Specializing in Makena, Wailea, and Kihei Real Estate
Lauren Peacock
(808)280 1343(808)280 1343

Ask Lauren: How do I get my beloved pup to Maui?


Well, isn’t this a loaded question if ya ever asked one! Tons of people move or retire to Maui every year, but we most certainly cannot forget our furry family. Right?! I, myself, was blessed with the tumultuous experience of bringing my little loved one all the way from Washington, DC a few years back. Here’s a quick article about my experience, some advice, and where to go for the real answers!

My Experience: When I learned I was moving to Maui for my job as a contractor with the federal government (many years back before becoming the awesome realtor I am today 🙂 I very quickly realized getting Cooper the Pooper (pictured) out to Maui was not going to be as easy as throwing him on a plane with me. Hawaii is blessed in many ways, but one of the biggest reasons I love living here is that there are no snakes! Or Rabies! And yah…they really pay attention to that…thank goodness.

Part of that process with the Hawaii Department of Agriculture is to not only ensure people’s safety on the island, but to ensure the safety of the ecosystem here which is fragile and well…we like to keep Maui, Maui! Therefore, all fluffy ones must go through the screening process.

Because I had to be here in a jiffy (yes, I just said that) Cooper had to stay with my parents back on the east coast until we could get his paperwork finalized. By paperwork, I do mean an official blood test with a lab in Georgia, recordation and tracking down of all of his vaccines from birth, and sending in applications with the state of Hawaii. After three long months on the mainland, Cooper was ready for flight. It was the WORST two days of my life.

Cooper’s Journey: This was many years back so it may be different now, however, it doesn’t seem that the Airlines and the Hawaii Dept. of Agriculture are really on the same page when it comes to importing animals. For instance, I found it very difficult to “schedule cargo” (my dog) 30 days in advance when sending in my paperwork. The application that goes to the State has to have a very specific date and flight time so they know when your animal arrives to island. All of this paperwork must be to the State no longer than 30 days prior to arrival. The problem is…you can’t schedule cargo more than 30 days out. So I just had to call and get scheduled dates and times of flights and pray that he could get on that plane. In addition, 24 hours prior to leaving on the flight, Cooper had to be signed off by a Vet on the mainland. That’s all fine and good except Cooper’s vet on the mainland is about 4 hours from the airport. Talk about a stressful 24 hours….oh, did I mention the traffic in DC. AND his flight was at 7am. Next time (which there won’t be) I’ll know to schedule a little better.

Off he went! Dad sent Cooper off in the plane (in a crate) for the long 5.5 hour flight to Seattle, Washington. I special paid for a veterinarian to pick up Cooper at the airport and take him home, rest, feed, play with him. This was the worst part. I had no idea who the vet was, he never responded to calls, I had no idea if Cooper as picked up or not or just left on the runway. If you love your dog as much as I love mine, you can imagine….my nerves were shot! I got an email the following day that Cooper had been placed safely on the plane and was headed to Maui. I could NOT wait. I was at the Cargo holding center two hours ahead of time…you know, just in case.

Arrival: He finally arrived. I saw the plane. I saw it land. I saw the cargo. I saw him….sitting on the tarmac for longer than any puppy should in this heat! Hello! Maui is HOT!

When you arrive to pick up your pup from cargo in Maui, you also have to have a vet show up as well and you meet in a tiny side room where they examine your dog. The vet I had called (and didn’t really know) was from the Wailuku Pet Clinic and he did a great job. When he noticed I was starting to freak about Cooper sitting on the Tarmac he quickly dialed someone and said in a pretty ominous voice “you get that dog off the Tarmac NOW” and not even 2 minutes later did an airport employee run out and bring Cooper right on over to me.

I’ll be totally honest, he was filthy dirty from all his muck and I’m pretty sure he puked a few times. He does that when he gets nervous (poor guy). But dear god I was so happy to see that little man! I think maybe it was one of the happiest moments of my life. I have never forgotten the whimpers, hugs, licks and tail waggles from that day.

All in all it wasn’t a TERRIBLE experience so to speak. It was long and arduous for sure, but definitely worth it and I totally understand why from the state’s perspective. Just look at how happy he is! I give a lot of credit to the Department of Agriculture for coming up with plans to allow outer islands to be a little more pet friendly and in a timely manner.

For all the details and more information, please visit the State’s website on how to get your pup to Maui.

Let’s Get Awkward: Tales from Open Houses

Oh how I LOVE holding a good open house. My favorite, you ask? OCEAN-FRONT!! Who doesn’t love a great ocean view?! Plus, I get to call amazing real estate my office for the day? Sounds good to me! Mostly though I just really love real estate on Maui….everything about it – the smells, the updates, the beach boys feel, the views, the kitchens, but mostly…the people!

In Maui, we get over 2.5 million visitors a year. Let me repeat that for you…two point five MILLION. WOW! Thats TWICE the population of the people that actually live in all of Hawaii combined. So all that being said, you can imagine I’ve met quite a few interesting people at my open houses.

Let’s get awkward for a minute. I know what you’re thinking…open houses sound like a really great idea until you actually walk in the door and see someone (me) standing there and immediately feel uneasy. Let’s talk about the elephant in the room. I know you are simply there to look and see what prices are like in Maui. It’s okay…I do the same thing when I travel. Why? We ALL love real estate. Don’t worry. Put your shoulders down and relax your mind. I am not going to make you buy anything. You don’t have to lie to me. You don’t have to pretend you’re a millionaire. I’m not either…it’s okay to be just a normal person. I won’t lie to you. And I won’t be a greasy salesman. I will however, let you look around and be available for any questions you might have. That’s what I’m here for…also maybe a smile and a cookie. That is all.

