Advice on buying a home in the DR

shasha14

New member
May 22, 2020
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United States
I want to buy a home with some land in Santiago De Los Caballeros. I am not one of the wealthy folk that can vacation in rich areas like Punta Cana or Puerta Plata. I'm broke and going to be paying this off for the rest of my life. A friend told me if I buy from here I'll be taxed heavily because I'm American, but if I have a Dominican citizen buy for me it will be much cheaper. Does anyone know if this is true? I already have been ripped off by "Aduanas" there. Everyone I speak to down there is trying to run game or get money. I have a friend who lives down there but he is extremely poor, doesn't speak any English, and definitely can't negotiate. If anyone knows how it really works from both sides, I would appreciate the help. Thank you.
 
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nanita

Active member
Jul 28, 2014
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Oh boy Shasha I am not sure this is a good idea. May I ask why you want to move to the DR? Do you have a job there, or will you be working remotely? Is your fren poor but handsome with a rocking body? Why can't he help you negotiate? So many questions, please give us some more details and maybe we can help you with your situation.
 

JDJones

Moderator - Covid 19 in DR & North Coast
Jan 7, 2016
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Short answer? Don't.

With one paragraph you've told me all I need to know to offer that advice.

Now that I've told you what you absolutely do not want to hear or accept, you need to start reading pasts posts here and start learning
 

Africaida

Gold
Jun 19, 2009
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Where did I go wrong ?

I am friendly, college educated, not ugly, yet no one has ever offered to buy a house for him/her with his/her money.

Where do I find these kind of friends ?

Life is unfair.
 

Auryn

Well-known member
Apr 22, 2012
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If you bought a house and had a mortgage in the DR, would it be a primary residence?

If yes, how would you make a living to pay that mortgage?

If not, who would manage the property when you were not there?

If your friend can’t negotiate, and something happens, can you afford to fly down at the drop of a hat to deal with it/afford/find a reliable property manager?

Do you know a Dominican citizen that wouldn’t rip you off? Would you trust someone in your own country to purchase a home for you, remotely?

Whatever is appealing in Santiago may become less appealing as a vacation destination. As a city to live and work in without distractions (ahem, sankies), it could be great.

This forum can definitely help. But take the advice given. Rent. Rent. Rent.
 
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shasha14

New member
May 22, 2020
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I have been there back and forth three times now and I love it. I speak Spanish well. My friend down there I trust and would put the house in his name. He can't negotiate because he doesn't know how to tell when he is being taken advantage of. Some of the Dominicans I met are the most passionate people I have ever encountered. Just surrounded with positivity and love. That's where I want to be. If I work up here and pay it off, I would like to be down there permanently in the next 3- 5 years. I'm 51and HATE the cold. I grew up in crappy projects in NJ. My family is from Jersey City and Newark. Makes the DR look like Disney World in comparison. I am not afraid of anything. I was there when the water went off for a week. The light and the internet went out every day for hours. I am not materialistic. I would live there under a platano tree buck naked and be happy. I'm just not trying to get ripped off. If I put the house in his name he can live there and take care of it while I visit back and forth until I can go for good. My family is old school Italian mafia on one side. Not worried about anybody. I'll find them if I need to. Just trying to see the best way to purchase down there without all the drama. If you know about how to do it, I appreciate the advice. If you are just going to make stupid comments, do it elsewhere. If you have useful, real and helpful information, I thank you for your time. I know some people here have families there and know the ins and outs. That's what I'm looking for. Thanks.
 

XTraveller

Active member
Aug 21, 2010
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I have been there back and forth three times now and I love it. I speak Spanish well. My friend down there I trust and would put the house in his name. He can't negotiate because he doesn't know how to tell when he is being taken advantage of. Some of the Dominicans I met are the most passionate people I have ever encountered. Just surrounded with positivity and love. That's where I want to be. If I work up here and pay it off, I would like to be down there permanently in the next 3- 5 years. I'm 51and HATE the cold. I grew up in crappy projects in NJ. My family is from Jersey City and Newark. Makes the DR look like Disney World in comparison. I am not afraid of anything. I was there when the water went off for a week. The light and the internet went out every day for hours. I am not materialistic. I would live there under a platano tree buck naked and be happy. I'm just not trying to get ripped off. If I put the house in his name he can live there and take care of it while I visit back and forth until I can go for good. My family is old school Italian mafia on one side. Not worried about anybody. I'll find them if I need to. Just trying to see the best way to purchase down there without all the drama. If you know about how to do it, I appreciate the advice. If you are just going to make stupid comments, do it elsewhere. If you have useful, real and helpful information, I thank you for your time. I know some people here have families there and know the ins and outs. That's what I'm looking for. Thanks.
Shasha, buying a house here is a lot different. Many Dominicans buy houses thinking they have a title but really all they have is a sale contract for the building and not the land.
If you are dealing with a reputable and honest lawyer then He/She would require a title and DESLINDE (land surveyor) for the property. In this instance the transfer tax will be the same weather you are Dominican or a foreigner. Except for very high price properties.

