Real Estate On Ambergris Caye, Belize

Better Than Beachfront

Everyone wants to live on the beach. Or so they think.

If, however, you’ve never lived on the beach, you might want to think through the idea before you buy into it.

Living on the beach (as opposed to nearby it) comes with downsides–sand flies and other insects, salt mist that requires you refinish your outdoor wood furniture more often than if you were located even, say, a few hundred meters behind the water line…


Plus, of course, you pay a lot more for living right on the water.

If you want ocean, but you’re also looking for a bargain, I suggest you look a few hundred meters inland from the beach. The world over, you can find that you’re better off positioning yourself within a few minutes’ walk of the sea rather than right at the water line.

You’ll save on the purchase price (the price differential between beingon the water and having an ocean view can be as much as 50%). Plus you’ll be able to minimize the negative effects of right-on-the-water living.

Of course, property pricing isn’t based solely on beach versus non-beach. Proximity to services, development amenities, and quality of construction all also play a factor.

That’s why I like the condos going up at Grand Baymen on Ambergris Caye in Belize. This emerging island community is in town, rather than directly on the water. It’s within walking distance both of the beach and of San Pedro town with its restaurants, nightlife, shopping, and other services.

In addition, Grand Baymen has full amenities on the property.

As I said, at Grand Baymen, you’re not on the beach but within a few minutes’ walk of it. The developer also owns a resort that is on the beach, and, as an owner at Grand Baymen, you have access to these facilities. You can enjoy a drink at the bar, take a dip in the water, enjoy the beach, and then head back to your condo a couple of blocks away.

All the while, paying only one-third to one-half what you’d pay for living in an on-the-water community. Yet you’ve still got all the benefits of a beach lifestyle, and you can put the money you save on your real estate buytoward your retirement.

The Grand Baymen community will include one-, two-, and three-bedroom units. The first building, Building A, has only 12 units (one- and two-bedroom units only) in total, and 75% of those have been sold already. Buildings B and C will be much bigger, so getting in on Building A buys you some privacy. The amenities are already in place, including the San Pedro Fitness Club with its pool, gym, and tennis courts. The developer has plans to re-develop his resort on the beach, meaning that, eventually, you’ll also have access to an even nicer beach club.

If you’re looking for turn-keyisland living at a reasonable price, I’d say Grand Baymen is a top choice. That’s why I’ve worked with the developer to put together special offers on two specific units exclusively for Live and Invest Overseas readers.

Unit A202 is a two-bedroom condo with 1,070 square feet. The list price is US$251,900, but the developer is offering a special pre-construction price of US$220,000. However, for Live and Invest Overseas readers only, the developer is offering an additional discount, bringing the price down to US$200,000. On top of that, the developer is offering direct financing. You put 10% down (US$20,000) and pay US$1,800 a month for three years at 0% interest.

At the end of three years, you either pay off the balance of US$115,200 (from your own capital or through bank financing) or refinance with the developer. At this point, the term would be 10 years at 11.5% interest, making the monthly payments US$1,620.

Unit A301 is a one-bedroom unit on the top floor that has 720 square feet. The list price is US$209,000, but the discounted price for Live and Invest Overseas readers is US$179,100. For this unit, the developer is offering financing with 15% down (US$26,865) and the same terms as above (0% interest for three years), making the monthly payments US$1,522 for 36 months. After three years, a balloon payment of US$97,443 is due, or the developer will refinance, again for 10 years, making your monthly payment US$1,370.

Interest of 11.5% sounds high to North Americans, but it is the going rate for bank financing in Belize. The three-year zero-interest period gives you time to sell your house back home if you need to, making this an excellent offer for someone ready to retire in the next couple of years.

Final construction bids are expected soon and the first building (building A) is expected to be completed in 2011. Retire now, sell your current house within the next three years, and enjoy the good life at the beach in the interim.

If you’d like more information about Grand Baymen and these exclusive Live and Invest Overseas offers, please get in touch here.

Lief Simon