BVI Sotheby’s International Realty is the global authority for property sales, vacation villas for sale and rent in the British Virgin Islands. Property valuation and management. Located in Mill Mall, Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands. Specializes in residential sales, vacation villa rentals, commercial property, including private islands, marinas, hotels and resorts. The best and most exact property valuation in the BVI.
Land in the BVI is very limited. With 59 square miles altogether and a substantial amount of the land being too steep to build on, the logic is simple - As the world population grows, as the amount of high net worth individuals increases and as the BVI continues to be the yachting mecca of the world, owning property is a fantastic investment for long term, consistent revenue. With a large portion of land remaining in the local hands, buying real estate in the BVI is in essence, buying a resource that will only become more scarce.
For Non-Belongers (Belongers "belong" to the BVI by birth, marriage or special designation), the procedure of purchasing property includes applying for a Non-Belongers Land Holding license. Among other documentation, the applicant must provide a police certificate, financial and personal references. When the license is approved, the Stamp Duty of 12% is payable by the buyer. Usually, the whole process can be completed within a year. For more information and consulting on the procedures, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Application fees are $200 for a person or $500 for a company, license fees are $600 for a person and $1000 for a company (please obtain complete list of fees from the Ministry of Natural Resources).
Land tax for expatriates is $150/year on the first acre and $50/year on remaining acres. For parcels of 0.5 acres and less, the tax is $50.
The new financial reality has shifted the look of the BVI real estate market. Most of the existing construction projects slowed down or got cancelled. With major economies struggling, the BVI real estate market has slowed. Nevertheless, there are some exceptions, such as luxury properties where the volume of high net worth individuals is not directly affected by the recession. Another example of recession-proof properties are houses with multiple units, that can be rented. With 70% of the BVI workforce being expatriates, there is a strong demand for good quality, furnished rentals. This is particularly true for the Road Town area. Many luxury properties are also rented as vacation rentals. Renting out the “second home” property during time spent outside of the BVI has become a preferred choice for new owners. Amount of rental revenue has become an important factor as for many properties, the income generated from rentals covers or exceeds the expense of owning the property.
In comparison to the low success rate of real estate projects in the Caribbean, there are those with solid financing and planning. Virgin Gorda has seen a number a new luxury real estate developments - new developments such as the activities in North Sound which have transformed Virgin Gorda into the leading “high end” destination of the Caribbean.
Oil Nut Bay is definitely one of the most successful developments. As more residential properties are sold, new projetcs are commencing construction. YCCS Marina has brought some real change to North Sound, with the super yacht regattas and constant development. Scrub Island became a part of The Marriot's Autograph Collection, a brand of high end hotels, reporting unprecedented occupancy rates and hosting several international conferences.
On Tortola, the Nanny Cay Resort and Marina continues its expansion. New condominiums are under construction, with the marina docking facilities expanding. The BVI Spring Regatta, hosted in Nanny Cay, is the high point of the sailing season both in the BVI and internationally. Additionally, properties are being constructed in Trunk Bay, a new residential district on the north-east side of Tortola.
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Because of the restrictive policies adopted by the banks, the entry threshold is higher compared to previous years. To name the most significant changes, many banks have increased the equity contribution (currently above 50% - varies on property) and decreased the repayment period from the usual 30 years to 15-20 years. This places a higher threshold on the entry. Nevertheless those who qualify have a very good negotiating position. Given the historically low interest rates and competitive pricing, perhaps it is the time to look at the options and start calculating.
The majority of activity and transaction in the recent years is connected with the uniqueness and luxury of the property. 2011 brought a number of $5m+ transactions, slowing in 2012 to two 5m+ transactions on Tortola. A good portion of the luxury properties are located in Virgin Gorda, which has become the focus point of high net worth spending in recent months and years. As for the mid-range properties of $1m-$3m, which used to be a sought after segment by US investors, activity is fairly low.