Buying Property in Panama: What you need to look for

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If you’re planning on moving to Panama or investing in Panama, you’ve most likely considered buying property in Panama. The Panama real estate market has been one of the region’s hottest over the past ten years, and for good reason. Panama is ideal for real estate investment, whether you’re full-time, part-time, or just want to make a financial commitment. There are properties of all types and all prices, with new construction booming in pretty much every sector. Buying property in Panama, like anywhere else, does require a bit of research, however. You don’t want to rush your decision or make a bad choice that will cost you time and money. Here’s some valuable info that will help get you started.


Visit Panama First:

This seems self-explanatory, but with the popularity of online real estate sites and transactions, it may be tempting to jump the gun and invest from abroad before actually seeing Panama first. We highly recommend you don’t do this. Planning an explorational trip is important, even if you’re simply investing, as it will give you a real life feel of what you’re buying, and what Panama truly has to offer. Plus, it’s fun! Who wouldn’t want to spend some time in Panama traveling and looking at houses? Before you come, there’s lots of online research you can do as well, and the combination of the two will make the entire process more enjoyable, and much less stressful.

Look for Neighborhoods That Fit Your Lifestyle:

When looking at homes, you may find the perfect one at the perfect price, but not in the perfect place. Panama has a diverse set of communities made up of expats and locals, and each has its own flavor and its own pace. Talk to people who have similar tastes, ask locals what they think, do research about (if applicable to you) schools, hospitals, transportation access, crime, noise, etc. Panama is known for its laid-back lifestyle, but it can also be very energetic and hectic if you’re in certain areas as well. Your neighborhood is as important as your property, so take your time, ask a lot of questions, and explore as much as you can.

Rent Before You Buy:

If you’re simply just investing in Panama real estate, then this doesn’t apply to you. However, if you plan on retiring to Panama or permanently relocating to Panama for any reason, this is a good first step. Rents in Panama can run the gamut from budget to luxury, and everywhere in between. While it may seem like you’re dead set on buying a home, a year of living in Panama as a renter will teach you a lot about what it’s like to live there, from a personal angle. You may find that renting in Panama will save you money and time, as you’ll either fall in love with where you are, or decide it’s not right for you. It’s not wasting time either, and if you really aren’t pleased, you can always leave. Paying the penalty for breaking a lease (though not recommendable) is far less of a financial risk than having to quickly sell a home.

Remember, when buying property in Panama, it’s all about getting a good value for your purchase, and feeling comfortable about your investment, no matter what it’s for. Take your time, consult an attorney,

About Manoj Chatlani

Manoj Chatlani is a Senior Partner at POLS Attorneys, a full-service law firm in Panama City, Panama. Specializing in offshore services, including asset protection, estate planning, offshore banking, and offshore corporations, as well as Panama immigration and real estate transactions, POLS Attorneys offers clients a streamlined solution to all their Panama legal needs. Manoj is a Panamanian lawyer and holds a law degree from USMA and earned a Masters in Communication Law and Panama Tax law.

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