Chocolate Tour at Kokoleka Lani Cacao Farm in Kona

cacao farm in kona

We missed the tour of the cacao farm in Kona last week because I used the wrong GPS and was halfway the wrong way when I figured it out. But the owners were nice enough to reschedule us for the following week. The cacao farm in Kona was fascinating and inspiring. Above is a photo of me holding a pod I just cracked in one blow with the raw seeds inside.

Of course, I immediately shot a photo of a cacao pod and sent it to my husband, asking if he knew what it was. That’s because he is in California while I am in Hawaii. Although, we did tour the Vanillerie together not too long ago, and I imagine he would really enjoy this particular tour as well. read more

How to Catch a Pig in Kona

catch a pig in kona

Never imagined I would need to learn how to catch a pig in Kona, but that monumental occasion has now presented itself. It is part of living in “the country,” even though our new house is only a couple of miles from our previously very urban house in Hawaii. Instead of a .05 acre lot in The Pines, we now own a house on a half acre up Hualalai. And it abuts to private agricultural land, which supports horses, cows and, unfortunately, the wild boars of Hawaii.

When I first noticed a pig had torn up on the lawn on the south side of our property, I shored up the hog wire fence and hoped for the best. The pigs still managed to squeeze on through, albeit a smaller hole. Naturally, I shored it up again, with tighter spacing on the stakes. So, they found a new place. Now I know why my neighbor installed expensive wrought iron fencing around his property. read more

Homebuying in Hawaii vs California

homebuying in Hawaii vs California

Have you ever wondered about the differences between homebuying in Hawaii vs California? Well, perhaps I am a bit jaded since I’ve worked in California real estate for so long that it all makes perfect sense to me, but Hawaii practices in real estate seem convoluted. Strange. Twisted. More complicated than it ever needs to be. Unsupervised. Everybody makes up their own rules. Completely unsophisticated island style. And run by the builders and developers, I may add.

California has added protections, and caveat emptor really does not apply to buyers anymore. California real estate contracts protect buyers but, in Hawaii, contract law seems to throw them under the bus. If you are homebuying in Hawaii vs California, you better get ready for peculiar requests and demands. read more

Would You Like to Buy a Second Home in Hawaii?

second home in Hawaii

If you would like to buy a second home in Hawaii, this remodeled home is extremely affordable and situated in a wonderful Kona location with an 180-degree panoramic ocean view. The flowers you see on this lanai grew from one small Allamanda plant — that rich volcanic soil produces garden miracles. This is only one corner of the lanai, it stretches across the entire backside of the house and then some. Further, that view is from south of the Kona Royal Resort to the whitecaps breaking on Kailua Pier and beyond toward Honokohau Harbor. read more

Why Buying a Home on Hawaii Island is Hard

buying a home on Hawaii Island

The process for buying our first home on Hawaii Island was a bit convoluted because we used conventional financing, with our mortgage people located on another island. And let’s just say they were not Dan Tharp quality from Sacramento. If I recall correctly, they also became inebriated on Christmas Eve and threatened to cancel my loan for no good reason. Then, they apologized profusely after sobering up the following day.

Buying a home on Hawaii Island is hard. 

Some of the problems with buying a home on Hawaii Island are contained in the way agents do business on Hawaii Island and also in the purchase contract itself. For example, California used to be referred to as strictly a Caveat Emptor state for buyers, but the state fixed that attitude and its inherent problems. The California Residential Purchase Agreement definitely favors buyers now. read more

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