How to Buy Real Estate in Belize
Belize is one of the hottest real estate markets in the world right now. The popularity of Belize is due in large part to the booming tourism industry. The Caribbean country of Belize draws in tourists, expats and investors all looking to enjoy the tropical charm of Belize and the island of Ambergris Caye. Whether you’re interested in buying real estate as a business venture or secure property for your retirement/vacation home, consider the following guide on how to buy real estate in Belize.
Finding Belize Property
The first thing you need to do is find real estate property in Belize. You can work with a local real estate agent to find properties that fall within your preferences and budget. There are many different real estate listings available in Belize, ranging from small homes to condo-style properties; commercial developments to raw land. You can find real estate listings for small beachfront cottages, large townhomes, small homes in suburban-style neighborhoods; or even undeveloped property that you can build your dream home on.
All the different areas and neighborhoods in Belize have a different atmosphere and a local charming culture. One of the first steps in buying Belize property is to do research on the different areas within the country and decide on where you want to purchase property for investment or if you intend to live there. If possible, visit the areas that appeal most to you and decide where is the best Belize destination for your needs.
Buying Belize Property
You should hire a local real estate attorney to help you make your real estate property transaction. This will ensure the purchase and title transfer goes smoothly. Your attorney will need to check that the property is listed for sale has a legal, proper title and that the person selling the property is legally entitled to sell it. This is an important step, as you don’t want to purchase a property only to find out that you weren’t legally entitled to buy it in the first place!
The next step is to put an offer for the property that you are interested in buying. The offer can include negotiation on the price until both you and the seller have come to an agreement. It may take some back and forth negotiation in order to agree upon a price. You can do this on your own, but working with a real estate agent can help to improve the process.
When a price has been agreed upon, you will need to submit a professionally written offer for your purchase; this includes paying a specified amount as a deposit and determining the financing terms (if any). You will also need to pay closing costs and stamp duty, which is 5% of the purchase price for Belize citizens and 8% for foreign buyers. As a buyer in Belize, you are responsible for all closing costs and stamp duty; sellers will pay the commission for the real estate agent.