Cost of Living in Playa Jaco, Costa Rica
Last updated on Jan 22, 2023
Summary: What is the cost of living in Playa Jaco, Costa Rica? Hear what expats, digital nomads and retirees living in Playa Jaco have to say about the cost of housing, health insurance and general living costs.
Is the cost of living in Playa Jaco high?
We asked people how much they someone comfortably live on in Playa Jaco, they wrote:
"In Costa Rica, this is a difficult question as there are many different communities, some more popular with expats and others more with a local feel. You will certainly live comfortably at $2,000 per month. If you are renting, consider adding more to this amount. Again lifestyle is important to consider. High end dining and shopping, live concerts will be more expensive. Consider also these activities may not appeal to you upon retirement," explained one expat living in Playa Hermosa de Jaco.
Will I save money living in Playa Jaco?
"Living abroad in Costa Rica has definitely exceeded our expectations financially. Imported products such as electronics can run 50% higher than our native country so this is definitely a downfall. Some imported foods are expensive too. However, it is not difficult to learn to live without all the high end electronics and the latest gadget. Learning to shop locally for food brings your grocery budget to a reasonable level. Fruit and vegetables are inexpensive and living on the coast, fresh fish is a great deal! Property taxes are inexpensive and a fraction of what we paid in the states. Vehicles are expensive as is gas; however public transportation is widely available and very affordable," said another expat in Playa Hermosa de Jaco.
What is the average cost of housing in Playa Jaco?
If you are thinking about moving to Playa Jaco, cost of living in probably a key consideration. Expats commented about the cost of housing:
"Our housing costs are lower than in the states. Taxes are very inexpensive in CR and the taxes in the states substantially higher. Private home insurance is less expensive in Costa Rica from our experience. It is very hard to determine the average cost of housing. In this area, the closer the location to the beach, the higher the price. Direct waterfront may cost well over $500,000 to the millions depending on amenities. However in a lower profile condo building with less amenities, you can absolutely find something at half that price. Knowing the market is really key here and return on investment must be weighed in if you plan to rent the unit, seasonally or long term," added another person living in Playa Hermosa de Jaco.
What are typical rental prices for expats in Playa Jaco?
"$1000 per month will be a condo with lesser amenities, smaller square footage, pool access, security. At this price range or slightly less, you will be expected to pay for electric but generally cable, wáter and internet is provided. At the $1,200 - $2,000 price point, an upper scale condo or a private home. The condo will have pool access, security, upscale appliances and a spacious layout. Generally three bedrooms and Americanized features. You most likely will be responsible for the electricity payment with cable/water, internet included. Over $2,000 - $3,000, you will find larger homes and upper scale condominiums. You will definitely have Americanized features such as upscale kitchens, bathrooms, furnishings, exclusive security, covered parking. Your utilities may be covered as some condos have "cooling towers" for air conditioning which will substantially reduce individual electric bills. The maintentance fees for these rental units are high so be aware if you are responsable for any portion of maintenance fees especially with these types of rental units. In condo complexes with buildings of several floors, the higher floors will have higher rental rates as these are the most popular and exclusive. Penthouse units will have exclusive entrances and these will be of the highest price range," said another expat.
What appliances are typically included in a rental?
We asked foreigners in Playa Jaco what appliances are typically included in a rental, and, if there is anything else included or not included that a newcomer would not expect. Replies included:
"Generally rental properties are fully applianced. Lower scale rental units will have the basics, no dishwasher, possibly only a stove top and not an oven. A washer may be included but generally not a dryer. On the higher end scale, these will be fully appliances with American style refrigerator, stove/oven, dishwasher, microwave and washer/dryer. Be especially observant if the condo complex has a community área with tables, chairs, sink/wáter availability, bathrooms and BBQ grill. This is especially attractive for entertaining friends and family," commented one expat who moved to Playa Jaco (Jaco Beach).
About the Author
Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.
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