Dominical Real Estate

Real Estate For Sale In Southern Costa Rica
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  • Where on Earth Does the Sun Set?

    Where on Earth Does the Sun Set?

    -By Ron Snell

    I just finished showing some clients a few beautiful luxury homes with stellar views of the
    Pacific Ocean. Those were Wow! moments, soul filling in the literal sense where you suddenly
    realize you haven’t been breathing normally.

    Always when looking at that view, the question comes up: “So where does the sun actually
    set?” Because the only thing more beautiful than the ocean in all of its moods is a blazing
    sunset where you can watch a glowing red ball sizzle right into the water way out there on the
    horizon, and you can picture a long, narrow burning path reflected across the water coming
    right to your feet, and the clouds flash brilliant colors, and you wear out your Instagram or
    Facebook followers with picture after picture of it all.

    Back to reality. Astronomical reality. Where, really, on that beautiful horizon, does the sun set?
    How much of the year can you actually watch the sun sink into the ocean as it wraps up the
    day? Can you believe the property description, your agent, or the homeowner?

    Three things complicate the answer:

    First, our coastline doesn’t generally run north and south. If you are standing square to the
    coastline and looking at the Pacific Ocean, you are tempted to think you are looking west, and
    since the sun “sets in the west, well….” Usually, you aren’t. You’re looking southwest, and the
    sun will mostly set to your right.

    Second, the sunsets travel a lot between December 21, when they are the farthest left (south)
    they will go, and June 21, when they are the farthest right (north) they will go. I won’t explain
    the astronomy behind this, but you can Google it and spend a fascinating hour refreshing your
    memory about things you were supposed to learn in earth science about 50 years ago.

    Third, it’s highly unlikely that your agent has ever actually stood on the property both June 21 st
    and December 21 st and marked where exactly the sun sets. Instead, it is highly likely that the
    agent has heard the owner say, “You can watch the sunsets over the ocean” and has
    immediately driven back to the office to include that in the property description.

    So what are you to do? How do you know how often you’re going to see sunsets over the ocean
    instead of behind the trees or an inconvenient mountain? It’s pretty easy, really.

    Point a phone app or a compass due west. Because we are about 9 degrees north of the
    equator, on December 21 st the sun will set about 23 degrees to the left (south) of west. On June
    21 st it will set about 23 degrees to the right (north) of west.

    No amount of fast talking by your agent will change that, so trust the science and set your
    expectations. Keep in mind that from September to early December it isn’t going to matter a
    whole lot anyway, because it is highly likely that there will be heavy overcast or rain that time
    of day. So focus on late December through June. That’s when you are most likely to see the
    sunsets.

    If you are the sort of person who enjoys this stuff, you would like the app I found for my phone:
    Sun Surveyor Lite. It’s free and shows you where the sun will set on any day of the year, among
    many other things like times for sunrise and sunset.

    By the way, if you’re a photographer, whether amateur or less amateur, this little app has some
    very practical value because you can set up shots based on where the sun will actually be,
    instead of where you wish it were going to be, any time of day.
    Check it out.

  • 5 Key Attributes That Lead To Success As A Real Estate Investor

     

    5 Key Attributes That Lead To Success As A Real Estate
    Investor:

    There are more than 5 key attributes that lead to success as a real estate investor;
    however, we feel that these aspects are important and vital to any investor. What do
    you think is important when buying real estate? Good credit? Having the money to
    pay it off? Of course, those are factors that determine whether you are an investor or
    a buyer who cannot really afford to do what he or she is doing. Let’s take a look at
    the 5 key attributes that lead to success as a real estate investor:

    1. A Worthy Rental Strategy

    Every good decision starts with a plan or strategy, especially when it
    comes to buying a property and renting it out. You need to determine
    whether or not you are going to rent out your property the traditional
    way, or Airbnb style. Which is more convenient for you and is Airbnb
    too precarious? The location of your property will play a part in your
    rental strategy as well. Which option will be more profitable and easy
    to manage?

    2. Location, Location, Location

    The location of your property will play a huge part in the success of
    your rental income. Being located in a high touristic area will likely
    result in more rental income. You can always renovate your property,
    but you cannot change the location of it. Supply and demand will play
    a large role in finding the right location. You want to be in a place with
    lower supply and higher demand. The location usually determines
    how much rent you can charge.

    3. Cash Flow

    Being an investor usually means you have the capital to invest. You
    want to make sure you have enough cash flow coming in to make a
    responsible decision and be able to maintain your properties. Cash
    flow is profit coming from your rental property. This will determine
    your ROI (return on investment). The more cash flow, the more
    equity you are obtaining.

    4. Monetary Consideration

    You need to understand the monetary considerations that come with
    owning a rental property. A successful investor will analyze the charts
    and determine the best way to go about financing. The reason a real
    estate investor is successful is because they take time to go over every
    possible option and outcome to figure out if they are making an
    accurate decision.

