DOMINICAN REPUBLIC PROPERTY MARKET OVERVIEW
Since the ‘80s, international holiday homebuyers have been attracted to the Dominican Republic’s stunning white beaches, mountains and fragrant pine forests. As the largest of the Caribbean islands, it boasts the greatest diversity in scenery, while the feeling of being trapped on a tiny island.
The Dominican Republic since slipped from the property market limelight for several years, but its economic fortunes were turned around from 2004: today, the government has significantly increased the country’s tourism traffic as well as developed its overall potential through the central America- Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement. This has brought with its strong investment growth prospects – all great news for today’s property buyers in the Dominican Republic.
Many properties are today being built with careful regard for the natural environment. Awe-inspiring eco-resorts and golf developments are setting new precedents in holiday home investment.
The island’s property market is emerging at a fast pace, largely basing itself on tourism, and buyers are making the most of currently lower prices than in many of the other Caribbean destinations. A stable government, a vastly improving infrastructure and easy access via three international airports are further encouraging people to take holidays and buy property in the Dominican Republic.
Year-round climatic appeal along with quality new resort developments make for a top tourism destination, with many buyers enjoying holiday use of their properties in addition to successfully renting them out during vacant periods.
There is always a finite supply of beachfront property available, so many homebuyers are snapping up the best front-line off-plan deals while availability and current prices still last.
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC PROPERTY INVESTMENT
Significant capital growth is being achieved by many investors in the Dominican Republic (20-30% p.a.), but there is still room for further price expansion, with strong returns and rental yields possible, based on high tourism demand for the foreseeable future. Most analysts believe that the trend for real estate investment in the Dominican Republic will continue unabated for at least the next twenty years.
As an investor, a major advantage to the Dominican Republic lies in the fact that property prices and the cost of living remain lower than in many of the equally desirable Caribbean islands, allowing you to achieve maximum returns from a growing market. Additionally, proximity and easy air access for 300 million holidaying North Americans means a ready market for your property investment in the Dominican Republic. In tandem with rocketing tourism (some 8% p.a. so far in 2008), free trade zones have been established to encourage much needed diversity in business activity, and the country’s GDP is growing at a rate of approx. 7.2% per annum (est. 2007). Luxury hotel chains such as Four Seasons, Fairmont, Conrad and Ritz Carlton have already established themselves on the island and the business giants such as Wal-Mart and Donald Trump are also operating in the Dominican. This activity further strengthens international investors’ strong belief in the island – after all when the world’s largest corporations and wealthy individuals decide that now is the time to invest, you can rest assured you are looking a strong investment prospect.
REASONS WHY DOMINICAN REPUBLIC IS A GOOD INVESTMENT
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC PROPERTY HOTSPOTS
Property hotspots are normally tourist hotspots in the Dominican Republic and offer investors some highly lucrative buy- to- let opportunities. Areas in and around the magnificent strip of white sands at Punta Cana and Bavaro are currently the most popular international tourism and property locations. Other hotspots include: Barahona, west of Santo Domingo and areas near Miches and Sabana de la Mar, near the bay of Samana. If you aim to settle in the Dominican Republic, the cities of Santo Domingo and Santiago give the opportunity to benefit from both quality of life and city investment potential. These cities are fast expanding, mirroring Los Angeles in the 1950s, and many timely investors are buying up land and bargain prices on urban fringes and waiting for the cities to come to them.
HOMEBUYERS IN THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
Property in the Dominican Republic has traditionally been popular amongst Swiss and German buyers. However, today it is increasingly attracting Europeans, Americans and Canadians who are buying up various projects mainly in the east of the island. Some 70% of all buyers in this area now come from the USA.
For sun-lovers, the Dominican Republic is regarded as a cost effective destination in which to buy retirement property in the Caribbean. A modern infrastructure, flight connections via country’s major airports and a low cost of living are all added advantages.
BEFORE BUYING A PROPERTY IN DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
Usually the funds for the property purchase are deposited by the buyer via electronic bank transfer or cheque to the real estate attorney’s trust account, then transfer to the buyer after the title is cleared. Upon completion, the title is transferred to the name of the new owner and registered with the registrant of titles in Dominican Republic.
DID YOU KNOW?
· No restrictions are placed on foreign ownership.
· Properties can be purchased either individually, join names or in the name of an offshore company.
· You do not have to be a resident to own property in Dominican Republic.
· Dominicans use the metric measurement system. Ex. 1M sq=10.795 sq ft.
· The Dominican Republic’s Senate passed a bill on June 21 2007 that gave tax exemptions to foreigners on goods and income.