Roatan is certainly at this point in time offers great value. Many over the past 2-3 decades considering property purchases in the Caribbean felt that their dreams of owning a piece of the Caribbean for vacations, retirement, or investment purposes were watching price points go up past their ability to afford their dream. That is no longer the case. Prices island wide, like many warm weather climates, have fallen considerably and extremely good bargains can easily be found. That said when you find the property that you feel is a good fit, ask your real estate professional for the pricing history of that property. Some prices have been drastically reduced in the past couple of years and the Sellers would not consider selling for less. The more information available, the better informed purchase you can make. If the company you are working with as your Buyer’s representative company is not using a CMA (Comparable Market Analysis to generate your offer, you may be dealing with the wrong company
Roatan, is the largest Island of the Bay Islands off the coast of the peaceful Democratic country in Central America, Honduras has been called ‘the Regions next ‘It Spot’ by the ‘Wall Street Journal’ and has been listed by CNNMoney.com ‘Hottest Second Home Foriegn Markets’ and “International Living” calls it one of the “Top Islands in the World to Retire On” Unlike many Caribbean Islands, Roatan is not flat but has considerable elevations and very lush green vegetation to go along with it’s aqua blue waters and white sand beaches. Location on the second largest barrier reef in the world it continually ‘wow’s’ it’s vacationers whether they come by air, boat or cruise ship.
Property ownership is guaranteed by the Honduran Government. This guarantee includes ownership by foreigners. Title Insurance is available both through Stewart Title and First American Title demonstrating the security of owning property in this small peaceful country. Honduras is the longest established Democracy in either Central or South America and has it’s roots in British history. Those of you that are ‘history buffs’ know that historically England guaranteed property rights to it’s citizens in the ‘New World’ decades before either Spain or France with some island titles dating back to Queen Elizabeth.
Purchasing property, whether it be a second or retirement home or condo, a home site for future use or just a solid investment is not unlike most other countries. Buyers receive a ‘Title’ registered with the National Government within about 60 days after closing, with copies of the closing documents generated immediately. Closing documents in this country are generated by a Honduran Attorney, witnessed by a ‘Notary’. Although a ‘Notary’ is a somewhat commonplace duty in many countries, here a ‘Notary’ is a place of honor in the Legal Profession that requires considerable extra education and experience.
Although this is a shortened version of the procedure in general what happens when you decide to purchase your very own ‘piece of paradise’. Obviously you need to find an experienced REATOR professional. Find the person that you feel comfortable with that has been attentive, responsive and answered every question or concern you may have. After you have done your research and made your choice he/she will ask you to generate a ‘Offer to Purchase’. The ‘Roatan REALTORS Associate’ has generated a standard form and your REALTOR can provide a copy for you to review which specifies the property and outlines the conditions of the sale. If you are on a visit to the island when this is generated you normally will be asked to place a 1% earnest money deposit upon signing and will be required to deposit additional funds upon Seller acceptance of the negotiated terms of the agreement. Your REALTOR Professional will provide to you possible choices for an attorney to represent you for the transaction. It will be your choice to of Attorney. This Attorney will be provided various documents in order to do a title search to secure your interests in the transaction. These documents will include a copy of the title, an Engineer’s property survey, and a Cadastral Survey, (this document is a ‘satellite’ survey showing the subject property and it’s relation to neighboring properties). This also is where your REALTOR Brokerage also ‘kicks in’ making sure that the property taxes are paid and communicating with the ZOLITUR Office and the DEI, (the Honduran version of the IRS). This step is necessary in that the attorney must confirm, (usually through the REALTOR Office), that the ‘Gains’ or what most would consider the ‘Capital Gains’ taxes are paid by the Seller. This entire process normally takes about 30 days. The Purchaser will be asked to have the funds needed for closing deposited to an Escrow account approximately 3-5 days previous to the closing date.
The above is an ‘in general’ description of the procedure and of course every transaction may differ. Some prefer, (or may be required based on the size of the property), to place there property purchase in a Honduran Corporation. Others wish to purchase with IRA or 401K funds for investment reasons and/or future use goals. You may wish the purchase with ‘estate planning in mind and these topics can be discussed with your attorney of choice with some of these scenarios are addressed in our ‘FAQ’ section on this site and would suggest you visit that section of this site.
Guaranteed by the Honduran Constitution property ownership, a two + hour flight to an international airport, mostly English speaking, tropical breezes, very low property taxes, the list goes on.
Visit our Roatan FAQ Page
Overall the purchase of a property here is relatively easy, safe and secure.
Is there anyone that would not like to own their own piece of paradise on a tropical island?
Checkout this youtube video on Buying property in Honduras