Ok – you’ve made a wise move and want to invest in Costa Rica – but where? One of the most important aspects to consider is choosing an area that fits with your type of investment.
I’ve put together a few tips to help you decide which area is best suited to what you are looking for.
1. Rapid Growth
It’s no secret that there are certain areas in Costa Rica that are experiencing rapid growth. Since the beginning of the year 2000 the province of Guanacaste has really become the top investment location.
Known as the tropical escape for the well-heeled the province of Guanacaste continues to experience rapid growth and significant direct foreign investment.
Playa Tamarindo, Langosta, Coco, and Papagayo offer the crem de la crem of property investment. Thanks to the Liberia International Airport tourism arrivals to this region have increased by an incredible 27% in the past year. Major hotel chains like Marriott, Ritz-Carlton, and Westin also help attract visitors to this region.
2. Potential Growth
Now - 17 years later all eyes are on the South Pacific – by all accounts the same property value rise is expected here.
Thanks to the opening of the Caldera Highway and resurfacing works on the Costanera the South Pacific is now more accessible than ever before. Continued infrastructure improvements including a proposed international airport in the south will certainly spark more interest of many investors. Remember new growth means new opportunities!
As the tourism industry continues to develop in this area and more employment opportunities are created property values will rise.
There are a variety of income properties on the market from boutique hotels, B & Bs, luxury estates, and businesses. Finding an expert real estate professional with a great reputation can help ensure you have access to the best opportunities on the market. Remember, many business operators do not publicly announce the sale of their properties to avoid any revenue or branding problems.
3. Existing Infrastructure & Services
If you are looking to acquire real estate in an area of potential growth you need to pay close attention to the existing infrastructure and service. As with many things in a developing country, tourism growth can take longer so you need to be sure that there are services that will ensure its appeal should you want to resell. These services also increase the chances that this area will begin to become a popular location for investment.
The South Pacific, Ojochal, Dominical, Manuel Antonio, and Uvita offer a fantastic range of amenities including well stocked grocery stores, banks, restaurants, internet cafes, farmers markets, pharmacies, doctors, dentists and much more. These communities already include the basics, like large international supermarkets and high-quality health care and you can reach San Jose in just under 3 hours.
4. Tourism strength & rental potential
This is where I would suggest that you look towards area such as Manuel Antonio. An established tourist area with an award winning national park, properties may be higher priced but the potential for vacation rental income is significant. Positioned on the Central Pacific coast, Manuel Antonio and the neighboring community of Quepos are popular vacation rental locations. Take note, most vacationers are looking for ocean views and swimming pools and though these properties may be higher priced they will get you higher occupancy levels. Ask to check the rental log to see if you can get an idea of how much of a return you can make on the property.
5. Ease & price of Access
If you are looking to acquire an investment property you need to ensure that it is easy to get to. This is why the improvements in coastal highways and the potential of a new international airport in the South Pacific strengthen the prospects for solid growth in tourism and investment.
6. Prices and Inventory levels
Local markets began rebounding from the real estate crisis in late 2012 with 2013 being a major recovery year. That being said, 2017 and 2018 will continue to see improvement in sales as new finished inventory hits the market. One of the biggest challenges for the local markets was finished product. Thankfully, a flood of investment in multi-unit projects featuring luxury villas and condos continues to see expansion. Buyers can still find excellent deals on lots and acreage since there is an abundance of inventory.