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Guanacaste, Costa Rica by Joseph Emanuelli

Real information and stories from Guanacaste , Costa Rica. Presneted by a long time expat living and working in Costa Rica
Costa Rica Property a Sellers’ Biggest Mistake

As a professional real estate broker here in Costa Rica, I come across some crazy stuff and sellers that sometimes are very unrealistic. This happens to brokers worldwide as well but it seems to be a recurring theme here. Let me give you some back ground and facts before you start slamming me with your thoughts as I am sure this article will provoke some from any sellers that might read it.

Here in Costa Rica, if you did not know, realtors are not licensed by the government; meaning just about anybody can be a realtor and believe me many try. However there are two government recognized real estate association CCCBR “Camara Costarricense de Corredores de Bienes Raices” or in English “Costa Rican Chamber of Real Estate Brokers” and the other is CRGAR “Costa Rica Global Association of Realtors”. I happen to be a member of both and a past board of director member for CRGAR.  To be a member you have to go through the associations’ classes and pass tests in order to receive a license from them. By being a member in both associations, I am also a member of NAR, the National Association of Realtors that is based in North America. So I have a really good working knowledge of whats what in Costa Rica real estate as I have been here for almost seven years now do it.

Most people believe that a realtors’ main job is to get the best possible price for the seller, which is true, but it is only part of what we need to do to help the seller. The responsibility of the broker is also to help the seller understand the ramifications of holding onto a property to long. As an example more taxes, or home owners’ association fees, maintenance of the property, property manager and the list goes on. The broker is also a sounding board and has a wealth of information to help the seller.

Here in Costa Rica most of the sellers were originally investors from back in 2000 to 2006, when the market was a new up and coming market and screaming hot. Many people purchased property because of all the great things that Costa Rica has to offer. But over 60% of these past buyers which some are now sellers never really planned on living here full time. The purchase was either for investment purposes only or for a second vacation home. As we all know in life, the best laid out plans always change.

Well the market has changed as well, over the past 5 years, more and more buyer are actually looking to relocate to Costa Rica full time, for tons of obvious reason but that’s another article, and those that are selling have changed their plans. I know you saying about now reading this “when are you going to get to the point of this article”, easy now I am getting there.

Ok so one of the biggest mistakes a seller makes, but not the biggest, is over pricing their property from the get go. Even though the brokers they may interviewed and finally decide on tell them otherwise, they just do not listen. I personally have been interviewed by some sellers that when I recommended a selling price they call me every name in the book. I have heard” Oh your just trying to get me to a lower the price so you can make a quick buck” or I hear “ are you kidding me I paid $$$$ for my property I want to make a profit on it” and the list goes on from there.

In my professional opinion the really biggest mistake a seller makes is when the broker present an offer and the seller says “I am insulted by that offer, it is too low and I will not even counter back”. This is just plan lunacy! Real estate is a business, too many sellers let their personal feeling about the property get in the way of finally selling it. Never as a seller, be the one to walk away from an initial offer, always counter back!! You have nothing to lose and everything to gain, like selling that piece of real estates you want to sell

I am writing this because I am facing this right now. I presented an offer to a seller. The property is priced according to the market and not overpriced, although it did take two plus years to get the seller to see the light and finally price it right. So you can’t say I was trying to make a quick buck. So I presented an offer to this seller two days ago, I immediately called them to discuss and emailed then the signed offer to review. We spent almost two hours on the phone discussing it and the seller said they would get back to me. This morning I get an email from the seller basically saying “I do not accept the offer and tell the buyer to jump in a lake”. Here we go, BIGGEST MISTAKE EVER and dumbest mind set ever!!! By not countering back they let a potential sale slip through their hands. The smart thing to do is always counter back, take the advice of the broker they hired; he or she is the pro, at least if they hired a professional. Yes the price may not be what they want, but in three years with no offers at least it is a starting point.

So after receiving this email I called then right away and discussed. They hired me to sell the property not fold like a house of cards when the table gets knocked a bit. I spent another two hours on the phone helping them realize based on market comparable properties, the present condition of the market, the condition of their property and a whole lot more, that they should never be the ones to walk away at the first offer. Let the buyers be the ones to walk away from a counter offer.

