There are a lot of reasons people are attracted to Uruguay real estate, which include a sunny place to spend winter, experiencing a different culture, taking advantage of real estate opportunities that are not available in the domestic market, investment diversification, protection against inflation or domestic threats, and establishing a base for citizenship and/or retirement.
As you compare Uruguay real estate to other offshore opportunities, you will learn that in addition to attractive settings and properties, Uruguay offers an attractive investment climate. Following are 10 factors that contribute to the safety, effectiveness, and comfort of your real estate investment in Uruguay.
1. Uruguay has a stable and transparent government
Uruguay’s political system is a democratic republic with executive, legislative, and judicial branches (much like the US). It is one of the most stable countries on the continent and is tied with Chile for having the least government corruption in Latin America. Uruguay’s government actively encourages international investment, trade, and tourism.
2. Uruguay has a stable economy
Uruguay was the only country in Latin America that avoided the global recession in 2008 and 2009. JP Morgan credited this to Uruguay’s fiscal discipline and adaptability of policies.
Uruguay’s economy is characterized by an export-oriented agricultural sector, a well-educated workforce, a developing industrial sector, a thriving tourism industry, and a fast-growing software industry.
3. You do not need to be a resident to buy Uruguay real estate
Property can be purchased and held by foreigners, as well as Uruguayan or foreign corporate structures, without the need for any government preauthorization or approvals.
4. Uruguay has a secure property registration system
Uruguay has a trustworthy and secure property registry system. Holding title to property in Uruguay gives you full ownership rights. Secured interests in real property and mortgages are actively enforced by law.
5. Uruguay has a stable real estate market
Uruguay real estate markets are stabilized by the fact that Uruguay is traditionally a cash society and most Uruguayan real estate is owned free and clear. When local banks do make real estate loans, they are very conservative and require a high rate of collateral. Because of this, it is rare for a home to be put on the market due to mortgage pressure.
6. Uruguay has property available in a variety of attractive settings
- City property: Uruguay’s capital, Montevideo, has been selected many years in a row as the most livable city in South America by Mercer Human Resource Consulting. There are apartments and suburban homes in a variety of unique communities and price ranges.
- Beach property: Uruguay is also the location of Punta del Este, South America’s premiere beach resort, with a variety of properties ranging from quaint cottages to world class luxury apartments. Besides Punta del Este, there are several small seaside communities with lots and a variety of single family homes.
- Country property: Uruguay has small farms, and rural estates, and large tracts of agricultural land.
7. Uruguay is a socially comfortable place to invest and spend time
Uruguay has the most highly educated population, the least economic disparity, and one of the lowest crime rates in Latin America. Uruguayans are generally friendly and tolerant.
8. Uruguay has good infrastructure
Uruguay has one of the best maintained road systems in Latin America. Uruguay has good utility distribution in most all developed areas (including cable TV and Internet), as well as regular sanitation services.
9. Uruguay real estate is bought and sold in US dollars.
Uruguay real estate is generally bought and sold in US dollars. Also, Uruguayan banks make accounts available in US dollars as well as euros and Uruguayan pesos. If you are in dollars you can purchase and sell Uruguay real estate without currency exchange costs and fluctuation concerns.
10. Uruguay has bilingual property administration services available
Many real estate offices in Uruguay provide property administration services that take care of apartments and homes for out-of-town owners (as well as oversee building services for homeowner associations).
This article was first published at Uruguay Real Estate
David is the author of Buying Real Estate in Uruguay.