Expat Housing Services in Costa Rica

Apart from beaches, which are publicly owned, and a roughly 200 meter zone around them which requires residency of at least 5 years to purchase, the housing market is open to foreigners without restriction, regardless of residency. However, buying property in Costa Rica requires large amounts of documentation. There are also many regulations regarding land use in Costa Rica. Rental leases are usually for three years, but shorter term rentals of only six months can also be found. The landlord is prohibited from raising the rent during the lease if it is paid in US dollars.


Average rents in Costa Rica are around US $100 to US $200 per month, and luxury homes can be as cheap as US $900. The rental property may be either furnished or unfurnished. Available apartments can be found in newspapers, through word of mouth, or through a rental agent. A security deposit is required to move in. It is lost if the lease is broken. The landlord can evict tenants within three months, or one month if it is the same building he lives in. He can move to evict a tenant if his account is seven days overdue, or for illegal activity. He can also inspect the property once a month.

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