Tag: buy Nicaragua real estate

 

Confusion Is Normal When Shopping For Real Estate In Nicaragua

4 for sales signs on one propertyAnyone looking for real estate in Nicaragua who actually visits the country discovers there’s a glaring difference between online shopping and being here looking for a buying opportunity. It’s an understatement to say that it is confusing compared to the nice, tidy websites with posted prices.

The first shock most people have to deal with is that there’s no “listing agent”. Every property in Nicaragua is offered for sale by the owner… no matter what prospective buyers may believe or have been told. True, some sellers don’t want to bother with the selling process so may use the services of a go between. However, that go between can be anyone… a property manager, a lawyer, a relative or friend, or a “merchant” specializing in real estate. I say “merchant” because there is no such thing as a “real estate brokerage” in Nicaragua. At least not as a North American or European would understand the term to represent. Anyone can sell real estate, no matter if they have any prior experience or training of any kind.

Nica Investments only deals with the owners of property seeking to sell or lease. The mandate the company operates under is to advise clients seeking to purchase real estate as to the true value of a property, the potential for equity gain and/or income from a property, what renovations may be required and the cost, and if there are any grounds for concern surrounding a specific property. We’ll then walk clients through the purchase process and assure the property is transferred without incident.

Nica Investments does not add on an amount over and above what the seller wishes to receive as a commission. This is the norm in Nicaragua. A seller will offer a property to “selling agents” at what the seller wants, net. The agent must then add on an amount over and above that sum. Nica Investment clients retain our services on a per diem basis, and task Nica Investments with negotiating the best terms and purchase price possible directly from the seller.

Nica Investments also negotiates leases, which in Nicaragua is often a more advantageous approach to securing a property for business use. See Which Is Better – To Rent Or Buy for more information about leasing over purchasing property in Nicaragua.

Nica Investments does not maintain a list of properties for sale or rent, “listings” as a prospective renter or purchaser from North America or Europe would expect to see. There is no point. We do inform clients of outstanding properties through our newsletter or on our website, under Investment Opportunities. However, these properties are being offer for sale by owners. Nica Investments deems these properties we highlight to be exceptional because of price, location, size, view or a combination of these reasons.

If a property is priced well it sells quickly. Too quickly to make advertising it practical. Such properties Nica Investments will inform clients of directly via email and open negotiations on behalf of a client who retains us to do so.

If a property is overpriced or has issues prohibiting its being sold, it will last long enough to make advertising it worthwhile. However, it’s unlikely to sell quickly so it’s a waste of time and energy in most cases. Besides, in Nicaragua virtually every property in private hands is for sale. There are rare exceptions, but well over 90% of homes, raw land and commercial properties throughout Nicaragua can be purchased from the owner whether or not it is being overtly offered for sale.

What Nica Investments does is source properties that meet the client’s parameters. These parameters are type of property, price range, location, land use, size, and so on. We then approach the owners of properties that meet our clients’ criteria directly and attempt to negotiate an equitable agreement to purchase or lease.

To learn more about purchasing or leasing property in Nicaragua, sub scribe to our newsletter, follow us on Twitter or Facebook, or contact us.

The Word On Living & Investing In Nicaragua

Regardless of what your opinion is of global agencies, such as the United Nations, International Monetary Fund or the World Bank, you have to agree they provide checks and balances in matters of international politics, financing, trade and commerce. Of the 196 countries in the world, 193 of which are members of the United Nations, many need the services and stewardship of these international agencies. Unfortunately, few of those in need actually heed the advice and guidance provided… and usually suffer for not doing so. Nicaragua is not one of those nations. What the World Bank has to say about Nicaragua speaks volumes…

Despite global economic turbulence, Nicaragua has stood out for maintaining growth levels above the average for Latin America and the Caribbean. Disciplined macroeconomic policies, combined with a steady expansion of exports and foreign direct investment, helped Nicaragua to weather the global economic crisis of 2008-09 and rising food and oil prices. By 2011, growth had accelerated to reach a record 6.2 percent, later declining to 3.9 percent in 2015, the lowest rate in the last five years. GDP growth for 2016 is expected to reach 4.4 percent, among the highest rates in Central America. Foreign direct investment and trade also shows an improved outlook.

