How to Avoid Common Pitfalls When Buying Land in Costa Rica

How to Avoid Common Pitfalls When Buying Land in Costa Rica

How to Avoid Common Pitfalls When Buying Land in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a popular destination to invest in land, thanks to its stunning natural beauty, warm climate, and welcoming culture. However, buying land in Costa Rica comes with its own set of challenges and risks that can trip up even the most experienced investor. Read on as we will discuss some common pitfalls to avoid when buying land in Costa Rica, and provide tips to help you make a wise investment. 

Whether you are buying a plot of land to build your dream vacation home or seeking a profitable real estate investment, these tips will help you navigate the process with confidence and avoid costly mistakes.

Common Pitfalls to Avoid

Buying land in Costa Rica can be an exciting prospect, but it's important to proceed with caution to avoid common pitfalls. Here are some tips to help you navigate the process and make a wise investment.

  • Research thoroughly: Before you even consider buying land in Costa Rica, it's important to research thoroughly about the location, climate, and other important factors. It may seem tempting to jump into the first deal you find appealing but thorough research on the area and surrounding market are necessary for making a sound investment. Consult with local real estate agents, attorneys, and other experts to get a better understanding of the market and the legal requirements.
  • Hire an attorney: It's important to have a qualified attorney who specializes in real estate law to help you navigate the legal aspects of buying land in Costa Rica. Make sure to check their credentials and experience before hiring. Buying land can get complex, especially for a first time buyer, having a legal opinion to help you along the way is always encouraged. 
  • Check the title: Make sure to verify the title of the land before purchasing. Hire a professional title search company to check the ownership history and ensure that there are no outstanding liens or claims on the property.
  • Inspect the land: Before buying the land, inspect it thoroughly for any issues such as soil erosion, landslides, seasonal flooding, or other environmental concerns. If possible, hire a qualified engineer to assess the land for any potential issues.
  • Check zoning and permits: Verify the zoning regulations for the land and ensure that you can use it for your intended purpose. Make sure to check if any permits or environmental assessments are required for development.
  • Understand the costs: Make sure to understand the total cost of purchasing the land, including legal fees, title search fees, and other expenses. Also, consider the ongoing costs of owning the land such as property taxes and maintenance costs. Outlining your budget will narrow down your land options and will help real estate agents assist you better with your search. 
  • Be patient: Buying land in Costa Rica can be a lengthy process, so it's important to be patient and not rush into any decisions. Don’t be impulsive, take the time to carefully consider all the factors before making an investment. Good things come to those who wait. 

Buy Your Own Dream Plot of Land Today

Costa Rica Land

Credit: Photo by Alix Greenman on Unsplash


Buying land in Costa Rica can be a great investment opportunity, but like any big investment, it requires careful consideration and due diligence. By conducting thorough research, the help of qualified professionals, avoiding rash decisions and being patient, you can avoid common pitfalls and make a sound investment. With its beautiful scenery, diverse wildlife, and vibrant culture, Costa Rica offers a unique opportunity to own a slice of paradise. 

So, if you're in the market for a piece of Costa Rican land, check out the plots of land for sale in Costa Rica and take advantage of the many benefits that Costa Rica has to offer.

Commonly Asked Questions about Buying Land in Costa Rica

Can foreigners own land in Costa Rica?

Yes, foreigners can own land in Costa Rica and have the same rights to ownership as the locals. However, there are some restrictions in keeping with Costa Rica’s efforts to stay natural and not be over developed. Land within 50 meters of the high water line can never be built on. 

What types of land are available for purchase in Costa Rica?

There are many types of land available for purchase in Costa Rica, including residential, commercial, agricultural, and raw land.

Are there any taxes associated with owning land in Costa Rica?

Yes, there are property taxes associated with owning land in Costa Rica. The rate is extremely low, only 0.25% of the property value. So on a $400,000 property, the property taxes are only $1,000 per year

How much does land cost in Costa Rica?

The cost of land in Costa Rica varies depending on the location, size, and type of land. Prices can range from a few thousand dollars per acre to several million dollars for prime beachfront property.

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We are- UNHAPPILY- home safe. Would much rather be back in Tamarindo. THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING you did to make our stay a joy ! We look very much forward to seeing you on our next trip to Costa Rica. PURA VIDA !

Steve Perry, Costa Rica

We had so much fun at Buena Vista. Thanks for arranging that with Memo.
I also want to say many thanks for all that you have done. We have enjoyed Costa Rica and I have found you so helpful with everything and a pleasure to deal with that it was a very stress free vacation. When I do come back here hopefully you will still be doing what what you do.
Our last couple of days will be spent enjoying the sunshine and eating at great restaurants. Sincerely,

Tara, Kevin and Roy., Costa Rica

While my computer is still running here, I'd like to take the opportunity to thank you for your help during our stay.
When we first came to your office, we were in dire straights and in desperate need of assistance. Andrea was extremely compassionate, spoke with candor, and had a "can do attitude" that was of immense help.
In addition, Andrea has put us in contact with Steve, with whom we are working, preparing to view a little property that might be just what we are looking for at this particular time.
In addition, having gotten to know Andrea personally as well as professionally has been our great pleasure. I wanted to let you know what a tremendous asset she is to your company. She is a great treasure -- a one in a million.

Tina Parker, Costa Rica

Laurel and Tony,
The both of you were fantastic with us throughout the property search and purchase process. As we had mentioned, two other attempts to find thorough, attentive, responsive agents to work with in Tamarindo were failures. I expect that we are more work to deal with than many others as we asked a lot of thorough and analytical questions and expected responses to all of them. You two never failed to deliver. The organization and execution of our condo shopping trip in January was excellent and the fact that you two devoted 2 full days to us, around our schedule, to get this deal done was key to our success. The selection of properties that Laurel planned out, including a few places above and below our target zone helped us to refine our interests. We truly appreciated your interest in our success. This could easily have been very stressful for us, and yet, it wasn’t. Thank you very much.
As a side note, when we walked into the Coldwell Banker office randomly with no appointment in November had we not found your office staff patient and accommodating from the start we would have simply walked on to the next agency. Your staff deserves special mention for getting us interested in the agency to begin with.
We will give you some advance notice before we make our first trip down so that we can plan to get together for lunch or dinner. We are tentatively planning on somewhere in the last 2 weeks of May, as soon as our son gets out of school for the summer.

Dan Batliner, Costa Rica
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