Properties in Costa Rica Blog


Real Estate Insights

Real Estate Insights

November 26, 2021

Properties in Costa Rica

  1. Are foreigners and entities controlled by foreigners permitted to own real estate directly, or are there specific licence requirements or restrictions in place that must be complied with for a non-citizen to own real estate? Are there restrictions on ownership of beachfront or coastal land, or land near beachfront?

According to the Costa Rican Constitution, foreigners and entities controlled by foreigners have the same rights of Costa Rican citizens. Both are equally permitted to own real estate directly in Costa Rica. Moreover, an investment in real estate in Costa Rica, with a minimum of US$200,000 grants a foreign purchaser the right to opt for a resident investor visa. As for the second part of the question pertaining to owning beach front or coastal land, or land near a beach front, there is a special programme applicable in Costa Rica. Its regulations are provided in the Maritime Zone Act of Costa Rica (Act No. 6043 of 1977), which states that the maritime zone will be 200 metres wide starting at the ordinary high tide mark. After these 200 metres, the first 50 metres inward will always remain in the public domain and may be fully accessed by any interested party. Therefore, access cannot be restricted. As for the remaining 150 metres in the 200 metres in the maritime zone, which is defined as the “restricted zone”, the state may grant a real estate concession for private individuals. Concessions can be held by corporate entities controlled by foreigners with a percentage that does not exceed 50 per cent of the actual stock issued in said corporation.

  1. Is all real estate capable of being owned as a property right (fee/freehold), or is the land owned by a government or monarch with only the ability to acquire leasehold rights? What other forms of real property ownership exist other than property right or leasehold?

Under the Costa Rican legal system, the rules for owning real property will generally be classified as freehold (fee simple), whereas ownership by leasehold is not applicable. There are special programmes in Costa Rica with characteristics similar to leasehold right systems. An example of this system is the concession system under the Maritime Zone Act. To illustrate this point, concessions to the maritime zone are granted by the state and can derive in administrative property rights. This is particularly true in situations where the interested party used and enjoyed the concession for the granted legal period and possible renewal periods. Nonetheless, ownership of the area subject to concession will continue to be held by the government.

  1. What overriding rights of the public exist that may affect land, such as inalienable rights to access certain natural resources or the use of beaches? Who owns mineral or riparian rights?

First of all, it is important to clarify that mineral and riparian rights are owned by the State of Costa Rica. These rights may only be exploited by obtaining a concession from the government. As for the overriding rights of the public that could affect land in Costa Rica, many of these rights may be related to the environmental protection legal system, whose legal framework is described in question 18 in relation to the environmental framework. As for inalienable rights to access certain natural resources or to use beaches, the programme for the coastal areas and beachfront properties, as regulated by the Maritime Zone Act, grants the character of public domain and inalienable effects over the public area contained in the maritime zone. Moreover, the status of inalienability and public domain are extended to all-natural resources and override private interests. In addition to beachfront properties, similar regulations apply to the limits and setbacks in terms of rivers, lagoons, mangroves, wetlands, etc, as described in the Waters Act (Law No. 726), also included in the Wildlife Conservancy Act (Law No. 7317). To provide an additional example, private interests may also be overridden by public interest when it is declared by the government of Costa Rica in the form of an executive decree. These procedures must follow the provisions of the Expropriations Act of Costa Rica (Law No. 7495) and its Rulings. By means of the Expropriations Act, if a public interest is justified and determined for a determined property, the Public Administration may exercise its power to declare eminent domain.

  1. Is title insurance customary to obtain in connection with a purchase or a loan? If so, is it available?

Title insurance, as conceptualised in other jurisdictions, is not available in Costa Rica. On this point, the types of insurance available for real property, usually in connection with a purchase or a loan, are related to hardship or damages that could affect the property. It is important to note that in Costa Rica the insurance market is regulated by the Insurance Market Regulations Act (Law No. 8653) and its Regulations. Taking this into consideration, the good standing and complete validity of a real property’s legal title is not something for which insurance providers may issue coverage. Most of the precautionary measures regarding the legal title (its background, existence, validity, singularity, etc) are subject to review during the due diligence proceedings for the property. These proceedings are entirely advisable for a potential buyer before buying. Precautionary measures other than insurance, such as cadastral or registry alerts to avoid fraud, duplicated sales and similar irregularities are available to the public.

  1. Are boundary or other surveys typically completed delineating particular property boundaries, or is reliance placed on registered maps? How are boundary disputes customarily resolved?

Surveys are typically completed by delineating the correct boundaries, which is also an issue that should be verified during the legal and topographical due diligence procedures. These procedures are carried out to validate that the property boundaries and area completely match what is indicated in the recorded survey and title. For a survey to be properly recorded, it must be prepared and submitted by a topographer, as a commissioned expert in such matters. The topographer will register the survey at the Cadastral Department of the National Registry. If there are differences in the property related to its actual measurements or boundaries (due to subdivisions, the effects of rivers or other natural forces that may erode the area, etc), the survey for the property must be updated and a new record must be submitted to the National Registry that reflects the current measurements. Reliance on cadastral surveys is generally safe and possible, although disputes may naturally arise from boundary issues.

Interested parties may settle these issues by non-contentious mechanisms, but there are also judicial remedies available. As for non-contentious mechanisms, parties may request an opinion from independent experts (topographers) who may attest to the correct measurements for a property and the applicable boundaries based on the recorded titles, their background domains and measurements. If disputes are not settled by extrajudicial mechanisms, parties may turn to the summary proceedings established in article 106 of the Code for Civil Procedures (Law No. 9342 of 2018). Namely, they may file a motion for reinstatement of property boundaries. These summary proceedings will only resolve issues related to the real property’s momentary possession and not to the substantive issues. However, it is a method of relief available to the interested parties.

  1. What taxes or other fees are payable in connection with the purchase or sale of real property (eg, notary fees, recording, alien licensing), and what are the amounts of such taxes and other fees?

The overall applicable costs in a real estate transaction have varied in certain aspects that will be pointed out below, following the recent enactment of the Law for the Reinforcement of Public Finances (Law No. 9635, also referred to as the “Tax Law”), which was published in the Official Gazette on 4 December 2018, entering into force as of 1 July 2019.

This Tax Law significantly amended the Income Tax Law, as well as the Law for the General Tax on Sales. Among several changes in separate fields, this new Tax Law implemented two major changes in connection to real estate ventures: First,

the introduction of the Value Added Tax (VAT), applicable to services (including legal and notary services), on a general basis. The situation used to be the opposite prior to the implementation of the VAT, since the General Sales Tax applied on limited scenarios and services were generally exempt. Second, the Tax Law implemented the Capital Gains Regime, which focuses on passive income impacting the net worth of a person owning real estate, whether on a personal title or by means of a corporation.