Just because the offer was low that does not mean the buyer may not have more money to spend, think about it, you go and what to buy a car, do you pay the sticker price? Or do you try to negotiate the price down. Buyers of real estate do the same exact same thing; they are trying to get the best price for the property they like. So don’t be offended, be smart and don’t make the same big mistake this seller just did when you are trying to sell your Costa Rica property if you have one.

If you don’t own in Costa Rica you should consider it as there are some really good deals out there still.

Thanks for stopping by and send any comments to me- Joseph Emanuelli @ jaaechef@gmail.com. If you have an interest in real estate or just starting to get a feel for the Playa Hermosa area of Costa Rica, click this link to my personal web site for more information. www.costarican-american-connection.com  or send me a note and I will help point you in the right direction. “Pura Vida”

Price Reduced on 47 Pacifico in Playas Del Coco

Playas Del Coco, Guanacaste  -  Announcing a price reduction on 47 Pacifico, a 767 sq. ft. lot / land "BIG OCEAN VIEW". Now $175,000 USD - Just Reduced by $50,000.

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Price Reduced on 4 El Real in Liberia

Liberia, Guanacaste  -  Announcing a price reduction on 4 El Real, a 2,100 sq. ft., 3 bath, 3 bdrm 2 story. Now $210,000 USD - Below Replacement Cost.

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Building a House in Playa Hermosa Costa Rica? It is Easy or a Nightmare?

Well about a year ago after a good search Pam and I finally found a lot that we really liked to build our Costa Rican dream home on. We spent probably 2 months looking around the area and standing on a lot of properties until we finally decided on the present location looking over the Pacific Ocean and still being in the Playa Hermosa area. We took a lot of things onto consideration, location, view, neighborhood, and ease of access and of course the ability to build on it.

I know there are a lot of web sites and blog sites out there that say what a nightmare it is to build in a foreign country including Costa Rica. Well that can be true even for Costa Rica, but the way to make sure that is not the case is to utilize the services of a reliable builder, one that you can communicate with. Remember English is not the first language here, Spanish is, so if you speak Spanish this is even better for you.

I know many people that have done just this, used a reliable builder and there are many. I also know a lot of people that though well if they work with a local builder that the restaurant manager or the hotel front desk dude or the tour operator told them about, they are going to get a better deal, “ I am going to get the Locals price” In the long run this is the biggest mistake so many people make. You have to look at it this way. Pay now or pay latter. The decision is all yours. So let me give you some advice here. PAY NOW!! Make sure you hire the right builder and engineer to make sure your home is built properly and to code. Be very suspicious when the guy that is building your dream says “Oh we can start now before we get the permits, this will save time”. If you hear this RUN and fast so you don’t lose your shirt and your dream does not turn into a nightmare.

Let me give you a quick break down of how this should go. This is a abbreviated versions but still on on course.

1)      Your builder should have a good designer on staff or know one that can do the floor plans and layout of the type of home you would like to build

2)      Once the design is completed, and this could take up to 2 months or longer depending on you and how many changes you make towards the design. When I did mine it took about 2 month. Then the plans will need to go to Costa Rica licensed architect to create the actual blue prints of the home.

3)      Once the blue prints are finalized and you are satisfied with them, the builder will need to submit and complete set of Plans to the College of engineers of Costa Rica. They will review the plans to ensure that the structure built meets the construction codes of the country. This process takes about 2 weeks if all is good.

4)      When the plans are finalized and approved by the college of engineers, then the builder will submit them to the local municipality for approval from the municipal engineer and the construction permits will be issued.

This is when the actual construction can start. Depending on the builder you utilize building in Costa Rica can be a very easy adventure. Average time from breaking ground to moving in is from 9 months to a year depending on the size of the house and the builder as well as any changes you make along the way. I know many people that say “But don’t I have to be there to oversee what is happening” well if you use the right builder you should not have to. Although I do recommend that at certain periods of the construction process you do come back for and meet with the build again, as you may have to pick out tile, bathroom fixtures, window styles, pain colors and so on.

In all honesty, the process of building a home in Costa Rica that I am going through right now, and we are almost at the end, has been a breeze and we even made changes while the construction started. I a working with  great builder that I can communicate with we are happy we chose the builder we did.

If you would like more information or a more detailed explanation please feel free to send me a email to jaaechef@gmail.com and I will be happy to set up a time so we can talk.

