Buying Property in Costa Rica: Relocate, Rent, Sell | 101, Easy Guide

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Relocate, Rent, Sell | 101, Easy Guide

If you’re looking into buying property in Costa Rica, you’re in the right place.

If you want to relocate, or if you want to acquire a Costa Rica real estate property as a long-term asset, or because you want to count on your own vacation rental in Costa Rica, this is the guide for you.

The Costa Rica real estate market is completely foreigner-friendly, and here we’re offering you a broad landscape of what you can expect when buying real estate in Costa Rica.

Table of Contents

Buying Real Estate in Costa Rica: The 2 Key Questions

Let’s start our guide on buying real estate in Costa Rica with the two questions you want to be answered immediately:

Can foreigners buy real estate in Costa Rica?

A foreigner can purchase Costa Rica real estate without a problem.

In fact, any foreigner, whether a resident or non-resident has the very same rights as a Costa Rican citizen, except for voting rights.

So yes, an American citizen, or a European citizen, can definitely purchase and own Costa Rica real estate legally.

Is it safe to buy a property in Costa Rica?

If you want to buy real estate in Costa Rica, the country offers safe investments, but there’s always the chance to get burned.

So, if you’re looking into buying property in Costa Rica, there are plenty of sharks willing to take advantage of naive ex-pats. So be careful!

Why Buying Property in Costa Rica

As the world recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic, Costa Rica continues to be advertised as one of the top destinations in the world to retire, or to buy real estate properties to then turn them into unique vacation rentals.

Costa Rica also offers a great ex-pat lifestyle, and you can enjoy great living standards, not very different than those you can find in richer western countries.

This includes modern infrastructure, great health care, first-class private education, and more.

The country also continues to offer decent security levels and low crime rates.

Plus, the country has no army, and democracy has been part of the local political landscape for decades.

So, you, as an ex-pat, can truly relax and enjoy all the advantages a progressive country like Costa Rica has to offer.

Also, English is the country’s unofficial second language, so you’ll always be able to communicate with ease.

Out of the properties for sale in Costa Rica, those located in the coastal north-west can bring you a great return on your investment, especially because there’s already a large ex-pat community in the area.

Here you’ll find an outstanding selection of property and land, and with a lot of tourists present in the area most of the year, it’s perfect to invest in Costa Rica real estate that you can then turn into beach rentals.

Costa Rica is indeed part of the most attractive buyer’s market in the world, and it has been for a long time.

Now that the global eyes are set on this tiny, yet amazing country, and with the rising demand, it means that to invest in a Costa Rica real estate asset is the kind of long-term investment you should consider.

Plus, when it comes to the higher end of the market, the prices of luxury properties for sales in Costa Rica are on the rise, and the trend is upward.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Legal Rights for Foreigners

Costa Rica is a paradise for real estate investors, and the reason is that you can acquire a real estate asset just like a national Costa Rican would.

And that’s because both foreigners and Ticos have the same rights to purchase land or any other type of Costa Rica real estate.

You can acquire a property and put it under your own name, or you can also put it under the name of a corporation.

And this is great because it means that you’re not forced to partner with a local in order to enter the market in the first place.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Titles

The titling system in Costa Rica is quite positive for foreigners looking to own a property in the country.

It’s very rare to find Costa Rica real estate properties that are not already registered and titled.

If you happen to be offered a piece of land that’s still not titled, you should pass on it as it can take a lot of time, even years, to sort through competing claims for the piece of Costa Rica property in court.

Plus, claims on the land can continue for up to a decade after the initial registration.

So yes, avoid these scenarios at all costs.

How to find your dream Costa Rica Real Estate Property

With so many choices around the country to choose from, buying property in Costa Rica in the right location can sometimes seem overwhelming.

So, you’ll need to figure out what your priorities really are so that you can choose real estate in Costa Rica that adjusts perfectly to your needs.

When buying property in Costa Rica, ask yourself these key questions:

  • Will you need access to private schools or be close to private hospitals?
  • Do you want to live in the city, or are you in search of the perfect piece of Costa Rica real estate off the beaten track?
  • Do you dream to live in your own luxury Costa Rica beachfront property and wake up to the sound of waves and the smell of the best coffee in the world?
  • Are you a surfer in search of a beachfront property in Costa Rica that allows you to hit the surf with your board every morning?
  • Or do you just want to enjoy the sun in your favorite lounger in the privacy of your own Costa Rica home?

