A Hawaii Rental Application is an essential part of the screening process for landlords trying to find reliable candidates before offering them a lease agreement.
Rental applicants typically pay a rental application fee that covers the necessary background checks and administrative expenses.
Hawaii has no statutory provision for how much a landlord can charge as an application fee. Still, the fee should be reasonable and proportionate to the cost of screening process.
According to the Handbook for the Hawaii Residential Landlord-Tenant Code, landlords cannot use the security deposit for the last month’s rent unless both parties have agreed in writing and the tenant provides 45 days’ notice to the landlord before moving  .
A landlord who keeps part or all of a security deposit must notify the tenant in writing why they retained the money. The itemized notification must occur within 14 days of the tenant moving out and include relevant receipts for any work done on the property due to the tenant’s default. Failure to comply means the landlord must return the deposit amount to the tenant.
The maximum amount that a landlord may charge for a security deposit includes any additional deposits the property owner may require, including pet deposits. Service animals are exempt from any additional charges.
Hawaii Fair Housing Laws follow all federal mandates for protected classes of people and protection from discrimination against HIV-positive renters. Application questions about employment, income, criminal background, and past rental history are acceptable, but landlords cannot use some questions to screen potential renters.
In addition to prohibiting discrimination based on race, sex (including sexual orientation and gender identity), color, ancestry/national origin, religion, familial status, physical or mental disability, and age, it is illegal for property owners to refuse to rent based on a person’s HIV infection status (§515-3).
The Department of the Attorney General provides a Sex Offender Registry public search option so that you can find out whether a prospective tenant has committed a sexual offense in the state.
How To Conduct an Eviction Record Search
The Hawaii State Judiciary allows property owners to conduct their eviction records searches by providing access to public court records.
This information will reveal whether a prospective renter has had legal action taken against them for reasons such as unpaid rent or failure to vacate a rental property in Hawaii within the past seven years.