I’m on the ground in Nicaragua. I’ve been here permanently since July 26, 2014 and visited a great many times before I made the final move. I have seen with my own eyes benefits from foreign investment and the overall improvement of the standard of living it provides the Nicaraguan people. And I have been amazed at the pace of change. There is room for more improvement of course, more investment that is likely to generate impressive returns. But the steady, upward march is comforting, as well as awe inspiring considering Nicaragua is still one of the poorest nations in the Americas.

Nicaragua on the globeIn a world plagued by political and civil unrest, financial chaos, and religious persecution, it baffles me why the steady trickle of foreign investment in Nicaragua has not already turned into a flood. Maybe it is because I’m here and can see with my own eyes that the objections people come up with for not investing in Nicaragua are misguided, based on misinformation, or, more likely, fear based.

By fear based, I’m not talking about fear for personal safety. Nicaragua is the safest country in Central America, and one of the safest in all of the Americas… far safer than the USA. What I refer to is a fear of stepping outside the box.

So many people I talk to who want to retire somewhere affordable, somewhere where they can live well on their pension income, never make the move.

It’s much the same with investors and entrepreneurs. I present opportunities that promise excellent returns. What I say fails to reach deep enough to alleviate their fears. Investors and entrepreneurs are no different than retiring pensioners. They too fear the unknown. More comfortable in a market that has a 9 to 1 failure rate in virtually ever economic sector, they’d sooner slug it out for single digit returns where they feel comfortable than pursue greater returns in another market.

Retiring To Nicaragua

The real reason people dream of retirement in a tropical paradise never act is because they’re afraid of the unknown. Unhappiness with one’s life often isn’t enough to motivate someone to step through a door they’ve never been through before. The known may be a life that sucks the very soul from a person, but it’s familiar. The unfamiliar is scary.

All I can do for folks wanting to have a comfortable retirement on the same fixed income they’d struggle with back home is present the facts, make suggestions, give advice, and provide assistance if needed. I can not force someone to move outside their comfort zone, no matter how much I think they’ll benefit from doing so.

Investing In Nicaragua

Passive investments in Nicaragua generate a higher ROI then anywhere else I’ve been in the world, and I’ve lived and worked in a great many countries. The returns possible in Nicaragua are good and the investments safe, but they’re investments in an unfamiliar market. There are slightly different laws, rules, and regulations. The language is different and the culture unfamiliar. It’s new, it’s scary. I understand.

As with retirees looking for somewhere to relocate to, I can only advise investors and entrepreneurs. Lead them by the hand if that’s what they wish. But I can not force opportunities on anyone that is tied down and unwilling to have the ropes cut.

Conclusion

Nicaragua is a safe place to live and invest in. I know this because I am here. I can source opportunities, advise on how to capitalize on those opportunities, and even help with hands on support. But as saying goes, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.”

If you’re someone looking to retire or invest in Nicaragua, contact me. Let’s discuss your specific wants, needs and desires and see if you’ll not agree with me that Nicaragua is where you should be.

Ref: http://www.worldbank.org/en/country/nicaragua/overview

The Tourists Are Coming & Tourism Highlights

Pacific coast beach in the north of Nicaragua.October for the tourism industry in Nicaragua is a slow month. It’s the tail end of the rainy season and not cold enough in most countries to motivate people to seek out sun and sand.

The rainy season lasts from May to October, and the wettest months are September and October. Of course there has been a drought in Nicaragua for 5 years, so the “wet season”, as the locals call it, has not been very wet at all. This year though the rain has been better, with a torrential downpour occurring usually once each day. I can rain for a few minutes or over and hour, then stops. This is much needed to bring lake and river levels back up to their norm, and replenish the aquifer.

