Condo Prices

Posted By: deadserious

Condo Prices - 02/21/07 11:28 PM

My wife and I are looking at purchasing a condo on Ambergris Caye that we will probably visit 6-8 months out of the year. The rest of the time will be spent back in the States with family or in our current place in Las Vegas.

My last trip to San Pedro was in October of 2005 (during the hurricane) and I know a ton of new development is in the works now. We've been looking at Reef Village as well as some other developments. We are also open to a detatched house, but prefer the condo situation due to the amount of time that we will likely be away. We don't care as much about the rental opportunities of the condo and may not elect to rent it out anyway when we are not there.

What is a reasonable price per square foot for a condo in San Pedro? I read another post here from Lan Sluder that the condo bubble may be about to burst and therefore are a little leary of buying at the high range. In fact, unless we decide to purchase a house instead, we would probably be looking more for a value investment than a luxury investment.

The Reef Village seems to be offering good value but I know there have been some issues with the locals regarding the development. In particular, I've read that they are destroying the road north of the cut and there are some questions regarding the environmental impact. Other than that, I haven't heard much about them outside of their marketing speak.

We will be there in April and will be seeking out as many options as possible so that we can make a decision shortly regarding a purchase.

If anyone has any tips, pointers or "been there" stories to share, I'd be especially interested.


Jason Southwell
Posted By: beachbumin

Re: Condo Prices - 02/21/07 11:54 PM

All condos or houses are not the same, and like everywhere else in the world, you get what you pay for. The best thing to do is plan to spend your time in April north, south, and central. Although you may find attractive "pre-construction" pricing on some condos, check the reputation of the developer. The island has many "gringo in Belize" stories. If you are looking at a condo, issues such as who manages the condos, homeowners associations and covenants all come into play. If you use a realtor, and there are some good ones, make sure that you see all the projects available and not just those they have the listing for. Good luck and have fun. No hurricanes in April!
Posted By: deadserious

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 12:12 AM

I understand that realtors do not need to be licensed in Belize. How do you go about finding a good one? I find that many realtors on Ambergris have really terrible websites, and while a good site does not always equal a good realtor, I've found that those who spend the time and money to put together a nice presentation are often the more successful of the bunch. But maybe it's just the fact that I'm a web guy by trade and put too much emphasis on stuff like that.
Posted By: indygal

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 12:33 AM

We used Chris at Pelican Realty and were very please with his services. He also saved us some money on the closing. We bought a fixer upper condo a Royal Palm a few months ago. We like it here and the prices are a bargin. They are at the age that the interiors need some up dating if they have not already been renovated.
Posted By: LaraTravelBelize

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 01:04 AM

i used tim and tina at they are amazing people that held my hand every single step of the way. they went from being my realtors to being dear dear friends who continue to be a positive influence in my life. i simply cannot say enough about them. their number is 501-226-4000 or go to the above website.

now, having said that, there are many amazing people on this island who also sell real estate. lots of real estate companies have wonderful people and great reputations.

like buying in the states, you need to have a relationship of trust with your realtor. talk to some of them, and pick the one that you like.
Posted By: lil'red

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 04:11 PM

If you are looking at Reef Village as your price range, you might also study The Cloisters". Bob Jorlene(SP?) is building them and they are on the beach side just acrossed from Reef Village, which is on the lagoon, as you know. They start at 105k if I am not mistaken and Bob is a very well respected builder. Personally I went more custom myself. I am very happy with the contractor who is building my condo. Chris Barenfanger has an excellent reputation and builds north of the bridge, also on the beach side acrossed from Reef Village. You can visit his prior projects, every one is different and unique, and he builds as close to custom as you can ask in a condo. He has so far moved every wall for me, is giving me a roof top widows walk (I bought on the top floor)and the moved the balcony and I know for a fact that he will try to accomodate any reasonable request during the building stages. He is honest and reliable, and has been building here for over a decade. You will not need a reator in this instance, but should you purchase a property thru an agent, Chris at Pelican Properties is also my recommendation.
In any your homework. Don't rush into anything or like beachbummin said, you may end up in a song :-)
Posted By: JZB

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 04:14 PM

I highly recommend Ambergris Seaside Real Estate! : )
Posted By: cakelee

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 04:52 PM

We also talked to and liked Chris at Pelican. We ended up going with Chris and Amanda at Sunrise. Amanda checks this site regularly, so you can see by her past postings that she is full of useful information! If you want more info, please PM me.
Posted By: deadserious

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 05:51 PM

Thanks everyone for your realtor suggestions and I'll certainly look into "The Cloisters" as well.

It seems like there is a vast difference in price per square foot on the island. Is the difference really just construction/location/decoration or is it just a case of certain developments/developers getting greedy?

Also, I'd assume many locals have a hard time purchasing property on the island based on the income vs listed prices. Would you say that a condo development like Reef or Cloisters attract more locals or are they still set up to target mostly gringos?
Posted By: Barbara K

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 06:35 PM

Condos definitely target gringos.
Posted By: DitchDocDiver

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 09:03 PM

Originally Posted by deadserious
Thanks everyone for your realtor suggestions and I'll certainly look into "The Cloisters" as well.

