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Unique caribbean places to live
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Buying a property in the Caribbean. Why Dominican Republic?

Where is Dominican Republic located?

Dominican Republic is a Caribbean country located in the central zone of the Greater Antilles, it’s one of the thirty five countries which form the American continent. Its capital, and most populated city is Santo Domingo. The island is limited to the north with the Atlantic Ocean, to the east with el canal de la Mona, which separates it from Puerto Rico, to the south the Caribbean Sea, and to the west with Haiti, with whom we share the island. It has 44,488 km2, with a current population of 10, 831,000. It’s the second biggest country in the Caribbean, Cuba being the first.

Here’s a little Dominican history

It was discovered by Christopher Columbus by accident, the 5th of December 1492 , during his 1st trip to the American Continent, while working for the Spanish Crown.
It was inhabited by the friendly Taino, an Arawakan people who arrived by canoe through the Orinoco river in the now Venezuela. They called their island Quisqueya or Ayiti. The island was divided in five chiefdoms and ruled by Its five caciques. They were basically wiped out when put into hard labor in the gold mines and sugar cane fields, also from starvation, diseases they were not immune to, some committed suicide to prevent being enslaved and hundreds died fighting or on the run. African slaves had to be imported, who began arriving in the island by 1503, and hence the birth of our mullato race, which makes up almost a 73% of our population.
FACTS: Did you know during this colonization they established the first of many things in the Americas?  The first tribune, the first stone house, the first university, the first hospital, the first sugar cane factory, the fist cathedral, the first forte, the first convent. Many of these structures you can still visit through guided tours, at our beautiful, picturesque and very interesting Colonial zone in Santo Domingo.
After a few of centuries of Spanish occupation from 1493-1821, the island was occupied by Haiti from 1822-1844. Our independence was declared on the 27th of February of 1844 by a group called La Trinitaria or The Trinity. The 1st constitution was approved the 6th of November 1844.
But as in many countries, politics have never been an easy matter, and so there was a chain of events after this: we were annexed to Spain again, a second republic was formed in 1865-1916 with a dictatorship, Rafael Leonidas Trujillo from 1930-1961 alias “El Jefe”, who was assassinated 30th of May 1961. This caused a few years of instability, until our fourth and final republic was formed in 1966 and to this date, where we still enjoy our established democracy.

Our biggest asset is our people

Ask anyone who has come here before what is one of the fondest memories they have of Dominican Republic and they will surely mention the Dominican people. We have a reputation of being amongst the friendliest people you’ll meet, great sense of humor, always with a radiant smile on our face, it doesn’t matter what we are going through, positivity always shines through. We are passionate and lively, we love talking a hundred miles per minute, absolutely love dancing to our merengue (our traditional music) and any type music really. We are characterized by our hospitality, with our warm embraces, be it a neighbor or a visitor. You will truly feel welcomed and as part of the family.

Ecosystem and Climate

Mostly known and advertised for the east and north coast’s beautiful pristine, white sand beaches, filled with tall swaying coconut trees, beach grapes, and an enjoyable, all year round, 86-95 degrees F climate, are all great benefits of owning a home here. This area is The majority of the all-inclusive hotels and resort communities are in this area, and they are indeed amazing but, if this is all you know, you are missing a whole chunk!
Beyond the most popular touristic locations, there is a wilder and more eco-friendly option of local tourism for exploring the rest of the country. You will find lowland rainforests, cloud forests, pine forests, dry forests, desserts, mangroves, savannah, lagoons, salt lakes, a rift valley, and four mountain range. Discovering these hidden gems will make having a home in the Dominican Republic even more memorable for the whole family.
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FACT: Did you know we have the highest peak in the Caribbean? At 10,215 feet, Pico Duarte location is in the Cordillera Central, in the national park of Armando Bermudez.  You can reach the top in a hiking two-three day excursion, where you will enjoy outstanding landscapes filled with pine trees, orchids, ferns and, even some planes with just shrubs and berries. It has a climate that very few would associate as typical of a Caribbean island, with cold temperatures all year round, going several degrees below freezing during winter nights.

Economy and business opportunities

The economy of the Dominican Republic is the fastest growing in Latin America and the most important in all Central America and the Caribbean, where it occupies the first place. The strong and constant economic growth during the past decades has placed it in a high human development index as per the United Nations.
It has a diverse economic activity; the strongest pillars are in service, tourism, agriculture, mining, trade, textile, pharmaceutical, and real estate; this, along with its advantageous location, attracts many foreign investments every year,
I have seen many second and third homeowners who come here planning to retire, more often than not, realize there are still many business opportunities allowing them to start anew.

Health system and security

The health system has since seen substantial improvements over the years; you can find excellent private hospitals in Santo Domingo, Santiago, and the mayor touristic areas like Punta Cana, which provide high-quality services.
The government has recently implemented a social security system for workers and employers, which works very well and has help many thousands of people get the necessary care. For those who are no employees, the recommendation is to get private health insurance; there is a wide range available.
A 911 number is also now up and running and is of great help.

Ownership and legal stuff

When you buy property, you own it; it’s not a 99-year lease like many countries implement.
Acquiring a property can be made under a personal name, or through a company; this generally depends on the use you will give the property, if it’s for personal use or meant for business.  In either case, we always recommend our clients to hire a lawyer to assist and guide them in the process, making sure they exhaust a proper due diligence. The majority of the time, this same lawyer helps you with the yearly property tax payments and company maintenance. They typically charge from 0.75-1% of the purchasing price.
And talking about taxes, there are two types:
– Transfer tax: is a 3% of the assessed value of the property, and it’s a one-time payment. Fees are paid based on the market value of the property, not on the purchase price stated in the sales contract.
– Property Tax: is equivalent to 1% of the cadastral value, as determined by the government, on the exceeding of US$144,000 ( approx.) and usually at much less than the market value. Properties with values below the threshold amount are not taxed. This tax is paid in two installments, one in March and one in September.
Although there is much more to learn about the Dominican Republic, this will give you a brief insight into our vibrant and colorful Caribbean country. Come and discover it for your self soon!
Although there is much more to learn about the Dominican Republic, this will give you a brief insight into our vibrant and colorful Caribbean country.
Come and discover it for your self soon!
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