qualifications for owning property in the DR

Isaac Green

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I am seriously thinking of purchasing a parcel
first and later building on it however
a friend of mine in the DR suggests it is better
to buy an existing home. What are the necessary
steps to owning property in the DR?


Thanks,
 

sjh

aka - shadley
Jan 1, 2002
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Buy used or better yet rent!

For places outside the city and tourist areas:

houses are often for sale in the DR for 1/4 to 1/2 the cost of construction, depending on the area. Even then, in some areas, you can rent a decent place so cheap it isnt worth buying it.. (3000 pesos a month to live in a house that cost 2 million to build)

New construction costs seem to be about 800 $US/square meter. Someone once posted that they had done it for as low as 300.

Also getting reliable skilled labor and management to build is next to impossible, and that is while living in the country.
 

Isaac Green

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yes but the qualifications to own?

Is it not true that one must be first a Dominican
citizen or resident in order to purchase in La
Republica?
 

Jim Hinsch

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In Boca Chica, one can buy a lot and build for 1/3 - 1/2 the cost of buying a similar already built house 10 years old.

For example:

4 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath, 200 sq meters, 2 stories.
lot - 300 sq. meters - US$10,000
Construction and Taxes - US$30,000
Total - US$40,000

This type of home sells for about US$90-120,000 in BC.

A friend of mine just built a very nice small house in Juan Dolio for about US$20,000 no including the lot.

If you are going to build, someone of trust must be there every day to oversee the quality of construction, purchase and inventory of materials, and you generally need 24 hour guard service to prevent looting. That is the biggest reason NOT to build in the DR. Time is money.
 

sjh

aka - shadley
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Thats really interesting Jim. I have been getting VERY different numbers on the north coast.

That works out to about 150 $US per square meter.

Does that include tiles and a concrete roof?
 

PJT

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Jan 8, 2002
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Qualifications

1. Having large sums of Money. 2. Having large sums of Money. 3. Having an honest lawyer who will help you distribute your large sums of Money. Regards, PJT
 

Jim Hinsch

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I've never seen a 10 year old house selling in that price range that didn't have tiles and a good roof. I have no idea if the roof is concrete.

By the way, I also agree that it is better to rent than buy or build if productive use of money is the objective. The only reason I can think of to build is to get a home exactly the way you want it. Don't buy land as an investment unless you are an experienced land speculator.
 
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sjh

aka - shadley
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thanks jim, I was just surprised by the difference in prices..

Anybody else want to throw some construction prices out on the table?
 

Ken

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Not Necessary to be Resident or Dominican

Isaac,

Your question seems to have gotten lost. No, you do not need to be a resident or Dominican in order to buy a home or property in the Dominican Republic. There are many foreign owners.

Ken
 

Isaac Green

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ok next question.

Thanks,

Everybody, thanks Ken my next question is if
you do not have to be a Dominican or resident to
own property in the DR does owning property in the
DR expedite the process of becoming a resident?

thanks
 

Ken

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Jan 1, 2002
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Isaac,

I recommend that you post this question under Legal so that you get an answer from Fabio Guzman.

Ken
 

hansbert

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Assets required for residency in the DR

Any foreigner who wants to obtain a residence permit in the DR to my knowledge needs assets in the country amounting to a minimum of RD Pesos 500'000. Therefore owning a house for that value enables you to obtain the residence permit provided that you comply with the other conditions required by the laws but does not expedite it.
 

Escott

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Re: Assets required for residency in the DR

hansbert said:
Any foreigner who wants to obtain a residence permit in the DR to my knowledge needs assets in the country amounting to a minimum of RD Pesos 500'000. Therefore owning a house for that value enables you to obtain the residence permit provided that you comply with the other conditions required by the laws but does not expedite it.
Not true. I didn't have to prove I had one peso. I had to show NO money to get my residency. Of course I had to pay for it like everyone else but no one asked how much money I had in the country.

Escott (my dominican name.
 

Escott

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shadley000 said:
Thats really interesting Jim. I have been getting VERY different numbers on the north coast.

That works out to about 150 $US per square meter.

Does that include tiles and a concrete roof?
The price you quoted was about 90 dollars per square ft. That price is way out of line for the DR. Hell I build cheaper in New York than that.

Regards
 

Andy B

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In Samana, it costs about $500-600usd per square meter to build a reasonable house. Of course you can spend less for a "bare-bones" version and finish it yourself. You can also spend a lot more if you want top quality.

As a foreigner there is no problem owning property and a home other than having a GOOD lawyer handle the entire purchase-title verification process. It is also HIGHLY advisable that you have a deslinde (legal survey approved by the Tribunal de Tierra Superior land court) to ultimately assure ownership and that you also create a Dominican corporation that owns the property. The corporation is necessary for liability and taxation purposes when you eventually sell the property (the reasons which I don't want to get into here). A GOOD lawyer will advise you of both of these necessities.

There IS a residency requirement to be able to show a $500,000rd investment; I know as both my wife and myself had to recently prove this individual net worth on our applications. Of course, we both own Dominican corporations and activly work them so our residencies are for both resident and business purposes. The financial requirement was instituted during the last year of Leonel's presidency but not enforced until the PRD attained power as a way to weed out some undesirables. It still seems to be required of some applications and not others unless the foreign applicants do not realize their lawyers are submitting it for them, falsified data or not.

I also find it hard to believe individuals that report here on DR1 that they got their residencies in very short times, one even saying it only took one day. It took us almost 18 months to get the temporary visa stamp in our passports (granted we had to resubmit some paperwork and that delayed it) and we have been waiting almost 3 months for final approval by Immigration so we can get our cedulas (and our temporary residency permits-only to resubmit them in a year for the permanent residency). When I read these posts regarding such short approval times I'm reminded of all the bogus residencies that were approved this way during the past administration; all of which seem to be no good. Perhaps a lawyer reading this will reply to that scam.
 

hansbert

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Assets required to obtain residency

Well jazzcom,
you were just lucky that they did not require you to produce evidence for assets since the pertinent law states clearly that the applicant must prove economic solvency.
 

JHC

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Second home

Like visiting Dr a few times a year for several years now. Love the country, customs, people etc. Have considered buy or build second home there and friends have offered following advise. "Create a Dominican corporation to own property. Insulates from personal risks and offers tax advantages if one rents out property. Also simplifies inheritance issues and costs." Any knowledgeable thoughts about this advice?
 

hansbert

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Most questions answered in the legal section

Good morning JHC
most of the issues you touch were already answered by the forum's legal expert in the beginning of April. Have a look into the legal section of this forum !
 
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Escott

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Re: Assets required to obtain residency

hansbert said:
Well jazzcom,
you were just lucky that they did not require you to produce evidence for assets since the pertinent law states clearly that the applicant must prove economic solvency.
I provided letters of credit from NY bank, US Brokerage and a letter of acceptance to give me a loan in high 6 figures. I didn't have to show a dime in the DR (which I had and could have proven had I been asked) at any time.

I retained an attorney in December, paid money and supplied documents. Went down in April and had it all done in one day in Santo Domingo. The attorney submitted papers on my behalf in the meantime.