    5. A Sense of Property Management

    It’s easy to buy a property but knowing how to manage one is
    completely different. You need to have the time, money, and skills to
    manage your income property. If something breaks down, you as the
    owner are responsible to fix the problem in a timely manner.

    Therefore, you need the money to do so and the skills to make it
    happen or hire it done. Since you are a real estate investor, you need
    to have the skills necessary to advertise your property and find
    appropriate renters. Look for someone who has paid his or her rent
    on time and will not damage the property.

  • Owner Financing In Costa Rica:

    Owner Financing In Costa Rica:

    Owner financing is when the seller of the property finances the property with the
    buyer, or entity acquiring it. When going the route of owner financing, you eliminate
    bank fees and associated fees that come with buying a property in Costa Rica,
    especially if you are a foreigner. If you have a good handle on real estate in Costa
    Rica (like we do here at Dominical Real Estate) you will know the ins and outs and
    the advantages of owner financing. During slow economic periods, owner financing
    is strongly encouraged. Before experiencing the market slump, many Americans
    paid cash for their properties. Since the bank charges much higher fees when
    financing, many buyers opt for owner financing in Costa Rica because the fees are
    substantially less.

    Owner financing is a great option for buyers because they have the utmost
    advantage in regards to the transaction. When looking at the terms and conditions
    of the contract and finance agreement, the terms are more flexible. As the buyer, you
    will pay the seller directly. This is a great option for buyers who have more liquidity.
    Most owner financing deals are assisted by a promissory note that includes the
    terms and interest rates, as well as the penalties of nonpayment.

    Owner Financing in Costa Rica enables investors to buy, which might be the only
    hope for some people to own real estate in Costa Rica. You are recommended to pay
    off your seller within a 5-year timeframe to be fair. Many financers offer a longer
    pay period in order to meet the needs of the buyer and he or she may be willing to
    extend the period if the buyer has been consistent with their payments

    Here at Dominical Real Estate, we offer owner financing on some of our properties
    because we want to make your experience as easy and effortless as possible. We
    believe in trust and our goal is to help people make the best investment and find the
    best possible property here in Costa Rica for you to enjoy! Whether you choose
    owner financing or you want to do everything through the bank that is up to you.
    The option is out there and the advantages are in your favor.

    One thing to note about owner financing is that the room for negotiating on the
    property price is very small to obsolete. This is because the seller is agreeing to hold
    your mortgage. The down payment all depends on the owner who is providing the
    finances to you. Most owners will require a down payment of 50% of the property’s
    value. Then the seller is agreeing to finance the remaining 50%. The average interest
    rate is around 7% give or take.

    If owner financing is not something you would consider, there are a few other
    options we can speak with you about. We are here to find you a property in Costa
    Rica that meets all your wants and needs. Don’t hesitate to contact us, as we are
    always willing to share our knowledge about real estate in Costa Rica!

  • The Process Of Purchasing Real Estate In Costa Rica

    The Process Of Purchasing Real Estate In Costa Rica

     



    Can a foreigner obtain real estate in Costa Rica? Of course they can, and every foreigner has the same rights as a citizen in Costa Rica, excluding voting rights.


    Since foreigners have the same rights as citizens when it comes to buying property; the government has made the process very simple. There are a few key factors you need to know in terms of where a foreigner can purchase real estate, and you will learn all about that in this article.


    It is important to know that a foreigner cannot own 100% of the property if it is located in a Maritime Zone. Titled property is any piece of land that is beyond 200 meters from high tide. The first 50 meters from the high tide line, is public property that is protected. Within 150 meters adjacent to the high tide line- this is known as the Maritime Zone and the property can be leased from the government.  


    Real Estate Attorney:


    It’s essential to hire a real estate attorney and someone who is bilingual if you don’t speak Spanish. Hiring an attorney with experience will ensure no problems will arise with the property you want to purchase. They will look over everything and make sure the property is in good standing.   



    A Good Real Estate Agent:


    It doesn’t matter if you are buying property in Costa Rica or anywhere in the world; it’s always essential to use a good/reliable real estate agent. Choose a real estate agent who has been in the business for a few years and who is familiar with the area you want to invest in. Make sure they match all your requirements and they postulate outstanding service. It’s always good to stick with one agent and get to know them on a personal level. This will make the buying process that much easier.  If you are speaking to several different agents, you will get confused and you won’t have that hands-on experience that one agent is willing to provide you. With Dominical Real Estate, we ensure you have a positive experience from the first time we speak to you- to after you are settled into your property. Our agents go above and beyond to assist you with every possible need. We are only a call, text, or email away from finding you the property of your dreams.



    Making An Offer:


    You will want your real estate agent to write up an offer and deliver it to the seller instead of making a verbal offer. It is always better to have this information written down on paper. After the offer is accepted, your agent will have your real estate lawyer draft up a formal purchase of sale agreement. When both parties sign the agreement, you will be required to send 10% of the property price into an escrow account that you will need to set up. Once the 10% deposit is deposited into the escrow account- the agreement becomes lawful.


