Cayman Islands Real Estate
Situated in the Western Caribbean Sea the Cayman Islands are a highly desirable expat and real estate investment hotspot.
The Cayman Islands are also a thriving offshore financial center and tax haven.
Comprised of three islands, Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman, the Cayman Islands lie south of Miami and north of Jamaica.
They are highly accessible thanks to multiple daily flights being received from North America and beyond.
- Politically, economically, socially and judicially speaking the Cayman Islands are extremely stable.
- No direct taxation is imposed on residents of the islands including foreign migrants, or on companies registered on the islands.
- Variety of residency visas available to enable expats of any age to live, work, invest or retire to the Cayman Islands.
- Highly sophisticated, government backed investment environment.
Cayman Islands Real Estate Market
We have contacts for real estate agents in Georgetown, Grand Cayman. Please contact us for prices of real estate for sale in the Cayman Islands, as well as current rental rates for homes, apartments, commercial property, and vacation rentals.
- Strong multi-tier real estate rental market, offering profitable opportunity for property investors.
- Residency can be enabled through real estate acquisition in Cayman Islands; however you do not have to be a resident to invest in property, nor is it necessarily compulsory to purchase real estate to secure residency.
- No annual real estate tax, capital gains tax or inheritance tax affecting real estate.
- No restrictions on foreign ownership: real estate title is granted and guaranteed by the Cayman Islands government.
- The Cayman Islands real estate investments market has enjoyed a steady return to growth following the global economic downturn.
- Unarguable tourism and lifestyle appeal underpins evergreen prospects for long-term real estate investment potential.
- Seven Mile Beach on Grand Cayman and George Town remain popular with expatriate and investment purchasers of real estate.
Property Investments, Taxes and Doing Business in Cayman Islands
- Stamp duty is incurred by all non-Caymanian purchasers of real estate and is currently set at 7.5%.
- No restrictions on foreign ownership of real estate, and real estate can be held in more than one name or by a corporation. The latter approach ensures actual ownership details remain private.
- There is active demand for long and short-term rental real estate which offers investors the potential for strong investment yields and returns on investment.
- Stamp duty is payable on mortgages at a rate of up to 1.5%.
- Investors renting real estate to the tourist market are liable for tourist accommodation tax which is 10% on the gross rent without any deductions.
- Tourist accommodation tax is only paid on short-term or holiday rental units, not long-term rental properties. If a property is being rented short-term or for holiday rentals it must be licensed with the Department of Tourism and an accommodation tax return should be filed with the Department monthly.
Landlord and Tenant
- Real estate rental law is pro-landlord in the Cayman Islands, with landlords free to increase rates and evict tenants with relatively short notice if required.
- Leases can commence any day of the month but typically the rent is due on the first of the month so the initial month may be pro-rated. 1 month’s security deposit as well as the first month’s rent are required before a tenant takes residency.
- Non-tourism residential rental leases tend to be for a 12-month period. The vast majority of tenants are expats on work permits that last for 12 months (renewable), therefore leases tend to tie in with this.
- The minimum lease generally available is 6 months but with relatively high leasing fees. Landlords tend to insist on 12 months, however break clauses are common with generally 60 days’ notice from either party the standard.
- Stamp duty on rental contracts only becomes payable on residential leases that are 2 years or longer, there is no stamp duty on leases under 2 years.
- Stamp duty is more relevant for commercial leases where any lease for a period of 5 years or more is subject to stamp duty.
Cayman Islands Property Investment Visa
- As foreign nationals are free to purchase real estate in the Cayman Islands there is no specific visa required for a property purchase, whether for self-habitation or investment purposes.
- Those who wish to reside in the Cayman Islands may be able to use the purchase of local real estate to obtain a residency permit under the following visa classes: Permanent Residence with the Right to Work, Certificate of Permanent Residence for Persons of Independent Means, Residency for Persons of Independent Means. Note however, additional requirements apply to each visa class: –
- Permanent Residence with the Right to Work – requirements: those who have eight years of legal ordinary residence in the Cayman Islands are eligible to apply for permanent residence. Under this visa class applicants are assessed under a points system. Those who achieve 110 + points are assured permanent residence status. Points can be gained by those who own local real estate that reflects their income.
Real Estate Markets of Interest in the Cayman Islands
Grand Cayman is certainly where the majority of expatriate and property investor interest is centered in the Cayman Islands. The island is served by Owen Roberts International Airport, and enjoys first world infrastructure and amenities.
George Town is popular with families with children who tend to seek property close to Walkers Road in for convenient access to schools. Those who center a real estate search away from the most popular beach areas are likely to find more affordable real estate options.
Seven Mile Beach in the West Bay district is one of the most vibrant centers for tourism interest on the island, and West Bay Village has a population of circa 8,243.
Cayman Brac has a landmass of just 14 square miles, and yet what it lacks in size it certainly makes up for in its striking diversity of flora, fauna and natural appeal. It is served by Charles Kirkconnell International Airport and has direct air links to Grand Cayman and Miami.
Little Cayman is the least developed of the islands and has a landmass of just 10 square miles. It is unspoiled and benefits from more secluded beaches, lagoons, mangrove forests, salt ponds and tropical forests.
Living in the Cayman Islands
The quality of life enjoyed by residents in the Cayman Islands is exceptionally good and whilst the cost of living in the Cayman Islands is quite high, this is offset by the fact that no direct personal taxation is incurred by Cayman Island residents.
The islands’ natural attractions are many; they include stunning white sandy beaches, coral reefs, diverse flora, fauna and marine life, and the tropical climate encourages an outdoor-centric lifestyle for much of the year.
Whilst historically the Cayman Islands have suffered some hurricane damage, all major storms are closely monitored by the government and ample warning is given to residents if necessary.
Healthcare standards locally are sophisticated; integration for North American and British expats is easy because everyone speaks English in the Cayman Islands, and because the islands are home to a strong expatriate community.
Cayman Islands Location and Geography
The Cayman Islands are a British Overseas Territory considered part of the geographic Western Caribbean Zone as well as the Greater Antilles.
They lie circa 430 miles south of Miami and 227 miles south of Cuba.
Each island is mostly low lying, and surrounded by stunning coral reefs, and they enjoy a tropical marine climate with the wet season running from May to October, and the dry season running from November to April.
Grand Cayman: This is the largest of the three islands, home to roughly 95% of the Cayman Islands’ population, and home to the territory’s capital of George Town.
The island’s five districts are Bodden Town, East End, George Town, North Side, and West Bay.
Cayman Brac: Situated circa 90 miles northeast of Grand Cayman, this island enjoys the most prominent terrain of the Cayman Islands as it has a limestone outcrop known as “The Bluff” which extends almost the length of the island.
Local attractions are largely based on the island’s natural attributes and attractions and include rock climbing, hiking, diving, fishing and cave exploration.
Little Cayman: Located circa 60 miles northeast of Grand Cayman Little Cayman is a stunning retreat for divers and wildlife enthusiasts. It too benefits from the Cayman Islands famed laid back atmosphere.
[Source: For more information Wikipedia Cayman Islands]
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