House hunting can be tough. House hunting in an area or place you’ve never been is even tougher. House hunting when you have no place to go back to (you’re fresh off a plane with nowhere to be…!) is quite possibly the most intimidating thing ever… And most exciting. Since we found out we were going, I’ve been looking at rentals (Privately owned, complexes, base housing…) and found a few things. People love dogs– except to rent to. (Fact: HI is dog friendly, but has very few rental properties that are!) Proximity to base is relative, due to positively insane island traffic– especially near the bases. So, you re-assess your standard priorities list. For us, it goes in this order: Safe location, dog friendly, comfortably sized, and proximity to base (since he’s the only one with a job to get to, so far!). Obviously, there are things that are non-negotiable; for us, safety and dog-friendly are those things.
At this point we feel like we’ve narrowed it down to one strong contender. Their 6 minute youtube commercial was a bit hokey (okay, a LOT), but talking to friends on the island- we’re hearing consistently good things about this joint! We’ve spoken to the rental office, and so far every person we’ve spoken to has been very helpful and answered all of our questions. Good signs. For us, the goal was to get the most ‘bang for our buck’ (or BAH). If we go for base housing, we’re close to his work– BUT– we lose our entire BAH to a place that is smaller and no longer covers utilities (previously, this was the dangling carrot for .mil folk). If you (we) go off base, the options open up the further you get from base. However, the rents are still high, utilities are insane, and the thought of the morning commute— well, it makes it obvious why folks live on base.
Us? Well, like I said– we’re eyeballing this place. The Waterfront at Pu’uloa is in a beautiful location (ironically- it used to be military housing!), sizes seem good, pet friendly, and yes, the commute will likely suck. However, if you start each day on the beach and end each day on the beach– can you really complain about where you live? That commute in the middle? Yeah. It’s on a tropical island. We are still living a bucket list… 😉 Stressful as the search may be, and the actual logistics of moving– we are still on track for that ‘happily ever after’ and that’s good enough for me.