I am a PRC holder, what can I buy in Bermuda?

By Heather Chilvers, Coldwell Banker Bermuda Realty

Two things spring to mind as being really good news for you:

1) There is a lot of inventory on the market at the moment and in some segments prices are down approximately 30% from the peak of the market in 2008.

2) In the recent budget it was announced that the duty payable on the purchase of a house or condo for a PRC will remain at 4 %, (for another year) instead of increasing to 6% in September 2014 as originally planned. 

With these two things in mind you can get out there and start looking at property.  What can you buy? You are eligible to purchase any condominium (except one in a government sponsored complex) or a house with a single ARV over $63,600. Based on current property on the market, this translates into a house that is probably going to be priced around or just over the $1,000,000 mark and upwards.

Although a freestanding home may be your preference, I would encourage you not to rule out a town house or condo. There are many out there that are actually stand alone, semi- detached or in small elite complexes of 2 – 6 units.  These can look and feel very much like a freestanding house. Some have been built in the last 5 years, and require very little work and upkeep, which if you are working long hours or hold a position that requires frequent travel, can be a huge bonus. Some allow pets, some have amenities such as a pool, and some even have an apartment style room, which would be ideal for an elderly relative, a teenager or a nanny.

The point is to keep your options open as the inventory is varied and there are great opportunities for purchasers in the condo segment.  When you find the perfect property, applications for a license to purchase will be provided by your lawyer, and in addition to your personal information you will be required to present:

  • A notarized, signed copy of the sale and purchase agreement.
  • A Bank reference.
  • Two personal references from referees who have known you for three or more years.
  • These referees should be Bermudian and, to the satisfaction of the Minister are in sufficient standing in their community.  

Be aware that once your lawyer has submitted your application for a license to purchase it can take 3 to 6 months for government to process. Working with a real estate agent to help you through the process can ensure your contract terms allow for a delayed closing.

Meanwhile Happy House Hunting!

Heather Chilvers is amongst Coldwell banker Bermuda Realty’s Leading Sales Representatives. She has been working in Real Estate for 25 years. If you have a question for Heather, please contact her at hchilvers@brcl.bm or 332 1793.

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