April 30, 2024

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Antigua and Barbuda Real Estate Investment in 2024

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Antigua and Barbuda Real Estate Investment in 2024

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In the Caribbean Sea, Antigua and Barbuda have some of the best properties you can find in that part of the world. These islands do not just offer you the possibility to own a piece of paradise, but also a lifestyle filled with amazing beaches, tropical scenery, and a laid-back atmosphere. Combining the beautiful surroundings with the chance for profit makes Antigua and Barbuda a great place to invest in property if you want both enjoyment and a smart investment.

Investing in Antigua and Barbuda's real estate sector not only promises potential returns but also opens doors to residency and citizenship through the nation's Citizenship by Investment Program (CIP). This program, recognized globally, offers investors and their families the opportunity to obtain citizenship in exchange for specified investments, including real estate purchases.

Antigua and Barbuda Real Estate Market Review

The Antigua and Barbuda CIP offers a pathway to citizenship through real estate investment, requiring a minimum investment of $200,000 in approved projects, maintained for at least five years. Antigua and Barbuda's dynamic real estate market presents a wide array of investment opportunities, making it an attractive choice for those interested in obtaining a Caribbean passport.

The real estate market in Antigua and Barbuda continues to thrive, fueled by a combination of factors including its stunning natural beauty, favorable tax policies, and robust tourism industry. Popular areas like Jolly Harbour and English Harbour attract affluent buyers seeking luxurious beachfront villas and condos, while the CIP further stimulates demand for high-end real estate. 

According to recent Bank of Guatemala data, the average price per square meter for property in Antigua is approximately $1,680. However, prices vary based on location, such as beachfront or hillside properties. Compared to New York City, Antigua's property prices are 11 times lower. Additionally, Antigua's housing costs are 48% cheaper than in Granada (Spain). 

Type of Properties to Invest in Antigua and Barbuda

Section 6 of the Citizenship by Investment Act 2013 outlines the procedure for approving real estate projects for investment under the CIP. Periodically, the government designates authorized development zones. Following this designation (R6.1), the Government proceeds to endorse individual projects within these zones. Subsequently, these endorsed projects become eligible for investment by participants in the CIP (R6.2) and include the following: 

Types of properties Examples
Luxury Villas and Residences A sprawling beachfront villa in the Pearn's Point development, featuring private beach access, infinity pool, and panoramic ocean views
Boutique Hotels and Resorts An intimate boutique resort like the Sugar Ridge Resort, offering luxurious suites, spa facilities, and personalized service in a tranquil setting
Condominiums and Apartments Fully serviced apartments within the Jolly Harbour Marina, providing waterfront living, access to a golf course, and amenities like swimming pools and tennis courts
Eco-Tourism Ventures Eco-friendly cottages nestled within a sustainable resort like the Nonsuch Bay Resort, surrounded by lush tropical gardens and offering activities like birdwatching and snorkeling
Mixed-Use Developments A mixed-use development project such as the Hodges Bay Resort & Spa, combining luxury residences, beachfront villas, and a boutique hotel with restaurants and retail outlets
Beachfront Properties Oceanfront condos in the Half Moon Bay area, offering direct beach access, water sports facilities, and stunning sunset views over the Caribbean Sea

Top Locations to Invest Real Estate in Antigua and Barbuda

Within the CIP program, there are 33 approved development projects, with three particularly popular options.

Moon Gate

Situated on the stunning Half Moon Bay, Moon Gate is an upscale 49-suite all-inclusive hotel and spa, offering breathtaking bay views. The suites, available as freehold titles, are fully furnished and priced competitively for CPI  investors. Property owners and guests enjoy access to various amenities.

Colibri Court

Nestled within the gated community of Jolly Harbour Marina, Colibri Court features eight newly built serviced apartments, each with its own swimming pool. Overlooking pristine white sand beaches and the Caribbean Sea, the apartments boast spacious layouts exceeding 2000 square feet, adorned with chic yet comfortable furnishings.

Pearns Point

Renowned as one of the Caribbean's most stunning luxury developments, Pearns Point offers land parcels along Antigua's western coast. With panoramic ocean views and limited plots remaining, Pearns Point provides an exclusive living experience for residents, with properties nestled both hillside and coastline, catering to the discerning tastes of the global elite.

