Real Estate & Property, San Jose, Costa Rica
THE TERRESTRIAL MARITIME ZONE OF COSTA RICA
Safely buying beach front property in Costa Rica requires that you know the laws regarding this much sought after property. Here, courtesy of San Jose attorney and notary, Jose Carter, is what you need to know to safely invest in Costa Rica beach front property
The 200 meters of the Terrestrial Maritime Zone are subdivided into a Public Zone and a Restricted Zone. The Public Zone consists of the first 50 meters measured from the high tide, with the following 150 meters forming the Restricted Zone. The Restricted Zone is under the administration of the Municipalities, as well as under the surveillance of the Instituto Costarricense de Turismo (ICT). However, there is titled land in front of the beaches, which is an exception to the rule. These titled properties exist from the colonial times when the Spanish Kingdom issued title to property in the name of an individual who claimed the land. They also exist in cases in which the owners followed the procedures of registering the land prior to the designation of the Maritime Terrestrial Zone. Because there is some titled land currently ,within the Restricted Zone of the Maritime Terrestrial Zone, there are exceptions to the rule. By law the land in the Restricted Zone is under the administration of the Municipalities with the surveillance of the lnstituto Costarricense de Turismo (ICT). Also by law, the ICT must approve the concessions submitted by solicitors to the municipalities, and also ICT is the agency that classifies as a Tourist Interest a specific beach or site in the terrestrial maritime zone.
NATIONAL CONCESSIONS REGISTER REGISTRO NACIONAL DE CONCESIONES
After approval of the concession by ICT, the property can be registered in the National Concessions Registry, which is located in Zapote. at the National Registry. It is best to have the concession recorded because the information about title (ownership), location and property description are located there.
Prior to this time, owners with Occupancy Rights in the Restricted Zone have been transferring them by a public deed of cession, drawn up by a Notary Public without mentioning the payment of a price. This deed of cession should include the measurement, location, boundaries, and sometimes details of transfers of previous occupancy rights and also refer to the existing Municipality file for that land parcel. With the deed of cession and a “croquis” or plot plan, the buyer can apply for the concession at the Municipality. The local government will then open a file for the application and submit a resolution to lease the land to the owner or buyer of the occupancy rights, charging a “canon” (rental fee) in accordance with the value of the lot, and also land tax (0.25%). Keep in mind that the municipalities administer land in the Restricted Zone, but to apply for the concession and obtain ICT approval, there must be IGN landmarks and a Zoning Plan. According with the Law and the legal opinion of the Government Attorney General the Municipalities are not allowed to charge the lease or canon if there is no Zoning Plan and Concession, but some Municipalities still do it.
Safely buying beach front property in Costa Rica requires that you know the laws regarding this much sought after property. It is extremely easy for a foreigner to be "taken".
You need TWO things to be safe.
An experienced Realtor who is 100% familiar with Costa Rica Maritime Law and a top notch attorney.
With Casa Bruno, you get both!
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