Costa Rica Real Estate News – The Costa Rica real estate market has seen significant growth over the past decade and a beach house in Costa Rica is the most prized piece of paradise to own. Owning a beach home in Costa Rica is a tropical dream already achieved by many people but there are some things you need to be aware when purchasing beach front property.
Generally, beachfront property is untitled in Costa Rica because the ownership and possession of the shoreline is governed by the Maritime Zone Law which restricts the possession and ownership of beachfront property; this is called concession property and is leased by the government for varying periods depending on the municipality ranging from 7 to 40 years.
The first 200 meters of beachfront starting at the mid-tide markers is owned by the government. The first 50 meters are deemed public zones and nobody may possess, own or build in that area.
The remaining 150 meters is called the Restricted Zone and can be leased to private individuals or corporate entities. There are many restrictions to concession properties, the most significant being you must be a resident for five years and a corporation applying for concession property cannot be wholly owned by foreigners. To learn more about the legalities of concession and titled real estate you can visit this website on owning beach houses in Costa Rica.
Costa Rica draws many people to the country because you can still buy a beautiful home on the beach at far lower prices than a home in southern Atlantic or Pacific United States. Depending on the region of Costa Rica you can find a beach house from $200,000. One of the few beaches where you can still find “Titled” beach properties for under $190,000 is Playa Hermosa which is located on Costa Rica’s Central Pacific coast, just a few minutes south of the region primary hub, Jaco Beach. Watch this short video on Playa Hermosa and Titled beach front property with bungalows for $185,000.
Here are the basics procedures a purchaser should follow when buying a titled property in Costa Rica:
The first step is to Sign a Letter of Intent or a Preliminary Purchase Agreement. If you are in Costa Rica, generally this accompanied by a small refundable deposit via credit card or cash, to the property off the market.
The next step is a Wire Transfer usually 5-10% of the purchase price to a “real” Escrow Company (sanctioned by Costa Rica’s Banking Authority SUJEF). There is required legal paperwork to be completed prior to sending in your funds. With a real escrow company no funds can be released without your signed approval.
The next step, Due Diligence, is performed by your legal representation which includes Title and Corporation research.
Closing then takes place with the transfer of the final funds, execution of transfer deed, endorsement of shares, change of officers and/or mortgage deed.
The Register of the new owner with the Public Registry (Registro Nacional) and takes about 9-12 weeks to receive official title. Your realtor and legal representation should be with you every step of the way.
As you can see process for buying titled property a straight ford procedure and with only 5% of beach front property in Costa Rica classified as titled, its one Costa Rica’s most pursued markets.
By Terrance Johnson