6 Facts About Buying a Property in Barbados
Owning a luxury villa or apartment in Barbados is, for many, the ultimate dream. It’s an island famed for its beautiful beaches and lush tropical landscapes, year-round sunshine and unlimited ways to enjoy your time. If you are considering buying a holiday home in Barbados, here are some interesting facts you should be aware of.
- No restrictions for non-residents
Many countries around the world have restrictions preventing people from abroad buying property. Thankfully, Barbados isn’t one of them. This means you won’t need to have Barbadian citizenship or apply for a purchase visa to buy your dream holiday home. You have the same legal right to purchase a property as a Barbadian resident does.
- Buying process is straightforward
Wherever you go in the world, the purchase of a property will need to follow established procedures to ensure legal requirements are met and that the process goes ahead smoothly. Barbados is no exception and there are measures in place to safeguard both the buyer and the seller of the property.
As in most countries, a real estate agent usually acts on behalf of the owner to sell the property and the process begins when the buyer makes a verbal offer to which the seller gives a verbal agreement. Once the offer has been accepted, this is made formal when the buyer provides the seller or their agent with written confirmation of their offer.
From this point forward, both parties will need to engage the services of their conveyancing lawyers who will draw up the contracts, arrange surveys and ensure that legal and financial matters are taken care of.
One rule that you need to be aware of is that, in Barbados, the buyer is required to pay a 10% deposit of the purchasing price four weeks before the exchange of contracts. The final 90% is then paid on completion. There can be an exception to this for off-plan developments where payment is made in stages during the property’s construction.
- You’ll need a registered conveyancing attorney
As mentioned above, you will need to engage a conveyancing lawyer. In Barbados, these are referred to as registered conveyancing attorneys. They will act on your behalf to ensure all essential checks and legal requirements are in order so that the process goes to plan and that there are no unexpected problems when you take ownership.
The fees Barbadian attorneys charge for conveyancing are regulated and are based on the property’s value. You will also have to pay Barbadian VAT on your legal fees.
- Foreign currency needs to be in place
As a non-resident, the funds required for buying the property have to come from external (non-Barbadian) sources. This means bringing foreign currency into the country and to do that there are some basic procedures you’ll need to follow. To ensure funds are available in time, it is best to arrange this early to avoid delays in completion.
Non-residents can obtain mortgages in Barbados but, like anywhere else, this will be dependent on financial status, including the ability to pay a substantial (usually between 30% to 40%) deposit. Non-citizens also need to provide two forms of government-issued ID, e.g., passport and driving licence, as well as giving financial guarantees that they can pay the mortgage, such as proof of income or employment.
- There will be annual property costs
When working out the affordability of a property, you will need to remember that besides any mortgage repayments, there will be other costs, like utility bills and maintenance. Additionally, property owners in Barbados have to pay an annual Land Tax, based on the property’s value. This is similar to taxes in other countries, like the UK’s Council Tax.
For properties located in some resorts, it is often the resort that will pay the Land Tax. However, owners may have to pay annual fees to the resort for membership and property maintenance.
- You can rent out your property
One of the big advantages of owning a property in Barbados is that you can rent it out when you are not using it. As one of the Caribbean’s most exclusive holiday destinations, this gives you the potential to generate significant income each year as accommodation prices in Barbados can be high. If your property is on a resort, you may find the resort itself will manage the lettings for you.
The best place to buy property in Barbados?
If you are looking for the ideal location for your holidays and somewhere you can maximise income from renting, then buying a property at Royal Westmoreland is the best choice. Providing you with Barbados’ most prestigious address, the private, gated resort offers luxury villas and apartments for full or fractional ownership. With world-class amenities, including a championship standard golf course, fine eateries, beach club, state of the art gym, housekeepers, private chef service and concierge, it’s the epitome of exclusivity.
Find out more about the luxury villas and apartments for sale at Royal Westmoreland by visiting their Ownership Page.