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Buying Bahamas Real Estate

Buying Bahamas Real Estate
The current legislation governing Bahamas real estate positively encourages foreigners to buy a second home on the islands. Enacted in 1993, the International Persons Landholding Act makes owning Bahamian property as simple as registering the purchase with the Investment Board and paying a registration fee.

Beach HouseIn most cases, foreigners looking to buy a single family home or vacant land won’t even need a permit. However, there are some cases where a permit is required:

  • The property is undeveloped land and of five acres, or larger, in size
  • The property isn’t a private residence, or won’t be developed as such

Failure to obtain a permit under these circumstances will render the acquisition null and void. However, the purchaser can recover any money already paid in consideration of the acquisition. Moreover, foreigners wishing to lease or let their Bahamas real estate don’t need to obtain a permit unless the agreement is for trade or business purposes.

The Cost of Real Estate
Bahamas real estate prices vary considerably throughout the islands, but tend to be expensive on the main islands. These high prices however, are offset by the near absence of direction taxation. One of the more important recent trends has been the development of luxury real estate to attract a wealthy international clientele.

This boom in the development of luxury real estate has also included rapid growth in the number of timeshare properties on the islands. As such, international clientele can choose to buy traditional real estate or to buy timeshares and enjoy part-time or co-ownership of a luxury resort property. Although many of the same legislation applies to Bahamas timeshares, prospective buyers may wish to buy through licensed timeshare brokers who can explain the intricacies of timeshare ownership. Experienced buyers have been able to take advantage of online timeshare resale markets to buy into some of the country's most popular locations.

Real estate transactions in the Bahamas come with a considerable government stamp duty attached. Stamp duty starts at 2% for real estate valued under $20,000 US, but increases to 10% for real estate over $250,000US. Payment of this tax is usually shared equally between the seller and the buyer. There is also a 1% stamp duty on mortgages paid by the borrower.

Read about Harborside Resort Timeshares on Paradise Island.

Read about Bahamas Beachfront Real Estate.


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