Land Values in Nosara, Costa Rica

  • September 20, 2012

This Blog Entry will be an ongoing series here on the – This week, we start with Guiones, Pelada, and Las Huacas.

Real estate values here in Nosara, Costa Rica, have quite an extraordinary range of prices and values. Here is a breakdown of Guiones, Pelada, and Las Huacas.

Guiones – Retail Lots range from $100 per square meter up to $500 per square meter. This is the most sought after and highest priced property in Nosara. Beach front and maritime zone lots are few and far between, and you will have to pay through the nose for them. Having said that, I like to compare Guiones property to fine art. As much as it costs to buy it, there is usually someone right behind you who is willing to pay nearly the same amount. If you are building, the rental potential is off the charts. The liquidity level is high in Guiones, meaning if you ever had to sell, its the easiest market to cash out of. Now that real estate prices have started climbing again in the states and elsewhere, many buyers that were waiting on the sidelines are now ready to pounce on any under-priced property that comes to the market. If you are searching for land in Guiones, your best value is a lot that is a 5-10 minute walk to the beach. For these lots, you will be able to pay $100-175 per sq meter, get a bit more privacy, and are still as close as can be to the beach. Rental potential is still very high, but the prices are a bit more affordable. Guiones lots are the most popular, highest priced, and most liquid properties in all of Nosara.

Pelada – Retail lots range from $30 per square meter, up to $150 per square meter. Pelada is the less-wanted, under-appreciated, step-sibling of Guiones. The price disparity is evident and I do not believe it will change. There are quite a few reasons for this, but mostly, from historical evidence and comparisons to other markets. Pelada can be a great value for those who are looking for nearby or beachfront property at a great price, but, as the saying goes, the poor man (or woman) buys twice. For some clients, Pelada is the perfect fit. It is a little more family oriented in the better view lots towards the back of the A section. But, be advised – do not purchase land in Pelada expecting it to appreciate in price and compare to Guiones. It will never happen. Pelada properties will always trade at a 50-60% discount from similar lots in Guiones. It is a very common investor fallacy to think that spreads between disparate pricing in close proximity neighborhoods will converge, case in point: The Upper East Side in Manhattan and Harlem. El Paso and Cuidad Juarez. Philadelphia and Camden. San Francisco and Oakland. Bottom line: Pelada can serve as a cheaper entry point into the market here, but do not expect it to appreciate in value outside of the benchmark measurement, and do not expect your resale to have anywhere near the same liquidity as Guiones, it just is not the case. Having said all of that, there are some really beautiful properties in Pelada. If you are working on a tight budget, Pelada can be the answer you are looking for.

Las Huacas, or, “The Hill” – Retail lots range from $75 per square meter, up to $250 per square meter. Las Hucas is the area behind Pelada and Guiones, of if you are looking at a Section Map, sections E, EE, and F. Fist, the most obvious pricing influence – The views. Where as, in Guiones and Pelada, there are just a few lots that have true ocean views, the opposite is true in The Hill – Ocean Views abound here. Some Ocean views are of whitewater, easy for checking the surf. Some are just blue water, with not as good a viewing angle. Some have partial views and just one half or third of Playa Guiones, others have sweeping views from point to point. Each view has to be analyzed independently. Some lots have great views, but are too steep to build anything more than a small home on. Even though the measurements of the lot may be fairly large (a half acre or more), the price per square meter should be low whenever there is a majority of the property that is not suitable for construction. There are downsides of owning property in The Hill, the most obvious is that it is not a walk to the beach. As much as the huge views might appeal to retirees or full timers, it dramatically reduces income potential when using a property to build an income property, if not a walk to the beach. If you are considering a property to build your dream home, Las Huacas may be the place. If you are looking for an income producing project, I would not suggest buying and building on the Hill. It all comes down to what your buying goals are.  If you are looking for dramatic whitewater & surf-break views, Las Huacas is numero uno.

On the next installment of “Land Values in Nosara, Costa Rica”, we will take a look at Santa Marta, The San Juan Mountain, and Garza. Until then, happy land hunting!

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