    Closing:


    Depending on whether you will be in Costa Rica during this process if for some reason you will not be- you should leave the power with your attorney, or real estate agent. They will be able to obtain the real estate property in the name that you approve of. You will need to have your property registered in your name or a corporation. Remember to always look at all the fees associated with your property. From utilities to condo fees, corporation tax, property tax, etc.



    If you have any other questions regarding the process of purchasing real estate in Costa Rica, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me and I would be happy to answer any questions. I want to make this process as easy as possible for you and ensure you have a positive buying or selling experience with Dominical Real Estate! ☺

  • Why Buying Property In Costa Rica In 2019 Is A Good Investment ?

    Why Buying Property In Costa Rica In 2019 Is A Good Investment? 

     

    Let’s face it- Costa Ricans are some of the happiest people in the world, with Costa Rica being ranked as one of the happiest countries in the biosphere. Why wouldn’t someone want to buy property in Costa Rica with a classification like that?

    Buying property anywhere in the world is typically a safe investment; nonetheless you want to look at places that will exploit your income in the long run. Deciding when to buy real estate and where, are usually the two big questions. When it comes to buying property in a foreign country for the first time, you want to take many factors into consideration and make sure you are aware of the process. Costa Rica is currently a buyers market and has been for a few years. There are many different places on the market, which allows you to be picky and find the perfect place. With the abundance of real estate on the market, come more affordable prices that make investing in real estate more cost efficient for foreigners. It’s always important to take your time and not make any decisions based on impulsiveness. A lot of people come to Costa Rica for the first time and distinguish they will be back for good. Take some time and experience the country a bit, once you see how scenic and tranquil it is, than make your purchase.

    Let’s take a look at the different reasons as to why Costa Rica is a good investment for the upcoming year:

    • Minimal taxes
    • Growing tourism
    • Buyers market
    • A safe country
    • The market is down
    • Permanent Residency
    • The weather
    • The diversity in the country

    Costa Rica is known for their minimal land tax. You have to pay 0.25% of the registered property value in your municipality. You have the option to pay this on a quarterly basis or one payment for the year. You will get a small tax break if you pay it all at once. In terms of the growing tourism here in Costa Rica, many people are coming to Costa Rica because of safety reasons and all the places to explore around the country. Costa Rica is an extremely safe country to travel around and to live and many female expats travel the whole country by themselves.  In the past 10 years, the tourism industry in Costa Rica has grown at a steady rate of approximately 8% each year. Tourism in the country generates about 13% of employment.

    With the crash that happened in the real estate market in 2008, the market is still recovering. With that being said, prices of real estate are down, which makes this the perfect buying opportunity for anyone who wants to own a property or income property in Costa Rica. With the tourism rate growing at a fast 8% each year, the market will eventually stabilize and real estate will rise. The government is working to cultivate new areas of the country and continue with new highway development. A new international airport is suppose to develop in Orotina in 2025, which will compete with the hub of Central America in Panama.

    Between the beautiful weather year around and the diversified landscapes spread out across the country, what better reason to invest in Costa Rica? There are beach properties close to the turtles and fishing ports, and there are properties in the rainforest, which are surrounded by monkeys and sloths. You have the choice to pick where you want to invest in Costa Rica. Also, after an investor invests over $200,000 they are granted temporary residency. Then they would wait three years and could opt for permanent residency or citizenship.

    For any real estate questions pertaining to properties in Costa Rica, don’t hesitate to reach out to me, as I would be happy to assist you through out this journey! ☺

  • Eco Friendly Costa Rica

    Written by Jason Mueller
     
                                                                        ecofriendly.png
     
     Costa Rica is the ideal country for anyone to relocate to that is conscious about their footprint on mother earth. Costa Rica is the perfect place for anyone looking to retire and they can even do it on a budget when saving money living a greener lifestyle. This pristine piece of paradise is very popular for tourism coming to see the abundance of wildlife and beauty within. The countries residents and government are very conscious about keeping Costa Rica as beautiful as it was before tourism became the number one income earner for the country. You must learn how to become more sustainable before you step foot in this country in order to pay your full respect.

    This is a peaceful country where you will rarely find a negative confrontation. In fact, Costa Rica renounced their army in in 1949 making it one of 15 countries with no army. The prior military budget was put towards culture, health and education. The most popular words that come from every one's mouth is “pura vida” This translates to pure life and seems to be a way of life for laid back locales.

    Costa Rica is rich in bio-diversity from coast to coast. The country is incredibly small with only 19,730 square miles. That equals .03% of the surface of the globe. However, the country is proud to say that it is home to 5% of the total biodiversity in the world.

    Over 25% of the countries land is protected by national parks and conservation areas. The government even pays landowners to conserve their own private land, this is referred to as “selling the air, yes you can even make extra money while doing your part to save the planet in Costa Rica.

    Roughly 50% of Costa Rica is forested and 7.5% of that is classified as primary forest. Primary forest is the most bio-diverse forest known or unknown to man whichever way you look at it. Primary forest means that there are no clear indications of human activities and the ecological processes are left undisturbed.

