Buying Property in Cayman

When you are considering making a purchase in the Cayman Islands, there are a number of questions that you will have. If you have decided that you are interested in making a purchase, the information below should be a good starting point for you.
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INVESTING IN CAYMAN
The Cayman Islands have for many years enjoyed a thriving economy with growth in population and tourism. The benefits of investing in real estate in the Cayman Islands amongst others are the following:

  •  No direct taxes imposed by the Cayman government: no annual property tax, no capital gains tax, no inheritance taxes, no income tax, no non-resident tax and no sales taxInvestment
  • No restrictions on foreign ownership of real estate in the Cayman Islands
  • Ownership can be held in one or more names of individuals or in a corporation, which does not reveal actual ownership
  • Stability and Security – the Cayman Islands has a stable government, sophisticated infrastructure and a strong economy based on legal, international banking and tourism
  • Caymanians enjoy one of the highest outputs per capita and one of the highest standards of living in the world
  • A thriving long/short-term rental market offering discerning investors great investment yields and returns.

MORTGAGESMortgages

Interest rates for real estate in the Cayman Islands are based on prime plus one or two points as quoted by Citibank. Standard mortgage terms require a 10-35% down payment plus closing costs, at a rate of 1 or 2 percentages above the prevailing prime rate.

Mortgages are normally amortized over 10 to 15 years; some lenders offer 20-year terms. Most financial institutions do not charge pre-payment penalties.

CENTURY 21 ® Cayman real estate professionals can provide you with the names of some highly respected lending institutions and loan officer details who will take the time to explain the options available to you and recommend a loan program designed to meet your needs. For non-residents loan applications may be handled remotely.


STAMP DUTYStamp Duty

There is no direct form of taxation levied within the Cayman Islands. There is only a one-time “stamp duty” on all transactions involving land property at time of purchase. The rate of duty payable is 7.5% across the Islands, unless the purchaser is Caymanian and a first time buyer where concessions in some areas may apply. Require further details on this, speak to a Century 21 agent (link to contact us). In essence, it is a government assessment on actual real estate at the time ownership transfers. When calculating the Stamp Duty, furnishings referred to as chattels are deducted from the sale price.

Transfers in consideration of “natural love and affection” that is, transfers between for example husband to wife, or father to child, may be approved by the Financial Secretary for payment of minimal stamp duty. Additionally, when an individual desires to transfer title to a company of which he is the sole beneficial owner, the Financial Secretary may approve a deduction of the full amount of all stamp duty on such transfer.


FOREIGN OWNERSHIP Ownership

There are no legal restrictions of any kind on foreign ownership of real estate in the Cayman Islands and, ownership can be held in one or more names of individuals or in a corporation, which does not reveal actual ownership. There are no imposed requirements to develop land (excluding subdivisions which do have Covenants) within a stipulated time period; consequently, parcels can be held indefinitely, with little or no expense, for future use or speculation.

The title to property in Cayman is “absolute” (fee simple). Based on the Torrens System, each site has a property register which can be obtained at the Lands and Survey Department showing its legal description, history of ownership, and record of liens.

Government guarantees title through this document making title searches unnecessary. A one-time Stamp Duty is paid to the government to register transfer of title.

Published by Century21 on . Last Updated .

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