Consequently, the capital gains tax will imply that if an asset is sold for a higher value than the amount that is registered in its accounting, said income will be taxed with an applicable rate of 15 per cent. It is important to highlight that the 15 per cent tax is calculated over the margin of profit. An exception is established for the capital gains tax when the transaction involves profits related to: (i) The sale of the asset that corresponds to the usual residence of the seller (whether an individual or corporate basis);

(ii) donations and (iii) inheritances. These assets are not subject to this tax. Moreover, as of the 15 per cent applicable tax, it is also relevant to highlight that there is an alternative for paying a 2.25 of the transactional value, if the seller is performing the first sale of an asset that was acquired prior to 1 July 2019. This exemption will not apply if the habitual economic activity is related to the sale of real property, in which case the applicable tax will be of 30 per cent, based upon the traditional income tax regime.

Considering the above, a purchase or sale of real property will pay transfer expenses (transfer tax and legal stamps), in addition to the notary’s legal fees. As for the legal stamps, the applicable percentage (which runs between 0.75 per cent and 0.8 per cent) may be calculated for real property transactions, whereas according to the Real Estate Transfer Tax Act (Law No. 6999 of 2012), the applicable taxes for transferring real property are 1.5 per cent, calculated on the transaction’s value set forth in the public deed or the property’s registered fiscal value (the higher of the two amounts). The transfer tax set out in the Real Estate Transfer Tax Act is payable for direct transfers (by conveyance using a public deed) or indirect transfers (if the property is sold indirectly, by selling the stocks or interests in the company that owns the property). In addition to the transfer tax, if the property is conveyed by public deed, it must also pay the legal stamps for said act at the National Registry. Moreover, the legal fees applicable to transferring real property will vary between 1 per cent and 1.25 per cent, according to the minimum fee schedule, which is established by the Costa Rican Bar Association and the government my means of an Executive Decree. In short, the total costs (including expenses and fees) will vary between 3.25 per cent and 3.55 per cent for the specific transaction. However, if we were to contemplate the payment of the capital gains tax (in the applicable scenarios) by using the differentiated rule of the 2.25 per cent above explained, said percentage in costs should be contemplated as a part of the transaction, with the clarification made in the sense that the capital gains tax is to be covered by the selling party.

  1. Which party customarily pays taxes and fees in connection with a purchase/sale of real property – the purchaser or the seller? What is the allocation of responsibility between a purchaser and seller of all taxes and fees payable to consummate a conveyance of real property?

Legally, the tax responsibility may be allocated to both the purchaser and seller in equal parts according to article 6 of the Real Estate Transfer Tax Act (Law No. 6999 of 2012), which expressly indicates that both parties are equally bound to make said payments. The customary practice in Costa Rica is for the parties to negotiate that the transfer costs and fees be allocated equally between the purchaser and seller. Nonetheless, the seller is the responsible party for covering the applicable capital gains tax, in accordance to the enactment of such regime by way of the Law for the Reinforcement of Public Finances (Law No.9635, also referred to as the Tax Law), which was published in the Official Gazette on 4 December 2018, entering into force as of 1 July 2019. On the subject of the capital gains tax, it results of relevance to indicate that if the property to be sold is owned by a non-Costa Rican resident, there is an obligation from the purchaser’s side to withhold the tax, in the sum of 2.5 per cent over the transactional value. In this scenario, a non-resident will be the person without a Costa Rican residency card or whose stay in Costa Rica does not surpass a time period of 183 days. This withholding obligation is furtherly explained in question 17.

  1. Can real estate be indirectly acquired by purchasing the shares or ownership interests of a corporation or other entity that owns real estate? What taxes and fees would be payable upon a purchase of shares of a company that owns real estate as compared to a purchase of the real estate directly?

Real estate in Costa Rica may also be acquired indirectly by purchasing the shares or ownership interest in a corporation, which is a common practice as well. For tax purposes, as referenced in question 6, the applicable taxes on the transfer of real property will be 1.5 per cent, as an indirect transfer. A possible benefit of this scenario is that the parties will not have to pay the stamps at the National Registry, since no change in ownership of the title would take place. The applicable legal fees will be the same as indicated in question 6, varying between 1 per cent and 1.25 per cent, according to the minimum fee schedule.

  1. What taxes and fees are paid on the conveyance of personal property accompanying a conveyance of real property, and in what amounts? Is it more favourable to allocate purchase price towards personal property or real property for tax purposes?

For registry purposes in terms of the conveyance itself, there are no distinctions in terms of personal property or real property for legal stamps and applicable fees. There are no distinctions either for tax purposes, depending on the purchase price for personal property or real property.

  1. What recurring annual fees or real estate taxes are payable in connection with the ownership of real property?

Owners of real estate must always pay municipal taxes on an annual basis, which are calculated in four quarters, from January to December. Municipal taxes will include fees for garbage collection and the property tax as calculated based on the value. If the ownership is held by means of a corporation, a yearly tax on corporations will also be applicable. Moreover, as will be mentioned below, there is also a solidarity tax (also termed luxury tax) that applies to the properties having an estimated value of more than US$210,000. The following list outlines the main taxes applicable to real estate in Costa Rica:

  • Municipal taxes: Includes Property Tax and Garbage Collection Tax. This tax is payable to the Municipality (local government) where the property is located and is based on the value of the property.

  • Solidarity tax: This tax is payable to the Ministry of the Treasury and applies to those properties with an estimated value of more than US$210,000 and is based on the value of the property.

  • Corporate tax: If the property is owned by a corporate entity, the owner corporation will have to pay an annual tax, in accordance with the Corporate Tax Act (Law No. 9478). This tax may vary depending on whether the corporation is economically active or not, and the payable amount will range between US$120 and US$380 approximately.

  1. Are preliminary agreements, memoranda of understanding or other concession agreements typically negotiated between purchasers/developers of real property and the government? What types of matters are incorporated into such preliminary agreements, memoranda of understanding or concession agreements?

Concession agreements must follow the rules and procedures that were outlined in questions 1 and 2 if they are subject to the maritime zone programme. In addition to those rules and procedures, the preliminary agreements and memoranda of understanding do not have to be negotiated with the government in connection to private property. Developers who will be selling the project’s units must register the draft agreements with the Ministry of the Economy, Industry and Commerce

(MEIC), based on the provisions for agreements for ongoing or continuous sales programs. The applicability of this procedure is established by the Law for the Promotion of Competition and Consumer Protection (Act 7472 or the Consumer Act), which contains public law provisions that must be followed. For real estate developers, if the previously referenced elements are concurrent, they should appear before MEIC and file for approval of the sale projects. The following are the conditions applicable to the registration requirements at the MEIC: (i) the programme must be offered publicly and in a generalised manner for consumers with no discrimination among the target consumers, (ii) the delivery of the good, service or project (depending on the programme) is conditioned on future execution of the terms and agreements contained in its obligations, (iii) the execution of the programmes depends on a person or entity either: (a) delivering the good; (b) providing the service, (c) Executing the project, and/or (iv) Allowing consumers to exercise their rights for any future programmes.

  1. What rights of first refusal or other rights exist by law in favour of third parties or tenants of real property?

Rights of first refusal in favour of third parties or tenants of real property are not applicable by law, although they are commonly negotiated between the interested parties. It is important to clarify that tenants do not legally acquire a right to purchase the property unless it is negotiated by private agreement. Moreover, the tenancy conditions for the property do not impede or affect the owner’s right to sell the asset.

