buying & selling

Owning Property in the USVI

Buying Real Estate

Buying a home can be one of the most exciting experiences of your life. Purchasing property in the Virgin Islands is easy when you have a professional real estate agent to help you make the most informed decisions. Whether you are looking for a home, condo, time-share, undeveloped land or commercial property, most of the same laws that regulate real estate in the states apply. Mortgages/financing options are available through local banks and mortgage brokers and insurance is available to protect your investment.

FAQs—Important Information About Living in the Virgin Islands (USVI)

TAXES & FEES

The Government of the US Virgin Islands collects two distinct taxes on real estate. Property taxes are collected annually at a rate of 100% of assessed value x .00377 for homes and condos and 100% of assessed value x .004946 for land. Stamp taxes (also known as transfer taxes) are assessed at a variable rate of 2-5% based on the assessed value or the purchase price of the property.

PROPERTY INSURANCE

In order to obtain financing, most lenders require both windstorm and earthquake insurance. The annual cost is approximately 2-3% of the replacement value, although insurance for wood frame structures may be a little more.

UTILITIES

ELECTRIC

Power costs are higher in the Virgin Islands than most states. Electric rates top $0.53 per kilowatt hour and the service can be unreliable, so a lot of home owners choose to add solar panels and generators.

CISTERNS

Most homes have cisterns and collect rainwater for daily use, however during the dry season water may need to be purchased and delivered via a water truck. Water filtration systems are important when your home has a cistern, and most people choose to install a UV filter system or drink bottled water.

Some properties are hooked into the city water system and are billed per gallon, and some condos have reverse osmosis or desalination systems.

TELECOMMUNICATIONS

Internet services include broadband and wireless options. Prices are typically higher than in the US. Cell phone service can be spotty and there are fewer providers that the States. 

CONSTRUCTION & RENOVATION

Due to the topography and location of the islands, there are a lot of issues that must be addressed before constructing a home. Proper site planning is key. Consideration must be made for drainage, erosion, earthquakes, hurricanes and the natural contours of the lot. All supplies need to shipped in, and construction companies may need to be booked months in advance. The process can be lengthy, but the end result is the home of your dreams.

RENTING IN THE VI

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Selling Real Estate

Are you considering selling your property in the US Virgin Islands? Whether you’re a homeowner looking to move on or an investor seeking to capitalize on the vibrant real estate market, navigating the selling process in this picturesque locale requires careful planning and strategy. From conducting market research to closing the deal, our comprehensive guide will walk you through every step of selling your property in the US Virgin Islands.

Important Information about Selling Property in the USVI

MARKET RESEARCH

Before listing your property, it’s crucial to conduct thorough market research to understand the local real estate landscape, including recent sales trends, comparable property prices, and the demand for properties in your area. As an experienced real estate agent with over 20 years helping clients sell their property in St. Thomas and St. John, I will gather relevant data and insights to determine the best approach to price your property and develop a strategy  to reach the most potenial buyers.

LIST YOUR PROPERTY

Once comparable properties have been reviewed and recent sales data analyzed, it’s time to prepare your property for sale.

The real estate market in the Virgin Islands is unique, and the traditional steps that you would take to repair, upgrade and state your property before putting it on the market in other locations may or may not make sense. You also may want to consider getting a pre-inspection or appraisal in order to anticipate any questions or concerns that may arrise from potential buyers. I can help guide you through this process and provide contacts for reputable contractors.

Once the preparations are finalized, I will work closely with you to determine the optimal listing price, create a compelling property listing, and showcase your property to potential buyers through various channels.

ADVERTISE YOUR LISTING

Effective advertising is essential to attract potential buyers to your property. Successful real estate agents utilize both online and offline marketing channels to maximize exposure. This may include professional photography and virtual tours, listing your property on popular real estate websites, social media promotion, and traditional advertising methods to get your listing seen by as many potential buyers as possible.

As my client, you will receive a dedicated, single listing website as well as listings on the Sea Glass Properties company website and additional affiliate sites. These sites utilize innovative, targeted search features that draw more traffic than other sites in the Virgin Islands. You may also receive social media graphics that can be shared on your network. 

 

CLOSING & BEYOND

As you receive offers and negotiate with potential buyers, it’s important to understand the closing process in the US Virgin Islands. This typically involves finalizing the sales contract, conducting property inspections, and coordinating with attorneys and title companies to ensure a smooth transaction. I will guide you through each step and help facilitate a successful closing.

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