    Renewable Energy

    When you turn on the lights or use any sort of electricity in Costa Rica you can feel a little better about your decision knowing that the country runs nearly 100% on renewable energy. In 2016 the country ran for more than two months straight on 100% renewable energy. They accomplished this task twice. That means the country ran for 150 days on 100% renewable energy. One of the biggest goals for the country is to be completely running on renewable energy in the near future.
    Costa Rica is giving huge incentives for those looking to go green and import an EV. Import custom duty taxes of 52.29% on new vehicles and 79% for vehicles 6 years or older make vehicles super expensive in Costa Rica and fully electric vehicles under $30,000 are 100% exempt from customs taxes. Also, there is a 10-year exemption for EV parts.

    ECO Tours

    The country does capitalize on the natural ecology for tourism that is for sure. There is an abundance of eco tours to choose from. The most popular eco-tours are the nature tours such as monkey tours, tree top tours, crocodile tours, and turtle tours. Many of the beaches are protected areas for turtles to nestle, only certain guided tours are allowed to explore these beaches. It is highly recommended that a guide accompanies you into the wild because there is so much that you would miss if you were all alone.

    There are 9 volcanoes in Costa Rica and all of them are a sight to see. The most popular and spectacular ones are Poas, Irazu, and Arenal. Turrialba has recently been active in 2016 and the beginning of 2017 canceling some flights in and out of the San Jose International Airport.

    Manuel Antonio National Park is the most visited park in the country and is only 45 KM from Dominical. There are 184 species of birds in the park and 109 species of mammals. Monkeys are the main attraction and you are certain to spot one when visiting the park. The trails within the park are in great condition offering an easy path for elders to enjoy the scenery. The white sand beaches within the park are the perfect place to relax for the day.

    One of the best ways to really appreciate the land is to join a tour that teaches you all about the agriculture in Costa Rica. There is an organic pineapple tour and organic coffee tours. Saint Michaels Organic Farm offers free education for sustainable farming, they also welcome volunteers looking for a free place to stay, look for them on WWOOF.

    Adventure meets eco-tour with the affluence of zip line canopy tours in the country. Many people don’t know it but zip lining was first invented in Costa Rica. Biologists first used this method in Costa Rica to access previous unreachable and unexplored rainforests.

    JASON MUELLER
    A Canadian expat, Jason Muller is currently living in Costa Rica and operating a small business. Jason enjoys travelling to many exotic locations and enjoyed meeting new people and telling related stories. Life is short, live your dream.

     

     
     
  • Guide to Importing a Car and Other Household Items into Costa Rica

    Written by Jason Mueller         
                                                        frog.png
     

    It’s understandable why anyone would want to move to Costa Rica. The country has a majestic landscape, exciting outdoor activities, low cost of living, favorable foreigner/expatriate policies and ample working opportunities. Costa Rica is however known for high import duties. Living in Costa Rica as a foreigner is easy. Moving is the main hurdle especially if you want to move with your car and personal belongings such as household items. To move seamlessly, there are several things you must know/understand.

    Laws and regulations
    Costa Rica's Customs Law has several articles relating to the importation of used goods/items. Duty varies depending on several factors i.e. when and how you import the goods. Here’s an important criteria to consider.
    Your household items are exempt from duty if; you are an adult who is importing the goods for personal use (not for sale). The items must also be used (at least 6 months old) and the importer must enter Costa Rica within three months (90 days) prior to custom clearance. If your shipment meets the above criteria, your household items will be exempt of duty. If you have new items, duty is based on CIF (Cost, Insurance, and Freight) as well as the value of those items. It is worth noting it is cheaper to ship more items.


    Shipping a vehicle
    Shipping a vehicle to Costa Rica is costly (costs more than shipping household items). Total costs vary depending on factors such as the; tax, size of the car, age of the car, how the car is shipped (i.e., in a container). It’s worth noting that taxation is charged against the original price, not the age or condition. The average retail value of the car is considered. The import value of a car can be established in the Ministry of Treasury Valuation Database: http://www.hacienda.go.cr/autohacienda/AutoValor.aspx .


    Total cost of importing a car to Costa Rica is highest for older car models. Cars manufactured in 1999 or earlier pay approximately 80%. Cars manufactured in 2000 to 2004 pay approximately 65% while those manufactured earlier i.e. 2004 and earlier pay approximately 55%.
    International moving companies such as A-1 Auto Transport Inc. can assist with moving household goods and vehicles to Costa Rica. For more information visit https://www.a1autotransport.com/moving-to-costa-rica/.

    Important considerations

    Essentials    

    After considering the cost of shipping your car and household items to Costa Rica, you may become reluctant. However, most foreign residents, as well as Costa Ricans, prefer imported goods from countries like the U.S. because they are of better quality. If you value quality, you may want to go ahead and import. If you don’t mind living without luxuries, you can consider living in furnished apartments or consider what you need locally. Remember, what you need to import solely depends on your own preferences and budget. However, don’t ship what you can get cheaply or easily in Costa Rica. You should also make an effort to declutter before shipping. Also, avoid bulky items to avoid excessive shipping and taxation costs. It may also be smart to talk to foreign residents in advance just to get firsthand insights.

