Buying Made Simple
Buying a property may seem like a daunting task, but with the right information you can make knowledgeable decisions that are best for you. Our sales representatives at Barbados Sotheby's International Realty® are here to help guide you through the process; we also advise that you consult an attorney regarding all legal documents. If you do not have a local attorney we will be happy to provide recommendations.
Important Facts You Should Know:
- There are no restrictions on the purchase of property in Barbados by persons who are non-citizens or permanent residents.
- Non-residents must ensure and document that all funds for the purchase of real estate are derived from external sources.
- All financial arrangements such as mortgage, purchase price and deposit payments should be in place prior to entering a binding agreement.
- Funds transferred to Barbados must be registered with the Central Bank of Barbados. This process guarantees repatriation of the same amount of funds if and when the property is sold.
- Purchasers who are non-residents must obtain permission to purchase property from the Barbados Exchange Control Authority, regardless of whether they are a Barbadian Citizen or not. This is a standard procedure under the Exchange Control Act.
- Purchasers must obtain the services of a registered local attorney who will have to search the register and establish title to the property prior to the completion of sale.
- Property passes by conveyance of title, evidenced by the recording of the deeds and certified survey plans at the registry of title.
- Attorney's fees are approximately 1.5% - 2% of the sale price. Attorney fees are subject to 17.5% VAT. Both buyer and seller are responsible for their own attorney fees.
- A 10% deposit is required for payment when signing the purchase agreement. This is a binding contract. The seller's attorney holds the deposit with the balance payable on completion of the purchase.
- The real estate agent's commission fee is normally 5% of the sale price. Real estate agents fees are subject to 17.5% VAT.
- Sales commissions and survey costs are borne by the vendor.
- In most cases international buyers purchase property through a company which has been incorporated outside but registered to do business within Barbados. This initiative may help reduce some costs and simplify the process when selling the property.
Town & Country Planning Office
- If the purchaser is buying vacant land, the vendor will require a Certificate of Compliance from the Town and Country Planning Office (TCPO), which certifies that the roads and services have been provided in accordance with planning guidelines. It is illegal for a vendor to sell a property without the Certificate of Compliance.
- If the purchaser is buying a built property which is to be improved, or intends to build a property on the land, planning permission is required from TCPO. The planning permission is granted in accordance with a set of guidelines established by acts of Parliament and statutory instruments. In addition, TCPO would be guided by the zoning of the land and environmental issues.
- In all cases application is made to the TCPO and permission is usually granted within a period of two to six months.
For more information, please contact the Barbados Sotheby's International Realty® Sales Team.