Most parents hope that providing as best they can for their children when they are young will give their kids the necessary foundation to succeed in life. In Hawaii, many of these children — now successful adults — are finding that even with six-digit salaries, it’s extremely difficult to find an affordable home in Honolulu and its in-demand suburbs.

The Hanaoka family, Pauoa Valley homeowners, shared that same narrative with so many other Oahu families. Lynette Hanaoka and her husband raised their son, Jared, in a single-wall, two-story home with her parents. A generation later, and Jared now has a lucrative career, yet has struggled to find an affordable home of his own. In order to help each other out — a new home for Jared and a more functional and accessible space for Lynette and her husband — the family decided to pool their resources and renovate. That’s when the Hanaokas started looking for a builder.


“I chose Graham Builders because I liked what I saw and learned at the seminar. Everyone was nice and easy to talk to,” said Lynette.


“They helped us throughout the whole process,” explained Jared. “We had multiple planning meetings in which the design of the house was created with the design team explaining why things were laid out a certain way. They listened to our ideas for the house, as well as gave their own input on how to make our ideas work better.”

The most important suggestion from Graham Builders was to forego the Hanaoka’s original plans for a renovation and tackle a complete rebuild of the aging and run-down 60-year-old home.


After completing a land survey, the Graham Builders team identified major structural issues with the house caused by decades of shifting soil beneath the home. The plan for the new rebuild included a retaining wall to help minimize the shifting of the land, adding strength and longevity to the new home, as well as updating the interior layout and construction materials.

“Working with Graham Builders was a good experience. Everyone was knowledgeable, easy to work with and quick to address any of our questions,” said Jared.


The new single-story, three-bedroom, two-bath house features aging-in-place designs to suit Lynette and her husband’s needs, in addition to the modern design aesthetic and functionality of an open fl oor plan that speaks to Jared’s sensibilities. The Hanaokas chose vinyl plank fl ooring — it is waterproof and requires less maintenance than hardwood and laminate flooring — quartz countertops in the kitchen, solid surface countertops in the bathrooms, and tile for the bathroom flooring and shower surrounds. Walk-in showers and ramps were a multigenerational design component central for accessibility for Lynette and her husband.

“My favorite part of the build is the vaulted ceilings, which makes the house appear larger,” said Lynette. “My biggest take away is to find people that you are comfortable working with, as it will make the experience easier.”

Jared was similarly pleased with his new home. “My favorite part of the home is definitely the kitchen,” he said. “I had a hand in choosing a lot of the finishes and appliances towards making it a ‘dream kitchen’ within the budget. Should I ever decide to renovate in the future, I would go with Graham Builders again. In fact, I already have recommended Graham Builders to a couple friends who are considering a remodel or a rebuild.”

As single-family home prices continue to climb out of the reach of many Hawaii residents, multigenerational living is a solution that strengthens families and communities alike.


To learn more about multi-generational building and design, visit the Graham Builders ohana at the Building Industry Association of Hawaii’s Home Building & Remodeling Show from Friday, Jan. 26 to Sunday, Jan. 28 at the Neal Blaisdell Exhibition Hall at booths 532C and 534C.

CONTACT 593-2808