Live the “pure life” in Costa Rica

The Central American country is a top 10 destination for AirBnB vacationers and a sought-after location for vacation property purchases.

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What is the first question to ask when looking to buy a vacation property in Costa Rica?

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“Are you a jungle person or a beach person?” says James Palmer of Evoke Realty Group, an agent for real estate brokerage firm Krain Costa Rica.

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For Robyn Moser and her family, new owners of a vacation home in Playa Hermosa on Costa Rica’s northern Pacific coast, the answer was “a bit of both, if that fits our criteria.”

Moser’s criteria included proximity to an international airport, part of a gated community with resort amenities, and good AirBnB earning potential. Moser really dug before buying.

“My husband and I went down for the first time in 2020 and toured the whole country. We specifically visited Costa Rica knowing that it was on many Top 10 lists for AirBnB and best places to retire. We liked southern Costa Rica because it has long-term investment potential, but the north is already established.

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With a zest for world travel and investing, Moser and his family represent a growing new group of owners. Inspired by digital nomads, information workers who work anywhere there is high-speed internet, Moser invests in popular AirBnB destinations to generate revenue and provide frequent family vacations.

A Calgary realtor herself, says Moser, “When buying property overseas, finding the right local real estate agent is crucial. James quickly understood what we were looking for. He lives there and is also a registered broker in Ontario.

It’s easy to see why Costa Rica is so popular. For many, Costa Rica offers a laid-back lifestyle that lives up to the national slogan, “Pura Vida.” More a way of life than just a saying, it means the pure life and represents the relaxed and simple way of looking at life for the locals. Activities include swimming, sailing, surfing, hiking, boating and sport fishing.

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The raw natural beauty of pristine beaches, scenic river valleys, rainforests, volcanoes and its year-round tropical climate offers something for everyone. Located in Central America, the country borders Nicaragua to the north and Panama to the southeast. To the northeast is 300 kilometers of Caribbean Sea coastline and to the west 1,015 km of Pacific Ocean coastline.

One of the most biodiverse countries in the world, Costa Rica’s wild and lush natural environment is found throughout the country. Home to four UNESCO-certified World Heritage Sites and 30 national parks, more than 25% of the country’s total area is encompassed by protected land. Animal lovers appreciate the biodiversity of wildlife, which includes sea turtles, sloths, rare monkeys and a variety of tropical birds.

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In the northern province of Guanacaste, nestled in the high cliffs of Playa Hermosa with incredible ocean and forest views, Moser found a charming three-bedroom, two-bathroom villa with over 1,500 square feet of living space. space and stunning 180 degree ocean views at Villas Sol Hotel and Beach Resort.

Liberia International Airport is just 26 minutes away, and Moser’s family and AirBnB guests have the option of choosing all-inclusive options or cooking their own meals in the fully equipped kitchen. Resort facilities include several restaurants and snack bars, a swim-up bar, swimming pools and a spa.

The resort offers activities, including children’s activities organized by resort staff, and for the health-conscious, it offers yoga, cardio, and water aerobics programs designed by fitness professionals.

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Moser has some additional tips when buying in Costa Rica. “Do your due diligence on your real estate agent and your lawyer and barter. Everything is negotiable, including price, realtor’s fees and legal fees. »

Costa Rica has the most democratic and stable government in Central America and has not had an army since 1948. It has an educated population and good health care. Canadian buyers in Costa Rica have the same property rights as locals. The Costa Rican constitution even guarantees property rights to foreigners. Property tax is significantly lower and there is no capital gains tax.

Faced with soaring inflation and multiple interest rate hikes, Canadian vacation home buyers and retirees are increasingly looking abroad.

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A new report published in August by indicates that Mexico, the United States and Costa Rica are the three most popular places for a vacation home for Canadians. Mexico tops the list, but Costa Rica is as popular as the United States. The report analyzes real estate keyword search volumes to highlight the top 30 home buying destinations for Canadians.

And how did the reality match the expected revenue? Moser says, “We bought in November last year and rented it out for a higher than expected rate and 60% occupancy, not including our four visits during that time. Overall, profit margins were higher than expected.

Costa Rica

Popular regions for Canadians: Northwestern Province of Guanacaste including major destinations, Las Catalinas, Conchal, Tamarindo: Southwestern province of Puntarenas, including the notable places Jaco, Monteverde and Montezuma.

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Flights: WestJet and Air Canada offer direct flights to Liberia and San Jose. Expect to pay between $524 and $840 for round-trip flights.

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