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For Buyers: Leasehold vs. Fee Simple

A Guide to Hawaii's Residential Leasehold
Authorized by the Hawaii State Legislature and the State's Housing Finance and Development Corporation

  1. Introduction
  2. Basic Terminology
  3. Purchasing a Leasehold Property
  4. Types of Apartment Unit Leases
  5. Obtaining Financing for Leasehold Property
  6. Renegotiating Lease Rent Payments
  7. Expiration of the Lease Term and Surrender
  8. Purchasing the Leased Fee
  9. Conclusion


As described in this article, leasehold ownership of apartment units involves a unique relationship and agreement between the parties to the apartment lease. Everyone considering the purchase of a leasehold apartment unit needs to understand the advantages and disadvantages of leasehold ownership in general, especially the impact of rent renegotiation and lease expiration.

Reading this article is one step in that process. The next step is to obtain and carefully read the applicable lease documents. Then if you have questions or need professional advice about the terms or implications of that lease, address your questions to the seller or to the seller's agent, the lessor, and to your real estate agent and attorney.

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