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Oahu Passes New Ordinance Allowing Ohana Dwellings

Mayor Kirk Caldwell signed a new ordinance into law September 14, 2015 allowing Oahu residents the ability to build standalone accessory dwelling units (ADU), aka ohana dwellings on their property with fairly liberal criteria in our opinion. There are subdivisions such as Mililani that restrict additional dwellings thru their HOA rules and covenances, so those folks will not benefit from this new legislation. The official document showing all the critieria is displayed below. To summarize it, if your lot is 3500- 4900 sq ft, you are allowed up to a 400 sq ft ohana unit, and if your lot is 5000 sq ft or more, you can build up to a 800 sq ft ohana unit.

There are parking requirements, so you must have the parking space to build an ohana unit on your property. If your ADU is under 600 sq ft, you are required to have one additional parking space. 601 – 799 sq ft requires 1.5 parking spaces, and 800 sq ft or more requires 2 parking spaces. The half space we believe is to accommodate motorcyle or moped, bicycle etc. Oahu is jam packed with cars everywhere, which is an unfortunate reality of living in the big city in our opinion, and it is very expensive to live here. Those conditions will not change, it is the way it is living in the economic hub of the pacific region. Everyone is addicted to automobiles and we don't see that changing. Life goes on.

You also must have the ability to hook up to the sewer line if one exists in your area, or you need to have the appropriate size septic tank and leach field to accommodate your new ADU. Those with cesspools would need to convert to septic if you want to build your ohana unit. That is an expensive ordeal on Oahu, but then again, the value of property is so incredibly high that it is certainly worth going thru the process if you can afford to. Read thru the document slowly and carefully to get all the necessary details of this new ordinance.

Our new modular homes are the fastest built and most economical structures available, and we are able to get the entire process expedited for those that are ready to move forward very soon. We are working on bank financing of our modular homes, and are hopeful that this will also happen quickly. Keep an eye out for notices on the updates page for this and other issues that we are busy at work finalizing.

For those allowed to build up to 400 sq ft, our modular home offering closest to that size would be 384 sq ft, comprised of 3- 8' x 16' modules, giving you a home with a 16' x 24' footprint. The basic module size is 8 x 20, and you can order modules that are shorter than 20' long if desired to maximize sq footage under this new ordinance. With standard sized modules, you can build 320, 480, 640 and 800 sq ft homes. The beauty of our all-steel modular homes is that once the walls are screwed into place, the interior walls, ceiling and floors are completely finished! No long ordeal hanging drywall and installing flooring! Exterior walls are also finished, as is the electrical system! Compare that to the time it takes to build a conventional stick home. Time is money. Most of our customers do not like drywall, and really love our all-steel interior and exterior walls, and we think you will too! Our 320 sq ft model home will soon be built on oahu, and you are invited to check it out for yourself. Again, keep your eye on our updates page to track our progress. Again, we apologize for the process taking much longer than we would have liked, but it is finally taking off and we are excited about that!

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