Do you want to purchase property in Costa Rica? Make a plan to tour and purchase real estate in Costa Rica during the rainy season. Green Season (a.k.a. “rainy season”) is one of the most enigmatic times of the year in this tropical paradise. Yet these few months can also create confusion for travelers and potential in terms of how to manage expectations and realities. While there are no absolute rules when it comes to planning an experience in Costa Rica, having some clear understanding of what to expect may just unlock the truths about why the rainy season here in Costa Rica is arguably the best time to visit and to consider finalizing a real estate purchase.
Let’s start with addressing the big myths about the rainy season:
IT IS ALWAYS RAINING…
This is the biggest misconception and one that must be addressed. The typical rainy season day in Costa Rica is like most tropical or subtropical destinations with bright, hot, crisp and clear mornings. These sunny mornings create a natural evaporation and wind cycle which brings increased cloudiness around midday, followed by afternoon and evening rain showers. While we can certainly have full days of rain, those are indicative of a weather front or low pressure system and are not an average day in Costa Rica. When you come, plan on enjoying your mornings by taking tours, hikes, walks, activities and visiting properties. Plan on enjoying the cooling evening showers to reflect, relax and enjoy what makes the rainforest so amazing – the rain that gives life to everything here!
So, if you are looking to lay out in the near equatorial sun from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., perhaps the rainy season might not be ideal time to visit (you also might want to consider meeting with a skin doctor immediately). But for everyone else there are a myriad of reasons why the rainy season is the best time to be visiting, exploring and investing in Costa Rica.
While far from an overdeveloped tourist destination, the rainy season sees a lower overall volume of tourists. This offers visitors during the rainy season quite a few benefits – airfare, hotels, car rentals and even tour operators typically have reduced rates during the rainy season and the decrease in overall tourism allows for you to enjoy this country in a more pristine sense.
Nature explodes to life
There is simply no way to explain just how breathtaking the natural surroundings and wildlife during the rainy season are here in Costa Rica. Water is the source of all life and you can literally watch plants and life emerge before your eyes during the rainy season in Costa Rica. or anyone looking to truly experience the rainforest, sounds, smells, sights and magic of Costa Rica, experiencing it at the peak of rainy season is obligatory. Waterfalls explode with clean fresh water while trees, flowers and vines soak in nutrients and explode towards the morning sun. The vision of watching the evening clouds and fog burn off the jungle canopy in the morning sun and the defeating sounds of the forest emerging from an evening rain will bring the most cynical to amazed silence.
Let’s face it…Costa Rica and the tropics are hot. The rainy season brings out more moderate temperatures and it is not rare for us to be reach out to friends and family in the U.S. during their summer telling them to come visit Costa Rica to cool down. To have the hot and humid mornings and the cool afternoons and evenings is a blessing. Just ask anyone who has lived in Costa Rica for more than a year – everyon will tell you that they love the rainy season. Everyone!
There are a lot of reasons why purchasing real estate in the rainy season is advantageous – some are linked to the points above and others are totally independent. Here are a few of the top motivations:
- While it is easy to fall in love with Costa Rica when you are escaping a 15-degree winter storm, uncovering the charm and beauty here even when weather further north is beautiful truly speaks to the magic of this destination. You will not be disappointed as this is a place which is much more than an escape from winter… it’s an escape to a better lifestyle.
- Fewer people also means fewer potential buyers. Oftentimes sellers have higher levels of motivation in liquidating property and are more open to either pricing to move quickly or negotiating to get a deal done. Rental properties are typically making less money due to lower occupancies and rates, so timing to negotiate the best deals is optimal.
- For investors looking to purchase rental income properties, contracting and closing in the rainy season is also ideal as it allows you to take ownership, make upgrades or promote and be ready to take advantage of the upcoming high season with a rental or promotional program in place. Purchasing at the peak of high season often leads to a lull in rental income immediately after purchase, whereas purchasing in the rainy season allows for much quicker returns as contract-to-closing periods are typically 30-90 days.
- Lastly, purchasing during the rainy season ensures that you see Costa Rica at what a typical tourist might say is its least desirable time. You are purchasing a dream, so it is nice to know that when closing you understand and appreciate the destination in all of its seasons and glory. (My wife once told me that I look amazing in a suit and tie, but that she knew we could get married when she still loved me when I rolled over in the morning.)
Take advantage of the rainy season, the lower density, the cooler temps, the amazing discounts and the magic of seeing the rainforest… when it’s raining! You won’t be disappointed and you will be like a local before you even buy.
Scott Cutter, originally from Birmingham, Alabama first came to Costa Rica in 1997 after graduating from the University of Colorado at Boulder. After arriving here, Scott explored the entire country, particularly the Pacific Coast and settled on living in the Manuel Antonio area. Scott spent several years as the General Manager of a luxury boutique hotel in the area and then began a career as a real estate broker in the area, a field in which he has been working full time for the past 15 years. In addition to working a specialist in vacation homes, condos, retirement properties and rental properties, Scott also has extensive experience in development in the area. Scott is now the sales director for Marina Pez Vela, in addition to his ongoing role as lead broker for 2 Costa Rica Real Estate, where he has managed the commercial development of the project, yacht sales programs, condo sales and general integration of the project into the community.
In addition to his intrinsic passion and love for the real estate field, Scott is actively involved in a host of community activities, charities and groups. He has served as a board member of the Chamber of Commerce and sat on the board of the private trusts charged with the first joint venture between the private sector and public water board to build major infrastructural improvements to the area.
Scott is married to Gisella Alvarado, whom he met in Quepos, and is the proud father of Liana Rosalina and Mia Isabella.