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March 3, 2008

Property Investment in Argentina

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by Brian Turner


Investing in the Argentina Property Market

Argentina is a country ripe for investment. As recently as 2001, the economy had a meltdown and the country has been recovering since. Today that recovery process, along with the weak Argentine peso, had made the property market in the country one worth considering. Despite the fact that housing prices can still be fairly high for the area, they are still lower than other regions around the world.

Tourism related areas can be a wise investment because of the potential for vacation rentals, but you will also likely pay a premium in purchase price.

Farmland is always a wise place to invest in the property market. There is a limited amount of land – and no more can be made (for the most part). Plus, income can come from leasing out the property to local farmers.

For the most part, purchasing property in Argentina is a quick process. Many of the transactions will be completed in less than two months. Registering a property will take around 40 days to complete.

Key terms:

Boleto – the down payment for a property. Typically it is around 30% of the agreed purchased price. It will be held in trust until the transaction is completed, but if the buyer backs out it will NOT be returned.

Escritura – this is the closing day for the property transactions. All payments will be settled at this time and the deed will be official signed and transferred.

CDI – the Tax ID documentation required for foreigners to purchase property in Argentina. It must be obtained through a Notary Public (Escribano).

escribano – the Notary Public who will require power of attorney in order to acquire the needed CID (Tax ID) for property transactions.

Key issues for buying in Argentina:

• All high-end and middle-end property transaction must be conducted in US dollars, but you can not bring US dollars into the country. You must convert monies to Argentine pesos to bring it into the country and convert it to US dollars once in the country to make the transaction. This can cost as much as 2% of the US value of the monies transferred.

• Buyers pay agent fees, notary fees, lawyer fees, taxes and registration fees – the total can cost up to as much as 12% of the purchase price.

• An Argentinean representative must be appointed by any non-residents interested in purchasing property. These representatives will be responsible for paying the property tax on the purchased property.

Each province in Argentina can impose its own taxes on properties being purchased. The Government of Buenos Aires City also has that power.

Market Past and Future

2002 marked the low point of the Argentine residential property market for this decade. The country has been working hard to recover from the low. Steady economic recovery and growth continue to drive the market upwards. This trend is expected to continue in the upward direction although the pace will be slow.

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