Buying a property in Cayman offers better value for money than in many other tropical paradise. And prospective purchasers are advised to buy now while places are still available and before prices go up.
“Buy before the opportunity goes because the prices here in Cayman never really go down,” says James Bovell of RE/MAX Cayman Islands. “Do not hold back thinking that the price will be better as it very rarely is. I would suggest you get what you can now.”
Since Hurricane Ivan devastated Grand Cayman in September 2004, the real estate market has been buoyant.
Properties which were damaged have been rebuilt stronger and safer, with many new developments now nearing completion.
Prior to the storm the market was up 30 per cent in comparison to the same time in 2003, and all the indications are that this year should exceed that boom period.
The market has also been stabilized by the new stamp duty fees, which were expected to rise for the past 2 years.
The fee is paid to the government by purchasers and the higher the duty, the longer people have to keep their properties in order to see a return on their investments. “Aside from all of this, in other destinations the price per square foot is much higher. It is very good value for money here. However there is less and less available and costs are increasing therefore it is becoming more expensive to buy land and improve sites. Cayman is still somewhat undervalued and compared to places like Hawaii and other popular resorts; you can get much more for your money here.”
Cayman is a popular choice for non-residents to establish business interests. It is also a preferred destination for people looking for a holiday home in a safe, relatively crime-free environment where there is political stability, good weather and no threat of terrorism.
“Cayman’s close proximity to Florida, makes it very attractive as a place to have a home,” Mr. Bovell says.
“The cost of living here may be high but so is the standard of living.”
Many investors are attracted to pre-construction properties which can be purchased as much as two years in advance of completion. “Buying at today’s price for tomorrow will give the investor an excellent opportunity for future return. Mr. Bovell points out. In some cases, such as Caribbean Club, these types of developments are sold out before construction even begins.
As tourism begins to pick up again this season, Mr Bovell anticipates the demand for real estate in Cayman will also rise, pushing prices up.
“The trend for buying real estates tends to follow tourism patterns,” he said. “We’ve had a lull in tourism since the hurricane but everything points towards high room occupancy this season. My advice is to buy now before you miss out on any remaining opportunities.”