• Do NOT assume that things operate the same way in Costa Rica real estate as they do with real estate in North America.
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  • Whatever Costa Rica property you are considering – Make sure you do survey the property.
  • You must ensure the building/home is inspected by an expert in Costa Rica real estate.
  • Do NOT assume that a property will be as easy to sell as it is to purchase.
  • Do use a respectable, established, well-recommended real estate agent in Costa Rica
  • Try to avoid the ‘sunshine syndrome’ – where many investors fail to remember the basics of investing when they step off the plane and succumb to the syndrome.
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  • Do NOT assume that asking prices of Costa Rica real estate are a good indication of market value.(You should not make the common mistake of using comparable asking prices as a guide to actual value, since many times properties may be listed above the actual market value.) Valuations are a real tricky thing in a market of imperfect data.
  • Security the luxury of having an isolated property in Costa Rica can also create potential security issues.
  • Water – Be aware that in some parts of the country it is very common to have water shortages during the ‘dry season’.
  • Flooding – As in all parts of the world some properties experience flooding, when viewing property during the ‘dry season’ one may fail to see potential flooding or access problems.
  • Avoid purchasing Costa Rica beachfront property without a concession or without a title.(A whole plethora of problems)
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  • Always ensure that you research a builder’s background, experience and qualifications.

If you do your homework and only work with the help of qualified professionals, you will easily avoid all the mistakes mentioned above.

Written by Tim Gifford who graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Colorado and studied a Master’s in Real Estate Finance and Development in the City of London.

Mr. Gifford’s real estate experience in Costa Rica has been focused on development and investment consulting.He has been involved in numerous multi-million dollar development projects in Costa Rica.

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