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Buying Belize Property Guide For Brits

July 27, 2009Article by Ray Withers

Belize property is a popular investment for Canadian and US property people and was the last British colonial toehold in the Americas as British Honduras – so much so the second language is still English. Belize is also blipping on the radar of British investors as having all the lifestyle benefits of a Caribbean island along with attractive tax benefits for expats and a thriving tourist industry– so here’s a quick guide to buying property in Belize:

* The country has no restriction son foreigners owning property

* Get legal advice from a reputable Belize legal firm – the real estate sector is unregulated and agents are not required to tell buyers about adverse information that might affect the property deal

* Make sure your legal advisor carefully examines any restrictive covenants on the property deeds. These restrictions detail how a property can be used and the property owner’s obligations.

* Check the property title is legally registered and the seller really does have the right to take your money and run. Not all properties are registered in Belize.

* Get in the zone – zoning states how many rooms the property can have and how high you can build among other things.

* Hone up your negotiation skills and argue a price.

* Your lawyer performs any due diligence.

* When he or she has confirmed the property is free of any charges, go ahead with changing the title.

* Ensure the lawyer files the new title deeds in your name

* The first 20,000 Belize dollars of any transaction is exempt from stamp duty – after that duty is charged at 5%.

* Legal fees are between 1-2% of the property value

* New residential properties have a 10% sales tax

Belize Reserve is an eco community in Western Belize. The development includes a hotel and 350 half-acre plots divided in to small villages for private residences.The plots cost £24,950 and are available from UK-based international consultants Property Frontiers.

The builder will put up your house at cost – about £34,950 on top of the plot price, depending on what you pick from the three designs.The community was awarded an ‘excellent’ kite mark from the independent whatgreenhome.com web site.Homes are built from local sourced wood. Solar power provides hot water and electricity. The sewerage system utilises anaerobic bacteria that is not only environmentally friendly but requires no electricity.The ongoing running and maintenance costs are predicted as minimal.

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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