Once you figure these things out, the next thing is whether you want to be part of a larger community of ex-pats or just lookout for a more isolated area and branch out on your own.

For example, if you want to be part of a great community of ex-pats, Guanacaste offers you all the modern-day amenities you need, and it features the second largest International airport in the country, Daniel Oduber Quiros Internacional, located in Liberia.

Costa Rica Real Estate Guanacaste: Top 11 FAQ Answers List

If you choose to buy a property located near this area, you have access to all of these amenities, plus you also have access to the tranquil atmosphere of the beach.

With that said, if you want to put some comforts aside, an area such as Limon, with some of the most pristine beaches in Costa Rica is the perfect option.

Whatever your personal wants and needs, your best bet is to search extensively before opting for the right Costa Rica home for sale.

And, once you have decided on the area where you want to purchase Costa Rica real estate, the next step is to decide what kind of property you want to acquire.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Homes for Sale for Foreigners

The quick and simple way to buy a home in Costa Rica is to search for one that is ready to move into.

And a ready-to-inhabit Costa Rica home offers you a lot more privacy than living in a condo.

Plus when you do your research, you will find out that private Costa Rica homes will often offer you a lot more space both inside and out.

This means that your loved ones will always be able to enjoy family time around the pool, or grilling something in the backyard, without never having to share or compromise.

In addition to this, if the property in Costa Rica you acquired is surrounded by available land to purchase, you can always choose to expand your current building or any kind of luxuries, such as swimming pools.

Keep in mind that you’ll be responsible for keeping your new property in great shape, and this includes all the associated costs of managing and maintaining it in perfect conditions so that it continues to grow in value and avoid depreciation.

You should also consider the fact that when you buy a home in Costa Rica, there are certain structural and architectural details that you simply won’t be able to alter.

So, make sure to perform a thorough inspection of the property before you actually agree to sign any contracts.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Pros and Cons

Here are the pros and cons of buying property in Costa Rica

Buying Property in Costa Rica Pros:

  • A lot more privacy than back home
  • A lot more space for your dollar than back home
  • Plenty of freedom
  • The option of start to enjoy everything great this fantastic, unique country has to offer

Buying Property in Costa Rica Cons:

  • You’ll be fully responsible for all the costs associated with the property
  • The architecture or design of a Costa Rica real estate property you like might not be of your taste
  • You may need to compromise a little bit on what you consider to be an ideal lifestyle

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Purchasing A Condo

If you actually want to live next door to other ex-pats like yourself, a condo is the best choice.

There are plenty of gated communities in Costa Rica and condominiums that offer you 24-hour security, plus maintenance and cleaning services.

If you’re not always around, or you just want to buy a holiday home in Costa Rica, this is a great choice because it means that you will always have someone around to take care of the building and its surroundings.

As we mentioned above, buying a beachfront property away from the crowds can give you a total sense of freedom reclusion, and, just like with many ex-pats, if that’s your idea of living in a tropical paradise, then go for it!

On the other hand, if you’re just looking to relocate to a new country where everything is less expensive, but where you can still find the comforts of home, then a condo shared by many ex-pats is exactly what you need.

So, if you want to go down the building, and share some good times and create some fond memories around the community pool and grill with other like-minded ex-pats, then condo living is your best choice.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Condo Pros and Cons

Here are the pros and cons of buying property in Costa Rica, especifically a condo:

Buying Property in Costa Rica Condo Pros:

  • The costs are shared by all the building residents
  • It’s way more convenient
  • It’s easy to move in
  • You get a great sense of ex-pat community

Buying Property in Costa Rica Condo Cons:

  • The shared space means that you get more restrictions, so less sense of freedom at times
  • There’s not that much privacy other than inside your own Costa Rica condo

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Purchasing Land in Costa Rica

You can make the choice of buying property in Costa Rica such as land in the perfect location, and build your dream Costa Rica home from scratch.

And this is an outstanding option because it allows you to pick all the right elements that you want to include in your paradise home in Costa Rica.

This includes a pool, a jacuzzi, a tennis court, a basketball court, your own man cave, you name it, it’s all possible.

