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Belize Offering Bargains On Luxury Property

October 7, 2009Article by Ray Withers

Belize property prices grew massively in the last few years, terminating in the second half of 2008. When this growth peaked the country started to lose its competitiveness, as new alternatives began to emerge offering lower prices and equally strong growth potential.

While Belize property has not seen the catastrophic price drops seen in the likes of the UK and Spain, the exodus of foreign buyers has led to developers offering some pretty special bargains in the country.
For instance Property Frontiers are currently marketing villas and land plots in the Cayo reserve with prices starting from £20,000 for 1/2 an acre of land, and £72,500 for a 1 bedroom villa. At the beginning of last year a similar 1 bedroom villa would have been priced upwards of £135,000. 2 and 3 bedroom villas are also on offer.

The Cayo villas are really quite special because the development is being constructed in the tropical rainforest of the Cayo district. It is surrounded by protected land, which means demand will be on a waiting list basis keeping prices going up. As an example, the development is already 80% sold out.

Properties like the Cayo villas are a pleasure to market, people do not get the opportunity to rent properties in such exclusively beautiful locations as the Cayo district very often, so a premium can be charged for the privilege. Rental yields of around 10% net are being forecast on the properties.

From the perspective of tourists and foreign property buyers, Belize is without doubt one of Central America’s biggest treasures: sheltered from storms by the Yucatan Peninsula it has a warm but never too hot climate.  A Constitutional Monarchy and part of the British Commonwealth it offers foreigners clear title ownership in a derestricted property market where English is the official language. It also has the largest coral reef in the western hemisphere, and loads of Mayan ruins to enjoy.

What’s more living costs in Belize are very low, which means the country offers cheap holidays to offset the more expensive flights. Belize is understandably very popular with American retirees, because they are not charged income tax, and because they can take their cars and belongings into the country duty free. These can be looked upon as a reliable exit strategy when it comes time to sell and realise the gains on an investment.

Author

Ray Withers

Ray has over 17 years’ experience in the international property market and bought his own first international property investment back in 2002. Aside from running Property Frontiers, Ray has been involved in residential, hotel, student and commercial property investment and development in both the UK and overseas and co-wrote "Where to Buy Property Abroad - An Investor's Guide". As Founder and Trustee of the Frontiers Foundation, Ray is directly involved with many of its projects to ensure they have a direct and tangible impact in individual communities across the globe. He is passionate about property, travelling, scouting out new opportunities and finding time to spend with his young family.
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