Has Belize become the “New Great Escape” ?

The past five years I have watched as the Placencia Peninsula and North have “been found”! Yes, North Americans from Canada and the United States have been purchasing properties here for years, and the majority of them utilized those properties as “Snowbirds”, coming down up to six months a year. Some would only come down for a couple weeks a year, and rent their homes the rest of the year as an investment.

However, for the past two years that has changed dramatically. As “conditions” in North America have morphed, more and more people started coming to Belize on vacations, but also to look for deals on houses and buildable property, especially beach properties.

Luckily for those people, at the same time, the aging population of home owners here decided it was time to sell their properties, and lifestyle. As they put their homes on the market, they were told by the qualified and knowledgable Realtors, that it could take 2-5 years to sell their homes.

And then the flood gates opened up, and we started seeing beachfront homes and building lots sell in some cases within months.

Yup…That’s my Harley Davidson 🙂

The fact is, the large majority of people looking to relocate here are seeking Caribbean beachfront property, because….why wouldn’t they ? Very quickly the numbers of homes on the market declined as they were being sold. Expats living here started complaining about all the Real Estate signs on the main road of the peninsula. These quickly changed to “under contract”, then “Sold”.

At the same time the many buildable lots for sale on the beach side as well as Lagoon-front started selling, and very quickly local builders started building homes on them. In fact, at this time, all the quality builders on the Peninsula are not even accepting new builds for 2-3 years, because they are that busy building. As one of those builders told me recently, up to two years ago he would be building one house, and have an order to build his next”on the back burner”. Today he is actively building 10+ houses, and not accepting new clients.

I think I found an “affordable home” honey 🙂

This past year has also introduced a new situation for the Real Estate market here, buyers buying homes and land “unseen” other than “virtually”. Yes, it’s true, and I personally know someone that saw a beach home online, then viewed an Aerial Drone Video, the wired $1,000,000 U.S. to belize to purchase it !

So, the past year has seen the virtual depletion of beach houses for sale, as well a building lots on the sea. Yes there are a couple houses on the market, and a handful of building lots, but, owners and Realtors are smart, and realize that as the available properties become few, the few are worth more. Case in point, a year ago the average building lot sold at about $225-240,000 U.S. The remaining beachfront building lots here in Maya Beach are now listed between $325-400,000 U.S.

You may ask, is “the rush” subsiding? The answer is a big “NO”. Not only are buyers and investors from the Americas still making appointments with Realtors, but we are seeing more arriving rom other countries as well, because Belize has been found. Recent expat/investors are seen buying 3-6 or more properties, because they know its a smart investment.

If you have been “sitting on the fence” waiting for a good time to find a “good deal” here in Belize, you may have missed the boat. Can you still find a good deal? Yes in some cases, but not on the beach. Buyers even today are out looking at “internal lots and homes”. Those are the properties not on the sea, not on the lagoon, but in between, and still “walkable” to beach access

I will tell you, as someone who had his own Real Estate Brokerage in Oregon, is “retired sort of” here, and has a wife who decided a couple years ago to open a Real Estate Office here in Maya Beach, it has been crazy! The past two years Marsha has become so busy that I need an appointment to see her. When she finally gets home at night, she is toast. As one of the top and busiest and most knowledgable Realtors here on the mainland, if you have any questions I suggest you contact her. I would if I was looking to buy here in Belize.

We recently visited San Pedro and “Secret Beach”, on business and pleasure…Appointment needed 🙂

But…you know I already did 🙂

I hope I didn’t totally depress you, but fear not, there is still time and properties.

Be safe and make good decisions,

Gary

Just in case 🙂

Marsha Peterson…. Keller Williams Real Estate, Placencia, Maya Beach, North and Cayes.

Email- Marsha@KellerWilliamsBelize.com

WhatsApp- 1-501-610-5608

About storiesbygary

I am a Freelance Writer / Photographer, writing travel related articles for international magazines, blogs and websites and my own published books.
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2 Responses to Has Belize become the “New Great Escape” ?

  1. Samantha W says:

    Hi Gary,

    I have been following your story over the last several years. We bought land down in Placencia in 2015. And we are now starting the process of building our property.

    I was curious to know , and you had mentioned some of this stuff in your post a while back, but do you have builders that you would recommend or not recommend?

    I would appreciate any insight that you have so that me and my husband can make the right decision on who we choose to build her home.

    Thank you and happy new year cheers to 2022.

    Samantha to be an soon neighbor of yours 🙂

    >

    • Hi Samantha…welcome to my neighborhood 🙂
      I would highly suggest that you choose one of the local Belizean builders, and stay away from any “expat builders” who claim to be “builders”. They all “subcontract”to local builders and usually choose the cheapest 😦
      That being said, these are our recommendations.
      For a larger to average premium home, Nelson Montalvo who built our home and many of our friends.-cell- 501-670-2021
      Next..for average homes, wood and concrete, Rigo Jovel- Cell- 501-615-1021
      Margarito Ortez- Keystone Design & Construction. Email- OrtizKeystone@gmail.com
      *** Please note- Margarito was our “2nd choice” to build our house, and over the past few years, we realized he would make a great 1st choice. He also is not as “busy” as the rest this minute.
      Good Luck

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