All you really need to do to make these dreams come true is to find the right architect that can help you draw the plans for the new home and help you clear the planning permission stages.

With that said, sometimes it might be challenging to native the laws and regulations related to this particular market.

And in addition to this, we highly recommend you to be there personally to inspect each construction stage, and this of course, will require your time and effort.

If this is a challenge you feel like taking, actually build a home in Costa Rica can be a rewarding experience.

First, empty land in privileged locations allows a smart home developer to turn a profit once the work is finished.

You can choose to sell it right away, or keep it as a vacation rental, it’s all up to you and your priorities as a Costa Rica real estate owner.

Now, remember that there’s a lot that can go wrong too during a big project like this.

For example, you can run out of budget, unforeseen complications will arise, you will get your own deal of unreliable suppliers, and even poor workmanship can get you out of your comfort zone.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Land Purchasing Pros and Cons

Now we have the pros and cons related to buying property Costa Rica, especially land.

Buying Property in Costa Rica Land Pros:

  • You can build the Costa Rica home of your dreams
  • There’s a big potential for profit with a sale or Costa Rica Airbnb
  • You can pick the best possible location
  • You get a lot of freedom

Buying Property in Costa Rica Land Cons:

  • It’s a lot riskier
  • You can run out of budget
  • There can be possible delays
  • It can be stressful

Once you’ve chosen a piece of land in Costa Rica for sale that you want to buy, it’s imperative for you to visit it physically.

You also want to check out the surrounding area and decide if this is really the place where you want to build the home of your dreams.

Buying Property in Costa Rica As An Investment

If instead of relocating to the country what you want is to invest in the Costa Rica real estate market, then this is a great option that comes with its own set of challenges.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Investing in Your Own Airbnb Costa Rica

Buying property in Costa Rica as a form of investment means that you can offer it at Costa Rica Airbnb and start profiting out of your new outstanding asset.

Local realtors estimate that buyers spend around six to eight weeks in Costa Rica, and that allows them to offer their property as a Costa Rica vacation rental for vacationers and other short-term visitors.

You can expect to earn around 6% to 8% net return for owning an Airbnb Costa Rica property.

So, in addition to capital growth and enjoying your own Costa Rica home, you can definitely turn your asset into a source of great steady profits.

When it comes to numbers, if you own $200,000 in Costa Rica, you can expect a yearly return of around $16,000 after expense, which is outstanding.

Here’s a great guide with the best Costa Rica vacation rental tips. Avoid these vacation rental mistakes and scams.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Factors to Consider

Apart from the factors above, these are other advantages you can find when buying property in Costa Rica as an investment:

There are no barriers to foreigners

As explained above, you can buy Costa Rica real estate just like a local would, and you own the very same rights.

With that said, there are a few exceptions to the rule, so make sure to gather the right info about the property you want to invest in before actually taking the step to buy it.

Year-round income

This country counts with a great variety of microclimates, which means that there’s always something great for vacationers to experience while in Costa Rica, both in low and high seasons.

Politically and economically stable

Costa Rica also possesses high levels of education, and most people offering a service in the country is bilingual.

So this means that buying property in Costa Rica is definitely a sure bet, in what’s doubtlessly the best area to invest in Central America.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Finding a Realtor

Due to the fact that no licensing requirements for real estate brokers in Costa Rica are required, this basically means that any person out there can present themselves as professional realtors, whether they actually are or not.

So, when buying property in Costa Rica, it’s important to make sure that the realtor you’re dealing with is part of the CRGAR, the most popular local real estate association.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Making an Offer

Once you’ve found the right realtor, then it’s time to make an offer for the Costa Rica real estate property.

This way you’re securing the property for yourself, and that also guarantees that you’re not paying extra for a give Costa Rica home or Costa Rica condo.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Financing

Unfortunately, if you’re not a legal resident of the country, it will be difficult for you to find any kind of financing to buying property in Costa Rica.

With that said, a number of options for foreigners are offered by developers of real estate in Costa Rica.

And, sell-financing might be a third option, although a rare one to find.

But, your best two overall options are home equity loans on your existing properties, and also your retirement funds.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Attorneys

When you find yourself at this stage of the buying process, your Costa Rica broker is likely to recommend you to find a good real estate attorney to help you take care of all legal paperwork.

