Returning again to the process of buying real estate, I want to remind you that in Belize, in order for a foreigner to buy a property there are no barriers. When communicating with real estate agents, you should know that in Belize there is no licensing of real estate agents, and they do not have certificates, respectively, according to the law, they can not provide valuable information about the property. In order not to expose yourself to risks you need to be careful with the choice of agent, the buyer should hire a lawyer, after making sure that he has a license and his reputation. That lawyer will be able to check the history of real estate ownership or title. Also, the lawyer will find out the true owner and establish all existing contractual restrictions on the rights and obligations of the owner of the property and find out its “zoning”, which indicates the size of buildings, boundaries, number of rooms, permissible height and more. The first duty of a lawyer to verify the legality of all existing restrictions on the property.
At the same time, you should understand that a lawyer should be hired on Your part, and not to use the services of a lawyer of the seller, as you must be sure that it is your interests and be aware of all the details. Approximately the services of a lawyer or a lawyer in Belize cost the client from 1% to 2% of the final value of the property, at least 1 000 BZD, which in accordance with the US dollar is: 2 BZD = 1 USD. Real estate agents estimate their services at a Commission of 6-7% of the cost for private houses and approximately 10% for apartments. Some foreigners in order to save their costs do without the services of agents and are engaged in the selection of real estate, interested in her neighbors and talk to the owner.
Once all the questions are clarified, the buyer enters into a contract with the seller and paid an advance of 10% of the value of the property. In Belize, there are several offshore banks that can provide mortgage lending and interest rates will be quite acceptable, where 10-12%. It is also possible to calculate in Belize dollars (BZD), local banks can also Finance the transaction. However, they charge high interest for this, it is in the range of 10 to 18% per annum, and for a period of only one year, as a result, it turns out that every year you need to renew the loan and get it again. Therefore, payments are most often made in us dollars and cash, due to high bank charges.
Stamp duty in Belize is 5% on real estate (regardless of citizenship), with the first 10 000 USD (20 000 BZD) of the value of the property duty is not levied. The purchase process, including document verification and transaction, can take anywhere from 30 to 90 days. In the future, each year will need to pay property tax, which in Belize is within 1.5% and compared to other countries, this is a very low tax, as the initial estimated value is formed from the price, which is lower by 10-30% of the market price. This is due to the fact that the calculations are based on the low cost of land, and not on the real property ownership, this state stimulates the development of land in the country, which is remote or underdeveloped.