Buying a home in Costa Rica is exciting, momentous, and meaningful, but it can be difficult knowing exactly what you are actually seeing online, this is where we can help you. We can provide a licensed home inspection in Costa Rica that will help you understand exactly what you’re buying. Internationally certified with 30 plus years construction trade experience, you can trust you will receive a quality inspection at a reasonable price.
If you are thinking of purchasing a home, especially in another country, there are many things to consider about the value of a home or property as a whole. Whether it has just had some remodelling for the sale or even if it is a recent build, it’s not just the home that estimates its value. Here are some important factors to consider.
Where it is.
Is it in a town? A gated community? Views, access to beaches/stores/banks etc these really affect the overall value. Do you need a school close by? Public transit? A lot of variables. Comparable homes in that area will have an effect on value if they are different by way of security, a pool, appliances/furniture, these types of things really make a difference.
The province and distances on what type of roads need to be be a big deciding factor. Power and water, closest highways, how off the path all play a role in value and desirability. What your needs are really need addressed here, so you are looking in the right place. VERY important if you have not been to Costa Rica a number of times, or at all.
Size of house and land.
This is not as easy as it seems. The bigger the home, the higher the value? Not necessarily the case in Costa Rica. Here, you spend a lot of your time outside the home, so more deck and pool area can actually be of more value. Two stories might not be the best thing in a country that has earthquakes (and has it been built to withstand these?) All of your standard reference points of value in USA or Canada are virtually useless here. Lot size plays a role in value, not only monetarily, but in the thoughts of what you need. A lot of times a big piece of land could be unusable land.
Age and condition.
Generally speaking newer homes tend to be valued higher than older homes. Major important components of the house like plumbing, electrical, roofing and even appliances are newer and possibly less likely to be problematic, and this has the potential to create a significant near future savings. Many homes here come furnished, so this must be considered as well. Flip side of this is "built to code" does not mean here what it means in other parts of the world. In this current building boom as well, new might not mean better.
Updates, upgrades and additions.
Additions and updates can add value to older homes if done correctly. It also can be a trick to hide major flaws. Recent work needs to be looked at very closely. Good ones for an older home here can be bathroom/kitchen upgrades, new pool, expanded deck space.
Local Market vs internet market.
Even if the house you see on the internet is in excellent condition and in the best location with premium upgrades, what actually is for sale there, and what they are selling for locally can be a whole different market than what is available on the internet. Think of the web as exactly that, and there is a real estate spider just waiting for you to stop in and create a big meal for his plate. We have seen things sell online for 5 times what something similar can be had for with boots on the ground.
Today (2023), things are so volatile, and many are leaving their home countries for places like Costa Rica. This in turn has brought big increases in "values" or perceived values here. It is not a place for everyone, and many leave after a relatively short time. This has been a common theme here for decades, and it always settles. Watch for excessively priced homes, do some homework. Also keep in mind that if you do move, and it is not for you, renting as a vacation home can be a good thing, if you have someone you can trust to take care of it.
I believe these are some pretty important things to consider, and each statement is most certainly expandable. These are all things that we could help you with, aside from the actual home inspection. We know decent realtors, we have been all across the country for many years now. We have built, we have looked at many being built, and seen many halted during the build. There are things to watch for here, and we can do that.