There is no denying that Belize real estate is really one of the hottest forms of property investments available today. But before you acquire the title of your very own Belizean land, there are some important things you have to know in shopping for a suitable piece of property.
First off, when diving into Belize real estate, take note that there are six major districts. There is Belize district where the largest city of the country is-Belize City. It also covers other islands such as Caye Caulker, Goff’s Caye, English Caye, St. George’s Caye, Ambergris Caye, and Caye Chapel. Next, the largest district is Cayo district, where the capital city of Belmopan is.
There is also the Corozal district which is located in the northernmost part of Belize; and the Orange Walk district in the northwestern side with significant towns like August Pine Ridge, Guinea Grass, San Felipe, San Jose, Santa Cruz, Santa Martha, and Trinidad.
Next, there is Stann Creek district is home to the port of Big Creek, Plancencia, Mullins River and the Garifuna village of Hopkins. Last is the southernmost district of Toledo with the towns of Monkey River Town, Silver Creek, and San Pedro Columbia.
Why do you need to know these districts if you are interested in Belize real estate? It is for the simple reason that location is one of the major factors which guide land values. The distance of the property from tourist attractions, major cities or famous landmarks affect the price of the estate you are interested in.
Also, the importance of knowing the strengths and weaknesses of these Belizean districts will allow you to assess the availability of utility infrastructure such as communication, water and electricity. You would not want to be trapped in a Belize real estate with low accessibility key utilities.
In buying properties in Belize, take note that the Department of Natural Resources charges a fee for each transaction. There is also a 5% selling consideration which will be given to the Government of Belize as transfer tax or stamp duty. For foreigners, registrations and fees will amount to USD 7.50, while for citizens, it is BZD 15. Regardless of your citizenship, 1-2% of the selling price will be used as lawyer’s fee for the legal services rendered such as drawing up contracts, deeds and other transactions.
In shopping for available properties in Belize, you can either check them up over the internet, newspapers, and agency brochures. Once you see a property you are interested in, remember that there are restrictions on land ownership for non-Belizeans nationals. One of which is that government approval is obligatory no matter how big or small the land you are buying. This should come from the Ministry of Natural Resources. Be sure that you cover all the basic restrictions before signing up your contract.
For the registration and title of your most coveted Belize real estate, take note of the three different systems they use: Registered Land Act system, Conveyance system, and Torrens system. The system that you will use depends where your property is located, so determine where the property you are interested in fall under since you have to abide by the law.
Obviously you will need to do a good job of research on each piece of property that you are considering to purchase. Much of the real estate business in Belize is unlicensed by the government. As a result finding a reliable and honest agent is critical. In addition finding a good real estate attorney is very important in assuring that all your interests are protected. Never the less investing in Belize real estate is a very good idea.