  1. How is real property conveyed – by deed or other instrument of conveyance? What is the procedural process for completing a conveyance? Is there a registration or recording process?

For real property to be directly conveyed, the conveyance must be in the form of public deed instrument. In this case, the parties (seller and purchaser) must appear directly before a Notary Public, who will record the details of the transaction, including the elements requested by the Real Estate Assets Department at the National Registry. Once the public deed is issued, signed by the parties and authorised, an official deed certificate will be submitted to the National Registry that includes payment of the applicable taxes and legal stamps for the recording process.

  1. When is title actually and officially conveyed to a purchaser – upon execution of a deed or other instrument of conveyance, upon submission of the instrument of conveyance to a recording office or registrar, upon acceptance of such instrument of conveyance for registration or recording, or upon the happening of some other event?

Title to real property is officially conveyed when the public deed is registered with the National Registry after having followed the procedures indicated in question 13. In this regard, the Real Estate Assets Department of the National Registry will register the public deed within a period of five business days after the deed is submitted for filing.

  1. What types of governmental liens or encumbrances on title could result in a forfeiture of the land? Real estate taxes, government-owned utilities?

Governmental liens or encumbrances may derive from circumstances related to environmental protective measures, mandatory servitudes related to government owned utilities, eminent domain provisions, legal mortgages, etc. As for the latter, for example, failure to pay the applicable real estate taxes may result in a legal lien being placed on the property, once the competent collection authority initiates legal recovery proceedings. Real property may remain titled and still have governmental liens or encumbrances. However, if the measures affect the use and enjoyment of the property to a limited degree, they may be deemed expropriatory. To provide an example, a property may be categorised as Cultural Heritage (Law No. 7555). Such a measure may imply limitations applicable to the owner in terms of the permitted uses for the property. If the ownership is affected to the degree that freehold rights are being blocked, the property could be subject to definite forfeiture, following the procedures contained in the Expropriations Act (Law No. 7495) and its Rulings. As complementary examples, real property may have liens or encumbrances levied related to the Forest Law, which introduced the concept of Natural State Heritage as administered by the Ministry of Energy and the Environment (MINAE). The Natural State Heritage comprises forestland and national reservations and is inalienable and could affect legal title to real property.

  1. Upon a sale of real property, would any portion of profits or proceeds be required to be paid to any third party? For example, are employees entitled to a share of profits?

These provisions are not applicable under Costa Rican law. Employees or other third parties are not entitled to a share in the profits, unless there is a private and specific agreement declaring that they are entitled.

  1. Upon a sale of real property, what taxes must be paid in connection with any gain, and are there withholding taxes? Are taxes different if the seller is an entity?

As indicated previously, Congress approved the Law for the Reinforcement of Public Finances (Law No. 9635, also referred to as the Tax Law), which was published in the Official Gazette on 4 December 2018, entering into force as of 1 July 2019. As a result of this legislative amendment, which introduced major changes to the legal framework in Costa Rica and its tax regime, capital gains are currently applicable upon the sale of real property. The applicable tax will consist of 15 per cent based on the difference between the initial purchase price and the selling price. However, if the sale of real property is the party’s normal line of business, the applicable rate may be up to 30 per cent, based upon the traditional regime. There is a differentiated rate established in the law, which allows the selling party to pay a 2.25 per cent over the transactional value (not on the margin of profit) in the first sale and purchase of a property that was acquired prior to 1 July 2019. This is a significant change in Costa Rica’s real estate regulations, considering that this tax was not previously applicable in this jurisdiction. The tax is not of a withholding nature in principle, although if the transaction involves a selling party that is not domiciled in Costa Rican territory, then the purchaser has the obligation to withhold a 2.5 per cent over the transactional value. In this regard, the Notary Public in charge of conveying the property shall indicate in the public deed that the Tax Administration perceived the obligation related to the sale.

  1. Are there any environmental regulations, and are environmental assessments customarily performed prior to acquiring real property?

To answer the first prong of this question, Costa Rica has a broad legal framework targeting environmental protection. This framework grants major powers to the competent governmental authorities in terms of enforcing this legislation, as will be indicated below. Therefore, environmental assessments are customarily performed during the due diligence process. Moreover, it is highly advisable and relevant to obtain a certificate from the competent governmental authority that certifies that the property to be acquired is not acquired in a protected area and does not belong to the Natural State Heritage (PNE) that is administered by the MINAE. The Natural State Heritage is comprised of forestlands and national reservations and is inalienable. This point needs to be mentioned for this analysis since it could affect real property due to the previously explained reasons. To complement this idea, the following are some of the most relevant environmental regulations:

  • Water Act (Law No. 246 of 1942), currently in the process of imminent amendments by the Legislative Branch);

  • Biodiversity Act (Law Number 7788 of 1998);

  • Law for the Conservancy of Wildlife (Law Number 7317) and its recent Ruling, as amended in 2017;

  • Law for the Ratification of the Convention on International Trade of Protected Species (Law Number 5605 of 1975);

  • Law for the National Park Services (Law Number 6084 of 1977);

  • Forest Act (Law Number 7575 of 1995);

  • Constitutional Law for the Environment (Law Number 7554 of 1998) and its Rulings.

  1. Are there building, land use and zoning codes?

There is a broad applicable programme for this item. Construction activities in Costa Rica are subject to a broad regulatory framework that grants hierarchical priority to the specific provisions as adopted by the local governmental entities in each county. Consequently, the first point of reference to determine the applicable construction regulations and binding zoning regulations for a property is the Municipal Regulatory Plan, as approved by each Municipality for the specific districts under their territorial jurisdiction where the real property is located. In the absence of a Municipal Regulatory Plan, the construction activities will be regulated by the general acts and regulations of Costa Rica, as detailed below. The following are the main laws and regulations applicable to construction activities in Costa Rica:

  • Regulatory Plan of the Municipality where the property is located;

  • Regulatory Plans Administered by the Costa Rican Institute of Tourism (ICT);

  • Construction Act of Costa Rica (Act No. 833);

  • Regulations of the Constructions Act of Costa Rica, issued by the National Institute of Urban Housing (INVU). The current Rulings were published in the Official Gazette of Costa Rica on 2 March 2018;

  • Historical Heritage Act (Act No. 7555);

  • Act for Equal Opportunities for People with Disabilities (Act Number 7600);

  • Regulations of the Act for Equal Opportunities for People with Disabilities (Executive Decree No. 26831);

  • Code for Hydraulic, Mechanical and Sanitary Installations;

  • Code for Structural Foundations of Costa Rica;

  • Seismic Code of Costa Rica (Executive Decree No. 37070-MIVAH-MICIT-MOPT);

  • Rulings for the Electrical Code in Costa Rica (Executive Decree No. 36979);

  • Rulings for the National Fire Protection Association; and

  • Rulings for Contracting Services in Engineering and Architectural Services.

  1. Are there laws permitting or contemplating condominiums or otherwise subdividing properties, or creating multiple ownership existing on one plot of land or building?

