Kolea is one of the most dynamic locations in all of the Hawaiian Islands. The beachfront property has an array of options including luxury beachfront homes all the way to reasonably priced two bedroom garden view villas. Another unique aspect of Kolea is how the rental of these properties are handled. Kolea is one of the only luxury properties in Hawaii where there are almost as many VRBOs (Vacation Rentals by Owner) as there are vacation rentals offered by management companies. Here are some of the many things to consider when deciding whom to rent from.
First, many owners do not have a licensed property manager available to help you in the event something goes wrong. For example, being locked out when you arrive or a plumbing issue occurring.
Second, given that most owners only own one property, in the event something happens and you are unable to stay in their villa you are left without a place to stay. There are many reasons this could happen (double booking, foreclosure, maintenance issue, etc). Since property managers have numerous properties, they can typically move you to a comparable or better one without too many issues.
Third, the property management companies are on island so they are constantly checking the villas to ensure the cleanliness of the villa and that all the amenities are there. Many owners just have a housekeeper, whom does not have anyone checking their work to ensure that it has been done properly.
Last, licensed property managers have standards and codes to follow in order to help assure that vacationers are getting a good experience. In the event that a vacationer does have a bad experience, they are typically responsive in trying to remedy the issue to save their brand. Since owners do not have a brand, many are not eager to go to any extreme to ensure that the problem is remedied. Not to mention that it is very hard to remedy an issue from the mainland where many owners live.
Sometimes getting Kolea vacation rentals from owners can lead to savings and a positive experience at Kolea, but there are risks involved. If you do rent direct from an owner we would recommend doing further research on the specific villa prior to settling on one.