Next month, November, will see tourists trickling in, with the peak season crowds pretty much filling up hotels, hostels, guest houses and bed and breakfasts. With the incentives available to foreign investors in tourism, courtesy of the Nicaraguan government, anytime is a good time to invest in Nicaragua’s tourist infrastructure. However, now is the ideal time to purchase any tourism related property or business because business will literally be banging on your door from day one.

Law 360 is the law that envelopes the advantages and incentives available to foreigners making an investment in the tourism industry. View the English version of Law 360 here.

Nica Investments’ participation in the perks available to foreign investment in tourism thus far is restricted to an application for subsidy of the electricity costs of Hotel de Sonrisas. However, we will be applying for tax credits and a grant for upgrading plumbing. We wish to install more efficient toilets and showers to cut down on both the expense and to minimize water use. We are also connecting to the newly installed sewage system. Possession of the hotel property was July 1, 2016. Assembling the necessary permissions, certifications and licenses, revamping the property, converting an empty space to a restaurant and another to operate as a spa took until the end of September. Now that the hotel is open and fully operational there’s lots to do in the way of securing the perks the operation is entitled to.

Hotel de Sonrisas, Granada, Nicaragua

Whether investment capabilities are large or small, the Nicaragua tourism industry offers something for everyone. Please note though, if your intention is to relocate to Nicaragua and become a resident, investor status residency requires a minimum investment of US$30,000.00 at this time.

Some of the properties and business opportunities available right now are…

An ideally located, 13 room hotel in Granada that can be purchased, renovated, refurbished and equipped for under US$200,000. This is a perfect operation for either an experienced hotelier or for novices wanting a mom and pop operation.

There are a number of hotels and hostels on Ometepe that are for sale. Some are businesses operating in leased properties, usually offered for sale turnkey. Others are land, chattels and business. Ometepe is a must see on most tourists’ Nicaragua itineraries. However, the number of accommodation operations is more than adequate to meet the demand. This means rates are low, so earning potential is limited. That said, if your goal is to enjoy a rent free existence with a little income to supplement a pension, there are a number of perfect opportunities on Ometepe.

San Juan del Sur is a hot market for tourism related business investments but the market demographics limit the return. San Juan del Sur is a beach community on the southern Pacific coast of Nicaragua. It is a Mecca for surfers and backpackers who generally stay in hostels or other cheap accommodations.

Ironically, there are a number of surf shops within the city but the waves in the bay are not much good for surfing. Each day surfers hop on shuttles that take them to the surrounding beaches where the waves are better. The two most popular beaches are, Playa Maderas to the north and to the south, Playa Remanso and Playa Hermosa. Thus the town of San Juan del Sur can be almost deserted during the day, even though the hotels and hostels are full. At night though, the surfers are back and San Juan del Sur lives up to its reputation as Nicaragua’s Party Central.

Click here to visit HotelLaCalzada.com

The demographics of the tourists visiting San Juan del Sur means that the wiser investments are at the low end of the tourist accommodation spectrum, hostels, cheap hotels or affordable vacation apartments and houses. Restaurants and bars too are a wise investment, especially those on the beach.

Conclusion

No matter if your interest is in making a large or small investment in real estate or a business in Nicaragua, retain the services of a competent lawyer and get good market advice. Nica Investments will be happy to assist you with your acquisition and we can recommend a few competent, reputable lawyers… Contact us.

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Dispelling Myths & Sharing Facts

Dispelling a myth.

The US government’s travel advisory is cautioning Americans that travel to Nicaragua at this time may be risky. The reason given is that emotions during the upcoming national election may lead to some sort of backlash against foreigners, particularly Americans. What a load of crap!

It seems someone in the USA State Department has confused the Nicaragua national elections in November with that of the USA. I can assure everyone that most Nicaraguans don’t become hostile over an election here as the world sees voters in the USA becoming. Daniel Ortega will win the election and the consistency in governance is good for the country, generally speaking.

That’s all I have to say on that subject.

Will The Canal Be Built?

I am asked about the future of The Nicaraguan Canal, formally the Nicaraguan Canal and Development Project, a few times a month. I know there is a lot of misinformation out there, mostly originating from Panama, the USA, and other sources with special interests. These information sources suggest a canal will not be built. This too is a load of crap!

