You are a foreigner looking to buy a home in Colombia, or invest in Colombian real estate. What are the five most important things you need to know?
- Foreign buyers of Colombian real estate have the same property rights as do Colombian citizens.
- In Colombian law, while it is true that our general real estate regulations resemble those in many other countries, including the U.S., there are some critical differences.
- In addition, prospective purchasers or investors in Colombian properties (particularly foreigners) who try to “take a go” at buying, or investing in, property without experienced, local legal counsel, risk sinking their hard-earned money into a property that is: 1) not truly owned by the “seller,” 2) in fact, an empty lot next to the house they believe they have purchased, 3) encumbered by liens from third parties and/or the Colombian government.
- Consequently, you want a licensed Colombian lawyer, with years of experience handling purchases and investments in Colombia, to ensure that there are no issues with the property, that the seller has 100% ownership of the property, free and clear, and that every piece of documentation is in order.
- You also want a licensed Colombian lawyer, who is fluent in English, and the legal terminology of numerous countries, who, very importantly, charges the same fees for his or her work, whether you are a foreigner or a local (no “gringo tax”).
At Colombia Legal Partners, our experienced attorneys advise individuals, families, and businesses on all aspects of real estate purchase and investment issues. Working alongside specialists in a real estate company, our legal team has successfully completed hundreds of transactions with foreign buyers since our inception in 2007.
Whether you’re looking at homes and apartments, commercial space, land, or development projects, we’ll ensure a seamless process for your Colombia real estate transactions…while continuously ensuring that the process is seamlessly aligned with your self-interest. That’s the only way we do business.
Here is a sampling of the real estate services we provide our clients:
Real Estate Purchasers
- Conduct comprehensive title searches on the property or properties you are considering to ensure you are not only purchasing the correct property, but that there are no liens that would enable a third party individual, or the government, to challenge your ownership. We do this by verifying ownership history and ensuring that there exists a no-lien certificate (“Certificado de Tradición y Libertad”).
- Guide you through the inspection process to ensure that the property is free of construction defects and contains no environmental threats. This includes procuring the best inspectors, overseeing each aspect of their inspection, and securing the documentation stating that the property is safe and in compliance with all relevant codes.
- Draft and finalize Promise to Sale agreements (“Promesas de Compraventa”), allowing the buyer to “hold” a property in advance of the actual real estate purchase. This is a preliminary agreement, secured by an money deposit, through which the buyer offers to purchase the home, and the seller is legally bound not to sell it to another party — unless the buyer fails to perform the actions to which he/she/it agreed to perform in this preliminary contract.
- Draft and finalize the documentation for the formal contract of sale.
- Negotiate, on your behalf, with attorneys for opposing parties – ensuring that your self-interest (not ours, not the opposing attorneys’, and not the opposing parties’) dictates the outcome of each negotiation.
- Handle all required administrative processes, including notarization, filing, and registration.
- Draft and finalize necessary powers of attorney and other documentation; and
- Manage the transfer of your incoming funds (often requires opening a brokerage account with a Colombian bank) and the registration of those funds.
Real Estate Development
We perform each of the same services listed, above, in Real Estate Purchases, plus we:
- Draft, negotiate, and enter into essential contracts with construction service providers.
- Assist in creating an extensive project management plan.
- Handle all aspects of the sales of lots within the development.
Please contact us using the form below to see how we can help you.
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