It seems like there is a vast difference in price per square foot on the island. Is the difference really just construction/location/decoration or is it just a case of certain developments/developers getting greedy?

Don't forget about Sueno Del Mar, its up North, but has free internet, plus a lot of other features. PM me for more info.
Posted By: Sir Isaac Newton

Re: Condo Prices - 02/22/07 11:40 PM

Locals usually purchase homes to avoid the condo cluster funk (with various owners in one property who either think they own the ENTIRE property or get hooked up with a "management company" who has a different agenda than the owners).

Stick with an established condominium complex with a good track record and local developers who have lived and continue to live here in opposition to those who recently arrived to ride the condo wave and head of to Nicarauga in a few years.

Posted By: flip flop

Re: Condo Prices - 02/23/07 02:00 AM

We've been going to San Pedro since 1989 and just bought. After all these years, we like north of the cut the best because of the lack of cars, traffic, higher land, and more trees!

We ended up buying at THE CLOISTERS after looking at everything all the way to Sueno Del Mar. Bob is the owner/builder and was great to work with. The condos are across from Reef Village, 60 feet from the ocean, cathedral ceilings, and the best price as far as we were concerned. Also, it's only one mile from the center of town. There is one building almost done, so it's still pre-construction.

If you want more info, I can give you Bob's email address. He has layouts, pics, and such. Hope this helps!
Posted By: DrSteve

Re: Condo Prices - 02/23/07 11:54 PM

You have been given some great advice here. Talk to as many people as you can. In person is always best. This chat room is a good start Ė but will not always provide the in-depth information you will need to make an informed decision. (there are many commercial interests here)

- Talk to current residents (and neighbors) of the complex if possible. (aside from your realtor) .
- Read the Association bylaws (this can be very important).
- Consider your lifestyle: Do you want to buy in a quiet residential complex., or one that is more active, some complexes have a revolving door of vacationers (who tend to have less respect for neighbors & property).

You donít want to be relaxing by the pool with your Grandchildren and find yourself in the middle of something like this (or maybe you do?):

Belize is a Great Place! Take your time finding your perfect piece of paradise.
Posted By: Sun&sand

Re: Condo Prices - 02/24/07 01:32 AM

Hi. We just got home from San Pedro today, and own a condo at Reef Village. We were the first ones to buy there, and were a little concerned, but it has exceeded our expectations. We are very happy with it, and are also having a villa built in the same project.
Everyone is giving you good information, and it is something that you will have to check out for yourselves. I still feel like RV is the best buy on the island, but of course, I'm a little biased. In any event, no matter where you buy, I'm sure you will love it. You and your wife really do need to investigate every condo you are interested in. Chris at Pelican REalty is a wonderful person, and will do his level best to help you make the best choice.
Good luck..
Posted By: SunPirate

Re: Condo Prices - 03/09/07 06:01 PM

We purchased one of 2 remaining units at in February--north of the bridge. Prices lower than many. Loved their sunset view patio connected to master bedroom. And the ocean front patios--of course. Happy with builder and his family. We plan to spend 6 - 8 months of year in San Pedro. Can't wait for fishing, diving, and golf carting thru the puddles.

We are from Houston and San Pedro captured us.

Posted By: 6string

Re: Condo Prices - 03/09/07 08:42 PM

You all have piqued my interest here in condos. We'll be in SP in 2 weeks and while its mostly for a vacation, we do have a desire to seek a tropical area to retire to in the next 8 -10 years. We've always thought we would buy property on the beach and build a small home, but the condo thing sounds intriguing. Does anyone own their condos a few years prior to living there more or less year round, but visit, oh say for a few weeks at a time and rent it the other weeks? My thought was, is it feasible and legal to own a beach condo, rent it during high season, and then still spend a few weeks/year there too?

Re: Condo Prices - 03/09/07 09:59 PM

Posted By: CatMo

Re: Condo Prices - 03/10/07 02:40 AM

Just a note: Hurricane Wilma did not hit Belize. Please be aware that, if you were there, you only experienced the outer fringes of what a hurricane is all about.

That said, good luck with your search and enjoy your time on AC. I have to agree (without any real estate connections there) that it won't get less affordable tomorrow than it is today.

Except for that global warming thing.
Posted By: cakelee

Re: Condo Prices - 03/11/07 04:10 PM

"Does anyone own their condos a few years prior to living there more or less year round, but visit, oh say for a few weeks at a time and rent it the other weeks? My thought was, is it feasible and legal to own a beach condo, rent it during high season, and then still spend a few weeks/year there too?"

That is the plan for us, although it will still be a few years (20 if we're lucky!). PM me if you want further info.
Posted By: GBZ39

Re: Condo Prices - 03/11/07 07:15 PM

That is exactly what everyone else wants to do.

Reef Village's first buildings seemed almost empty when I was there last month.

If you buy, be prepared to pay maintenance fees...possibly collect some rental income.... and perhaps sell at a higher price.

Posted By: Inplub

Re: Condo Prices - 03/12/07 05:19 AM

You think you can sell them
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