    Port proximity

    You should also consider shipping from the nearest port. If you live in the U.S. for instance, you should ship your car and household items from Miami, the U.S. port that is nearest to Costa Rica to enjoy lower shipping costs.

    Tax waivers on household items

    Foreign residents in Costa Rica are allowed to import merchandise worth $500 tax-free after every 6-months. This waiver is in addition to regular traveler’s luggage. You can take advantage of this waiver to import the items you need overtime. However, you must not exceed the $500 limit to avoid additional charges and customs restrictions.

    Container shipping

    It is very expensive to import large items by air. For items such as refrigerators, washing machines, etc. that exceed 500 pounds, consider shipping such items in a large container. You can choose a large or small container (40-foot or 20-foot). It costs approximately $1,500 including tax to ship items to Costa Rica using a 20-foot container. Large 40-foot containers cost approximately $2,000.

    You need a customs agent to get all your household items and belongings (such as your car) out of customs seamlessly. You can find a reputable customs agent by conducting a simple search online or asking for referrals.

    Required documents

    Documents required to clear a shipment through customs include; a copy of your passport (the main page) plus the page containing last entry. This is required for your shipment to be treated as personal effects given customs must clear personal items within 90 days of a person’s arrival. You also need a packing inventory showing the value of the declared items. If the items are imported via air, you need an original airway bill. Freight forwarders send airway bills with shipments. Airline agents usually give you this document after you pay Terminal handling fees.

    The above information summarizes the process of importing a car and other household items into Costa Rica. Since it is a lengthy and tedious process, most people prefer paying custom brokers/agents to handle everything on their behalf. It may cost more; however, you will save valuable time and effort.

    Best of luck and pura vida!
     
    JASON MUELLER
    A Canadian expat, Jason Muller is currently living in Costa Rica and operating a small business. Jason enjoys travelling to many exotic locations and enjoyed meeting new people and telling related stories. Life is short, live your dream.
     
  • Manuel Antonio National Park

                                                       Manuel Antonio National Park - The most visited of Costa Rica's parks.
     
    1.1

    Located in Central Pacific Area in a small conservation National Park.
    Know for its Banana boat rides, beautiful beaches, hiking trials, and their mammals and tons of species of birds. 


    2
    Manuel Antonio beach offers you the banana boat ride adventure for a great price. Perfect for a group of friends that just want to take a wild ride in to our oceans! This consist of an inflatable  in a shape of a banana being pulled by a boat and just drifting away while enjoying the beautiful sites.





    3.1
    This Costarican beach is just amazing with its crystal clear waters, no danger what so ever and perfect for 1st time surfers.
    An awesome get away for friends and family to enjoy a nice and peaceful vacation. This beach is known for its calm waves, warm waters, quiet and relaxing.
    The beach is a long stretch of clean sand. So natural but still not isolated!



    This beach offers you an amazing hiking experience where you get to see all kinds of animals like the 2 toed sloths, over 184 species of birds like the kingfisher, brown pelican, laughing falcon, 4 different type of monkeys and iguanas recharging in the sunlight. A great place to enjoy the natural wildlife. 
                                                                               Collage

    There are 5 different types of trials.
    The Main Trail: which is a 1/2 mile long on sandy land, this trial passes by mangrove swamps on its way to the beaches.
    The Cathedral Point Trail: An outcropping of land that used to be an island but is now joined to the mainland, the trail might be a little slippery at times but only in the rainy season.
    The Trampa Trail: Connects the beginning and end of Cathedral Point Trail, a very short path.
    The Playa Gemelas: A mile walk through the forest to two other beaches of the same names.
    The Mirador Trail: The most challenging climb close to a mile long to a beautiful lookout gazer.
    6There's more to Manuel Antonio National Park - from horse back riding to snow cones and live music to jet skiing and drinking fresh coconut water.

    Domincal Real Estate is located only 30 minutes from Manuel Antonio National Park, one of the great things about living here is that you can go and enjoy the beaches any time you want! Many people decide to buy property here because of Manuel Antonio and all that it has to offer!!!!
     
    Here is the link to one of our featured listings in the Manuel Antonio area.......


  • Real Estate for Sale in Costa Rica: Attractive Options for Retirees

    Posted by Saul Rasminsky

    Every person has his or her idea of what makes the ideal retirement location. Many pre-retirees are drawn to places where the climate is mild and senior-friendly amenities are plenty, while some favor neighborhoods close to urban centers with top-notch healthcare and entertainment facilities as well as opportunities for employment. Still others are content to stay put in their current communities and enjoy the retirement lifestyle choices and benefits in store for them.
     
