Big changes for accessory dwellings on Maui in 2019

More accessory dwellings allowed:

An important update to the Maui County Code Ordinace 4936 now allows for more detached cottages (accessory dwellings) to be built on residential properties, in an effort to increase housing affordability for local people. These smaller secondary homes are commonly called “ohana” since it often means a place for the extended family, or ohana, to live.  It’s not uncommon to buy two homes when you buy a Maui property, and many buyers are specifically looking for that extra house. 

The new law allows for any size lot to have an extra home, and every lot can have another one in addition to what they have now, and they can be larger than before.  But this does not apply to Agricultural zoned lots which have “secondary farm worker dwellings” instead of accessory dwellings.  That’s a whole different conversation.

Larger ohanas allowed

  • 500 square feet is the maximum size for small lots
  • if the previous size limit was 500 sf, it’s now 600 sf
  • 600 sf ohanas can now be 720 sf
  • 700 sf ohanas can now be 840 sf
  • 800 sf ohanas can now be 960 sf
  • 1,000 sf ohanas can now be 1,200 sf

Another ohana allowed

  • Every lot that was allowed to have 1 ohana, can now have another ohana

Smaller lots now eligible

  • previously a lot had to be 7,500 square feet to be eligible for an accessory dwelling
  • now any size lot may be eligible for an ohana up to 500 sf

Read the update from the Government Affairs Committee regarding the changes to the laws.



Some important things to remember:

  • may not be used for transient short term rentals such as Air B&B
  • restrictions will apply to lanais, walkways, carports etc.
  • Molokai and Lanai have different rules

Thanks for reading my blog…

Let me help YOU with your Maui real estate needs.

Georgie Hunter R(S) e-Pro, Hawai’i Life Real Estate Brokers
26 Baldwin Ave, Paia HI 96779
E-mail or call/text: 808 283-0635


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