro

    Chair, Committee on Finance

    District 39

     

    Any hope that there is an attorney out there to determine this is just plain discriminatory? I keep reverting to that issue at my gut feeling.

    thanks all.

  • anja Senior Contributor 1,560 posts since
    Aug 9, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    43. Feb 21, 2012 1:04 AM (in response to amy.siroky)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    HB 1707 directly attacks the private property owners' rights.  In short, if passed, it will force private property owners to buy a service they may not want....or need....under threat of the Hawaii State of penalty, i.e. $1000 per day for every day of non-compliance.  It sounds familiar.....

     

    It reminds me of another "mandate" in a bill already passed...actually pushed through Congress in Washington, whereby citizens will be forced to purchase a product / service that they may not want or need. That one has landed on the table of the Supreme Court in Washington ...at the behest of 27 US States suing the Federal Government for forcing citizens, again, under threat of penalty {$ thousands of dollars}  by the Federal Government for every year of non-compliance.

     

    If this bill is forced through and approved, there will have to be an appeal...perhaps a class action lawsuit by people ...against it. There must be thousands of owners and other local business people with interests here that would contribute to a special fund... you are right amy.siroky...an attorney will be needed.  This bill, in my opinion, is more than discrimination.

     

    I read the Bill(s)....not even an investigation was carried out...no fact finding when it is easy for the State to "find the facts".  I read no evidence....just assumptions...just accusations.  It is Kafkaesque to me. A panel of people levies an  accusation, a threat and verdict {pending} upon people who had no hard evidence against them...no trial...and those Owners have not even the right to vote in the State in which they invested their capital heavily in.  I think this is shocking and obscene...and I'm not proud of my State of Hawaii, over this.  All Owners living outside and inside the State, and others who benefit in the State of Hawaii via the injection of monies into the local economy here through the Owners' investments...should VOTE  out the elected officials that ARE responsible for the mismanagement of  Hawaii's economy. This State is in deep trouble and it's not because of non-compliance of this nature. It's mismanagment by the government.  There are measures in place to ensure the collection of taxes...it is not difficult to identify the non-compliers...do that...go after those few....and the many "residents of Hawaii" who live "off the radar", willfully!  Everyone:   Vote...with your heads not your hearts. Vote for those individuals that want Hawaii to be a more business-friendly environment. ...or we'll all be struggling here.

  • jwe Contributor 284 posts since
    Feb 18, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    44. Feb 21, 2012 5:57 AM (in response to amy.siroky)
    Re: Hawaii Trying to Kill VRBO

    Amy,

     

    Thank you very much for your great and informative posting.

     

    I also received your email request to join the Facebook Group "Stop HB

    1707".  For some reason your request did not appear on the top of the Group

    page so I was unable to approve it.  If you do not mind, would you try again

    by going to:  http://www.facebook.com/groups/194035220703875/

     

    I apologize for the difficulty.  We are trying to make it easier for people

    to join so now any existing member should be able to approve a new member.

     

    I'd like to get your Homeaway posting onto the Facebook Group page.  If

    there is a delay in joining the Facebook group, I may take the liberty of

    copying and pasting your Homeaway posting to Facebook if you don't mind

    (giving you credit of course).

     

    Mahalo

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