Sunday, December 7, 2008

Should I buy or should I rent

This is a common question that I have heard many times among people relocating to Costa Rica.
When someone has decided to move to another country, there wish is to be a homeowner and not rent for the rest of their lives, we all know the advantages of being a home owner, although now in some places in the USA it is better to be renting because of tax issues, however this is not a problem in Costa Rica since property taxes are usually very low.

Some people have been saying that it is better to rent for a period of time than to buy right away, this has several implications, we believe that a person relocating to Costa Rica has already decided to live here because they have visited the country on vacation and loved it enough to live here at least part time, so taking this in consideration, buying would be the more intelligent thing to do since real estate prices in Costa Rica are always going up and have never gone down in the past, yes they must go down at some point, but most likely not in the near future, since

Costa Rica is continually becoming more popular all the time, thereby increasing the demand of residential homes, the recent approval of the Free Trade Agreement with the USA will only add more demand to commercial and industrial property as well as residential homes.

I have seen several cases of people renting first and then deciding to buy the house that was being rented at a price quoted originally only to find out that a few months later the owner had already raised the selling price almost double, why did this happen, well the explanation is that the price was very low to begin and when she found out what other homes were going for she raised the price and the demand had also increased, the owner decided to move and find another deal, so far after about five years and several other opportunities the renter is still renting and probably will continue to do so.

Prices for real estate in Costa Rica vary a lot from as low as $50,000 to as high as a couple million dollars, depending on the area and the size.
There is always something available for any budget, cooler climates, warmer climates and everything in between.
A good idea when buying a house in Costa Rica and anywhere else for that matter is to know what your budget is for buying a property, what size land, house and specifications you absolutely need, what type of neighborhood and area, do you prefer near the beach ? in the mountains ? in the city or outskirts ?
By narrowing down your requirements you will save a lot of time and effort in choosing a house.

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