There are laws permitting condominiums and regulating their function. The Condominiums Act (Law number 7933 of 1999) established the main rules that apply to real property and ownership when existing in subdivided properties, such as

condominiums. Moreover, when a property is located in a condominium, the ownership of the property will be subject to the regulations established in the by-laws of said condominium. Consequently, when performing due diligence, it is of the utmost importance to analyse said bylaws in relation to the interests of the potential purchaser.

  1. Are there any restrictions on, or specific legislation relating to, subsurface rights and air rights?

In Costa Rica, real property ownership does not grant subsurface rights and rights, which are elements in the public domain. Moreover, construction work on real property must abide by the regulations of the Directorate of Civil Aviation of the Ministry of Transportation. Mainly, in buildings or any sort of construction in zones influenced by airfields, airports, aerodromes or similar items, where it becomes necessary to obtain the approval for construction from the competent authority.

  1. Are there any laws relating to the preservation of views or light?

A lender for a real estate project can be a private or public financial entity. If lending is provided by a financial entity (whether private or public) this agent will have to be registered with the Superintendence for Financial Entities of Costa Rica (SUGEF) to be able to provide credit facilities and to handle and administer third-party funds. Entities or individuals (national or international) providing private money lending are required to be licensed by SUGEF in this jurisdiction to provide facilities for real estate projects.

  1. Is a lender for a real estate project in your jurisdiction required to register or be licensed in such jurisdiction?

A lender for a real estate project can be a private or public financial entity. If lending is provided by a banking entity (whether private or public) this agent will have to be registered with the Superintendence for Financial Entities of Costa Rica (SUGEF) to be able to provide credit facilities and handle third-party funds. Nonetheless, entities or individuals (national or international) providing private money lending are not required to be licensed in this jurisdiction to provide facilities for real estate projects.

  1. What determines the priority of a mortgage, charge- or guaranty trust – the date of the loan, the date of execution of the mortgage, charge or guaranty trust, the date such mortgage or charge is actually recorded or registered, or some other factor?

The priority of a mortgage in terms of recovery will depend on the degree of registration for the real property (depending on whether it is first degree, second degree or third degree). This priority degree for a mortgage derives from the date on which the obligation is recorded with the National Registry. Provisions related to the priority degrees are applicable to mortgages, which are regulated by Chapter IV of the Civil Code of Costa Rica. Nonetheless, guaranty trusts, which are subject to the provisions of the Commerce Code of Costa Rica, are commonly employed as a valid mechanism as collateral.

  1. What taxes or fees are payable by a borrower or by a lender in connection with a loan secured with real estate in your jurisdiction?

If the loan is secured with real estate, the expenses will depend on the amount of the security, as determined by the schedule of fees set forth by the National Registry. The applicable legal fees will be calculated in a range of 1 per cent to 1.25 per cent of the property’s value, as established by the Costa Rican Bar Association and the government, my means of an executive decree.

  1. What typical remedies does a lender with a security in real property in your jurisdiction have in the event of a default by its borrower?

In the event of default on payment, when the loan is secured by real estate, a typical remedy for the lender is to turn directly to the foreclosure procedures, to be explained in the following question. A lender also may secure the real property by means of a guaranty trust. In this scenario, the trust agreement should include a foreclosure procedure related to due process for the debtor, following a structure that is similar to the structure provided for in the legal foreclosure mechanisms. A benefit of the execution proceedings for a guaranty trust, in the event of a default in payment, is that the foreclosure proceedings for the property will be more expeditious since they will not be subject to a court decision. Instead, the proceedings will be handled by a trustee who is legally entitled to conduct the foreclosure. It is important to clarify that any direct award of the property to the lender, without having followed the procedures related to foreclosure and auctions, will not be deemed to be valid. The details related to foreclosure procedures are explained in the following section.

  1. Is there judicial or non-judicial foreclosure in your jurisdiction, and what is the foreclosure process generally?

There is judicial foreclosure in Costa Rica. The procedure is established in the Civil Code (1888) and the Code of Civil Procedure, which was recently updated in 2018. If the debtor fails to make payment, the creditor may file a foreclosure proceeding for the mortgage. The foreclosure procedure generally functions as follows:

  • To initiate the proceedings, the lender must file a petition with the court system (i) attesting to the existence of the mortgage with a certificate issued by the Public Registry, (ii) describing the debtor’s breach of contract, and (iii) indicating the total amount owed up to the petition date (principal and interest).

  • The first ruling issued by the judge must be served personally on the debtor by the court system or by a notary public appointed by the court system to do so. Furthermore, the court will instruct the Public Registry to annotate the process on the property’s title.

  • The debtor has the right to file a written objection. If the objection is legitimate and well grounded, the judge will set a date for an oral hearing, at the end of which a final ruling will be issued.

  • The debtor may terminate the process at any time by paying the total amount owed to the lender, including the legal fees and any related costs.

  • Three auctions on different dates are scheduled for each foreclosure. Bidders are invited through an announcement published in the judicial newspaper that sets the time, date, place, and the baseline for the bids at each auction.

  • As a condition to participate in the auction, each bidder must provide a certified check for an amount equal to 50 per cent of the opening bid.

  • The winning bidder will have three business days to pay the outstanding balance. Failure to complete the payment implies forfeiting the deposit, which is in turn credited to the debt. In such an event, the judge will announce three new auctions.

  • The starting bid in the first auction is the base value, which is agreed to by the parties in the mortgage document (usually the total amount owed for principal and interest).

  • If the first auction is unsuccessful because no bidders attended, the foreclosure will move on to the second auction. The starting bid will be 75 per cent of the baseline value. If the second mortgage is also unsuccessful, a third and final auction will be held in which the opening bid will be 25 per cent of the baseline value. As an example of how this procedure works, bids for a property with a baseline value of US$100,000 will begin at US$75,000 in the second auction, and US$25,000 in the third.

  • In the event of a successful bid and payment of the offered amount, the judge will transfer the property to the new owner and instruct the police to assist him or her in taking possession of the property.

  • If no auction is successful, the judge will assign the property to the lender as partial payment. The value of the assignment will equal the opening bid of the last auction. The debtor will continue to be liable for paying the outstanding balance of the debt; therefore, the lender may seek payment by seizing other assets owned by the debtor.

As referred in question 26, non-judicial foreclosure also exists in Costa Rica. Trustees of guaranty trusts upon creditor’s default execute foreclosure. Non-judicial foreclose must always follow due process through a procedure based on judicial foreclosure.

  1. What rights does a tenant have by law that cannot be varied by agreement or a lease?

The Tenancy Act contains mandatory provisions (law of public order) that are meant to protect the tenant’s interests. Said legal provisions cannot be relinquished by the will of the parties. For instance, tenants have the right to establish a lease agreement for a minimum period of three years, which is a period that cannot be varied by the lessor. Article 26 of the Tenancy Act provides for additional general rights that the lessor must respect in favour of the tenant, including guarantee of the safe enjoyment of the property. Among other rights that cannot be varied: the lessor may not block or throttle the basic utilities (potable water, electricity, sewers). Moreover, no increases or readjustments to the lease rent may exceed the limitations established in article 67 of the Tenancy Act, although it is important to point out that such increases do not apply to rents payable in US dollars.

  1. How long can someone own property as leasehold? What statutory or legal rights does a long-term leasehold owner have with respect to its property?

