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Real Estate Market Slowing ?

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We bought a wonderful house with 15ac just oustide of La Suiza. There's a fair bit of coffee growing in our area but my husband and I decided to go a different route. To offset our living expenses we are/will be growing our own cows, pigs and chickens and are putting in an extensive fruit and vegetable garden.


Building materials have dropped a bit in price compared to last year, due to slowing demand, so the livestock housing will be constructed over the next few months.


We're up in the mountains and we don't really have any problems with biting flying insects, although we do occasionally burn a mosquito coil when watching movies on our computer outside.


The streets have fewer people due to the slower economy and hotel rates in the tourist areas are a bit cheaper now. We're having an easier time finding labor for small jobs. Some local properties are still outrageously priced, but a few have recently sold, so I think prices may have come down a bit or maybe the right buyer found what he/she wanted.


I hope some of this has helped - Desiree



EskaSue, et al



I'm looking mostly at the central (Terrialba, La Suisse areas), for a 10-30 acre 'hobby finca', perhaps exisiting coffee, where I would be able to offset SOME of my living expenses, without heavy involvement. I would augment that with a couple head of cattle, sheep, etc, for experimenting with 'pasture raising' for personal use (local sharing-trading).


I have a friend who has spent the last two months 'on the ground' in Ecuador, and has reported a 'surprising' issue (to both of us). We had thought that like in North America, higher elevations would reduce/mitigate a lot of the 'biting' insects (mosquitoes, fleas, biting flies, etc). Much to our surprise, it did not appear to be the case in all parts of Ecuador <snip>So, what opinions do you have WRT current economic issues as they affect CR, now that we are seeing a much greater potentiation for 'connected' affects? to continue this thread?


ciao for now,


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  • 5 months later...

"The biggest issue at hand is the complete lack of credit--or should I say reasonable credit. I've laughed when I received emails from the people at Scotia Bank offering 13.5% financing for our clients. Who in their right minds would pay credit card rates for a home or condo loan? Not many people." meditica


You know, its all relative. I recall when we moved out of San Francisco, CA to Santa Rosa (about 50 miles north) 10+ years ago that a "good rate" on a mortgage was 8-10%. Our CD's were paying at the time 15%!! Yes, 15%! (I just shredded an old account statement).

My credit card was great, less than 10% apr. Now I hear friends saying that the banks are raising thier rates to 20%+ for no real reason (same here). They have paid on time, never been late, only carried small balances & paid off asap, but now are being punished for that.


Now people carp if the mortgage rate is above 5%, and think its great if they can get 2.5% on thier CD's. Thier credit card is probably at least 19% (and maxed out too).


Like I said, its all relative, but I doubt that we will ever see such high rates paid on savings again. Won't be surprised to see mortgage rates go back up tho.


Oh, we have such short term memories. And I wont go into the difference between who was President during these different periods, and what effect that may have had on things.



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  • 1 month later...

I sat down with an investor group from NY today and we discussed the state of the market here in CR and what is going on in the USA. The biggest issue at hand is the complete lack of credit--or should I say reasonable credit. I've laughed when I received emails from the people at Scotia Bank offering 13.5% financing for our clients. Who in their right minds would pay credit card rates for a home or condo loan? Not many people. The one thing that is helping our non-cash buyers is developer financing. More and more projects are offering special financing, which is a plus. The disappearance of home equity lines have also made two of my deals in the last 3 months go south. My client literally showed up to the bank to wire funds and their HELOC was gone or reduced by over half! We have many factors that affect the beach/coastal areas that may not affect the Central Valley. Our property management division has been doing great. I don't really know what that tells me other than people are still traveling to CR and looking to save money by renting a home or condo. Two of our last four sales have involved some sort of private or developer financing. The properties that were sold were being sold under market value. I would like to consider myself an honest Realtor and not the 'car salesman' type that some on this forum refer to us as.


