Top 5 Mistakes People Make When Buying a House in the Caribbean
Millions of people dream of owning a slice of paradise. However, only some get to own their dream house in some of the Caribbean islands. Many people can’t afford the privilege of owning a house in this part of the world, whereas some have the funds, yet despite that, they don’t end up owning their dream house.
Here are the top 7 mistakes people do when trying to buy a house in the Caribbean.
#1 Trusting self-proclaimed experts
The Caribbean is one of those places that lets you start from scratch and make it big. However, many people misinterpret that, and instead of doing the hard work, try to find shortcuts. Nowadays, more than ever, there are plenty of realtors trying to make a ton of money fast. Usually, that ends up bad for all sides.
The point here is not to trust anyone. At least not until you make a background check. After all, every respectable Caribbean real estate expert will check your background before going into business with you. Do them the same courtesy.
#2 Don’t rely solely on description and online photos
You are looking at this magnificent villa online, and you think this is it. The description puts it in the perfect location, surrounded by all sorts of amenities and roads. Just by the photos, you are tempted to close the deal the same day and wire the money right away.
Well, based on other people’s experiences, you shouldn’t rush things.
Again, it all comes down to over-ambitious agents that will even post fake pictures, misleading descriptions, and do all sorts of tricks for you to buy a specific property.
What you need to do instead is to conduct your thorough investigation or even hire a third-party professional. That way, you won’t be pushed into buying property based on fake photos and fake descriptions.
#3 Thinking the buying process is fast and easy
Unfortunately, the Caribbean bureaucracy can prolong your purchase. Like it or not, often, there is no way around, even for the locals. So, there is nothing much to do but be patient. Always stay in touch with your realtor that can inform you about the progress.
#4 Thinking all Caribbean islands are the same
No, they are not. The only common thing between some islands is that an ocean surrounds them, and the temperature is great. Each of them is unique in its own right. Just because you’ve spent two weeks on a Caribbean island, it doesn’t mean you know them.
Again, it all comes down to doing proper research on the island, the area, the infrastructure, the weather, etc.
#5 Trying to build a house believing it is cheaper
Unless you are there to negotiate a good price with the contractors, be there for every construction step. Monitor their work, making sure they follow your blueprint, stick to your agreement. It is not recommended to start such an adventure.
In the United States, the process is fairly simple, and you don’t have to worry about anything if you have a deal with a reputable contractor. But, the Caribbean is not the US. You always need to be on top of everything, or things can easily go sideways very fast.