There are no maximum limits for holding property as leasehold. However, as mentioned previously, the Tenancy Act provides a minimum term of three years for housing lease agreements to the benefit of the tenant. Article 44 of the Tenancy Act provides the main requirements that the tenant must meet, including: (i) Prompt payment of the rent, (i) abiding by the use for which the property was leased, (iii) maintaining the property in good condition, (iv) delivering the property at the end of the lease, (vi) respecting the activities that are allowed based on the lease agreement. In connection to item (i), failure to pay the stipulated rent for more than seven consecutive calendar days grants the leasehold owner the right to initiate eviction procedures.

  1. What are the most common reasons for a dispute or a conveyance of real property in your jurisdiction not to be completed?

Examples of real estate disputes may usually involve individuals and/or foreign entities against the state. For example, in connection with the maritime zone programme as described above: disputes may arise between private individuals, disputes may arise due to the existence of duplicate titles on real property, or there may be registration inconsistencies or transactional frauds that could block the conveyance of real property.

  1. Does your legal system incorporate or defer to the laws of another country?

As a civil law jurisdiction, with a significant influence from the Napoleonic Code, rulings in connection to real estate and ownership will be based upon the written law. This is a major difference in relation to the common law jurisdictions, since the rulings by previous courts (precedents) are not binding in Costa Rica, but the written norm will prevail when they are being interpreted. There is respect and deference to the rule of law and the laws of other countries, but real property issues are mainly ruled by written acts, especially the Civil Code and the Civil Procedure Code.

  1. Is there a standard schedule of legal fees for real estate transactions? If so, what is it, and is it based on a percentage of the transaction value or some other methodology?

There is a minimum standard schedule for legal fees in real estate transactions, which is established by the Costa Rican Bar Association and the government by means of an executive decree. The current schedule sets a fixed amount of 1 per cent and

1.25 per cent for legal fees calculated based on the total value of the transaction. As of the enactment of the new Tax Law, all notary services are subject to the 13 per cent VAT. However, transactions for real estate are not subject to VAT

 

Creditos: COLBS STUDIO LEGAL

 




Wondering How Much to Charge For Rent? 8 Key Factors to Consider

Wondering How Much to Charge For Rent? 8 Key Factors to Consider

October 11, 2021

Properties in Costa Rica

If you have a spare house or room, renting it out can be a great idea to earn an extra source of income. You may also consider renting if you are moving to another location but don’t want to sell your house. Whatever be the reason, renting out a property is beneficial in most cases, provided that you have evaluated some pros and cons. Taking on a tenant can help you pay off your mortgages in a shorter period. The extra income you earn when you list your house for rent can also be put to good use by investing it in a financial goal like your retirement plan. So once you’ve decided that you want to rent out your house, you will want to consider some important factors before deciding on how much to charge for rent.

According to a TransUnion survey, around 84% of landlords said their biggest concern when it came to renting their property was payment. If you plan on staying as an independent landlord, the key to maximizing your income from rent is by fixing a rental rate that not only profits you but is also priced in a way that attracts responsible tenants. It can be quite a challenge to decide on the perfect rent. If you are tempted to set an aggressively high price for your property, hold that thought, because charging an unreasonably high premium could mean that your house has no takers, and it remains vacant for a long time. On the flip side, if your rent is too low, it will affect your income and bargaining power.

Let us now see what factors you should consider when deciding your rent, along with some hacks for estimating a good rental rate, and the importance of counting in several factors that landlords often tend to miss out on:

1. Know the rent control laws of your area

This is the foremost step in deciding the rental rate – knowing whether you are governed by rent control or not. All states do not have rent control laws. The states that do have rent control have a cap on the maximum rent you can charge from your tenants as well the increment in rent allowed every year. These laws work at the city level, so the average rental rate under rent control laws varies from city to city. Some of the cities that run under rent control are New York, Oregon, Washington D.C., Maryland, California, and New Jersey.
To check whether your city falls under the purview of rent control, you can consult an attorney or refer to government websites.

2. Do your research

The next thing you want to do after confirming rent control is to find out how your property fares against other similar properties in your area. This is called competitive research and you need to do it to ensure that you’re not pricing your property too high or too low. You can compare your property to others based on the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and amenities on offer. Using your research, map out an average baseline to help you decide how much you can charge.

Besides the features of your property, your neighborhood also determines the rental rate based on the conveniences and services nearby. Tenants prefer neighborhoods that are safe and close to their office/school. However, remote work setups are slowly changing this preference.

Top amenities that tenants look for:

  • Parking space
  • Security
  • Walkability from nearby schools, markets, restaurants
  • Outdoor recreation options

3. Monitor local ups and downs in the market

The local property market is likely to experience highs and lows as time goes by. This can be due to many factors. You can adjust your rental rate accordingly. You can also choose to modify the rates when it is time to renew the lease. A lot of landlords have been kinder towards their tenants since it has been a rough year for many people.

4. Use a rental calculator

There are many tools available online to help you calculate an estimated rent for your property. Before you post your room for rent, all you have to do is enter certain parameters such as the area you live in, the size and square footage of the property, amenities offered, and other similar factors.

5. The 1% rule

There’s an old saying that the rent of a place should be approximately 1-2% of the total value of the property. While this rule may give you a broader sense of how much you should charge as rent, it may not factor in many factors such as inflation and rise in property prices and taxes as compared to the rent prices.

6. Tis the season

Seasons greatly affect rental rates. It is seen that the demand for rental property rises during spring and summer but quiets down around winter. One of the reasons for this trend can be that people do not like to move in the cold season or during the middle of a school year.

7. Repairs and maintenance

Your property is likely to incur costs related to repair, maintenance, and facilities such as gas, electricity, and water over time. You need to factor these costs into the rent as well. You can use a simple spreadsheet to calculate these costs.

8. Rent collection

Lastly, it is important to figure out how you will collect the rent. A lot of renters prefer paying their rent online. You can work out a way to collect rent that is convenient for both you and your tenant. Some ways to collect rent are through a property manager, mail, direct deposit, online payments, or rent collection apps.
Once you’ve estimated how much you want to charge as rent, you should look into how to list your house for rent. One of the most common ways to post a room for rent is through a real estate agent but they’re most probably going to ask for a hefty commission, sometimes equivalent to a month’s rent. An easy way to list houses for rent is to publish your real estate listing online on Cirtru and reach out to countless potential renters easily!




Why has Teradyne invested $US 20 million in El Coyol , Alajuela? Let’s find out.

Why has Teradyne invested $US 20 million in El Coyol , Alajuela? Let’s find out.

August 27, 2021

Properties in Costa Rica

Terradyne’s new investment in el Coyol has sparked some interest in Costa Rica and has left some people wondering about the company’s goal behind all of this. To those who don’t know what Teradyne provides, Teradyne manufactures automation products, specifically in the form of medical equipment and systems that help enhance the production process of companies who operate in diverse industries. The Boston native enterprise has been working and providing services in Costa Rica since the year 2000 and as of today, they’re planning to invest more than 20 million US dollars to extend their operations, and of course, their work force and impact in the country altogether.

