Property for Sale in the Caribbean

A Quick Look at Property in the Caribbean

The islands of the Caribbean are like everything you imagined. Golden sandy beaches fringed by palm trees and lapped by crystal clear water. Banana daiquiris served by smiling staff on a wooden veranda as the sun goes down. The scent of jasmine carried on a warm tropical breeze. It’s hard to get past the clichés, so let’s not bother. It really is that wonderful.

Yes, but property in the Caribbean is so expensive and so far away isn’t it? Well, not necessarily. Flying time is less than nine hours direct from London to islands like Barbados and there are properties from £60,000. You can get there all year either directly or by competitively priced and frequent flights via Florida. Jet lag? There’s only four hours difference, so hardly any jetlag.

The Caribbean really is a place in the sun. it averages between seven and eight hours of sunshine every day, with temperatures barely changing during the year between 20 and 30ºC – that includes the nights.

Thirty countries and territories make up the Caribbean, and there are wide variations between them both in accessibility and environment. The British tend to go for Barbados in particular, with 85 per cent of its buyers coming from the UK. St Lucia is also popular and property is more affordable here, it also has direct UK flights.

These islands have a British-based buying procedure too, with low buying costs for homes, while others have a continental model using a notary. Islands can vary in language, currency and culture: there are Dutch, French, Venezuelan and American islands. Some are rich, others are poor; others, like Cuba, feel like they’re about to change dramatically.  

Some islands will restrict residency rights, while others offer residency in return for investing in a property, known as a “golden visa”. With Americans loving Caribbean property, real estate agents tend to be professional and well trained.

The American influence is also visible in the high levels of service on many islands, and with currencies often pegged to the US dollar, you’ll have no problem knowing what buying a property will cost you. You may also find huge boatloads of cruise passengers arriving every day – ports like Nassau and St Thomas get as many as four big ships every day – great for any business owners, less good if you want to avoid crowds.

The Caribbean ethos is not to worry, but that might not be easy when you see your first hurricane. The islanders are well used to them however and if you make sure your property meets all building standards you will be well protected.

click to read our guide to buying in the caribbean...

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