This includes the due diligence, which is probably the most important report at this stage.

Your attorney will help you verify all the existing registration regarding any current mortgages and liens, plus he’ll make sure all fees and back taxes are paid in full.

Last but not least, your Costa Rica real estate attorney will also help you draw up the contract of sale.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Signing the Deeds

Different from other countries, you will require the help of a Costa Rica Notary Public to make sure all transactions related to real estate are formalized.

And for this reason, all deeds must be signed and recorded with the Public Registrar right at this point.

What’s great is that you don’t have to be in the country to close the deal, and all you need to do is to ask your lawyer to employ your power of attorney.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Investing Glossary

If you’re interested in buying property in Costa Rica real estate as an investment, you should be familiar with the jargon related to real estate.

Asset

Now, the first thing you need to know is that real estate is called an asset.

A property you’re getting is becoming a personal asset.

It may be a commercial property or residential property, or just a piece of land, but that is called an asset.

In sum, an asset is anything you own that can generate income for you.

Debt

Now let’s talk about debt.

So, that’s the amount you have taken to invest in Costa Rica real estate from your bank.

This debt is another expense.

It can be ranging from a few percent, one or two to 10%.

So debt is an instrument that you use as a loan to buy your asset.

Equity

Can you have 100% debt on the asset?

Let’s say you have 20% of the total amount you need to buy your Costa Rica real estate property.

So that is the equity you have for your asset.

If you have 100% equity, there will be no debt.

But if you cannot pay all the money, you use debt, known as leverage, to buy your asset.

So let me be clear, you have an asset that you want to buy, but you don’t all the money, you just have 20$ equity.

Then, you take debt or leverage, and the remaining percent which you paid for your asset is equity.

Leverage

Leverage is simply using borrowed money to buy a Costa Rica Real Estate property.

Let’s say you only have 25% of the money required, and that’s 25% equity. And let’s say the value of an asset is 100K.

You have borrowed 75% of the total amount needed for the purchase, so that means that you have 75% leverage.

So, if you’re highly leveraged, it means that you have more debt than equity.

Loan

The loan is money borrowed from a bank.

The bank will lend you money, so they’ll send some dollars across.

But the condition is that you will pay these dollars back to the bank in a time.

Which usually is a number in decades. That sounds pretty good.

Interest

If the bank borrowed money, they would charge you for it.

So a percentage of the cash you pay to the bank has to go back in interest.

And that’s what happens when a bank lends us money.

Now, if the bank is lending you this money, th house is secured against the money.

Cash Inflow and Cash Outflow

When you have an asset, you have cash inflow and cash outflow.

You had invested money in a Costa Rica real estate asset, and that was cash outflow.

When you sell it, that’s cash inflow.

In sum, any money that’s going out is cash outflow, and any money is coming to you, it’s the cash inflow.

Cash Flow

And, the net amount is considered as cash flow.

Let’s say your rental income is $1000, and your monthly payment for taxes and other things is $600 dollars.

So the $400 left is your cash flow.

It can be positive or negative, let’s say you have $1000 rental income and $600 to be paid to people.

So you’re having $400 dollars of positive cash flow.

But, if your rental income was $1000 and your expenses were $1100, you would be having a negative cash flow.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: House Hacking Guide

Buying property in Costa Rica also involves house hacking, and if this is an area you’re interested in, read on.

This section is all about helping you learn about how others have been able to purchase real estate in Costa Rica and are also living in their property as well.

Buying Property in Costa Rica, House Hacking: What Is It?

So what exactly is house hacking in relation to buying property in Costa Rica?

The simple answer is basically buying a small multiple-unit property in Costa Rica, you end up living in one unit, and then you rent out the rest of the units.

And, what happens is once you rent out the rest of the units, that means your mortgage and your living expenses should be mostly paid for, or completely paid for in some cases.

Buying Property in Costa Rica House Hacking: Home Types

When buying property in Costa Rica, these are the different house hacking types:

Buying Property in Costa Rica House Hacking: Duplex

So the first one is a duplex or two units.

So it’s kind of like a house split in half.

So maybe in this case you would purchase a duplex and you would live in one unit and then you’d rent out the other.

