Sara Hearts Costa Rica

By: Nick Viale

When she came back from her two week vacation in Costa Rica to icy Minnesota, Sara was haunted by memories of the way her toes had taken to the warm white sand and the way her heart had taken to the people. Echoes of the rolling surf chased her though her days at the office and had her daydreaming like a lovesick teenager. At night, she found herself scouring the Internet for "Real Estate in Costa Rica" and recalculating her budget until the wee hours of the morning. Finally, bleary-eyed and convinced that she couldn't live without this fascinating Latin American country in her life everyday, she traded her two-storey brown brick home for a condo on the beach and has never looked back.

Sara's story isn't an isolated incident. There are an estimated 250,000 foriegners living in Costa Rica to date and with few barriers to living, working and investing in this country, the population of expatriates grows bigger everyday. As the demand for Costa Rica real estate increases, so do the options for foriegners who want to make their vacations last a lifetime. For brave travelers like Sara, it's green lights all the way.

Known as the The Silicon Valley of Latin America, Costa Rica has plenty of opportunity for employment in the high tech industry. Companies like Acer, Microsoft, GE, Abbot Laboratories, Continental Airways and Intel Corporation all have headquarters in Costa Rica. A founding UN nation with political neutrality and no military, Costa Rica is peaceful with good international relations. The democratic government is generous in both its progressive environmental protection policies and its care for its population. Fittingly, the quality of education and health care compares favorably with countries like Canada and the US. In fact, Costa Rica boasts an even higher literacy rate than the US (95%). Low crime rates and world class surfing along the 1800 km coastline also add to Costa Rica's undeniable allure for Americans of all ages.

Condominiums are still the hottest investment opportunity for people looking to make their beach time last longer than a two week vacation. Offering security and ammenities that single family homes simply can't, these mini-communities let you recognize a long time dream with very little risk. Twenty-four hour security, property management services, enhanced services and even shopping are just some of the built-in amenities you can expect in these developments. Real estate remains affordable and with a median home price of just 300K can you afford not to invest?

Of course, if you're not ready to take the plunge and become a permanent resident, Costa Rica is still a prime location for a second home or an investment property. Condo ownership allows residents to enter into property management arrangements quite easily and turn the property into a rental income when you're not using it.

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