Real Estate

How to buy real estate in Antigua and Barbuda and obtain its citizenship

The Antigua and Barbuda property market attracts investors from worldwide. Coastal villas and apartments are in the most significant demand; they also can be rented. Prices for such objects are growing by 3—5% per year. Thus, rent brings up to 15% per annum in the high season.

Foreigners can get citizenship if they invest at least $200,000 in Antigua and Barbuda real estate. A Caribbean passport opens visa-free entry to 151 countries, including Singapore, the UK, Schengen countries, and others.

Buying real estate in Antigua and Barbuda

Real estate prices in Antigua and Barbuda

Antigua and Barbuda is a country with a stable economic situation and an excellent spot for foreigners to buy real estate. The government has launched a program that allows investors to purchase property and obtain citizenship for themselves and their family members.

Starting in 2019, the real estate market of Antigua and Barbuda is experiencing an upswing — it is growing by 5% per year. The country consists of three islands: Antigua, Barbuda, and Redonda. Real estate on the island of Antigua is in the most significant demand — here, the well-developed infrastructure in addition to the tropical climate and clean sea. Barbuda is not so popular and less populated, but it also attracts foreigners with its peace and privacy. 

According to Global Property Guide, the average price for two-bedroom houses is about $350,000, and for three-bedroom and up properties is about $600,000.

Expenses when buying real estate

The final cost of housing in Antigua and Barbuda consists of the property price, taxes, and registration costs. Expenses for citizens and foreigners when buying real estate differ. 

Citizens pay the following expenses when buying real estate 

CostFeesLegal supportTaxes
$600,000 for a furnished apartment 2% of the object’s cost are fees for the real estate sale contract1—2% of the cost to check the legal purity of the object2.5% is a stamp duty on the sale and purchase of property

In the case above, the total expenses will be $639,000, with maximum rates of fees and duties. 

Foreigners have the same expenses, but if they buy a villa with a plot, they incur additional costs: they must pay 5% of the transaction for an Alien Land Holding Licence. When a foreigner purchases a villa with a plot for $1,000,000, he will spend $1,115,000.

It’s possible to buy land in Antigua for building. There are conditions for the land purchase: construction needs to be completed by a fixed date, and the buyer must pay state transfer fees of 2.5%. There is a prohibition from buying land for building in Barbuda now.

Conditions of buying property under the
citizenship program

Foreigners planning to buy real estate in Antigua and Barbuda can obtain citizenship. To get a passport, investors must meet the following conditions. 

Conditions for participation in the citizenship program

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Сhoosing a property from a pre-approved listReal estate purchase for at least $200,000Sale in five years, if necessary

Select a property from a pre-approved list of objects. To obtain a passport, the investor must buy a pre-approved property by the government for participation in the citizenship program. 

The investor can purchase the following types of properties:

  • a share in a resort complex by the sea;
  • apartments;
  • villas.

Immigrant Invest lawyers check the legal sound of each property and developer.

Prepayment and Due Diligence. When the investor has chosen a property, they prepay 10% of the property value. After that, the investor must undergo Due Diligence checks. It is a mandatory stage: the government checks the solvency and reputation of the investor who decides to participate in the program.

Buy real estate for at least $200,000. The minimum investment is enough to buy a share of a condominium or a hotel under construction. The cost of apartments in personal ownership starts from $400,000. Villas cost $600,000 and more.

The investor pays 90% of the property value for real estate after passing Due Diligence checks and approval of the citizenship application. 

Own a property for at least five years. Under the program terms, the investor can sell the real estate for at least five years after receiving a passport. If you want to sell an apartment or a villa earlier, you must buy another object worth $200,000 instead.

You can rent out real estate and receive additional income during this time. Foreigners can sell the property five years after the purchase and return the investment. Resort management companies usually offer assistance in finding the next buyer.

Examples of properties to buy in Antigua and Barbuda

Apartments for sale in Half Moon Bay, Antigua and Barbuda

The 40-room hotel is in Half Moon Bay, on the island of Antigua. The price ranges from €200,000 to €600,000

The hotel complex for sale in Half Moon Bay in southwest Antigua

A hotel complex with a distance of 50 m from the ocean and 2 km from the airport. The cost ranges from €220,000 to €715,000

Buying a villa in a five-star resort complex, Antigua and Barbuda

Villas for sale in a 5-star resort complex. On the territory are various villa types – with two bedrooms selling for $400,000 and three bedrooms selling for $450,000 and more

Shares, apartments, townhouses, and villas for sale in Antigua and Barbuda

The pre-approved project on the island coast has various property types for sale. A one-bedroom furnished apartment with an area of ​​56 sq. m. is worth $400,000. A townhouse cost is at least $1,200,000

Shares, villas, and apartments for sale, Antigua and Barbuda

The project, with 120 villas and apartments, is located on a cliff on the west coast of Antigua. The resort is available for purchase until 2023

Expenses when buying property under the
citizenship program

The cost of real estate is the main expense when applying for citizenship. In addition, applicants must pay state and passport fees, duties, bank commissions, and Due Diligence checks.

Real estate expenses under the citizenship program for one applicant 

Real estateState feeDue Diligence checkPassport feesBank commissions
from $200,000$30,000$7,500from $300from $300

If a property costs $200,000, the total expenses will be $238,100, which the investor spends on obtaining citizenship.

The investor can participate alone or with family members. A spouse, children, grandparents, sisters, and brothers can also obtain citizenship under such a program. The minimum property cost remains the same, but additional expenses depend on the number of applicants.

