A Guide to Buying Property in Jamaica for Foreign Buyers
The island of “One Love,” Jamaica is a unique destination unlike any other island in the Caribbean with a vibrant property market currently experiencing tremendous growth.
If you are currently considering investing in real estate in Jamaica but you are wondering “where are the best places to buy property in Jamaica?” or “how do I go about owning property in Jamaica as a foreign buyer” then this guide is for you.
Our guide takes you through the process of buying property in Jamaica from beginning to end, including an introduction to the real estate market, the buying process and the taxes you will need to be aware of.
Overview – The Jamaica Real Estate Market
From the cool hills of the Blue Mountains to the white sands of Montego Bay, Jamaica is simply stunning. Its landscape seduces the senses and has lured Hollywood royalty for decades. Marlene Dietrich, Marilyn Monroe and Sophia Loren count among those who are known to have fallen in love with the island.
Jamaica’s idyllic beaches, crystal clear sea, cascading waterfalls and lush mountainous backdrops have made the island the destination of choice for countless weddings, honeymoons, and family vacations. In 2018 a record 2.47 million stopover visitor arrivals were welcomed by this Caribbean powerhouse located almost halfway between the Cayman Islands and the Dominican Republic.
With championship golf courses, restaurants and spas catering to those who plan on staying for longer than a vacation, there is also a well established real estate market in Jamaica. There are several prestigious gated communities with luxury homes available, including beachfront property and villas overlooking golf courses in locations including Montego Bay, Negril, Ocho Rios, Port Antonio, Runaway Bay, and St Ann.
Buying Property in Jamaica
Can foreigners buy property in Jamaica?
Yes, foreigners can buy property in Jamaica and the Government of Jamaica welcomes investment from overseas buyers. There are no restrictions on foreign buyers acquiring real estate in Jamaica and foreign buyers enjoy the same rights as Jamaican citizens.
Buying property in Jamaica is a relatively simple process, which typically involves the following steps:
- Begin your property search.
- Find your perfect property and make an offer.
- Once you have made an offer on a property and that offer has been accepted, a land survey and title search should be conducted.
- The seller’s attorney will prepare an Agreement for Sale.
- Upon signing you will typically need to pay a deposit of 10% to 20% and the balance will then be paid in installments.
- Pay all required taxes and fees.
Total stamp duty amounts to JMD $5,000 which is split equally between buyer and seller – Buyer JMD $2,500; seller JMD $2,500.
There is also a Transfer Tax of 2% of the purchase price of the property, which is paid in its entirety by the seller.
A registration fee amounting to approximately 0.5% of the purchase price is payable to the Registrar of Titles.
This fee is also split equally between buyer and seller – Buyer 0.25%; seller 0.25%.
In the case of unregistered land, a nominal recording fee is required.
We would recommend that you seek the advice of a local attorney-at-law.
To avoid conflicts of interest we would suggest you seek independent legal advice.
Fees for acting in your behalf for the property transfer, for preparation of the Agreement for Sale and for preparing and reviewing all required documents typically amount to 2% to 3% of the purchase price plus 16.5% Consumption Tax.
There is also a nominal property tax based on the unimproved value of the land.
Search Jamaica Real Estate Listings
As specialists in luxury Caribbean property, we can introduce you to a wide selection of the finest residential property in Jamaica.
Homes for Sale & Condos for Sale
Land for Sale
You can also browse undeveloped land. Purchasing a lot of land provides you with a blank canvas and the opportunity to build your dream home in Jamaica.
Whether you are looking for beachfront land or a centrally located lot, we’re here to help you find the perfect lot of land for sale in Jamaica.
For larger parcels of land for commercial development, please see our commercial real estate listings.
Hotels for Sale
Searching for hotels for sale in Jamaica? Browse hotels, B&Bs and guests houses right here.
Finding the Perfect Property for Sale in Jamaica
Discover the most sought after real estate investment opportunities and benefit from unrivaled insight into the market.
To find your perfect property in Jamaica, search our Jamaica real estate listings.
Best Places to Buy Property in Jamaica
Discover Hanover – Read our guide to buying property in Hanover.
Discover Kingston – Read our guide to buying property in Kingston.
Montego Bay & St James
Discover Montego Bay & St James – Read our guide to buying property in Montego Bay & St James.
Discover Negril – Read our guide to buying property in Negril.
Ocho Rios & St Ann
Discover Ocho Rios & St Ann – Read our guide to buying property in Ocho Rios & St Ann.
Oracabessa & St Mary
Discover Oracabessa & St Mary – Read our guide to buying property in Oracabessa & St Mary.
Discover Port Antonio – Read our guide to buying property in Port Antonio.
Discover Portland – Read our guide to buying property in Portland.
Discover Runaway Bay – Read our guide to buying property in Runaway Bay.
Discover Spring Farm – Read our guide to buying property in Spring Farm.
Discover St Elizabeth – Read our guide to buying property in St Elizabeth.
Discover Tryall Club – Read our guide to buying property in Tryall Club.
Discover Westmoreland – Read our guide to buying property in Westmoreland.
How long can a foreign citizen stay in Jamaica?
Citizens of the USA, Canada, UK, EU countries and many countries in CARICOM, the Commonwealth and Latin America are permitted to remain in Jamaica on holiday without a visa for up to 3 months.
How do I become a resident of Jamaica?
Individuals looking to stay longer than 3 months in Jamaica can apply to the Jamaican Passport, Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA) for an extension which may allow an extension up to 6 to 12 months.
Retired individuals who are financially solvent, of good character and no longer have no need for employment can apply to PICA for permanent residence in Jamaica.
How do I become a citizen of Jamaica?
Individuals who have lawfully resided in Jamaica for 5 years can apply for citizenship by naturalization.
Sending Money to Jamaica
You could save money when investing in Jamaica real estate by using a foreign exchange expert to get the best rate for your property purchase. We have partnered with Halo Financial, a specialist in foreign exchange, to help you get the best exchange rates when making one-off or regular international payments for a property purchase in Jamaica. To see how you could save money, read more: Foreign Exchange.
How to Get to Jamaica
There are direct flights to Jamaica from various cities across the United States, Canada and Europe (the UK).
You can fly direct to Jamaica’s Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay or to Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston.
From the USA, there are direct flights from various cities, including Atlanta (Delta), Dallas and Miami (American Airlines), New York (Caribbean Airlines, Delta and JetBlue) and Charlotte and Philadelphia (US Airways).
From Canada, Air Canada operates direct flights from Toronto and Halifax.
From the UK, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic operate direct flights to Jamaica from London.
Atlanta to Montego Bay: 2 hours 50 mins
Dallas to Montego Bay: 3 hours 55 mins
London to Jamaica: 9 hours 20 mins
Miami to Jamaica: 1 hour 40 mins
New York to Jamaica: 3 hours 55 mins
Toronto to Jamaica: 4 hours 10 mins