Constructed in Coyol’s Free Zone, another well-thought-out consideration taken before investing is the prime exporting points offered by the area’s strategic location. Be it through air (Juan Santamaría Airport), or sea (Caldera Port or APM Terminal in Limón), the 24 companies who are already operating in the zone have all enjoyed this benefit and, as a matter of fact, 8 of those 24 are classified as the Top 30 Life Science companies in the world. Along with this exceptional location, companies who work in the park enjoy the benefits of the free trade zone regime, which include incentives such as competitive tax on royalies and fees, 100% income tax exemption for the first 8 years of operation, no custom duties in imports/exports, you name it!

But what do all these investments and companies mean for Coyol or even Costa Rica? Well, first of all, CINDE (Costa RicaI Investment Promotion Agency) reports that 70% of the investment made in Costa Rica by multinational companies has been reinvested year by year, and this means that companies are investing in the country to expand and bring more work opportunities to Costa Rican and expat citizens.

Additionally, another pilar of the Coyol Free Zone is their sustainable real estate development achieved through a well-developed experience in LEED manufacturing, where key qualifications such as building strategies, use of materials, water management, transportations, among other factors are contemplated to ultimately receive the renowned LEED qualification that six of the companies within the park have obtained.

If you learned something new today don’t forget to follow our blogs and page in Facebook for more information on the upbringing of Coyol’s Free Zone and Costa Rica more broadly, until next time!




Top 6 Things to Consider When Designing a House

Top 6 Things to Consider When Designing a House

August 25, 2021

Properties in Costa Rica

One of the most important decisions you’ll ever make is investing your hard-earned money in a house and designing it for comfortable living for you and your family.

 

That said, designing your home that suits your family’s size, lifestyle, and needs can be challenging. But with some careful planning and preparation, you can build a home of your dreams where your family can live comfortably for years to come. Given below are 6 factors you need to consider when designing your house:

 

1. Make sure the land and location are right for you

 

Figure out if the site is ideal for constructing your dream home. This is particularly important because the soil conditions can affect the design of your home, which could increase the construction costs. The fact of the matter is, the flatter your site, the more economical it is to build on it. Avoid rocky areas or slopes if you don’t want to spend a fortune on home construction.

 

Since a home is a long-term investment, you need to give serious consideration to the location of your house. It should not only be closer to your kid’s school and easily accessible to your job but also flexible enough to accommodate the changes you’ll have in your life over the years.

 

2. Ensure the home design is family-friendly

 

The structure and design of your home should meet your aesthetic and functional needs. If you have kids, you have to consider their play areas to their risk of playing. How do you want your kitchen and washrooms to be set up, what should be the size of the rooms, how the furniture will be placed are some of the things you need to consider while designing a home.

 

Making a home plan can be challenging, but you don’t have to do it alone. Various virtual staging companies can help you create a real estate floor plan that best fits your family’s needs.

 

3. Create your budget in advance

 

If you are going to build your house, you have to come up with a budget. Knowing your finances is critical to the success of your home-building process. Some of the expenses you need to consider are:

 

  • Construction, materials, labor

  • Appliances, fixtures, etc.

  • Architect, survey, geotechnical, etc.

  • Furnishing

  • Municipal or County fees

  • Moving

 

Try to budget an additional 15% – 20% over your project cost for emergencies and unforeseen expenses.

 

4. Determine the best direction of the house

 

The direction your house faces is an important aspect you should not overlook while designing your home. Bedrooms, dining rooms, and living rooms should face in the right direction to ensure optimal comfort during the summer and winter months.

 

Determine the direction your house should face to ensure you are making the most of the elements you are exposed to.

 

5. Pay attention to outdoor home design

 

Don’t overlook the outdoor spaces of your home because these spaces have the potential to affect the value and versatility of your home. For example, in the future, if you have plans to extend, your well-thought outdoor home design will make sure that you have enough room for your kids to play outdoors.

 

6. Consider flex rooms

 

The rooms need to have the flexibility to transform seamlessly as per the needs of the family. So when designing your home, make the rooms multifunctional with transforming furniture. Another advantage of flex rooms is concealed storage options, which is definitely a plus point for families with children.

 

If you have worked out the details of your home design in your mind, it’s time to get a real estate floor plan ready. Because if you don’t, executing your home design can be a challenge. You may want to take help from professionals who are experts at transforming your home design ideas into a reality.

 




Looking to work from home in Costa Rica? Check this out…

Looking to work from home in Costa Rica? Check this out…

July 2, 2021

Properties in Costa Rica

Many people dream of a holiday where they can enjoy their time in a peaceful hammock with a stunning view of the ocean; well, for Digital Nomads, whatever setting they choose can become their workplace if they have their laptop and good internet access. Digital Nomads have become a post-COVID reality and Costa Rica has thus been a place where they find comfort and are able to experience the famous ‘Pura Vida’ lifestyle while they maintain their businesses or jobs from afar.

Ever since Costa Rica reopened its doors back in November 1 2020 to all 50 states, Digital Nomads have been packing their bags  (and laptops) and flying to the different beach towns the country has to offer.  Be it  Nosara , Santa Teresa, Tamarindo or the Limón coast, people have no problem staying in these places for many months and still be in touch with their duties , and that is why this law will have a mayor impact in the number of expats wanting to come and live in Costa Rica.

This past Monday in Costa Rica’s legislative assembly, the first debate regarding the passing of the law to attract Digital Nomads ended  with a 41 to 1 voting in favor. The “Law to Attract International Workers and Remote Service Providers”, or Law No. 22215, is still under revision, but its main goal is to allow Digital Nomads to legally stay in the country for a year with the possibility of extending their stay for an additional year in case it suits them. Moreover, the beneficiaries will be exonerated from local income tax payment and any import taxes that can result from bringing personal devices that are necessary to do their jobs. In case you want to rent a car while you are here, don’t worry, your valid foreign drivers license would  be accepted while you enjoy your stay in the country.

One of the restrictions that must be noted is that people who are under this condition will not be able to do paid work in the national territory different from the one that  has been registered once the expat has arrived.

After the first debate, the legislative presidency has now fixed a date for the second debate taking place Tuesday the 13th of July. Stay tuned for more news regarding advances of the law.




Why You Should Buy a Home in A Golf Estate

Why You Should Buy a Home in A Golf Estate

Properties in Costa Rica

Living near a golf course is a dream come true for avid golfers. Imagine waking up in the morning to a scenic view, a relatively quiet neighborhood, and being a few steps away from your favorite sport.

Buying a house in a golf estate sounds pleasing to the ears. In fact, you might just find your dream house near a lush green field. Well, Costa Rica boasts some of the best golf estates. Whether you’re an avid golfer or someone who appreciates being near lush landscapes, here are some reasons that will make you want to purchase your own home in a golf estate in Costa Rica:

Reduced chances of having rowdy neighbors

One main concern of house buyers is how their neighbors would be. In fact, bad neighbors are a common red flag among home buyers. Since your home is located near or in a golf course, the likelihood of having noisy, rowdy neighbors is reduced.

However, it is still imperative for you to do research on the neighborhood. Homebuyers who do their research well are more satisfied with their decisions and are less likely to suffer from buyer’s remorse.

