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Thread: Buying a house + land in Jamaica!

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  1. #1

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    Buying a house + land in Jamaica!

    Hi all,

    I'm in the process of buying a house and 10 acres farmland in Westmoreland. It's my retirement plan.

    Upon buying it, I'll spend some time there and get it set up, but I'm not going to be ready to move there full-time for a while, as I'm not quite retired yet. Any advice on what to do in the meantime? What's the worst that could happen if I just leave the house empty and the farmland un-planted? It's not in a gated community or anything like that, it's actually in a rural farming community. Alternatives to leaving it empty would be (a) rent it out, (b) let a friend stay for free, (c) hire someone to take care of it while I'm not there. There are pros and cons to each of course.



  2. #2

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    Re: Buying a house + land in Jamaica!

    What's the worst that can happen? Well, that is rather open ended... lol.

    For this answer I am assuming that you have clear legal title to the land and that you are talking about preventable "worsts" as opposed to acts of God.

    Land and/or a house left alone can lend itself to unwanted "squatters", both animal and human. If a neighbors' goats, pigs, etc. have made your land their home, then you would have to ask the neighbor to get them out. If the animals do not belong to anyone else, depending on what animals that they are you may need to contact the proper authorities to get them removed. Some wildlife are protected species.

    As for human habitation, you can also contact the proper authorities to have them ordered off the property. Squatting is becoming less of an issue for landowners, but squatters still have some rights depending on the circumstances.

    On a more personal issue for those who live here, leaving any property unattended for any length of time attracts some issues in the Caribbean. Buildings, rather like cars, tend to die a quicker death when not being used. With the humid sea spray infused climate, rust, mold and general decay happens quickly.

    Having someone tend to the property by hire, renting or free would all help to minimize the above issues.
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  3. #3

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    Re: Buying a house + land in Jamaica!

    Thanks for your answer! Yes I will have legal title after closing which should be soon. There appears to already be a couple of cows grazing on my unused land, presumably from neighboring farms, but I don't really care about them at this point. You are right that I wouldn't want human squatters. I should hire someone to fence the land, I think. (Anyone have contractor recommendations around Sav?).

    I will be back and forth for the next few years, but I could be gone for months at a time, until I actually retire and move full-time. I'm leaning toward just hiring someone to check on it once in a while while I'm not there. Hesitant about letting anyone actually live there. I would but only if it's an individual person that I really trust.

  4. #4

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    Re: Buying a house + land in Jamaica!

    Other interesting questions are: Should I hire someone to farm it? If so, what should I grow? (Previous owner was growing sugarcane but is no longer doing so). *Can* I legally hire someone to farm it commercially, not being a citizen?

    Many challenges ahead... makes life fun and interesting

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