Choosing the right real estate agent is the first step to choosing the right house in Costa Rica. If you have made the decision to relocate to this beautiful country or you are investing in a vacation home it is important that you look for a real estate agent who you can trust and that will look out for your interests.
There are a large number of real estate companies in Costa Rica to choose from, but not all of them are reliable and/or responsible Deciding between professional companies and those that are simply after your money can prove very complicated, especially in a country where there is no mandatory real estate licensing by the government. Therefore, we want to give you some pointers on this matter:
1) If possible go by trusted recommendation: If you have a friend that lives in Costa Rica or perhaps someone in the country that you can trust ask if they know of any companies or agents they would recommend, but preferably someone they can recommend by personal experience.
2) Check with the Costa Rican Chamber of Real Estate Brokers (CCCBR): If you don’t know anyone that can give you recommendations then opt to make the inquiry to this association which gathers real estate professionals and has worked towards having clear rules for the real estate market in the country. Members of this association should be professional agents that can help you in your search for the right house. Now, as we mentioned before, because licensing in the country is not mandatory, we have to mention that there are also reliable and good real estate companies in the country that might not necessarily be part of the CCCBR.
3) Do your homework: Consult with at least three agencies, check their background, ask around for references, check their permits and do a quick online investigation on them, you can also use social media community groups to ask for information on the company you are thinking of using. Several good books have been written by real estate lawyers and authorities that you can consult.
4) Get a real estate agent preferably located in the area you are thinking of relocating to. This is quite important since it will help that they know the area well, its pros and cons, the history of properties in the market there, problems, and they can provide background additional info that can be useful.
5) Make sure you get a “buyers agent”: which means they will not try to push you into buying one of the properties they have listed for their other clients, but instead they will listen to what you are looking for and try to find the property that best suits your needs, Palms International Realty is a perfect example of a buyers agent that will go the extra mile for you.
6) Find a good lawyer: If you don’t personally know one and don’t have anyone you trust to recommend one then go with a reputable firm, they may charge a bit more than the neighborhood lawyer but you can find someone that specializes in real estate deals and you will likely be in safer hands. Whether you choose to go with an attorney and a realtor that has experience working together or not that is up to you. Sometimes, this may be a good move as it should make things flow better; but if you are the kind of person that prefers to play it safe then pick a realtor and a lawyer that has not worked together before, this way each of them will offer their objective opinions and suggestions.
Finally, don’t allow a realtor to put pressure on you, ask all the questions you need, go back and visit the places you liked as many times as you want, a professional real estate agent will understand that buying a property is not something to take lightly and will try to guide you and help you make the right decision without any pressure.
If you are looking for a recommendation to choose a real estate agent in Costa Rica, CONTACT US HERE at Palms International Realty.