And then, in that case, that other unit should cover the majority of your expenses as far as mortgage, and things of that sort.

The pros of this are that for a duplex getting it rented you only have one set of tenants to deal with.

The downside of a duplex is that saying tenant leaves, now you have absolutely no income coming in from that property.

In order words, you’re suffering from vacant vacancy, which basically means that you have a property that’s supposed to be rented, but no one’s renting it right now.

Buying Property in Costa Rica House Hacking: Triplex

Three units in total, where you rent two units and you live in one.

And with that your risk is actually spread out a little bit more.

This means that you now have to find two tenants, two different people to rent to for the two different units.

So that’s the downside.

But the really good side to this is that your risk is lowered in the sense of the chances of both tenants leaving at the same exact time are pretty unlikely.

Basically if one does leave you still have income coming from another source.

Buying Property in Costa Rica House Hacking: Fourplex

The best when it comes to house hacking is a fourplex.

This is a total of four units, where you live in one, and there are three other units for three different renters.

This is really how you minimize your risk.

Buying Property in Costa Rica House Hacking: What Isn’t

Let’s go over what isn’t a house hack and what things maybe you shouldn’t expect when it comes to house hacking.

If you’re looking for a place that you have absolutely zero neighbors or anything of that sort, well then probably house hacking isn’t for you because with house hacking you’re going to have neighbors.

That’s just how it is.

Buying Property in Costa Rica House Hacking: What to Look For

Let’s go over what to look for when it comes to your house hack or just house hacking in general.

So, the first and biggest tip we can give you is to know what you want.

This is really self-explanatory. But then, when people get into it they’re kind of confused and they stop looking.

And now here’s some more actionable advice in the sense of actual things to be looking out for.

Buying Property in Costa Rica House Hacking: Overlooked Opportunities

So here are some other ideas.

First, really be on the lookout for overlooked opportunities.

For, example, you see a property that has x amount of rooms, and you think one of these rooms that’s maybe being used as office space could actually be turned into a bedroom.

That’s a huge opportunity for you because you’re able to turn really wasted space into a bedroom.

And ultimately what that means is potentially more profit for you.

So, be on the lookout for missed opportunities that maybe the past owner or owners of that property have missed, and really find a way in how you can make it better.

This is something that can be easily done as far as just being able to look at the pictures online.

Buying Property in Costa Rica House Hacking: Great Pricing

Next is great pricing.

This is a factor that gets all buyers’ attention, probably the fastest out of all things.

If the property has a great price, it’s going to attract naturally more attention.

That’s just really how that works. But you need to be on top of your game, meaning knowing what you want, and then setting up maybe even notifications for different sites such as Zillow and the rest of the realtor websites where you can set up notifications, etc.

So if you’re looking for a certain type of property, and a new one pops up, and it’s your market, you’ll get notified.

Buying Property in Costa Rica House Hacking: Properties With A Long Time In The Market

Next is then looking for properties that actually have been on the market for long periods of time.

So, this is your opportunity where people maybe tend to just forget about it over time and just move on.

There’s this great property here but say the owners just want way too much for it.

If you see a property that has been on the market for, say over 150 days, there’s a good chance that you can make a much more realistic offer to the person.

And the chances of them getting back to you with some kind of counter offer that’s a whole lot less than their original asking price is a lot more likely.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: House Hacking FAQ’s

Now let’s go over some really common questions when it comes to house hacking when it comes to buying real estate in Costa Rica.

Will I be living with multiple people?

It totally depends on what type of property you have.

For example, let’s say you have a duplex, then you’re not going to be living with multiple people inside your own specific unit.

So you’re not going to be with them in that sense. However, they’ll be right next door to you.

It really depends on your setup, but generally speaking probably not.

The only exception to this is that if you were to buy a larger single-family home, and say you were renting all the different bedrooms, and you were still deciding to live in one of the bedrooms, well in that sense you’re probably gonna end up in some sense living with them.

Do I have to be a landlord?

So the simple answer to this is technically speaking no, you don’t have to be a landlord.

There are companies out there that you can hire, and then they’ll manage the property for you.

However, keep in mind that these companies obviously are not going to do it for free.

So, ultimately what this means for you is that you will have to more than likely pay some kind of set fixed price each month, or it can be done to buy a percentage of your rents.