Benefits of Investment in Antigua and Barbuda Real Estate

Investing in real estate in Antigua and Barbuda offers a multitude of advantages that extend beyond mere property ownership. 

Visa-Free Travel Privileges

Acquiring property in this Caribbean paradise grants a passport with visa-free travel privileges to over 140 countries, facilitating seamless international journeys without the hassle of visa applications or fees. 

Remote Citizenship Application and Dual Citizenship

The application process for obtaining citizenship is fully remote and expeditious, typically completed within six months and conducted entirely online. Additionally, investors enjoy the perk of dual citizenship without the requirement to renounce their existing nationality, affording greater flexibility and mobility on a global scale.

Favorable Tax Regime

Antigua and Barbuda boasts a favorable tax regime, with no taxes levied on foreign income, wealth, gifts, inheritances, or capital gains. This presents a lucrative opportunity for individuals seeking to optimize their tax planning strategies, potentially unlocking access to lucrative business and investment ventures along with attractive tax incentives.

Promising Financial Returns

Investing in Antigua and Barbuda's real estate market offers promising returns, particularly through fractional ownership in prestigious 5-star hotels, resorts, or private villas. With an anticipated annual return ranging from 2% to 4%, investors can expect to recoup their initial investment within a timeframe of 5 years.

Regional Mobility within CARICOM

Caribbean passports often include the added benefit of regional mobility within the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), facilitating easier travel and employment opportunities across member countries such as Barbados, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago.

Natural Beauty and Lifestyle

Beyond financial considerations, the allure of Antigua and Barbuda lies in its natural beauty and laid-back lifestyle. The region's pristine beaches, tropical climate, and breathtaking landscapes offer an idyllic setting for living, working, or retiring. Moreover, holders of Caribbean passports may access quality education and healthcare services, including internationally renowned institutions such as the University of the West Indies.

Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship by Investment in Real Estate Program

Applicants interested in securing citizenship through the real estate option in Antigua and Barbuda have three following pathways to choose from: 

  • A single applicant can invest in property valued at a minimum of $400,000 under sole ownership. 
  • Two applicants can jointly invest in property worth at least $400,000, with each contributing no less than $200,000, resulting in joint ownership. 
  • A single applicant can opt for property valued at a minimum of $200,000 under sole ownership.

For a single applicant or a family of four or fewer, the processing fees are set at $30,000. However, for families with five or more members, an additional fee of $15,000 per dependent applies.

Ownership of real estate can be facilitated through a non-profit company, provided it meets certain criteria outlined by Antigua and Barbuda's laws, including having issued all authorized shares to the applicant(s), being established and in good standing under local laws, and not being an exempt or offshore entity. 

The application process involving real estate acquisition may extend the processing time, contingent upon the selected property. Resale of the real estate is prohibited until 5 years after purchase, unless an alternate officially approved property within Antigua and Barbuda is acquired.

To initiate the citizenship application under the real estate option, a binding purchase and sale agreement with a developer of an approved project must be signed. This agreement is subject to the approval of the citizenship application by the Citizenship by Investment Unit (CIU).

Upon application submission, due diligence fees and 10% of the government processing fee are required. Upon approval, the remaining government processing fee and all sums due to the developer under the sale and purchase agreement must be paid to finalize the real estate investment as per CIU guidelines.

Following approval, a certificate of registration is issued for both the primary applicant and their family members. This certificate, along with the necessary documentation, must be submitted to the passport office.

Applicants will then be guided by their authorized agent/representative to schedule either a visit to Antigua and Barbuda for passport collection and the oath or affirmation of allegiance, or a visit to an Embassy, High Commission, or Consular Office of Antigua and Barbuda for the same purposes. 

Antigua and Barbuda Approved Areas

Antigua and Barbuda has designated certain areas approved for real estate investment under its Citizenship by Investment Program. These areas offer opportunities for individuals seeking citizenship through property investment. Prospective investors are encouraged to explore these approved areas to find properties that meet the program's criteria and their personal preferences.

Overall, the approved real estate areas for investment in Antigua and Barbuda are outlined below in the table.