Thanks for stopping by and send any comments to me- Joseph Emanuelli @ jaaechef@gmail.com If you have a interest in real estate or just starting to get a feel for he Playa Hermosa area of Costa Rica, click this link for more information. www.costarican-american-connection.com  or send me a note and I will help point you in the right direction. “Pura Vida”

Playa Hermosa Costa Rica, Where is the rain for 2014?

Well it has been a long time since I wrote a blog here and I apologize about that, I am not making any excuses, although I might have some really good ones but I won’t. So you can call me lazy, you can call me not interested or whatever you want. It is just not worth going into.

As a lot of people may know I stated this blog post over a year ago talking about the weather here in the Playa Hermosa area. This year due to the fact of the el Nino effect in the Pacifico Ocean we are experiencing a drought. That does not mean that we have not received any rain, we have but not a lot. To date I have measured 13.3 inches of rain at my house in Playa Hermosa. So Far this year it has only rained 29 times since the beginning of the “rainy” season. As a comparison to last year to date, we had received 35.4 inches of rain as of September 12, 2013. The total days that we actually had rain was 52 days. So yes we are in a drought and down about 22 inches from last year, but not as bad as some areas in Central America and not as bad as some reports make it out to be.

If you ever had thought about coming to Playa Hermosa in the rainy season and were concerned it rains every day, don’t be. There might be a passing afternoon thunderstorm or a morning shower but there are always great things to do outside, even if it rains!

Thanks for stopping by and send any comments to me- Joseph Emanuelli @ jaaechef@gmail.com If you have a interest in real estate or just starting to get a feel for he Playa Hermosa area of Costa Rica, click this link for more information. www.costarican-american-connection.com  or send me a note and I will help point you in the right direction. “Pura Vida”


Price Reduced on 42 Palo Alto in Palo Alto

Palo Alto, Playa Hermosa  -  Announcing a price reduction on 42 Palo Alto, a 2 story "Legally Registered to build 2 Stories". Now $94,900 USD - Best Price in Development.

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Price Reduced on 27B Palo Alto in Palo Alto

Palo Alto, Playa Hermosa  -  Announcing a price reduction on 27B Palo Alto, a 2 story "Maximum 2 Story Contruction". Now $110,000 USD - Great Price- Ocean View.

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2 Story For Sale in Ocotal

Reduced by over $100,000.

• 2,100 sq. ft., 3 bath, 3 bdrm 2 story - $230,000 USD - Lowest Priced Top Tier

 -  This is the view you have been waiting for. Do you have a dream of waking up in the morning to the sounds of the surf breaking on the soft sands and hearing the monkeys howling in the trees surrounding the area? Or maybe you have always wanted to watch the wales playing in the bay while you snorkel around the point of Pez Vela. Later in the day you log on to you Facebook account and post pictures of the previous days catch when you were deep sea fishing for the elusive Black Marlin, while sitting by the infinity edge beachfront pool sipping ice cold tropical fruit drinks and eating fresh fish tacos from the in house restaurant Picante. This private wonderful villa is conveniently located just 30 minutes from the Liberia International Airport and just minutes to the all the amenities of Playas Del Coco. Close to everything, but a secluded word all of its own, quiet, peaceful and at the then end of the road in Paradise.
This is not a dream!
This Can and Should be Your Reality
Lowest Priced unit on the Upper Tier
Affordably Priced at $230,000
3 bedrooms All with Ocean View
2.5 baths with Beautiful Tiling
Fully Furnished, 2100 sq. ft.
Unparalleled Ocean View
Master Suite Private Veranda
Separate Laundry Room
Large Kitchen Fully Stocked
Covered Parking
3 Community Pools to choose from
Paved Roads & Restaurant
In House Property Management and
Rental Program
HOA includes Water, Internet, Landscaping, 24/7 Security, Pool and Common Area Maintenance

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Single Story For Sale in Playa Hermosa

Great Ocean Views

• 3,600 sq. ft., 3 bath, 4 bdrm single story - MLS $850,000 USD - Worth Every Penny!!