I am new to the forum, it is one of the best information about CR. We are looking for property to buy in Cr and reading everything CR related. We are not new to live in a foreign country, owned property in different countries and went through some nice things and more bad things and learned a lot down that road. Currently we live in the USA (not US citizens) and love the country and people. In my opinion, the USA has some of the easiest ways to get around. We have lived for a couple of years in Turkey and owned property as well. Of course, they have different laws, either you live with it or just leave, and some of the laws does not make any sence. And I read in this forum CR is no difference. We are very well aware of it. We are searching the internet for properties, talked at least to 5 different "real estate" agents (I think there is no such profession in CR - no offense), most of them where incompetent, and we have seen the same property listet at different prices at some different webs. Every time I talked about the economy crisis in the USA and also in Europe and Canada, most of these "agents" answered, NOT in CR, people come with cash and buying houses! But I know one thing, a lot of people are buying a vacation home with HELOC, but in most cases, at least here in the US, there is NO more equity in there houses, and banks are not giving any credit to finance a home in a foreign country. And I was running into sellers, they are in no hurry to sell, will sit it out. Wake up, it can take a long time. And there is another phenomen, Americans starting to save instead running up another credit tap. A friend of mine was going to buy property in CR, but decided to buy a house in SW Florida (stress sale) for a good price - he would get for that amount a 1 bedroom condo in CR. We come in Jan. for 4 weeks to CR the second time, to look seriously for a nice place in Central Valley. But my feeling is, a lot of sellers are not willing to negotiate on there property, and we are no bargain hunters. We compare somehow prices paid for houses here in the US with those in CR. We live in Arkansas and I see houses in CR priced like a nice lakehome here in my neighborhood - and that is a big premium for paradise. And there is a big issue with taking your used household goods into CR. I talked with several people, who moved to CR and shipped the used household goods and paid hefty duty on it. And that actually is a big issue for us, after collecting some nice stuff over the years. We never had any problem moving our stuff from one country to another, and coming to the US, not a penny for anything. This is definetly not a welcome sign for someone moving to a new country like CR.

Edited by Epicatt2
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I would say yes to this question.


I bought my first property in CR in 2009. I started looking into this market in 2007. I kept a lot of the records of the properties that were on my list (more than a hundred). Costa Rica is for sale. More than 80% of the properties that are on my list still for sale. A good part of them their prices went down.


I've one in mind: A beautiful 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom home was built to North American standards using nothing but the best in construction materials by a North American builder. Modern well lit kitchen including electric range and refrigerator. Large oversize windows and doors to enjoy the view. A fantastic 360 degrees views. Privacy walls and fully fenced. Hot water throughout, all utilities including telephone, DirecTV ready, 7 Different variety tropical fruit trees on 2000 square meters. The new asking price 129K.


I really think it's a buyer market. Easy to buy and hard to sale, it's only my opinion from what I saw there.

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albacor: Sounds like you spoke to some not-too-bright agents. Anyone that tells you that we have not felt the effect of the world economy is lying. Plain and simple. You need to just come and see what is out there. No offense, but my brother-in-law is from Arkansas and can you really compare Arkansas to Costa Rica?! People move here or vacation here because they love Costa Rica. Not because it's the cheapest place on Earth nor because the laws always make sense (because they don't as you have noticed). My family is from here and I've grown fond of the country because of the people and the scenery. We used to live in Florida, and decided to come here for a different kind of life. If you are looking for Real estate, you will find deals, You simply need an agent who knows what they are doing or spend lots of time on the web. You realize because there is no MLS (Multiple Listing Service) as I had in the USA, you will see inconsistencies on pricing on different websites. It happens. Keeping up with hundreds of listings is tough, and I try to stay on top of it as I can for price changes. My husband and I shipped our things here and our duties were around $1,200 for a 40 foot container. What do you consider expensive?? I thought that was reasonable considering we moved a 3 BR home to CR.

Good luck to you and seeing if CR is for you and yours.

Edited by mediatica
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