    Real Estate for Sale in Costa Rica: Attractive Options for Retirees
     
    For those who decide to retire in another state or even country, comfort, security, and the availability of healthcare and other essential services are paramount. Incidentally, Costa Rica scores high on all these aspects as well as those pertaining to cost of living, retirement infrastructure, ease of integration, and real estate. A recent Tico Times article sums up the findings of an International Living report as regards the top retirement destinations in the world.

    "This year's ranking states that Costa Rica’s “legacy of year-round warm weather, as well as longtime political stability and public safety” earn the country a ranking in the top 10.

    The publication also highlights the country's health care system and states that Costa Rica “is still going strong because the country continues to tick the boxes of those looking for their place in the sun. Plus, because of its long history as an expat haven, it’s easier than ever to start a new chapter in your life.”"

    International Living also cites the affordable yet high standard of living in Costa Rica as a key factor why as many as 20,000 U.S. expatriates and retirees choose to take up residence in this Central American nation. It also helps that the country is blessed with an abundance of natural beauty, biodiversity, and pleasant temperatures throughout the year. Such factors make it quite clear why prime real estate for sale in Costa Rica, whether along the coast or further inland, has enjoyed stable demand from international buyers.

    Whether you’re looking for an investment property or somewhere you could comfortably retire, you’ll want to work with a trusted real estate firm—such as Dominical Real Estate—that knows the local property market quite well. When considering the best options in relation to real estate for sale in Costa Rica, it certainly pays to have a reliable expert by your side.


    (Article Information and Image from Costa Rica still one of the best retirement destinations, says International Living magazine, Tico Times, 6 January 2014)
  • Costa Rica Real Estate: Stable Demand despite Modest Growth Prospects

    Posted by Saul Rasminsky

    With its breathtaking natural beauty, high quality of life, and remarkable economic and political stability, it’s no wonder that a lot of folks looking for investment or retirement properties seek to own a piece of real estate in Costa Rica, also known as the Switzerland of Central America. Quite a number of businesses are also drawn to this tiny nation (bordered by Nicaragua to the north and Panama to the southeast) due to the relative ease with which they can set up operations, as well as the highly skilled workforce and the general affordability of commercial real estate.
     
    Costa Rica Real Estate: Stable Demand despite Modest Growth Prospects
     
    Tourism is another major contributor the country’s economy, with as many as 2.3 million tourists arriving each year and consequently generating about 2.2 million dollars in revenue. In an article for World Property Channel, Michael Klein sums up the recent developments in Costa Rica’s real estate market as follows:

    "While the first-boom buyers bought for investment, buyers now are buying for lifestyle and income. Interest in land or plots to build on in particular is predicted to see a larger focus during the remainder of this decade. Costa Rica's inventory of both mountain and coastal land plots and parcels is larger this decade as many first-boom investors have now shifted money into land purchases rather than more condominium development and resales. 

    Evidence of a rapid recovery or the start of a "second boom" can be found in the Costa Rica news media. Recent surveys show an uptick in 2013 inventories and upward trend in sales and prices, citing better international awareness, buyer demographics, improved U.S. economy and higher consumer confidence as primary factors."

    While Klein maintains that the current real estate boom is not as spectacular as the one that took place before the global economic slowdown, private and commercial real estate in Costa Rica nonetheless remains a hot commodity. The key is to time one’s purchase precisely and to snap up available land or property while prices are still favorable. Interested investors can enjoy a wide range of choices when it comes to prime properties along the Caribbean and Pacific coastlines.

    Property buyers are also advised to do business with reputable Costa Rica real estate agents who know the lay of the land and either originate from or have lived in the country for quite some time. Experts from trusted firms like Dominical Real Estate can offer interested investors access to a convenient Multiple Listing Service that lets them search for available residential, commercial, or ranch properties.


    (Article Information and Image from Second Boom in Costa Rica: Slow and Steady, World Property Channel, 19 December 2013)
  • Retiring Soon? Why Not Find Real Estate for Sale in Costa Rica Today?

    Posted by Saul Rasminsky

    People who have lived their whole lives under the shadow of a huge metropolis, nourished by the dynamic energy of bustling streets and fast-paced days, more often than not inevitably seek out a more quiet and serene destination to live out the rest of their non-working lives. If you are one of these people, look no further than one of the richest coasts in Central America, renowned for its natural beauty and quiet splendor: Costa Rica.

     

    Americans in the Heart of the Americas

    A Marketwatch.com article about an American expat couple conveys the sentiments why many people, at retirement, go looking for real estate for sale in Costa Rica.

    They considered the southern U.S. and Mexico, but ultimately opted for Costa Rica in part because of the natural beauty, the decent and affordable health care and the “friendly people—both expats and Ticos,” says Gloria. They liked that the country has had a stable democracy for years, says Paul: “We just wouldn’t feel comfortable in a place where the government is unstable or there is a strong anti-American sentiment.”

    An Oasis amidst Caribbean Chaos

    Statistics presented from studies in Britain’s International Centre for Prison Studies have shown that Caribbean states closely approach the top ten countries with the most number of incarcerations. While Costa Rica borders the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, the country is quite peaceful and law abiding, compared to its neighbors (it has been so, in fact, since 1949).

