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CHRIS AND LISA SIMMONS - OWNERS 3 COSTA RICA RE/MAX OFFICES

     Ocean Surf &  Sun Flamingo and Tamarindo, Guanacaste, Costa Rica                                       
    Cell: 011-506-8844-2153  |  USA: 360-371-3333  |  Office: 1-866-976-8898                       www.costaricaoceanheights.com       |       info@costaricaoceanheights.com

Costa Rica Residency

Living in Costa Rica - Make the Move!

Why Get Your Costa Rica Residency?

 

Costa Rica is truly a multi-cultural country, with residents relocating to Costa Rica from all over the globe due to its high quality of life. The increasingly diverse population of newcomers from Europe, North and South America, integrate easily with the local Costa Ricans – or “Ticos” as they call themselves. Ticos exhibit a welcoming attitude towards immigrants and their property laws are very foreigner-friendly, which makes relocating or retiring here a pleasure. In the vast majority of case, foreigners have the same rights when it comes to owning Costa Rica real estate properties as locals, and legal residents have access to the social medical system.

 

International immigrants have long enjoyed life in Costa Rica with family and friends. Costa Rica is reknowned for its stable democracy, high quality of medical and dental care, and excellent schools. Those who relocate to Costa Rica prior to retirement often start their own businesses or work as consultants or contractors to Costa Rican companies. As Costa Rica continues to improve its infrastructure and accessibility, it's attracting individuals of all ages seeking to relocate or retire  to a country with peaceful political conditions, great climate, fabulous beaches, relaxed culture and direct flights so that it is easy to visit family and friends.

 
Costa Rica Residency Status
 

The following is for informational purposes only. The process establishing for Costa Rica residency can be adjusted by the Costa Rican government at any time, and you should consult a Costa Rican attorney for the most detailed and up-to-date information regarding Residency Status. Our recommended Costa Rica Residency Expert is Murcela Gurdian of Immigrantion Experts.  That being said, here are a few guidelines to help you to understand different categories of Residency in Costa Rica.

 

There are Three Main Categories of Residency in Costa Rica:

  1. Pensionado - Residency as a Retired Person

  2. Inversionista - Residency as an Investor

  3. Rentista -Residency as a Renter

 

Pensionado - Residency as a Retired Person

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A foreigner and family (spouse, parents, single siblings and children) can only apply for this category of residency if he is entitled to a lifetime pension of $1000 per month in their country of origin. This could be from a US IRA program, or a 401K retirement plan or a certifiable pension from a corporation or the US Social Security. The same applies for Canadian residents with their RSP program .The foreigner must obtain a certifiable letter to prove life time pension and this letter must be authenticated either by a Costa Rica Consulate or through the “Apostille” Process. The foreigner will be given a temporary residency and can work in Costa Rica only if he has his own Costa Rican corporation / business and not work for another company. After 3 years of temporary residency, the foreigner can apply for permanent residency with no restrictions. 

 

Inversionista - Residency as an Investor
 

A foreigner and their family (spouse, parents, single siblings and children) can apply for residency as an investor if the foreigner owns investments in Costa Rica valued over $200,000. USD$. The Investment should be in specific areas as tourism, reforestation, and share ownership in a Costa Rican corporation, properties and/or any other activity supported by the Costa Rican government. The foreigner will be given a temporary residency and can work in Costa Rica only if he has his own Costa Rican corporation/business and not for another company. After 3 years of temporary residency, foreigner can apply for permanent residency with no restrictions. This is one of the easiest ways to obtain and maintain residency in Costa Rica. A retiree can purchase a property as in a home, villa, condo or even a farm that they will retire to, as long as the property is held in a Costa Rican corporation that is legally registered in the National Public Registry showing a value over the $200,000. To maintain the temporary residency for the 3 years all that is required is proof of value and proof of property taxes being paid.
 

Rentista - Residency as a Renter
 

A foreigner and family (spouse, parents, single siblings and children) can apply for residency as a Renter, if foreigner receives a certifiable monthly income of $ 2,500.00 USD$ for the following 5 years or has verifiable bank investments in Costa Rica of $150,000. USD$. Under this type of residency the foreigner CANNOT work for another company while living in Costa Rica. To prove the income, the foreigner must get a letter from a Costa Rican Bank, financial institution, foreign bank, CPA or Law Firm certifying he will be receiving a monthly income of $2,500.00 USD$  for the next 5 years. If the letter is issued outside of Costa Rica, this document must be authenticated either by a Costa Rica Consulate or through the “Apostille” Process. The foreigner will be given a temporary residency and can work in Costa Rica only if he has his own Costa Rican corporation/business and not for another company. After 3 years of temporary residency, the foreigner can apply for permanent residency with no restrictions. . (The Immigration Law will change soon and required the bank investment in Costa Rica to be $60,000.00 USD$ for 2 years or the foreigner must prove he will also receive a certifiable monthly income of $2,500.USD$ during the 2 years) 

 
Budgeting
 

Moving to a foreign country can have many advantages. However, there are usually changes to routine that must be accepted. We recommend that anyone considering a move to Costa Rica visit at least once and make a serious effort to live for a week or two as a resident and not as a tourist. Stay in a Costa Rica vacation rental or home rather than a hotel and engage in normal residential activities such as grocery shopping, cooking and doing laundry. (The good news is that you likely won’t need to clean, since cleaning service in Costa Rica is very affordable!) Visit the clubs, gyms, golf courses, churches and other organizations that you would like to be a part of.

 

During this period, keep track of your expenses and budget your daily cost of living. If you own your own condo or home and your car, we use US$3000/month as a touchstone for a couple who wants to live well. Most individuals who have relocated also budget for one trip per year to their home country to visit family and friends. As mentioned previously, this is becoming more cost-effective and convenient every year due to direct flights to the Liberia international airport from all over the world.

 

If you have more questions about Retiring or Relocating to Costa Rica, please contact us.  We would be more than happy to answer any of your inquiries about Costa Rica real estate and living in Costa Rica. Pura Vida

Costa Rica Residency