In Costa Rica real estate, many factors that affect the cost of land or standing structures are obvious; but what about the price of building a new home in Costa Rica? Many interested buyers (and agents, too) tend to be misinformed—or uninformed altogether—when it comes to building a new home here.
There are countless nuances that affect the cost of building a home, so the price per square foot can range from $50-$125. Materials, contracting/labor costs, and land obstacles (among other things) will create variation in price in the process of going from ground zero to a finished home
Most laborers on a construction site are paid minimum wage or close to it; but some contractors may have a few university-trained men on their staff. By law, those with degrees make more money, so obtaining a prominent crew can be hard on your pockets (though definitely worth it). In a similar light, some contractors have very high reputations, and likely will almost always be booked. Such builders charge more per square foot and have every right to do so. It’s not absolutely necessary to pick the builder in highest demand, and it’s equally important not to simply take the lowest bid when considering the price of building a new home in Costa Rica.
Undertaking a homebuilding project is not for the lackadaisical owner.
Anyone who prioritizes the practice of cutting costs will surely run into trouble. There will always be a crew willing to bid a cheaper price, and the final product will reflect that. To avoid frustrating repairs down the road, spend the money to do things right the first time around; even then, construction will still be 20-30% cheaper than building in the US.
It’s absolutely necessary that the owner, or someone trusted, make frequent visits to the building site to ensure everything is going according to plan. For many, it is advisable to contract a supervising architect to deal with the paperwork and make said visits. From the moment ground is broken through the final product, a supervising architect will run around $10,000. It adds to the price of building a new home in Costa Rica, but it’s a small cost considering you can be confident all is well during the building process. If your piece of land is not yet cut or is located on a hillside, tack on a few thousand dollars in fees towards preparation. Medium to fine finished, generally run around $100 per square foot, which is what most buyers tend to choose. Including land and all extraneous fees, a 2000 square foot, 3 bedroom home, QFinance mortgage lender estimates say that this can be constructed on Guanacaste’s Gold Coast for $300,000.
Materials have the largest affect on the price of building a new home. Contractors often make miscalculations, or charge well above cost and get a commission from the provider. Do some research on materials, talk to other people who have built, etc. If, as mentioned before, you’ve chosen a reputable builder, they are likely honest and will charge fairly. From tiles to roofing, stonework, lighting fixtures, doors, cabinetry, countertops, and all the little accents, the materials chosen to complete the home will create the greatest variation on the price of building a new home in Costa Rica.