Costa Rica Blog

Colon's 11% increase spurs Central Bank to Buy Foreign Currency

Posted by Steve Linder on Fri, Sep, 03, 2010

With the colon's increase in value this year topping 11%, it was the second highest appreciating currency worldwide.  In a reaction by the central bank to control the astonomical increase in the value, the bank has announced plans to purchase up to $50 million dollars per month in foreign currency to curb the rise in value of the colon.  The rapid rise in value of the colon will make both tourism and exports more expensive.  The central bank has traditionally allowed the colon to float in a range between 500 and 640 colon to the dollar but this week the colon approached the upper ranges in value, at 504 colons to the dollar. 

By purchasing foreign currencies, the central bank hopes to decrease the value of the colon.  The higher value of the colon makes real estate and exports more costly to international investors.  This is a good thing for the many North Americans who have already purchased property there, as the value of thier property increases.  It does make real estate more expensive for new buyers unless the property is priced in dollars, not colon.  Fortunately our prices at Pacific Lots are priced in dollars but as the dollar continues to lose money worldwide, there is pressure to change our pricing system to colons.  For those who have purchased property using a self directed IRA, the gain they realize over time reflects the increase in the value of the colon as well as the increase in value of the property.  As the dollar continues to lose value, more Costa Rican real estate, home sites and lots will be priced in colons. 

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Tags: Real Estate Costa Rica, Costa Rica real estate, Real Estate, Costa Rica Colon, property purchase in Costa rica, property, home sites

Is Costa Rica Rental Property a Good Investment? How to Judge...

Posted by Steve Linder on Wed, Dec, 16, 2009

Rental Property Research Tools:  Thinking of buying Costa Rica real estate as an investment?  When buying real estate in Costa Rica you should research first to determine if it's a wise choice.  Before you decide to build a home in any foreign country for rental income, consider the following.  Have you ever heard of  This site, Vacation Rental by Owner, is a great place to find rental properties around the globe.  It is also one of the most valuable research tools available for anyone considering the purchase of property in a foreign country.  One of the best indicators of how to judge the value of a real estate investment in a foreign location is the quality of the rental market.  If a strong rental market exists, you can easily judge the quality of any investment using simple math.  Using you can find complete rental information, including rental rates as well as availability.  Each property specifies the rental rates for short term versus long term, high season or off season as well as features and photos, square footage and number of beds and baths.  It is a great tool to compare potential purchases in various foreign locations.  If the rental market in an area is good, so is the resale market.  If the rental market is weak, don't expect great returns on your investment, appreciation or a secondary market to sell down the road.  
What to Look For:  With this tool you can compare the cost of any purchase to the potential return on investment from rental income.  High rental rates and low availability is the key to solid returns and appreciation.  As an example, check out the rental activity in our town, at VRBO.  From the home page, select Cental America, then Costa Rica, in the state of Puntarenas and the town of Ojochal.  Compare our rates and bookings to any other location, Panama City, Salinas, Nicaragua, Belize, Ecuador or Mexico and see for yourself why our developments continue to outsell many others.  Look through all the listings in each area you are considering, this is what smart investors do.  You may see a few new listings that may not yet have much rental activity and there will always be some very successful renters as well as some who don't do well at all.  Use a good sample size and then compare results to the cost of purchase to figure your potential return on investment.  A good investment should always have a strong rental demand.  

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Tags: Ojochal, Real Estate Costa Rica, Real Estate, Rental, Costa Rica

Real Estate in Costa Rica, Panama, Mexico, Nicaragua and Belize

Posted by Steve Linder on Mon, Nov, 30, 2009

Real estate for Expats - A Comparison

Costa Rica, Mexico, Panama,  Belize and Nicaragua

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Tags: Panama, Real Estate, Expats, Living Abroad, Mexico, Belize, Nicaragua, Costa Rica