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4 Tips for Buying Property in the Caribbean

A comfy home rests on a narrow strip of Carribean shoreline.

Investing in property on the sun-soaked islands of the Caribbean has long been considered the reserve of the rich and famous. Not anymore—there’s never been a better time to buy a second home in the Caribbean.

Investing in emerging international property markets is always a balancing act between increased risk and potential reward. However, there is a plentitude of Caribbean investment opportunities and there is no reason why an investment can’t be safe and profitable.

The Caribbean summons strong imagery for many people looking for a place in the sun; the Independent calls the region a true getaway destination with a hint of home from home. Whether you’re looking to move to the Caribbean permanently or for your next investment opportunity, these tips should make the process easier and clearer.

 

1: Decide why you’re buying the property

First things first. Before you buy the property, you must decide why you’re buying the property. If you want to start a new life on an island, you’ll be looking for a property to make your home. Are you moving for work? You might look for an office or commercial location to do business. Or are you just looking to add to your property portfolio? All of these factors will determine the type of property you choose to invest in.

 

2: Broaden your horizons in your research 

The National Association of Realtors state “the economic, political, and social environments of the different Caribbean island nations vary greatly in their impact on real estate.” To find the perfect property for you, you must first find the right island. You may look for a strong quality of life, or average property prices, an economy that is doing well, or the most affordable way of life – all of which differ across the islands in the region.

The Caribbean is a region of around 40 million people and each country is unique – economically, politically and culturally. For example, English is the most widely spoken language in Dominica, Barbados, Grenada, Jamaica, St Kitts and Nevis, and Trinidad and Tobago to name just a few. In Haiti and Guadeloupe, French is most widely spoken and in Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico, Spanish is the official language. These are important considerations to bear in mind when choosing a place you plan to live or conduct business deals in.

 

3: Look for government-approved real estate opportunities 

There a number of Caribbean investment opportunities available through citizenship by investment (CBI) programmes. CBI is a way for high net worth individuals to gain citizenship in a country by making a financial contribution to the local economy. Often, this involves government-backed real estate projects.

Dominica is one such country that invites investments that “will generate sustained economic growth and prosperity, and create jobs and business opportunities for their people.” A minimum sum of US$200,000 is required for a qualifying investment in real estate, which includes, for example, shares of the Tranquility Beach Resort, a project run by Curio – A Collection by Hilton, one of the world’s most successful luxury hotel operators.

 

4: Remember You Are Buying in Paradise

1st Day of Summer, a blog about Caribbean island life, suggests that “when you buy a home in the Caribbean, buy it because you want to spend an amazing time there with family and friends. The return on investment is all those incredible, precious moments” – and we agree. Remember that when you buy in the Caribbean, you buy in one of the most spectacular locations in the world. It will leave you with unparalleled memories, no matter what your primary purchasing goal is.

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