How hard is it to find a good property?

So there is a lot of great real estate investors that have this rule which is to look at 100 properties online.

And never take a decision before following this key step.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Relocation Cost Comparison Chart

United States v/s Costa Rica

United States
Average ($)

Costa Rica
Average ($)

Average Gross National Income (per capita)

$47,390

$6,810

Housing (comparable 3 bedroom, 2 bath) 

$1000-3000

$500-1200

Gasoline (per gallon of regular) 

$3.00

$5.00

ADSL Internet monthly (1024/512 kb/sec) 

$34.95

$28.25

Home Phone Service (basic monthly fee)

$29.95

$7.00

Cell Phone (450/500 anytime minutes, plus taxes) 

$39.99 

$35.75

Cable TV (basic /monthly) 

$39.99

$37.00

Water (per unit m3) 

$.61

$.48

Electricity (average cost per kWh)

$.1063

$.11

Private Health Care (average annual cost of individual health plan for male 55-59 yrs)

$3695

$1300

Car (purchase price for 2011 Toyota RAV4)

$22,475

$36,000

Movie Ticket average cost

 

$12.00

$5.00

Housekeeper or Gardener (average pay / hour)

$9.00

$2.00

Haircut (in a beauty salon)

$18.00 & Up

$3.00 & Up

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Becoming a Real Estate Agent

When it comes to buying property in Costa Rica, you can also jump in the business of selling local real estate and get big profits by doing so.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: What is a Real Estate Agent?

A real estate agent is a professional who negotiates and arranges the buying and selling of real estate transactions.

In a nutshell, that basically just means that a real estate agent is given the responsibility to help a buyer, or help a seller to understand what they’re getting into when they jump into a real estate transaction.

Real estate agents actually get paid on commission.

Now, this is important because you want to be able to raise your commission and be comfortable and confident in the amount of commission that you’re asking for.

Buying Property in Costa Rica: Fiduciary Duties of A Real Estate Agent

So you need to be able to perform your fiduciary duties, which is going to increase your chances of having that higher commission and having that confidence in what you’re receiving for commission.

Loyalty

Loyalty just says that the agent is going to put the seller’s interests, their best interests above the buyer’s interest.

Above the buyer’s agent’s interests, above your broker’s interest, above your own interest. You have to guard that with loyalty, and saying that you’re going to put them above all else.

Obedience

Obedience says that the real estate agent is obligated to perform tasks within the realm of the law that is given to them by their buyer or seller that they’re representing.

For example, if a seller has a home that you think is worth $100,000 but they want you to list it for $500,000, then you have to do that.

If you enter into the agreement with them and say yes, I’m going to be your real estate agent, then whatever number they say goes.

It’s out of your control in a way.

All you can do is give them advice.

You can make suggestions, but when the seller or buyer asks for a certain task, as long as it’s lawful, you basically have to perform it.

Disclosure and Confidentiality

Disclosure just means that basically whatever information you know, you should be sharing that info with the person who you’re representing, your buyer or seller.

Now on that note, we have confidentiality, which says that you’re not to disclose your principles, financial information or situation, to anyone else in the real estate transaction.

So, for example, if a seller that you’re representing is willing to accept lower than the asking price, then that’s not something that you should be going out and sharing with list buyers agents or different buyers.

Also, if a buyer finds a home, and you’re in negotiation, and you know that they’re willing to pay more than the asking price, that is not something that you need to be going and telling anybody.

So, confidentiality just means that you’re going to protect your client’s best interests by not disclosing their financial situation.

Reasonable Character

Reasonable character says that a real estate agent has to always have good character and integrity.

The real estate agent is supposed to almost be like a witness in transactions.

Someone who’s there to help a seller or buyer make decisions, to provide information, and be a helpful and useful piece to the puzzle.

Accounting

Last but not least, we have accounting.

As a real estate agent, you have to be able to do some numbers.

Now, there’s no rule against having a calculator, and everybody has a smartphone.

But you’ve got to be able to understand numbers and a couple of formulas and calculations.

If you do work with investors, you want to know the cap rate, the capitalization rate.

If you’re working with buyers, you’re going to have to come up with the buyer’s estimate sheet that tells them every cost that’s expected to occur or to receive in this transaction.