Expenses for investors and their families under the citizenship program 

InvestorMarried coupleFamily of 4, excluding siblingsFamily of 5
Real estate purchaseFrom $200,000From $200,000From $200,000From $200,000
State fee$30,000$30,000$30,000$30,000
Due Diligence$7,500$15,000$15,000
for a spouse

+$2,000
for 12 to 17 years old child

+$4,000
for an adult family member
$15,000
for a spouse

+$2,000
for 12 to 17 years old child

+$4,000
for an adult family member
Other fees$600$1,200$1,800$2,400

The investor with a spouse will increase by about $8,100 and amount to $246,200. A family with two children under 18 will pay $251,400.

How long does it take to buy real estate 

The investor can purchase a property through a lawyer by proxy. The lawyer will check that real estate is suitable for sale and participation in the citizenship program. Your presence is not required.

When you select a property, you need to obtain a “Non-Citizen Land Holding Licence” to purchase real estate. It can take from 3 to 6 months to process and cost 5% of the property value. When you get the licence, the transaction completion process usually takes about a month.

About 1 month
Takes the transaction process

The investor receives documents confirming the ownership of a real estate by mail. When you finish the transaction, you register it at the local office.

Real estate maintenance costs in Antigua and Barbuda 

Antigua and Barbuda is a country that consists of three islands, with some differences in taxes. Antigua, the largest island, has a property tax that ranges from 0.1% to 0.5%. Barbuda does not have a real estate tax. The owners must maintain housing and pay property tax. 

Ready-made housing. If the investor purchases an apartment or a villa in its entirety, then their maintenance and rental will be handled by a management company. The price of its services will include the following costs: current repairs, insurance payments, and real estate tax.

The cost of the management company service depends on the apartment area. For example, if the apartment area is about 50 m2 expense is $1,000 per year. The amount can reach up to $1,000 per month for a two- or three-bedroom villa.

Buying real estate under the citizenship program exempts from paying property tax.

Share. If the investor buys shares, they don't incur maintenance costs or pay management fees and property taxes.

Buying a property in Half Moon Bay, Antigua and Barbuda

Half Moon Bay is one of the most popular beaches in Antigua, a 40-minute drive from the capital

Buying a property in Antigua and Barbuda

Dickenson Bay is located on the northwest coast of Antigua, with the most developed beach on the island. Here everyone will find water sports activities to their liking and upscale restaurants. V.C Bird International Airport is about a 20-minute drive from the beach

Rental income

Foreigners can rent the property out and get rental income. Gross rental yields are around 4%. During the high tourist season, you can rent a house 1,5—2 times more expensive. 

The investor should share the rental income with the management company. The contract shows the exact date. If the investor has a share in the project, the management company divides the rental income among the shareholders. 

There is no income tax in Antigua and Barbuda. Thus, rental income is not taxed.

Capital gains tax on real estate 

Under the citizenship program, the investor can sell real estate after five years of ownership. This contribution allows them to make a return on investment and receive additional income. 

Housing in Antigua and Barbuda is a profitable investment. Prices are rising by an average of 4% per year. If you sell the property after five years of ownership, you can get 17% of your income. The cost of a new villa by the beach can grow faster — by 10% per year.

There is no property transfer tax in Antigua and Barbuda, but sellers must pay a stamp duty of 7.5%.

Benefits of buying property in Antigua and Barbuda

Buying real estate in one of the Caribbean countries opens up many opportunities. The main of them is obtaining a second passport by investment. Caribbean citizenship gives the investor many benefits.

Visa-free entry to 151 countries. An Antigua and Barbuda passport allows the investor to visit Schengen countries and spend 90 days out of 180 there. Citizens can be 180 days in the UK, 30 days in Singapore, and 90 days in Hong Kong.

B-1 and B-2 visas to the USA. The investor with an Antigua and Barbuda passport receives a B-1/B-2 category visa to the United States for ten years. They can extend it remotely. 

Bank accounts in European banks. The investor with a Caribbean passport can open bank accounts in European banks. 

Beautiful beaches for the best vacation. Antigua and Barbuda has 365 beaches with magnificent views and landscapes. Country nature attracts celebrities: Oprah Winfrey, Giorgio Armani, and Eric Clapton bought villas in Antigua.

Frequently asked questions

Can a foreigner buy a property in Antigua and Barbuda?

Yes, a foreigner can buy a property in Antigua and Barbuda. The country even offers to get its citizenship if an investor purchases real estate under the citizenship program

There are some requirements: property must be pre-approved by the government and cost at least $200,000. 

Is the Antigua and Barbuda property market good to invest in real estate?

Antigua and Barbuda is a country with a stable economic situation and an excellent place for foreigners to buy real estate. The state allows you to obtain citizenship by investing in real estate for at least $200,000.

During the ownership period, they can lease real estate and receive an additional income. Rental income is not taxed. Moreover, the program’s purchase exempts investors from paying property tax. After five years, investors can sell the property. 

How much does it cost to buy a house in Antigua?

From 2019, the real estate market of Antigua and Barbuda is experiencing an upswing — it is growing by 5% per year. According to Global Property Guide, the average price for two-bedroom houses is about $350,000, and for three-bedroom and up properties is about $600,000. 

Can Americans buy land in Antigua?

Any foreigners, including Americans, can buy land in Antigua. They need to apply for a licence, which is 7% of the purchase price. If a foreigner buys a plot, he must complete the construction on time. And the buyer must pay government transfer fees of 2.5%. The Barbuda government prohibits buying land.

How much is property tax in Antigua?

Property owners pay property tax from 0.1% to 0.5% of the expert-assessed value of a property, real estate, or land. In the case of a share purchase, investors will not incur maintenance costs or pay management fees and property taxes. The purchase of real estate under the citizenship program exempts investors from paying property tax.

How to buy real estate in Antigua and Barbuda and obtain its citizenship
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