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How can a Foreigner Buy Properties in Medellin, Colombia?

How can a Foreigner Buy & Sell Properties in Medellin, Colombia?

 

Medellin has become one of the most affluent cities in the world, with sophisticated visitors coming every month, demanding the highest standards for gastronomic, travel, accommodation, and tourism experiences. 

Not only that, the real estate market is booming, with short-term rentals being scarce, a shortage of high-quality listings, and demand going up every year thanks to its geographical location, socio-economic fundamentals and investment grade. 

So without further ado, here’s the 10- step process to buying a property in Medellin, Colombia:

Step 1: Come and visit (you owe it to yourself). Medellín is amazing! Cuisine, people, weather, atmosphere, the art and cultural scene, the vistas, and everything to make you fall in love with a place from the moment your feet step off the airplane. You won’t want to leave…. guaranteed. 

Step 2: Walk around the neighborhoods, get a feel for each place. Don’t be afraid to get lost! Use google maps for directions and just follow your heart (or nose!). If you’d like to book a private tour to see the best areas/projects/listings and properties in Medellin, you can reach us anytime at tomas@springlivingmedellin.com or +573116711475.

Step 3: Get a representative/broker. Get in touch with a us, a real estate firm you can trust, and we’ll get you set up with a lawyer than can represent you in all transactions. We have brokers, lawyers, accountants and investment managers that will help you make this process smooth, easy and safe. 

Our promise is to protect your interests at all times, and as experts in the market, and alongside our certified Colombian lawyers, we’ll take care of representing you and keeping your investment on track at all times.

Step 4: Investment or Residential? Make sure you choose what’s more important: an apartment to use for YOURSELF, where you don’t want anyone but your friends and family coming in, or an apartment that will MAINLY generate monthly income and will appreciate considerably over the mid to long-term. 

This is important because it will determine the type of property that will fit your needs best, and the ones we’ll focus on. There’s really no right or wrong answer, just a matter of personal preference. 

One is a home, a residential property. The other one is an investment property, which will increase your capital over time, and will continue to provide cash flow in the years to come. 

Step 5: Open an account with a Colombian bank. Colombian branches and US/EU branches of the “same bank” do not cooperate or work together at all. They are TWO separate entities. What that means is that if you have a bank account in Citibank US, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get approved at all in Citibank Colombia. 

You’ll most likely get denied, because they work with different rules and regulations, and you don’t have something called a Cédula (a type of social security ID number that’s approved for residency). 

We in Spring Living Medellin have all the best alliances for banking in Colombia to make sure your process of investment is followed correctly. This is a prerequisite to buying a property, because you MUST register any amount over $10,000 with the Colombian central bank and portray to them the purpose of that investment so you don’t have any issues with repatriating your funds. 

Step 6: Find “the one”. We’ll help you find a property that our knowledge, the numbers, your gut intuition, and your mind will tell you it’s the right one. We’ll take you to tour the lots, the properties, neighborhoods, and show you all the available opportunities that we cherry-pick each day for our investors. 

We’ll be looking at neighborhoods like Provenza, Parque Lleras, Manila, Astorga, Lalinde, Las Lomas, Laureles, las Palmas and El Tesoro. We’ll make sure you see a broad spectrum of options to pick from so that you can also start to form an idea in your mind of value of the land and the variance of income, costs, fees and land distributions. This is a super fun process that we love! We’ll meet up for coffee, look at options, and take our Audi A4 company car from there to go tour these listings.

Step 7: Closing. Found one you completely fell in love with, it meets your budget, your criteria, your expectations, it’s perfect, you LOVE IT, and you really really want it? Well, time to snatch that property out of the market! You “reel the fish out of the water” by doing the following: 

Pass an offer! After you have analyzed and have had a cup of wine the night before to consider this (we strongly recommend this; making sure you are certain, of course), pass an offer for the value you want to start negotiating at. You want a quick tip? Don’t buy retail price. Try and negotiate the value before you settle on a price. You’d be surprised what properties can close at, and paisa (Medellin) culture is built around negotiation, because we are avid negotiators. Don’t be afraid to offer 75-80% of the value to test the waters, but perhaps try to stay above that, as you also do not want to insult the seller. 

Once you reach an agreement on price, congratulations, you’re almost there! We’ll get the lawyers working on a title study, background check on seller, and analyzing all documents to make sure the purchase is safe and you’re not getting yourself into a troublesome situation with a problematic property. We’ll be able to identify this from the beginning to make sure you’re safe. 

Lawyers will give us a green light and we’ll sign the respective contracts (whether it’s purchase agreement or deed) at the notary, where transfer of funds will be necessary in order to fully close. Contracts get signed, money exchanges hands, and everyone is happy and protected with the clauses of the contract. You get the keys to your dream property to increase capital or use for yourself, the seller gets back his money, and we get paid. It’s a win-win for everyone.

  1. Step 8: Interior Design and Details. Once closed on your property, you can start to design it however you want! We have in-house interior designers, alliances with custom builders of furniture (great labour at a third of the cost in the US), or you can buy your own furniture in places like Falabella and Homecenter.
  1. Step 9: Property management. You can talk with us about property management, which is what goes on after the sale, and what is going to be done to get you paid every month. Here we’ll handle your taxes, obligations and payments for the apartment, as well as getting the bookings, coordinating maintenance, cleaning, legal documentation, and keeping everything in order. Click here to see more.
  2. Step 10: Enjoy and use it! Whether it’s an investment or a residential place, come and stay in your place for as long as you want! Just tell us when to block the dates and we’ll have the apartment like a palace waiting for just for you. 

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