Live From Panama—I’m Not There…Maybe You’re Not There Either…But We Don’t Have To Miss Out
“I just spoke with a really nice lady,” my daughter began yesterday afternoon when I stopped by the Veneto Hotel to check on preparations for this week’s Live and Invest in Panama Conference. “When I told her my name,” Kaitlin continued, “she laughed and said that she knows everything about my life. She’s been reading your stuff since before I was born.
“She said that, after all these years of reading about it and dreaming about it, she’s in Panama this week because she’s finally doing it. This lady retired from her job just last week,” Kaitlin continued, “and now here she is! She and her husband are attending this conference to find out if Panama is where they want to start their new lives.
“She’s so excited. I told her she has to speak with you, because you love hearing these kinds of real-life stories.”
I do. And this week, unfortunately, I’m missing out. I’m on the temporarily disabled list. I stopped by the Veneto yesterday briefly to check in. Otherwise, I’m at home recuperating. Nothing serious, but I’ve got to lay low for a couple of weeks.
Meantime, this morning, Lief welcomed the more than 150 readers and friends in attendance and kicked off three days of presentations, discussions, and workshops intended to help all assembled determine how best they might take advantage of all the opportunity Panama has to offer right now.
As we’ve been reporting, we believe 2014 will be a game-changing year in this country. Unlike many other countries in the world and in the region, Panama did not crash post-2008, neither its economy nor its property markets. It chugged on (as we predicted it would), growing, prospering, building, improving. Now it’s gearing up for another run. Important infrastructure works are coming online this year (including the new Panama City metro and Phase 3 of the city-center Cinta Costera thoroughfare). Plus, the completion of the Panama Canal expansion project is just around the corner.
Property values softened in Panama starting in 2008 but stabilized by 2011 and have begun again to appreciate. The rate of appreciation will quicken this year. Right now, it’s still possible to buy a water-view condo along Avenida Balboa, one of the city’s best addresses, for as little as US$2,000 per square meter. This will not be the case a year from now.
This is one important topic of conversation at this week’s conference. Our key property advisors are convened with Lief starting today over in the meeting rooms of the Veneto Hotel to discuss the best current property buys, how to shop for a rental investment, how to maximize net rental yield, where to buy for appreciation, where to go for local financing, and where to look for the best long-term store of value, both in Panama City and in other key local markets across the country.
Also on the program is a detailed economic update from an expert I trust with long experience both in the region and in Panama specifically. His report, I know, is enthusiastically positive. Unfortunately, as I said, though, I won’t be there to hear all the details for myself.
That’s why I’ve asked my daughter Kaitlin to act as my eyes and ears on the ground. Kaitlin will be sending me updates over the coming few days, which I’ll relay to you in real time.
As I write, our recommended legal eagle in this country is on stage, Kaitlin reports (via Skype), telling the group in detail about all 14 of Panama’s residency options, including the new and ground-breaking Specific Countries visa program this country premiered last year.
I’m not there to hear firsthand…and maybe you’re not either…so we’ll stand by for updates from Kaitlin and others on the scene. They’ve promised to send photos, too.
Then, after the event has concluded, I’ll look forward to listening to the recordings of these proceedings for even greater detail and insight. Every speaker’s presentation is being recorded, in full, including all live Q&A. We’ll bundle these recordings, once edited, to create our all-new Live and Invest in Panama Home Conference Kit.
Continue reading: Top Investment Markets For 2014