Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
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#54780 - 07/13/02 01:36 AM I Have the Real Estate Bug
CMNate Offline
I've recently gotten the real estate bug for a place that I have never been to. In the past weeks I've read numerous articles and have talked to many people that have travelled there. I've read most of the warnings about buying and would NEVER buy anything site unseen. I've also read many posts and articles about Belize and how so many people are starting to travel there. I had already been thinking about adding a few days to my November Cancun trip so I could go and check the place out. A friend of mine (who also got the bug) suggested that I not wait and go next month. So that is the plan.
I had first been invited to go to Belize many years ago when my company dive club was going to make a trip down. The only problem for me at the time was that I felt that I needed a little more nightlife. The fact that Ambergris Caye is getting more tourists actually appeals to me. One of my big concerns is the property values on AC and how fast they might be rising (that is what is actually fuelling this early trip). I don't plan on buying anything this trip (I've never even been there), but I also don't think that I can afford years to get acquanted before I make that decision (who knows what property values might be in 10 years). I'm still fairly young and travel to the carribean 2 or 3 times a year. My plan would be to possibly buy a condotel room so that I could rent it out while I was not there. This would at least guarantee me a place in that paradise. Then I would have an opportunity to really get to know the area and possibly purchase something near Placentia (which might better suit my lifestyle in 5-10 years).
I am fortunate to have two Belizeans who are co-workers of mine who have answered many questions on basics and locations (yes, I do realize that I need to travel there). I have also learned so much by reading the boards, articles written by Lan Sluder (thanks Lan), and surfing the net. My average time to travel after booking a trip is less than a month so don't let that part freak you out. I also apologize for being so long winded, but I wanted to at least give you a little background so that I might minimize the "don't be a nut" posts (I've actually travelled quite a bit and I do know a little about real estate).
My questions are these:
1. Are the prices in AC really rising that fast?
2. Does anybody know the occupancy rates in AC?
3. Are the internet property listings elevated or are they comparable to what the properties are actually selling for? I called Captain Morgans and they wanted $150K for something that was listed on the internet for $99K and now they're building timeshares for $8K-12K (even I know that's too much, although I admit to watching "Temptation Island").
4. What are your recommendations for real estate attorneys on the island?

Within the short amount of time I have made contacts with friends of friends who have lived there and friends that have just recently returned. It seems like a great lifestyle and community. I have always wanted a place on the beach and it's hard not to get excited when I see that it might still be possible (provide I visit, get to know the country, keep my head, and don't do anything stupid (disclaimer)) .

For those of you that made it to the end of my post, thanks for taking the time. For those that do respond, I'll be in touch.


Nate

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#54781 - 07/13/02 04:12 AM Re: I Have the Real Estate Bug
trina Offline
WEll, Nate, lord knows I am no real estate tycoon. All I can tell you is what I saw and heard while there last month. A lot of hotels are for sale. Both in AC and on the mainland. Occupancy was down post 9/11, but is creeping back up. There seems to be a 'building boom', particularly on the north end of the island. And a lot of guys with briefcases zipping around on boats and in golf carts (main mode of land transport on Ambergris). I'm not sure what this all adds up to, but a lot business seems to be going on right now. All I can say is, if you're seiously interested, ya gotta go there. Someone can describe something to you, you can read about it, but there's nothing like being there in person. One final note: the limited browsing of real estate we did, displayed properties that were, to my mind, a bit on the inflated side. Fairly high prices listed, in US dollars, for properties that were, in some cases, "fixers".



[This message has been edited by trina (edited 07-12-2002).]

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#54782 - 07/13/02 05:18 AM Re: I Have the Real Estate Bug
KC Offline
My advice to you is to get in touch with Diane Campbell, camp@btl.net and make arrangements to have a talk with her when you go down, and maybe see some properties.

This recommendation is because she is *honest*, and knows her stuff. She won't sell you a property that has "problems".

We were as green as they come when we first went to Belize. She did it for us.

Kathy
_________________________
"You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think."

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#54783 - 07/13/02 10:00 AM Re: I Have the Real Estate Bug
rickcheri Offline
Nate,
Please E us at Rickcheri@hotmail.com,
and I can give ya the low down on what we went through on our property and house building that is now almost finshed!!!!!!
Thanks,
Rick

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#54784 - 07/13/02 04:54 PM Re: I Have the Real Estate Bug
Gaz Cooper Offline
Hi guys

I have a project I am working on see info at
http://www.playablancabelize.com/invest.html

Real estates is definatley booming here on Ambergris Just take a walk North or South and its amazing how much construction is going on.

In 10 years who knows what prices will be

regards

Gaz



[This message has been edited by Gaz (edited 07-13-2002).]
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#54785 - 07/13/02 10:26 PM Re: I Have the Real Estate Bug
CMNate Offline
Gaz,
Thanks but $120,000 is a lot to spend on a studio cabana that has not even been built yet. Unfortunately, you can only make projections on occupancy. The biggest task for you will be getting construction finished.
I need more factual information when I invest in real estate. I already now of a few places that already have GOOD reputations (from what I read). A building is one thing, finding good managers and staffing is another. I may have time to look into your outfit later, but for now I need something more concrete.

Thanks Anyway,

Nate

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#54786 - 07/13/02 11:56 PM Re: I Have the Real Estate Bug
Gaz Cooper Offline
Hi Nate

Of course you need more factual information what I directed you to was merely an outline of the project and by no means did I expect anyone to make a decision based on that, it was to acertian if it is what someone is looking for, obviously in your case it is not.

There are other websites with pictures and information that I would send interested parties.

FYI 3 Cabanas are already built and sold and completion date is December 1st for the other 4,

I have a fully functional dive resort with occupancy and have been fully operational for 1 year and been in the diving business for 12 years here in Belize.

I also personally own and have invested in several properties here and have been involved in the real estate business for many years on a personal investing level.

The real estate market here is ever changing and my project has made it possible for the average person to be able to afford to own something on the island with an established operator.

Not everyone has a bunch of cash to invest but would still like to have a place on this beautiful island to come down a few weeks a year and chill.

Unless people have a large disposable income it is almost impossible for the average person to be able to own or invest in something on the BEACH here as the prices are getting extremely high, in addition financing is not an option in many cases unless it owner financed or the offshore banks are now offering some financing at 12.5%.

While My project is not what you are looking for a it may fit the investment profile of others.

Good luck in your search.

Gaz Cooper
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#54787 - 07/14/02 12:03 AM Re: I Have the Real Estate Bug
Gaz Cooper Offline
Forgot to direct you to some reputable real estate people here on the island

charles payne Ambergris seaside seaside@btl.net

Diane cambell which I know has been mentioned before and has a lot of knowledge on Real estate here in Belize.

Sunrise Realty

Amanda or Chris

and Southwind properties

Rachel and Claudio

Between all them you should have it covered.

Good Luck

Gaz
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#54788 - 07/15/02 10:06 PM Re: I Have the Real Estate Bug
bbnx Offline
CMNate...

Rashell at Sounthwinds has been working with me relative to purchasing Real Estate on AC. VERY helpful, patient and HONEST. If you have any questions, feel free to email me at
sjp@technicalwriting.com
_________________________
BBNX
http://www.technicalconsultant.net

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#54789 - 07/15/02 10:13 PM Re: I Have the Real Estate Bug
SEAWINGS Offline
I have purchased 3 beach lots on the north end of the island.Be happy to share my experience.
Steve
seawings2@juno.com

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