Why invest in the Turks and Caicos?

The Turks and Caicos Islands, located north of the Dominican Republic, are emerging as one of the fastest-growing markets in the Caribbean region. CREW takes a closer look at why Canadian buyers should give some consideration into this area.

Why invest?

A rapidly emerging market, Canadian investors are only beginning to enter the Turks and Caicos Islands.

“Currently, the prices are down to what they were prior to 2008, when the economic situation in most of the world went down,” explains Kathryn Brown, chief operating officer of ERA Coralie Properties.

“If you want a two-bedroom condominium, you will probably pay between $450,000 and $800,000, depending on where the development is, and the size of the unit."

Single-family homes are also attractively priced. “If you’re buying a home, you may be able to get a two-bedroom home for $250,000,” says Brown. “Most properties are sold fully furnished. The reason for this is because there is not often enough room to move furniture.”

She also believes the returns will increase in time. “I would say that the properties here can provide Canadians with good returns,” adds Brown. “Going forward, the returns will be even better, and our values are already starting to increase.” 

Dealing with financial issues

Many countries have stringent rules for conducting business. However, this is not the case in the Turks and Caicos Islands, as there is far less for investors to worry about there.

“We have no taxes,” says Brown. “There is no property tax, income tax or any other tax. There is, however, a one-time stamp duty that is paid at the time of purchase, depending on the price.”

The Turks and Caicos Islands rely on the British legal system for business dealings, similar to the Canadian system.

“We are a British protectorate, which means that we are under British common law,” adds Brown. “So when your name is on the deed, this guarantees ownership of property.”

Sourcing finance from financial institutions is also much easier. “Our banks here are all Canadian banks,” explains Brown. “Canadians can get access to some of the major Canadian institutions, including Royal Bank of Canada, Scotiabank and CIBC.”

Looking ahead

The Turks and Caicos Islands weren’t always a popular investment locale.

“Ten years ago, most Canadians had never even heard of the Turks and Caicos Islands,” says Brown. “And now, when it’s mentioned, people say the opposite. We have a great reputation, and anyone that comes to visit comes home and tells their friends and family about it.”

Brown is optimistic about the colony’s potential. “I believe that the future of the Turks and Caicos Islands is very bright,” she adds.

“We are a developing country, and we’re just getting started. We will never be like the Dominican Republic or Jamaica, but the islands are trying to maintain their integrity as being a paradise. And that’s what people expect when they come here.”

This article was published in the October 2013 issue of CREW magazine.

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