The buy in Dominican name cheaper deal is the biggest SCAM here! Be Careful.....
You can use your Dominican friend to deal for a better price for you with the seller before letting the seller known that he selling to a foreigner but put the property in your name.

It would be best to rent first for a year or more before buying.
 

shasha14

New member
May 22, 2020
5
3
3
United States
Shasha, buying a house here is a lot different. Many Dominicans buy houses thinking they have a title but really all they have is a sale contract for the building and not the land.
If you are dealing with a reputable and honest lawyer then He/She would require a title and DESLINDE (land surveyor) for the property. In this instance the transfer tax will be the same weather you are Dominican or a foreigner. Except for very high price properties.

The buy in Dominican name cheaper deal is the biggest SCAM here! Be Careful.....
You can use your Dominican friend to deal for a better price for you with the seller before letting the seller known that he selling to a foreigner but put the property in your name.

It would be best to rent first for a year or more before buying.
Thank you. That's exactly what I meant. I was looking in August and the realtor said there was no title for the property. Just some sort of permission to live there for 20 years or some odd thing. Thank you. I appreciate your information.
 

nanita

Active member
Jul 28, 2014
128
178
43
OK. So you're looking at the DR as a possible early retirement option. DON'T PUT YOUR PROPERTY in someone else's name. Just please don't do that, it's a terrible idea. If your fren doesn't screw you over, his friends and family may find a way. So please don't do that. Ideally, a Dominican would do the negotiating and you would then buy the property.
XTraveller's info is great as unscrupulous people may try to 'sell' you something that you won't actually own.
It's a big decision to retire in another country so PLEASE live there for a year or more before doing anything permanent and investing your money in a home.
It's good that you consider yourself someone with some street smarts BUT there are lots of scams in the DR that you may not be aware of. I personally think 3rd world survival skills are only learned by living in the 3rd world, just my opinion.
It's a buyer's market in the DR, it will be hard to sell the place if things go south and if you continue to participate on the board you will see that the allure of the DR may wear off in time. Or not.
 

chico bill

Lobotomy Surgeon
May 6, 2016
7,247
1,282
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I have been there back and forth three times now and I love it. I speak Spanish well. My friend down there I trust and would put the house in his name. He can't negotiate because he doesn't know how to tell when he is being taken advantage of. Some of the Dominicans I met are the most passionate people I have ever encountered. Just surrounded with positivity and love. That's where I want to be. If I work up here and pay it off, I would like to be down there permanently in the next 3- 5 years. I'm 51and HATE the cold. I grew up in crappy projects in NJ. My family is from Jersey City and Newark. Makes the DR look like Disney World in comparison. I am not afraid of anything. I was there when the water went off for a week. The light and the internet went out every day for hours. I am not materialistic. I would live there under a platano tree buck naked and be happy. I'm just not trying to get ripped off. If I put the house in his name he can live there and take care of it while I visit back and forth until I can go for good. My family is old school Italian mafia on one side. Not worried about anybody. I'll find them if I need to. Just trying to see the best way to purchase down there without all the drama. If you know about how to do it, I appreciate the advice. If you are just going to make stupid comments, do it elsewhere. If you have useful, real and helpful information, I thank you for your time. I know some people here have families there and know the ins and outs. That's what I'm looking for. Thanks.
Why would you put it in "his name" ?
You are trying not to get ripped off ? Actually I think you are asking exactly for that. And believe me there will be plenty of drama.
You might even wind up buried under that plantain tree or in a pozo.............if you are not careful.
This forum not long ago lost a prolific member to just the scenario you are painting.
 

AlterEgo

Administrator
Staff member
Jan 9, 2009
20,021
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South Coast
I want to buy a home with some land in Santiago De Los Caballeros. I am not one of the wealthy folk that can vacation in rich areas like Punta Cana or Puerta Plata. I'm broke and going to be paying this off for the rest of my life. A friend told me if I buy from here I'll be taxed heavily because I'm American, but if I have a Dominican citizen buy for me it will be much cheaper. Does anyone know if this is true? I already have been ripped off by "Aduanas" there. Everyone I speak to down there is trying to run game or get money. I have a friend who lives down there but he is extremely poor, doesn't speak any English, and definitely can't negotiate. If anyone knows how it really works from both sides, I would appreciate the help. Thank you.

There are NOT separate taxes for foreigners and Dominicans. Your friend is either out to fleece you, lying or misinformed. Under no circumstances should you put a property in any name except your own. There are so many pitfalls to your plan that I don’t know where to begin. I’ll start with DON’T DO IT.
 

Africaida

Gold
Jun 19, 2009
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Connected guys don't raise their families in the projects. And their families ain't broke! Just sayin'...

That was my initial thought as well, then again I am guilty of binge watching Netflix.....

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