    Glorious Green and Wonderful Wildlife

    Costa Rica’s natural beauty is unlike any other in the world – from the hidden treasures of the Caribbean deeps to the lush, untamed jungles and exalted mountains. There you can tour the Tortuguero Canals to see the mysteries of life amongst the swamplands, or trek atop Chirripo Mountain, the largest in the country.

    A Pinch of Convenience for Flavor

    You’d be wrong to suppose that a place as nature-oriented as Costa Rica wouldn’t have the ordinary convenience of everyday life. As a matter of fact, dependable taxis, high-speed internet, and an affordable health care system are highly functional in the country.

    With all of these perks packed in a neat, small, but fiercely beautiful bundle of a country that is Costa Rica, it’s no wonder that many retirees check out Costa Rica real estate for sale from companies like Dominical Real Estate. How about you, have you thought of your ultimate retirement destination?

     

     

    (Article Information and Image from Retire Here, Not There: Costa Rica, Market Watch)

  • Costa Rica Real Estate and Retirement: How to Live Cost-effectively

    Posted by Saul Rasminsky

    Moving to Costa Rica, this “Little Switzerland” of Central America, is a thrilling prospect for many people. If you are one of the multitude thinking of purchasing real estate in Costa Rica, but are worried that you might end up stretching your finances too thin, you might be surprised to learn how affordable living in the country is. Marcel Evans attempts to lay it down for you in his article for the Costa Rica Star:
    In piecing it all together, I estimated that if someone said (cost of living in Costa Rica) was inexpensive now, then it could be, in fact, possible to live cheaply in Costa Rica. And since moving here, that has precisely been my experience. For July, I decided to find out exactly how cheaply I could live here. I did pretty well.

    For the month of July, I lived on roughly $715. By lived I mean that it is now August and I’m still alive. Very little more, very little less. To put my expenses into context, I live in an efficiency apartment in Jacó, Costa Rica and I don’t own a car. Here is a basic breakdown of the outflow of dollars during July.

    Housing: $240
    Utilities (electric/internet): $25
    Online Services: $60
    Transportation (taxis): $5
    Food: $200
    Cigarettes: $100
    Fees: $30
    Entertainment: $55

    Do you think this is workable for you? Then moving to Costa Rica can be a really smart decision on your part. To help make the transition even easier, here are some Costa Rica home buying tips that you should know:

    Ask yourself first: how long do you plan to stay in the country? Five years? Longer? If you plan to live full time in Costa Rica, renting should be out of the equation. By buying a property, you’ll have little to worry about in terms of the tourism industry, the health of the local economy, and the real estate market.

    Another thing you can do to make moving to Costa Rica even simpler is to take only the most important items with you when you move. Shipping all your items to Costa Rica can get expensive, not to mention unnecessary since many items are already available in the country. It can be more cost- effective to pack light and buy the items that you need when you arrive. 

    For help regarding your Costa Rica real estate purchase, brokers like Dominical Real Estate can provide you with all the tools and information you’ll ever need.


    (Article information and image from Living Cheaply in Costa Rica, Costa Rica Star, Aug. 10, 2013)
  • Retiring? Why Buying Real Estate For Sale in Costa Rica is a Good Idea

    Posted by Saul Rasminsky

    The massive recession in 2009 devastated the finances of many people of many countries, including those from the U.S. Between dwindling savings and an economy in recovery, many are feeling the need to reevaluate their retirement plans. Unfortunately, most are discovering that they cannot afford to retire in the USA.

    So what to do? Where to live? Purchasing real estate for sale in Costa Rica may be the solution. AARP, Inc., formerly the American Association of Retired Persons, explains why:

    Costa Rica is where you go to live the lush life. It is lush with nature—misty rain forests, extraordinary wildlife, and fabulous beaches—as well as such comforting amenities as malls, supermarkets, restaurants, museums, and social clubs. U.S. retirees have flocked here for years, drawn by its mild climate, its prosperity (relative to other Central American republics), its literacy rate, its health care, and, significantly, its stable government—with no army. Another plus: Costa Rica's commitment to a thriving natural park system that is second to none in Latin America. This is as biodiverse a country as you’ll find anywhere.

    There are approximately 50,000 U.S. citizens in Costa Rica. That's already a large percentage of the country's overall population, considering that Costa Rica's inhabitants number around 4.7 million. Expats can be found in almost every town, which is something that can't be said about many other Latin American countries.

    "There are a lot of Ticos (that's what Costa Ricans call themselves) who speak good English. Those who don't, go out of their way to communicate in some way,” says Skip Anderton, retiree from Texas who moved to Costa Rica in 2009. “There is a lot of sign language and a lot of smiling. Everyone is most helpful."

    For those planning to move here permanently, you must apply for and receive legal residency. The process takes a bit of effort, as you will need to obtain certain documents such as birth certificate, marriage certificate, police good conduct report, and the like. Those who are on a pension or social security are required to have an income of $1,000 per month.

