What do I need to know when buying property in Costa Rica?
When we asked expats what advice they would give a foreigner before buying a property in Costa Rica, they said...
"1. Buying property in Costa Rica requires a local lawyer, who can help you understand the local laws and regulations regarding ownership, transferal of ownership, local taxes, and property rights. 2. It is wise to hire a Costa Rican lawyer and real estate professional to advise you on the purchase of property and to ensure the transfer and registration of property are done correctly. 3. Consider due diligence, which involves researching the property’s title, surveying the land, and verifying the seller’s legal right to transfer property. 4. Make sure you understand the foreign ownership limits in the country, which are designed to protect the rights of local people in land ownership. 5. It is important to familiarize yourself with the local customs and laws regarding property ownership, including Costa Rica’s Title Guarantee Law, which requires all property to be registered with the government to ensure legal proof of ownership. 6. Property taxes in Costa Rica are typically paid annually and are based on the assessed value of the property. 7. Make sure you understand the process of obtaining residency and work permits, if needed, as the process can be complicated. 8. Make sure you understand the potential liabilities and responsibilities should any problems arise after you purchase the property," explained one expat living in Costa Rica.
"ONLY hire a commonly recommended Attorney Notary who has been recommended by a few Expats. DON'T take risks with any Attorney. DON'T take risks or trust ANYONE! Ensure the Attorney fully checks the property has ZERO issues with it (unless it has 1 or 2 that are negligible). Don't trust anyone with your money. Do your Due Diligence on the Realtor," said another in Costa Rica.
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What do I need to know when buying property in Costa Rica?If you live in Costa Rica, newcomers to Costa Rica would love to hear your answer to this question:
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.