Becoming A Real Estate Entrepreneur: The Cashflow Quadrant

Let’s check out Rich Dad’s Cashflow Quadrant, by Robert Kiyosaki

Understanding the business of becoming an entrepreneur is a lot different than just working the normal 9 to 5 job.

You become your own boss, which in turn means that you have to have 100% accountability for your actions when you become your own boss.

Nobody’s there to make sure you’re actually doing the things that are important for you to do in your business.

You have to be the one who’s working in your business and working on your business.

What does this mean?

I’ll give you an example.

Working in your business is actually going out and showing homes to buyers, it’s taking a step back and looking at the numbers, seeing what your percentages are, how many houses you’re closing.

Over a span of let’s say six months how many leads you’re getting per month?

And how can you scale that to make even more money or profits or even more leads come in the door?

Each and every day working on your business is more about growing your business and being more effective as an entrepreneur.

The Cashflow Quadrant

Let’s check out the cash flow quadrant.

This cash flow quadrant basically breaks down the four different ways to make money in business. In any business.

The Employee

So let’s look at the first quadrant which is the employee quadrant as an employee.

You go in you clock in let’s call it a 9 to five.

You trade time for money. You basically can’t make any more money than you’re given the time to make.

So if your employer gives you 40 hours a week, then you’re going to make let’s say 20 bucks an hour for 40 hours a week.

But if your boss says that you can only work 10 hours a week then you’re stuck only working 10 hours a week.

So honestly in the cash flow quadrant, being an employee gives you the least amount of freedom to be able to do what you want and make more profits in the business.

Self-Employed

The next in the cash flow quadrant is being self-employed.

When I think of someone who’s self-employed, I think of maybe a contractor, or a lawyer, or something along those lines.

When you’re self-employed the difference between actually being an employee is you have a little more freedom.

You may still work for somebody, most likely under some sort of agreement, with someone who isn’t necessarily your boss, but they may have hired you to perform a task.

The Business Owner

Now, the business owner.

The pro factor is that you can actually set your prices.

Now, of course, you have to look at market data and see what’s comparable in those sorts of things, but for now, let’s just make it simple and say you can set your own price.

It’s a lot different than being a 9 to 5 employee because there’s no boss to set your hours and set your pay.

You’re in a position now to be able to say I want to work X amount of hours for X amount of dollars thus allowing you to set your price and set your freedom.

The biggest difference between a business owner, someone who’s self-employed, or an actual employee is the fact that a business owner can step away from work and still get paid.

If you own a business and you have someone in place actually working in the business then you can step out of the business and the business will still make you money.

You can show up on the job whenever you want because you don’t have to work in the business.

You can focus on working on the business.

When you become a business owner, guess what…

You no longer have to be present in the business to make money.

The Investor

An investor is someone who allows their money to make money for them.

Someone like a lender or someone who puts their money into some sort of mutual fund or stock or real estate and sees a return on that money.

They’re actually just putting their money in a place that allows them to make more money.

Ultimately you want to be an investor.

You want to be able to put your money in a place that you know will make you more money, and will give you enough income from the returns for you to live your preferred lifestyle.

That’s when you are an investor.

The Real Estate Agent in the Cashflow Quadrant

So what’s a real estate agent in the Cashflow Quadrant?

Well, the estate agent actually falls in the self-employed category.

You have the freedom to set your own prices and also to set your own hours.

Again, it’s heavily dependent upon your market, and you know your laws and those sorts of things around you.

But all in all, you’re not in the same position as an employee.

So as an agent, you do have the ability to schedule viewings and listings and showings whenever you want.

You don’t have to necessarily do it at a certain time, and you can also negotiate your commission because real estate agents work on, and get paid by commission.

Therefore you have the ability to make more money when you make more sales, or when you make higher-priced transactions.

An example of an employee in real estate brokerage would be an assistant.

Someone who works on the administrative side, and gets paid a salary for being there.

They don’t need to be licensed professionals. They may just be there doing paperwork and filling in the gaps.

An example of a business owner would be a broker, usually called the broker of record.

It’s not always the owner, but the broker, in most situations, and for simple terms, owns the business, and they don’t necessarily have to be out showing houses and getting listings because they hire agents to do that for them.