 -  This Custom built, Newly Completed Villa is the home you been waiting for! Located close to the top of the highest mountain with views to die for, in the development of Hermosa Heights, set in the middle of Playa Hermosa , Guanacaste. This Beautiful home features a front facing wall of glass to take in all the splendor of the Pacific Ocean with Volcanoes as the backdrop. The open living, dining and kitchen floor plan take all the views into consideration. The Chef Kitchen features built in stainless steel convection oven, side by side refrigerator freezer, gas cook top rang in the center island and plenty of cabinet space for storage, accent lighting to reflect on the granite countertops This single floor plan home also features a large laundry room with separate washer and dryer with a built in mop sink. The entire home is adorned with solid hardwood cabinets and doors, 24” high gloss floor tiles, 20 foot ceilings of Almendro wood and teak, wired for cable, internet and phone. The exterior covered patio meanders towards the walk-in tiled infinity edge pool, with built lounge, table and Jacuzzi. The home features a extra-large reserve pressurized water system. This is the home you want to show off to your friends as they would wish they purchased it.
This spectacular property is being offer for sale @ $925,000.
Features Include:
2 Master Suites with spectacular ocean views
Master En suite Baths
2 Additional Bedrooms
3 Bathrooms Total
3600 Sq. ft
Granit Countertops
Hard Wood Cabinets and Closets
All Appliances
A/C in Every Room
Infinity Pool with Built in Bar
Infinity Edge Whirlpool
Ready for YOU!!!

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Price Reduced on 84 Los Altos Del Cacique in Playas Del Coco

Playas Del Coco, Guanacaste  -  Announcing a price reduction on 84 Los Altos Del Cacique, a lot / land. Now $70,000 USD - Negotiable Seller.

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Lot / Land For Sale in Playas Del Coco

Cacique - Main Entrance 24/7 Security
Bordered By Green Zone

•  lot / land - $70,000 USD - Seller is Negotiable

 -  A perfect property to build your retirement place, second vacation home or rental generating property. The development of Los Altos del Cacique consists of 100 lots and presently there are 30 luxury homes built. The Contour of the land is slightly sloping away from the road and is a easy build with not a lot of site preparation
Property Features:
* Fully Titled
* 754.95 Meters Squared
* Water Line in Place
* Electric in Place
* Paved Roads
* 24/7 Roaming Security
* Low HOA Fees
* Easy to Build On
* Borders Protected Green
Space / No One Behind!!

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Lot / Land For Sale in Coco Bay

Coco Bay Entrance
Building Pad Site in Place

• 2,685 sq. m. lot / land - $9,500 USD - Reduced from $225K

 -  More and More people are looking to Costa Rica for that special place to retire to, vacation and invest. This beautiful Ocean View lot has it all to offer. Enjoy a leisurely walk or play a heart pounding set of tennis, then head back to your tropical retreat to write a email to all your buddies telling them about your deep see fishing experience the day before all while gazing across the Bay of Coco while watching the parrots cruse by your veranda. This is the opportunity you have been waiting for. Many Ocean View Lots are on the market and most do not have a building site in place, if they do the price is substantially higher, meaning you have to spend even more money on site preparation before you can even start to think about building your dream home. Many Properties are moving fast if you think prices will go lower and want to wait longer, you will have already missed the boat.
Start Enjoying Costa Rica Now!!
*2685 M2 Ocean View Lot
*Ocean Views
*Underground Utilities include
Electric, Cable and Internet
*Legal Water Ready to Build
*Building Pad in Place
*Hand Laid Brick Paved Roads
*Gated Secure Community
*Walk to all Amenities
*Lighted Tennis Courts
*Tropical Lagoon Pool
*Well Equipped Fitness Center *Private Beach Club
*On Site Restaurant
*3 Minutes to Shopping,
Beach and Entertainment
*25 Minutes from Liberia
International Airport
All this for the only
Well Below Owners Cost!!!

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Lot / Land For Sale in Playas Del Coco

Coco Bay Estates Lot 42 r 1
Practically Giving it Away!!!

• 2,373 sq. m. lot / land - $40,000 USD - BELOW OWNERS COST

 -  This Beautiful easy to build on lot is located within the Coco Bay Estates Development; a premiere master planned private community. The lot measures 2373 Sq. Mt. just over a half acre and has a building site pad already cut. The lot is mostly flat for ease of construction. The Property is centrally located within the development and walking distance to all the amenities. The community boasts top quality tennis club, fitness center, full service spa, tropical lagoon style pool, outdoor recreation area, club house area, private beach club facility and 24/7 security. The development is only a short 3 minute drive to the beach and town of Playas Del Coco and which has all the things you will need from four grocery stores, to banks, pharmacies, nightclubs, restaurants, shopping, fishing and diving outfitters and so much more. Just 25 minutes from the Liberia International Airport and you are Home in your own tropical paradise!
If you have been waiting for a property that is worth investing in that will not break the bank, NOW is your Opportunity!
The owner said “Just Lower the Price and Sell It”
Originally listed for $199,000
Now Being Offered for the CRAZY Price of $40,000.
At This Price It Will Not Last Long!!!

