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6 Facts You Probably Did Not Know About Costa Rica property

6 Facts You Probably Did Not Know About Costa Rica propertyAre you dreaming about Costa Rica property? Sunshine and white sand beaches? Mountains and ocean views? It keeps you awake at night and you can’t get it out of your system.

Do you have the guts to make it happen? If you are going through that experience and you would like to make it happen, you need to be able to make an informed decision.

You want to purchase a vacation home or a retirement home in Costa Rica, and be successful and happy about it. Therefor you will need some more facts on Costa Rica property so you can understand how it works here.

These facts might also give you a good reason to purchase Costa Rica property and not in just any other country. Here we go:

1.    It is safe to buy real estate in a democracy

If you have been researching the international market, for sure you have found Nicaragua and Ecuador as a cheap retirement or vacation destination. Left wing dictators run those countries. A country run by ANY dictator makes for an unhealthy investment climate.

Proof is that Nicaragua’s President, Daniel Ortega lives in a house owned by a Costa Rican family since he came into power and have never paid rent to the rightful owner. You purchase property in a country like that you might end up without the property at any time.

In Costa Rica, one of the oldest democracies in Latin America, every titled property is registered in the National Register and your closing attorney can check and show you proof of a clear title. If the property does not show a clear title before closing, DO NOT PURCHASE.

2.    We measure differently

Costa Rica property is registered in square meters and not in square feet. We also measure in hectares and not in acres. The speed and distance of our vehicles is measured in kilometers and not in miles. Our products show in kilos and grams on the labels and not in pounds and ounces. We buy gasoline, beer and milk by the liter, not by the gallon. Costa Rica property buyers can learn more about why Costa Rica real estate is measured differently and download our FREE American European Real Estate Group’s Land Measurement Chart below.

6 Facts You Probably Did Not Know About Costa Rica property
Click on image for FREE download of Costa Rica Land Measurement Chart

3.    Real estate prices are in US dollars

The official currency in Costa Rica is the COLON. For many years, the Colon was an unstable currency and the exchange rate would change every day. This made it impossible to advertise more expensive items like Costa Rica property and cars in Colones. The custom stuck and you will find that most property in Costa Rica is offered in US dollars.

The huge advantage of this is that you will always be able to take your dollars home again when you sell again and do not depend on any exchange rate differences or try to change a suitcase full of local currency back into US dollars.

6 Facts You Probably Did Not Know About Costa Rica property
Costa Rica property is generally sold in US dollars

4.    Very little beach front property is titled

Because of the Maritime Zoning (ZMT) in Costa Rica, titled property in most beach areas of Costa Rica starts at 200 meters (see in 2 how much 200 meters is) of the median high tide line.

Property ownership is restricted by concessions within the 200 meters of that median high tide line. ONLY Costa Rican citizens are allowed 100% ownership of property within the ZMT and foreigners can own up to 49% of the concession rights. Before you purchase, check on construction restrictions within the ZMT.

6 Facts You Probably Did Not Know About Costa Rica property
Explanation of Maritime Zoning in Costa Rica

5.    Few restrictions on property rights for-non residents

The Costa Rican constitution regulates the ownership of private property. This gives a non-resident buyer exactly the same right to purchase and own a titled property in Costa Rica.

A foreigner has ONE restriction on owning Costa Rica property: a property located in the Maritime Terrestrial Zone (ZMT).

Another restriction for a foreigner is to buy a Costa Rica property that was donated to a Costarican farmer by IDA (Instituto de Desarrollo Agrario) within X years of the donation.  IDA was created to help poor small farmers to be able to farm their own parcel and as a protection, they could not mortgage or sell the donated property for X of years.

6 Facts You Probably Did Not Know About Costa Rica property
Purchase Costa Rica property and get residency

6.    Purchase property and get residency

Unlike in most countries in the world, including the United States and Canada, you can get residency in Costa Rica by buying a property that has a registered value of more than $250,000. This property can be residential property, a farm or an investment property.

6 Facts You Probably Did Not Know About Costa Rica property
ALMOST Equal Property rights for non-residents

Click here to find out which area of Costa Rica will be the best fit for you. Our affiliate agents from coast to coast can assist you in making sure you don’t commit any mistakes. You can take full advantage of our services, contact us NOW.

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Ivo Henfling

Your West-side of San Jose real estate agent, covering Escazu and Santa Ana, Rohrmoser and Ciudad Colon. If you are looking to buy a home in Costa Rica or invest in a condo anywhere in the Central Valley or looking for any property for sale in Escazu or Santa Ana, you need to contact Costa Rica real estate agent Ivo Henfling. Ivo has been selling Costa Rica real estate on the westside of San Jose, in the locations of Rohrmoser, Sabana, Escazu, Santa Ana and Ciudad Colon for over 20 years and can show you hundreds of happy buyers of real estate in Escazu and those other areas. For Ivo, a deal is not a good one unless both buyer and seller are happy.

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