Location Description
Antigua
Fort James to Blue Waters Coastal area encompassing Fort James to Blue Waters, offering scenic views and potential for tourism development
Pillar Rock to Five Islands Coastal area known for its picturesque landscapes, suitable for resort or residential development
Pearn's Point to Johnson's Point Coastal stretch ideal for luxury resort or residential projects, offering serene beachfront settings
Falmouth Harbour to Galleon Bay Area around Falmouth Harbour and Galleon Bay, rich in maritime history and potential for marina development
Willoughby Bay to Half Moon Bay Coastal area featuring Willoughby Bay and Half Moon Bay, suitable for eco-tourism and luxury accommodations
Nonsuch Bay area Scenic bay area known for its natural beauty, ideal for boutique resorts or upscale residential developments
Guiana Island and environs to Crabbs Peninsula Sparsely populated area offering opportunities for secluded luxury developments amidst unspoiled nature
Blackman's Estate (Blackman's Point) Coastal estate with potential for exclusive residential projects, offering privacy and stunning sea views
Marble Hill Elevated area with potential for hillside villas or eco-resorts, providing panoramic views of the surroundings
Barbuda
Low Bay to Palmetto Point and Coco Point Coastal area extending from Low Bay to Palmetto Point and Coco Point, offering pristine beaches and tranquility
Coco Point Secluded area with potential for high-end resorts or private residences, featuring untouched natural beauty

These approved areas offer diverse opportunities for real estate investment, ranging from luxury resorts and residential developments to eco-tourism projects, all within the framework of the Citizenship by Investment Program in Antigua and Barbuda.

How to Buy Real Estate in Antigua and Barbuda?

If you are considering purchasing property in this beautiful twin-island nation, it is essential to understand the process involved. Here is a wider introduction to buying real estate in Antigua and Barbuda:

Step 1.  Legal Assessment

At this stage, you need to engage the services of a reputable firm that specializes in real estate transactions in Antigua and Barbuda. Their expertise will be invaluable in assessing the legal status of the property you are interested in. They will review the deed and ensure there are no encumbrances or legal issues that could affect your purchase.

Step 2. Sales and Purchase Agreement

Once you have found the perfect property, your attorney will help you draft a Sales and Purchase Agreement. This document outlines the terms and conditions of the transaction, including the purchase price, payment schedule, and any contingencies that need to be met before the sale is finalized.

Step 3. Landholding License

As a non-citizen, you will need to apply for a Landholding License to acquire real estate in Antigua and Barbuda. This license is required by law and involves a fee of at least 5% of the property's value. However, if you are participating in the Citizenship by Investment Program (CIP), this requirement may be waived for properties approved under the program.

Step 4. Deposit Payment

While your Landholding License application is being processed (which typically takes around 5 months), it is customary to pay a 10% deposit to the seller to secure the property. This deposit demonstrates your commitment to the purchase and reserves the property for you during the approval period. 

Step 5. Legal Registration

Your attorney will take care of registering a restriction on the property, preventing others from dealing with it without your consent. This ensures that your investment is protected and that no unauthorized transactions can take place while the sale is pending.

By following these steps and working closely with experienced professionals, you can navigate the process of buying real estate in Antigua and Barbuda with confidence. 

FAQ about Antigua and Barbuda Real Estate Investment

What is the Average Home Price in Antigua and Barbuda?

Property prices in Antigua and Barbuda offer a diverse range, spanning from $255,000 to $12,000,000. The price per square meter to buy an apartment is around $10,000. Prospective buyers can explore a variety of options, from charming historic colonial houses to lavish luxury beachfront villas. 

Can Foreigners Buy and Own Real Estate in Antigua and Barbuda?

Yes, foreigners can buy and own real estate in Antigua and Barbuda. The country welcomes foreign investment in its real estate sector and offers a straightforward process for foreigners to purchase property. There are no restrictions on foreign ownership of property, and individuals from around the world can acquire land, homes, or commercial properties in Antigua and Barbuda. 

Is It Easy to Buy Property in Antigua?

Yes, it is easy to buy property in Antigua. Buying property in Antigua is generally straightforward for foreigners due to the country's welcoming stance towards international investment in real estate. With no restrictions on foreign ownership and a legal system based on British law, the process is familiar and accessible to buyers from various backgrounds. The prevalence of English as the official language further facilitates communication and documentation, simplifying transactions for non-native speakers. Additionally, the presence of experienced real estate professionals who specialize in assisting foreign buyers ensures smooth navigation of the purchasing process, including legal requirements and paperwork. Supported by government policies aimed at facilitating foreign investment, such as the Citizenship by Investment Program, Antigua presents an attractive destination for those seeking to acquire property in a Caribbean paradise.