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Single Story For Sale in Flamingo

oceanica flamingo condo cean view terrace
Luxury Condo Fully Furnished

• 1,585 sq. ft., 2 bath, 3 bdrm single story - $424,900 USD - Reduced from $550,000

 -  Oceanica 816 is a fabulous 4th floor condo with stunning views embodying tropical charm with its beautiful woodwork and spectacular beach and ocean vistas from the bedrooms, dining room, and living room. World-class white sand Flamingo beach is a 2 minute stroll away. Relax on your large ocean view terrace with a cool cocktail, while gazing at the unsurpassed sunsets every night, then open the master suite windows to fall asleep to the rhythmic cadence of the Pacific Ocean. This wonderful ocean view Flamingo condo enjoys a well-appointed floor plan, very spacious and bright, with 3 bedrooms, 2 sleek bathrooms and a gourmet kitchen boasting stainless steel appliances and granite counters. The modern furnishings and chic decor create an ambience of tropical sophistication. The luxurious master suite at Oceanica 816 features a private balcony, king bed, and louvered windows that fold back to reveal the lovely ocean and beach views. The private master ensuite bathroom has a deluxe shower and more louvered windows that also open out to pristine Flamingo Bay. The comfortable second bedroom offers a queen bed, while the third bedroom has two twin beds and its own balcony with excellent views over Flamingo beach. This elegant ocean view Oceanica condo is nestled on the hill of the prestigious Flamingo North Ridge, overlooking the soft white sands of unspoiled Flamingo Beach. The Oceanica development offers a sparkling infinity edge ocean view pool, with BBQ rancho area, elevators, wireless internet, 24 hour security and parking on the grounds. Popular Flamingo restaurants such as Mar Y Sol and Maria's - as well as quaint shops, grocery store and bank - are just steps away. Flamingo is in the heart of Costa Rica's famous North Pacific Gold Coast, with world-class beaches, sport-fishing, signature golf courses, surfing, diving and eco-activities. The new Liberia International Airport is only 45 minutes away, and the best private schools on the coast are under 10 minutes away

Property information

Single Story For Sale in Playa Hermosa

180 Degree Ocean View
Superior Construction SINGLE FLOOR PLAN

• 3,059 sq. ft., 4 bath, 3 bdrm single story - $799,000 USD - Reduce By Almost Half

 -  This Spectacular Custom Built 1800 Ocean View Home is located in the resort style community of Hermosa Heights in the center of Playa Hermosa, Guanacaste. The Gorgeous and Spacious Open Plan retreat features 3059sqf under AC containing 1 Master suite with private bath including a 2 person ocean view Jacuzzi. In addition there are 2 bedrooms with private baths, All having a stunning Ocean View. Nothing was spared in the construction of this home it has all the extra Upgrades that you could think of. Some of the features are a 10 Year Developer Warranty, Solid Autoclaved Aerated Concrete Construction, an Environmentally friendly, superior thermal and acoustic insulation, Zoned Central Air Conditioning, Superior quality, energy efficient Reflective Low E glass windows and Almond Wood Flooring with a 25 year warranty. The Chefs’ Kitchen was designed for ease of use containing High Quality Stainless Steel Appliances, Designer Viking Range Stop Stove, 2 Zone Wine Fridge and Built in Ovens. Granite Countertops and Custom Tropical Hardwood Cabinetry throughout finish off this great area. Enjoy lounging around in the 60 Ft. Infinity Edge, Travertine Tile Lap Pool or the Infinity Edge Jacuzzi that is attached to the built in BBQ and Wet Bar area. The Home also has Extensive Camera and Security Alarm System As well as Ceiling Speaker System installed inside and outside with top rated phoenix gold speakers. You do not need keys for this home with the Schlage Digital keyless locking system for the front door. Simply enter a code and you enter the house. The Home is reasonably price for the many amenities it has to offer.

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