For those that have had poor experiences with Realtors before where you’ve felt taken advantage of or lied to…I apologize on behalf of all good Realtors. Always make sure you interview a few Realtors before you make a final buying or selling decision. No Realtor is created equal!

Here are some of the funny and awkward stories I thought I’d share from either my open houses or some I’ve heard. Go ahead, be amused but please…do not repeat history!

  • The Druggy – One of my very first open houses, I was sitting and minding my own business, working through a purchase contract when a guy came in and literally ransacked the condo I was sitting in. Nothing was destroyed (thank goodness) but he literally was like a tornado and speaking some really crazy mumbo jumbo while he was at it. Luckily there wasn’t much furniture in the place so nothing got ruined, but let’s just say…he was spitter. He never said anything to me and with his super nutso behavior all I can assume is that he was on drugs. I spent the next hour cleaning up the condo. And yes, I was scared for a minute. Thanks, dude for ruining that day. On another note – just say no to drugs!
  • The Angry Canadian – Now, we get A LOT of Canadians that buy, live, and play on Maui. I believe they call us their 13th colony? Something like that…anyways, I love Canadians. They’re always very friendly and love to just chat. One time, this couple came in and one of the questions I always ask people just as fodder for conversation is “where are you from?” since almost no one is actually from here. This particular woman turned toward me with a bright red face and very angrily said “we’re Canadian! Why? Do you have a problem with that”?             Ummmm….no. In fact, I do not. I actually love Canadians. I was a little stunned and taken aback and not sure what to say until her husband actually apologized for her rude behavior. She proceeded to be incredibly defensive towards me throughout her tour of the home where she kept staring at me…very intently…the whole time. Trust me…it got REALLY awkward. Not sure what that was all about but I must admit it was a little strange. For the record – I love Canadians. 🙂
  • The “I don’t remember what I just lied about guy” – Recently, a man came into one of my open houses and he looked like a buyer, smelled like a buyer, he WAS a buyer. How do I know? Very minimal eye contact and he paced very quickly throughout the condo almost as if his body language was saying “glad I saw this place, but this is not the one for me…on to the next.” Those are my favorite kind of people because they’re direct and know exactly what they want. BUT this guy….FORGOT what he told me. First he said me he lived primarily in LA and also had a condo here in Maui that he rented and it was getting too personally taxing renting and living in both places so he was looking to buy. ?? Not sure if that makes sense to me, but smile and nod. 🙂 When I asked him where he rented here on Maui, he got very defensive and said, “No, I have a condo in Kauai”. I very nicely reminded him that Kauai is not a part of Maui, but an entirely different island in of itself. Then when I asked what he liked to do in LA for fun, he looked at me startled and said he did not live in LA…he lived in San Francisco. Hmm this is getting very interesting. He then decided to get very snarky and left very quickly. ??? I think he was embarassed. Awkward. I just felt bad for the guy…clearly he had no clue as to where his actual home was. Poor guy. 🙂 How’s that for a little snarky.
  • The Pooper! – Ahhh yes. The pooper. I had been sitting this one particular home for a couple of weeks when one morning I came in and noticed somewhat of a fishy smell. It caught a hold of my nose as soon as I opened the door. This was odd, as the home previously had smelt like walking into Pier 1…clean, fresh, like new flowers. I love new house smell! Not today though. Today it smelled like old dead fish. I immediately went out and bought a good-smelly thing and called the listing agent to let her know something was up. Finally around noon, I couldn’t take it anymore and I started roaming around the house hunting for the culprit. It had to be SOMETHING! I thought, maybe someone threw an old sandwich away in a bedroom, or forgot their smelly shoes? As I continued my quest, I lifted the toilet in the master bedroom and there it was….poop! Gross gross poop everywhere and the smell was HORRENDOUS! I cannot express to you the amount of gags I could not contain. Why did it smell like fish? NO. Just absolutely no. All around, NO. It’s then I remembered, there had been a man the day before who had come in and stayed quite a while upstairs (where the master is). This is normal though. Typically when people really like a house…they hang out a bit. That’s cool. THIS….not so cool, dude. Go poop in your own house and next time, flush the toilet! Gross.
  • The Renter – An agent friend of mine had a showing at a lovely ocean-front condo and told me this story. He showed up with his client, only to find that the current RENTER of the unit was still hanging out in the condo when he opened the door. This is abnormal. The agent obviously introduced himself and his client and asked if they could take a look around. After the guy said yes, apparently he proceeded to get up and get SUPER (and I do mean, super) close to the poor buyer viewing the property. I’m talking creepy chest to back, super close. The renter kept whispering in the potential buyer’s ear that the condo was haunted and that there are drug addicts all over the building and that there were terrible floods and water leaks every year and that the HOA is a nightmare. The agent asked the guy to please stop…but oh no, he was not stopping. They eventually had to leave and needless to say, the poor agent lost the sale. Ohhh renters.

There’s a few of my fun stories. Trust me, there’s many many more. Hope you enjoyed these and as always, please reach out to RealtorLauren Maui@gmail.com for any Maui real estate questions you may have.