Beach House

So, you have searched and searched for that perfect property in that perfect country. The Palm trees sway in the breezes, the sunsets are endless, the ocean laps at your very doorstep. It's time for a little dose of reality to come a-knocking...

Now that you have found the real estate that you like and have always dreamed of, what about that price? There are an awful lot of zeros there. Oh, wait! The price may be in the local currency and not USD. Whew! Still how can you trim some numbers, and even some zeros, off that price?

It is often the case that real estate markets can be highly negotiable, more so than what you may have experienced in the U.S. Sometimes there is negotiating room of as much as 30%. Whoa! 30%! Gasp. How?

As we say in Playa Del Carmen, "Cash talks and caca de toro walks." Never underestimate the power of cold hard cash. You may find that if you pay in cash, coin of the realm, greenbacks, sawbucks, you will often have more bargaining and negotiating power. It's hard to say no when a giant wad of green is being waved in your face.

It has been noted that in some foreign countries, an agent receives a "net" commission as opposed to the typical fixed commissions in the U.S. What is a "net" commission in a foreign country? Well, often the seller tells the agent that they would like to receive a certain amount for the real estate. Whatever the agent sell the property for over that amount is the commission. So what motivation does the agent have? Jack that price up, baby! The more it is sold for, the more commission they make.

Is that corruption? Mmm define "corruption." Or not. The reality is that this practice does happen and it is legal in most countries, which usually takes it out of the realm of "corruption" per se.

This means that you need, not only a 'good' attorney, but also some good negotiating skills to work on that price a bit.