A long-term investment

From an investor’s perspective, buying into a residential golf estate is a smart move. Golf property only accounts for less than 4% of the total real estate, and its exclusivity makes them stand out in the marketplace. Having a property near a golf course is a factor that quickly enhances residential values, such as waterfront setting, the overall atmosphere, and elevation.

And if you’re thinking of reselling the property, best believe the resell value is high because of its high-quality residential values!

Beautiful views

Who says living near a golf course would only benefit golfers? Anyone will love to live with a well-maintained view. Golf courses pride themselves on their green grounds, clean ponds, tree-lined fairways, and the like, so best bet you’ll have a lovely sight to wake up to every day.

Play golf anytime

If you’re an avid golfer, you will primarily benefit from this feature. Imagine waking up to the view of the field every single day! When you come to think of it, you just have to prepare for a few minutes, pack your golf iron sets and other essentials in your bag, and spend a few minutes walking to the fairway. It’s so easy, stress-free, and convenient!

If you’re a beginner, it will allow you to try a new sport. If you want to get into golf, you can check out this great list of beginner-friendly putters.

Some golf clubs allow membership for the residents in or around the golf course, while some offer memberships at a discounted price. Make sure to look into this possible perk.

Justified pricing

Most people think that living in a residential golf estate is an unattainable luxury. But what they don’t know is that properties on residential golf estates are only a bit more expensive than homes in neighboring suburbs. We believe it’s better to pay a little more for a home that promises a happier lifestyle, more peaceful neighbors, and a breathtaking view.

Bottomline

Owning a house near a golf course has a lot of perks. If you think these reasons have convinced you enough to purchase a home in a golf estate in Costa Rica, make sure to discuss your plans with your real estate agent.




Amazing Costa Rica: Great Places for Your Honeymoon

Amazing Costa Rica: Great Places for Your Honeymoon

June 25, 2021

Properties in Costa Rica

Perhaps one of the best honeymoon destinations and places for a peaceful and wonderful life is Costa Rica. If you crave flawless beaches, mesmerizing nature, and a fabulous getaway, then be sure to go to Costa Rica on your honeymoon.

Our life is gradually adapting to new rules. It is easy to find your love with the best dating sites review, but when it comes to honeymoon destinations, COVID-19 has made romantic adventures challenging. However, it is still possible. And one of the magical ideas for your honeymoon is Costa Rica.

An incredible view will open to you surrounded by Nicaragua and Panama: nature, culture, and beach holidays. A big advantage of such a romantic getaway is short distances. One day, you can see many beautiful places, and you do not have to spend a lot of time on the road.

Small and even tiny Costa Rica connects North and South America. It occupies only 0.3% of the territory of our Earth. However, despite its size, it concentrates 5% of all flora and fauna of our planet. Therefore, people worldwide come to see the striking priceless beauty of this place, considering it one of the best honeymoon destinations. The main attractions of Costa Rica are waterfalls, mountain rivers, volcanoes, and underwater caves. Read on to discover this paradise on Earth and enjoy an unforgettable honeymoon.

The Romance of Magical Beaches

65% of the country is the Pacific Ocean’s coastline and the Caribbean Sea, which has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Although Costa Rica is a very small country, you can observe a rapid change of landscapes even in a few hours of traveling through it. Here you will see volcanic wastelands, savannas, mountain slopes with rain forests, coffee plantations, rivers, and waterfalls, as well as a large number of historical places and architectural monuments.

Manuel Antonio beach is considered one of the most beautiful honeymoon destinations for 2021, not only in Costa Rica but in the whole world. Imagine horseshoe-shaped coves with white sand shores, blue-green waters, and jungle hills. Here you can snorkel, scuba dive, surf, kayak, hike, and fly over the treetops on the zip-line, but remember to relax from time to time and admire the beauty around you.

What are Good Honeymoon Destinations in Costa Rica?

Costa Rica has many unique natural performances. If you want to see a truly Costa Rican fragrant and fantastic nature, you need to come from May to December. At this time, all this bird and insect, forest and sea world leads a rather lively and energetic lifestyle. Besides, hotel prices drop significantly during the rainy season.

Visit “Jurassic Park,” created on the basis of Spielberg’s movie. The park’s mountain landscapes and relic plants growing there have remained almost the same as they were millions of years ago. Tourists travel in special open-top minibuses among the jungle and funny rubber sculptures imitating different breeds of dinosaurs.

Attend the famous Turtle Island. On a sunny morning, turtles crawl ashore. Local kids sometimes drive on their shells and boulders. But such activity is prohibited for adults—the law and armed patrol guard the turtles.

The Irazu volcano is one of the best honeymoon destinations you can drive to. The air near the crater is saturated with all sorts of fumes and, according to the guides, is very healing. The main thing is not to overdo it. It is not recommended to stay at the very top of Irazu for more than an hour – too much evaporation can damage your health.

Also, do not forget about the capital – San Jose. The city fascinates with its striking appearance, which mixes the traditions of Spanish architecture with modern trends. There is a museum of the pre-Columbian gold, an amazing children’s museum where you can feel like a kid because you can touch everything and join many other performances. Near San Jose, there is the town of Alajuela, where you can visit a butterfly farm.

Conclusion

As the name suggests, Costa Rica is a coast rich in everything at once: two oceans – the Pacific and the Atlantic, exotic black sandy beaches, nature reserves, volcanoes, and mountains. It is one of the best honeymoon destinations during a pandemic.

You can choose a plan for active people who are passionate about adventure. Rafting on mountain rivers, walking in the jungle, the Arenal volcano, swimming in thermal springs, relaxing on the Pacific coast in the best hotels, and pleasant surprises – all this will make your trip ideal and give you the most vivid emotions.

Have you been to Costa Rica before? Are you considering this trip for your honeymoon? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

Author’s bio:  

Miranda Davis is a freelance writer in the relation and psychology area. Miranda is interested in such topics as building healthy relationships between people, love/sex compatibility, and how to find the right balance in life in general. She is currently doing specific research on the topic. Miranda loves cooking and long-distance walking.




This new law makes it easier for you to live in Costa Rica!

This new law makes it easier for you to live in Costa Rica!

June 15, 2021

Properties in Costa Rica

With the purpose of attracting foreign investment and reactivating Costa Rica’s local economy , 35 legislators out of 45 have voted in favor of a bill aiming to reduce the total amount of money required to obtain a Costa Rican residency in the case of foreign pensioners or rentiers . Primarily, the bill considers a drop in the minimum sum of investment to 150 thousand US dollars, applicable towards investments related to  real estate, registrable assents, shares, securities, and productive projects or projects of national interest, all of which have to be properly demonstrated and in line with Costa Rican law to be able to opt for the a 10- year residency. Furthermore, vehicle import free of import and tariff taxes  for  investors and  pensioners has been increased to 2 cars instead of only 1. Some other benefits to keep in mind are the following:

  • Exoneration (for a single time) of import customs taxes on household goods
  • Monthly pension received from abroad is free of income tax
  • The falsification of documents would result in the  payment of the exonerated tax and a sanction equivalent to 10% of the taxes exonerated.

