Are non-residents in need of a special permit to purchase property in Aruba?
Absolutely not! It is actually dientical as for a local resident.
What types of land are properties built on in Aruba?
In Aruba you can find basically two types of land where properties are built upon:
• Freehold property land (15%). The owner is in possession of the legal tile of the property at the land registry.
• Leased land (85%). These are all owned legally by the government; a maximum of 60 years is assigned to the title holder. As the title holder you have the right to act as a full owner; you have the right to sell and negotiate all rights to the land, much similar to when owning freehold property land. A relatively low yearly fee is to be paid by the title holder. The lease period will be automatic extended for another 60 years (possibly with an increase in the yearly fee) automatically for another 60 years. Most demanded areas such as Malmok- & Arashi beach, Tierra del Sol, Salinja Serca and Palm beach are built on long leased land.
Are there any property taxes?
Certainly, property taxes in Aruba are based on prices of the properties for sale, which are relatively low. The first US$34k is tax free and after that it is about 0.4% or only $4 per $1000 of value.
How about in insurance, do we need any?
Luckily Aruba isn’t in the range of the hurricane belt, there are close to none calamities happening on the island. This results in a relatively low average fire insurance rate of approximately 0.3% annual rate over the reconstruction value of the house.
What to do if I like a property?
Our experienced associates will advise you in making an offer and will give you complete guidance through the negotiating process. Once an agreement has been reached, the (selling) broker will prepare a purchase and an sales agreement. The “contract” has to be signed by both parties, (seller and buyer) which will be given to the buyer’s notary of choice. It is expected from the buyer to transfer 10% of the purchase price to the account/escrow of your notary within 10 business days. Then we have successful a binding agreement.
Is a notary necessary?
An assigned Notary must be engaged (by law) in order to draw up all of the deeds of property transfers. Notaries in general are strictly appointed by the Dutch Monarch, and represent both seller and buyer. Notaries are responsible to find out if indeed the property is really owned by the seller, and also to certify that the property is free of embargoes, etc. (Land Registry and Public Registers). Closing generally takes between 8 to 12 weeks, which depends on the complexity of the transaction.
What are the closing costs?
Additionally to the asking price, there are costs which are due at the closing time of the sale of your property. Respectively the transfer tax and Notary fees. 3% closing costs will apply if the property is valued at under 250,000 Aruban Florins (US$140,500). In the case the property is valued any higher, 6% closing cost will apply. The Notary fees run mainly between 1.5–2% of the selling price depending if the buyer needs a mortgage or not.
Can I apply for a mortgage in Aruba as a non resident?
Our local banks do offer mortgages to both residents and non-residents. Each individual bank has their specific prerequisites for mortgage loans. These include; valid identifications, reference letter from other banks, employment reference letters, etc. To obtain a mortgage loan, our local banks will also require copies of appraisal reports and any sales agreements to determine exposure. Generally our local banks will loan 60% of the value of the property against a 7% interest rate and a closing fee of about 1.5% of the total loan amount, all within a certain minimum.
How long can a non-resident in Aruba stay?
You can always stay with a visa as a tourist for a period of 180 days per year. Should you wish to stay any longer than the stipulated days, you will need aid from the Department of Immigration (DIMAS). Anyone who is not born in Aruba, but wishes to temporarily work and/or live on our beautiful island Aruba or even wants to live here on the long term for good will need approval of Dimas (application for residency is possible). Please visit www.dimasaruba.com for more detailed information or contact us.
Who has to pay the Real Estate agents?
All commissions are paid to brokers (not agents), and come out of the sales proceeds (generally paid by the seller). All agents work for a broker who are not directly paid whereas they cannot act independently either. If this is otherwise you will be advised in advance.