What is the Average Return on Investment from Real Estate in Antigua and Barbuda?

Investing in real estate in Antigua and Barbuda proves to be lucrative, with property values experiencing an annual appreciation rate averaging 4%. This steady growth means that if you were to sell your property after five years of ownership, you could potentially realize a return on investment of approximately 17%. Such consistent appreciation in property values underscores the attractiveness of Antigua and Barbuda's real estate market as a profitable investment opportunity.

Does Antigua and Barbuda Have a Property Tax?

Yes, Antigua and Barbuda have a property tax. In Antigua and Barbuda, property tax, alternatively known as real estate tax, applies universally, regardless of residency status. This tax rate spans from 0.1% to 0.5% of a property's assessed value. 

Do You Need a Local Bank Account to Buy Real Estate in Antigua and Barbuda?

No, you do not need a local bank account to buy real estate in Antigua and Barbuda. To purchase real estate in Antigua and Barbuda, having a local bank account is not mandatory, but it can streamline the process. 

While it is possible to conduct transactions through international banks, a local account could facilitate smoother financial transactions, such as payments for property taxes, utilities, and other local expenses. 

What are Other Expenses While Buying Real Estate in Antigua and Barbuda?

The costs associated with purchasing real estate in Antigua and Barbuda typically include a 2.5% stamp duty or transfer tax, a 7% Non-Citizen Landholding License (NCL) fee, and approximately 1% for legal fees, amounting to around 8.5% to 9.5% of the property's price for the purchaser. However, opting for a new property within a development offering tax concessions could potentially lower these expenses.

How to Get Citizenship in Antigua and Barbuda by Real Estate Investment?

To obtain citizenship in Antigua and Barbuda through real estate investment, individuals can participate in the country's Citizenship by Investment Program (CIP). The program offers citizenship to qualified investors who make a significant financial contribution, such as purchasing approved real estate. To qualify, applicants must invest a minimum of $200,000 in government-approved real estate projects or properties. Additionally, they must meet other requirements, including passing due diligence checks and paying applicable processing and government fees. Successful applicants and their families gain the right to live, work, and study in Antigua and Barbuda, along with visa-free travel to numerous countries.

Antigua and Barbuda

Residence Benefits

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Visa free travel to 151 countries

Including the E.U. and Schengen area, the U.K., Hong Kong, Singapore, and others. Easy procedure for obtaining long-term US and Canada tourist visas

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Global mobility and freedom

We take care of the paperwork and help you prepare and submit your application - you receive your passport via DHL Express. No residency requirements to maintain citizenship status

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Fast application processing

within 6 months

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Global mobility and freedom

Zero personal tax. No tax on inheritance, capital gains, foreign income, dividends, interest, or royalties

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Dual citizenship is permitted

There is no need to renounce your previous citizenship when obtaining an Antigua and Barbuda passport

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Global mobility and freedom

From $125,000 donation amount for a family of five

Antigua and Barbuda

Citizenship

Processing Time and Terms

Enter your estimated application start date for Antigua and Barbuda citizenship and receive a clear timetable for the entire procedure

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Sign a service agreement, fill out application forms, and pay the initial service and due diligence fees.

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We compile a document package and submit it for due diligence performed by Antigua and Barbuda CBI unit

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Due diligence and background check conducted by the state

30

We submit your citizenship application once we receive the approval, and you make payment of the outstanding investment amount, government fees, stamp duty, and other fees.

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We supervise the issuance of your passport by Antigua and Barbuda and send your Certificate of Citizenship and passport by DHL Express.

There are Always Options to EXPAND YOUR BOUNDARIES! Let's Discuss Yours

Every client is unique

Every case requires an individual approach and solution. Our years of experience in the industry allow us to provide both.

We will answer all your questions and provide detailed information about the available second passport and residency programs to help you make the right choice.

Victoria

Lead Attorney at Golden Harbors

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Victoria

Lead Attorney at Golden Harbors

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