 

Even though there is still room for improvement in Costa Rica’s foreign attraction policies and laws, Costa Rica’s deputy of the PLN party Silvia Hernández reminds us that the “attraction of investment cannot be limited to a single element, which is why the bill includes other mechanisms to enhance this objective. Additionally, the country needs to urgently address different areas, such as the simplification of procedures, among others ” (Hidalgo, 2021).

 

Be it in the central valley capital city of San José or the Pacific and Caribbean coastlines , Costa Rica is constantly working to enhance all expats experience around the country; and, more importantly, these changes in its law facilitate the ‘Pura Vida’ lifestyle you’ve finally come to enjoy  .  Stay tuned for more information regarding the final approval of the bill.




Tips For Traveling Costa Rica On A Budget

Tips For Traveling Costa Rica On A Budget

April 23, 2021

Properties in Costa Rica

Costa Rica often referred to as the Switzerland of Europe, is one of the most naturally beautiful countries in Central America. Because of its warm climate, decent rainfall, rolling hills, and active volcanoes, the country offers some of the most diverse wildlife one will find in the peninsula. On top of this, the Costa Ricans, or Ticos as they are affectionately referred to, provide a warm and exciting culture.

Unfortunately, compared to other countries in the area like Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Honduras, Costa Rica can be quite expensive, and travelers need to watch their budget a little more carefully, a topic we will explore in greater detail below.

Visit Less Travelled Places

When it comes to visiting Costa Rica, many people end up in places such as Manuel Antonio, Jaco, Playa Samara, and Tamarindo. As beautiful as these places are, they are also some of the most visited and most expensive.

Travelers looking to reduce their overall budget should consider visiting some of the lesser-known beaches or sites. For example, there are a number of beaches in the Guanacaste province that are much more wallet-friendly than the ones mentioned above. Those who are feeling a little bit more adventurous may consider visiting the Caribbean side, which aside from Puerto Viejo and some areas of Limon are much more affordable.

Get Off The Beach

As many will expect, the most expensive places in Costa Rica are the beaches. If you’re looking to reduce your overall budget, consider spending only a portion of your time at the beach and the rest enjoying one of the other amazing spots in Costa Rica. “Aside from beautiful beaches on both the Pacific and Atlantic side, the country also offers amazing rainforests, cloud forests, volcanos, and mountains. For those who are looking to be somewhat active, there is plenty of hiking, kayaking, horseback riding, and other activities available,” writes Jessica James, a travel writer at 1 Day 2 write and Write my X.

For those who like the idea of getting off the beach to save money, some places to consider include:

Rincón De La Vieja: An active volcano in the Guanacaste province.

La Fortuna: A beautiful mountain town with rivers and hiking trails in the surrounding area.

Monteverde: One of the most attractive cloud forests in Costa Rica.

Bajos Del Toro: A beautiful eco-lodge located in the middle of a cloud forest.

Eat Local Food

Besides accommodations, food can take up a major chunk of your budget if you stick to hotel restaurants. Throughout Costa Rica, little restaurants called ‘Sodas’ can be found, which offer local dishes at a fraction of the cost of the most popular tourist restaurants. At these Sodas, the most common dish people will find will be rice and beans served with either chicken, beef, or fish.

Stay In Hostels

Another way to save a good chunk of money is by staying in Hostels. Over the years, many hostels in Costa Rica have improved dramatically in quality, and they are no longer only for backpackers. “Aside from the savings one will enjoy, Hostels are a great place to meet new people and gain travel tips and perspective. In fact, Hostels offer a type of travel experience that resorts and 5-star hotels simply are not able to,” writes Tom Smith, a lifestyle blogger at Brit Student and Next Coursework.

Travel During Rainy Season

When it comes to tourism in Costa Rica, there are two major periods, the rainy season and the dry season. These two seasons are also referred to as high season and low season because the country sees many more visitors during the dry season than during the rainy season.

This is important because hotels usually have two prices, one for high season and one for low season, and, as one may have guessed, the prices for low season are noticeably lower. If you’re worried about the rainy season, don’t fret too much – while it does rain more during this period, which runs from May to November, it is not the type of rain one would expect to see on the pacific west coast. Generally, it will rain hard for 35 minutes then stop.

One benefit of the rainy season is the vegetation is much lusher and greener and is a great time to enjoy outdoor activities or simply enjoy the beautiful nature the country has to offer

Michael Dehoyos is a health writer and editor at Phd Kingdom and Essay Writing Services. Throughout his career, Michael has assisted a number of companies in developing and implement marketing strategies. In his spare time, Michael enjoys writing for online health and marketing publications. Many of his writings can be found at Origin Writings.




Phases of a Real Estate Transaction In Costa Rica

Phases of a Real Estate Transaction In Costa Rica

April 16, 2021

Properties in Costa Rica

1.Identify the property you want to purchase through your real estate agent. Here the Properties of Costa Rica team, being the experts in the field, can surely and professionally assist you through all the process.

2.Coordinate with the selected escrow agent in order to have them on board in regards to the custody of funds that will be required for the upcoming transaction. Attorneys can assist in providing a qualified escrow agent duly licensed by SUGEF (the government entity which provides the licenses for companies that are involved in the financial and banking line of business).

3.Once the SPA is signed, then have your attorneys initiate the Due Diligence process during the term established in the SPA for said tasks to take place (a thorough review of the current standing of the property, which includes among others, a checking of the property taxes, HOA, etc).

4.We recommend constituting a corporation through which the investor will hold ownership of the property.

5.Once the earnest money deposit has been confirmed by the escrow agent, and the term established on the SPA has elapsed, then the public deed through which the title of the property is transferred can be signed by the parties with the assistance of a Notary Public.

6.At the same time, the final payment is coordinated to be canceled through the escrow agent.

7.Next, the public deed testimony is sent by the Notary Public to the Public Registry in order, to begin with, the inscription and registration process of the property transfer. This stage entails the payment of the property transfer tax, the National Registry legal stamps, duties, and registration expenses.

8.Finally, once the National Registry finishes the inscription and registration process of the property transfer (it may take between 2-4 weeks), the purchased estate will now appear at the National Registry under the name of the new owner. Therefore, based on the registration and publicity principles that support the Costa Rican real property rights, the new proprietor has now full ownership over the estate and the government protection that comes with said title.

It is important to confirm that the property can be purchased even if the client cannot attend closing physically. The way for that to happen is through an extra step in which the buyer would grant a power of attorney to a representative in Costa Rica that will be enabled to specifically sign the purchase public deed in name of the buyer’s corporation. This extra step is a service that an Attorney can and usually provide to a client, both by preparing and coordinating the power of attorney, plus by providing the representative that will execute the purchase in name of the client´s corporation.

In conclusion, these are the main stages that a real estate purchase transaction will be facing in Costa Rica. Of course, if there are further legal questions or instructions on your behalf, please feel free to let us know about them so we can help out clarifying. In the meantime, We wish for you to have a sensational experience through the phase of looking for the right property in which your dream to invest here in Costa Rica becomes true.

Article Provide by RE&B Attorneys

Jose Alejandro Martínez-Castro

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