Since the canal project was proposed China’s economy has taken a hit. Wang Jing, the Chinese businessman and force behind the canal, lost and estimated 85% of his net worth during the 2015-16 Chinese stock market downturn. However, both Russia and Iran are rumored to be in discussions about investing in the canal project. Which countries or individuals are involved in the construction of a new canal is irrelevant. What is important for investors to know is that the canal will be built… eventually.

Hotel de Sonrisas, Granada, Nicaragua

Forget all of the negative spin and outright misinformation. The fact is that The Nicaragua Canal HAS to be built. The Panama Canal was widened to extend it’s lifespan, but it will become obsolete within a decade or two. Logistics demands that another inter-ocean waterway be constructed that is wider and deeper than even the revamped Panama Canal. The next generation of super tanker, container and ore carrying ships, and even super cruise liners, are going to be wider, have deeper keels, and be longer than the Panama Canal will allow. This is the simple reality, and no amount of spin is going to change this fact.

The Deal Of The Day!

There are a number of properties being offered for sale around the Laguna de Apoyo crater. Some are rim properties, while others are inside the crater. Some properties are already developed, some land is used for agriculture, and the rest is undeveloped.

Laguna de Apoyo is a water reserve and recent laws have limited what can be done with land inside the crater. Basically, unless a property has an existing foundation it can not be built upon, period. Existing landowners are not pleased with this turn of events of course, and many are trying to sell their property. I assume they’re hoping to find someone who wants a piece of land they can pitch a tent on. Then again, maybe a seller is looking for a sucker who does not do their due diligence and will buy the property, only to find out later they can not build anything.

There are a number of existing homes, abandoned homesteads with derelict structures, and already subdivided land with lots that can be developed or expanded. There are also a few rim properties that can be developed because they are outside the restriction zone. Of these rim properties, some titles extend down the slope of the crater walls and along the shore. Only the rim portion of such parcels can actually be developed.

One choice piece of property is detailed here. It is a parcel of land approximately 35 acres in total with a clear title. There is water and electricity available and the road to the property, although not maintained well, is an official roadway. The price and terms are negotiable. In fact, the property can be purchased for the cost of a couple of existing rim lots, or for less than any of the American standard houses for sale around Laguna de Apoyo.

It is a bit of a challenging hike down to the lake-shore, but the shore can be reached by car as well. However, for someone wanting a one of a kind view, this rim property has spectacular views for 360 degrees. These views include Mombacho volcano, the crater lake of course, Lake Nicaragua in the distance, mountain vistas, and the cities of Catarina and Granada. There is not a single potential building site within the 35 acres that doesn’t provide a breathtaking view. The elevation and constant breeze cools the temperature, keeping it in the mid 20s Celsius.

For photos and more information check out: Laguna de Apoyo Rim Property

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Laguna de Apoyo Rim

Location of 35 acres of land for sale.

This clear title, encumbrance free property atop the Laguna de Apoyo crater rim is approximately 35 acres, and straddles the Granada and Diriomo district borders. Situated at 1700 feet above sea level, this parcel of land has a cool climate and an almost constant, refreshing breeze. Electricity and water are at hand, and there is an official road through the property.

As a private residence building site the existing road is navigable with a four wheel drive. To develop the land for multi-residential use, the road will need to be upgraded.

I have personally walked this property and every potential building site has spectacular views of either the laguna itself, Mombacho volcano, Lake Nicaragua or mountain vistas. This property, being only a few minutes outside of Granada, would make an ideal housing development site.

The owner is open minded and would consider any “reasonable offer”, and may entertain financing a portion of the purchase. Also, the owner may be open to a joint venture proposal. Contact Nica Investments to learn more.

View from the rim of Laguna de Apoyo property. Laguan de Apoyo - 35 acres of view property View of Lake Nicaragua and Laguna de Apoyo from crater rim.
View of Mombacho volcano from Laguna de Apoyo rim property that is for sale The view from another Laguan de Apoyo building site. View from a building lot on the rim of the Laguna de Apoyo crater