And usually, there are also assistants who either work at the front desk or handle phone calls and paperwork.

To a certain extent, this way the broker can focus on scaling the business.

Working on the business, instead of working in the business.

How to Get Real Estate Leads – Strategy #1: Facebook Ads

The first strategy to get more leads for your business is using Facebook ads.

So, when it comes to Facebook ads, you need to know this upfront: you’re gonna be spending money.

You can try to use certain free things on Facebook, you can attempt to post things on your page, but let’s just be real here:

Unless you already have a following, chances are very little to no amount of people are going to actually be a lead for you.

A true lead for you when it comes to using Facebook.

And so, what do you get from the ads, exactly?

You’re going to be after things such as phone numbers, names, and then also e-mail addresses.

Keep this in mind, as all these are incredibly valuable things for you.

Now, let’s find out exactly how to create an ad on Facebook when it comes to lead capture.

So first you’re going to need your own Facebook account.

Then, Facebook ads are under Facebook business.

The Persona

You want to have an idea about who to target.

And, as far as your daily budget, that’s completely up to you, as far as how you want to do that.

So what’s important is creating an ad targeted at the audience you’re trying to attract.

Area

Let’s start with the area.

Set it to the United States, and to the specific area.

If you’re looking for buyers or sellers in New York for your properties in Guanacaste, you don’t want to target the full country. That will just be wasting your money.

Age

So here is another important thing which is the age of your targeted audience.

Maybe for you, that’s people between the ages of 45 to let’s just say 75.

And maybe you’re trying to hit mostly men.

So you have that option available.

Notice that the more specific you get about these things, the potential reach does decrease.

But that can be also sometimes a good thing as well in the sense of being able to get down the exact person you’re looking for.

Demographics

So you can add in different demographics, interests, and behaviors.

Here, sometimes you have to experiment to see what they’re interested in, what not, or what’s actually interesting to them will pop up eventually.

Placements

So the next thing is placements. This is something big that’s super important.

It’s not recommended to have automatic placements.

That’s because that’s a way about how Facebook can kind of take more of your ad budget than what’s actually needed.

You also want to have it both on mobile and desktop.

Something important as well is you only want it on mobile devices when they’re connected to Wi-Fi because that way you make sure that they’re able to see the actual content itself.

Indeed, having it on Wi-Fi connection can be actually helpful as far as helping conversions in the long run.

Facebook Ads for Real Estate Quick Tips

There is a learning curve to Facebook ads. You’re going to make mistakes. It’s not going to be perfect the first time you do it. It should get better over time as you do it.

Make sure you have a set budget per lead. Now what I mean by this is that you’re not willing to spend more than $xx dollars per lead.

How to Get Real Estate Leads – Strategy #2: YouTube Channel

The next strategy to increase your leads as a real estate agent is to create a YouTube channel.

You obviously want to create sales, but what does that mean for you?

Maybe that means you want to give tours of a house that you have available.

Now, there are channels that have done relatively well with just tours.

But these work just for the curiosity factor, and for the sort of $5,000,000 luxury home.

If you’re offering an average home, that’s not gonna be nearly as interesting for people because that’s just what people see in everyday kind of a thing.

Yes, it’s the huge, really the huge states that get people’s attention.

But some of the most successful youtube channels that have to do with real estate agents running them actually have to do with more or less normal sales, what people can generally afford, and things of that sort.

What you want to do is to give value through your YouTube channel.

You want to be able to answer questions that homebuyers may have.

YouTube Real Estate Channel Quick Tips

Here are some youtube channel tips on buying real estate in Costa Rica that are going to really help you along with the process of building your channel over time.

The main one is to always be in the mentality of giving value to your content.

How are you adding value to people’s lives?

How are you helping people?

Are you actually really helping with true tips that can help them take action on something?

In other words, are you offering actionable tips?

Quality is also important. Chances are you can probably take high definition video with your phone.

So really what you can end up doing is using that.

Also, think about how can you differentiate yourself from the pack.

Why should people be watching your videos compared to someone else’s video?

The perspective: Maybe you have what other people don’t have, etc.

So, ultimately you need to stand out in some way.

We hope this guide on buying real estate in Costa Rica will serve you well, best luck in your search for your own slice of paradise!