    It would also be helpful if you visit the country a few times to see how living here suits you. Later, you'll be more confident  when you purchase real estate for sale in Costa Rica. Feel free to discuss your purchase plans with companies like Dominical Real Estate. The expertise of these firms will ensure that you find the right property with which to start the next chapter of your life.

    (Article Excerpt and Image from Costa Rica, AARP the Magazine, September/October 2010)
  • Gone South: Why is that Retirees Are Buying Real Estate in Costa Rica?

    Posted by Saul Rasminsky

    Buying a home for your family would count as one of the most important investments you've ever made. However, soon after the kids have flown the coop to start their own families, you wonder, along with other many American seniors whether it is still practical  to keep your home, or start over in a smaller house in another part of town.  After all, the priorities and needs are different now, and the  funds may just be right for a household of one or two.

    Recently, CNN Money released its recommendations for the best places to retire in America, and in their opinion, a city from the Tar Heel State topped the list:

    Raleigh, N.C.
    This state capital's thriving economy and proximity to top universities have long made it a prime relocation destination.....From 2000 to 2010 the city's population of 55- to 64-year-olds shot up by 97%, according to the Brookings Institution.

    Raleigh provides a big-city feel with a low cost of living; mild, four-season weather; and, thanks to all those medical schools, world-class health care.

    You don’t even have to confine your search within the country’s 50 states. About 50,000 retired Americans have crossed the southern border to buy real estate in Costa Rica to spend their golden years there. Expats can obtain residency status by proving that they receive at least $1000 in pension, Social Security, or retirement funds. Once they do, they can then enroll in the country’s top-notch public health-care system for a small monthly stipend. International Living Magazine says that health-care costs in Costa Rica is only about a third to a fifth of what it would cost stateside, and even private health insurance is markedly cheaper.

    Many retirees live comfortably there on just $1000-$2000 a month, nearly impossible in the States. On that monthly budget, a retiree  need not sacrifice some luxuries like cable TV, internet, cell phones, and the occasional dinner out to enjoy his life in the new country.

    The pleasant weather in Costa Rica is also a popular draw for retirees. In the Central Valley, people experience spring-like weather year-round, and homes rarely need heating or air-conditioning. Those who want warmer temperatures move closer to areas like Dominical with its popular beaches. 

    If you think Costa Rica is the right place for you in which to retire, contact reliable Costa Rica real estate agents such as those from Dominical Real Estate to inquire about available property listings.


    (Article Excerpt and Image from 10 Best Places To Retire In America In 2013, The Huffington Post, 29 October 2013)
  • Want to Be Happy? Then Invest in Costa Rica Real Estate Right Now!

    Posted by Saul Rasminsky

    Costa Rica might as well be one of the best places to live on the planet, according to the United Nations in an article from the Tico Times:

    Costa Rica might as well be one of the best places to live on the planet, according to the United Nations in an article from the Tico Times:


    Costa Rica still ranks among the world’s happiest countries according to the United Nation’s 2013 World Happiness Report released Tuesday. Ticos are ranked as the 12th happiest people on Earth out of 156 countries. Costa Rica also was ranked 12th in the 2012 report.

    Its No. 12 spot puts Costa Rica’s happiness ahead of every other country in Latin America, trailed by Panama (15) and Mexico (16), and at No. 2 in the Western Hemisphere, topped only by Canada (6). The U.S. ranked 17th, a marked drop from last year’s 11th place. 

    The report analyzed data from surveys conducted between 2010 and 2012. While traditional happiness indicators like per-capita gross domestic product and life expectancy were considered in ranking happiness, other factors like the availability of social support and the perceptions of corruption and generosity were also included.


    The report also concluded that the “happiness rating” in the country didn't change much for the 2010-2012 period, similar to when the same survey was conducted between 2005 and 2007. However, the UN also noted that those who live in Latin America are generally happier than those who live elsewhere. Costa Rica is also ranked together with Chile (5th) as one of the “most emotional” countries in the world, which can possibly be attributed to the country's vibrant culture and beautiful scenery.


    A lot can be done with these survey results, although it's not a stretch to say that they proved just how lucrative investing in real estate in Costa Rica can be. Firms like Dominical Real Estate even specialize in specific provinces simply because tourists and investors alike have their hands full finding the “best place to stay” in the country. The province of Dominical, for instance, is a well-known haven for surfers, jet skiers, and others who're interested in water sports.


    Of course, people should still be careful even when visiting one of the happiest places on Earth today. The US government recommends caution when swimming in the country's beaches since the currents can change dramatically in an instant. Even buying real estate in Costa Rica may warrant the help of a lawyer, especially if the buyers aren't familiar with the country's property laws.


    (From Costa Rica Ranks 12th in World Happiness Report, Tico Times, September 10, 2013)


    Sources:

    • travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1093.html

    • www.lonelyplanet.com/costa-rica/central-pacific-coast/quepos-to-dominical/activities

    • home.howstuffworks.com/real-estate/10-investment-tips-for-buying-a-vacation-home.htm

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