Buying FAQs

Buying FAQs

What is the Punta Cana Real Estate Market Like?

The Punta Cana and Bavaro areas on the East Coast of the DR are considered one of the fastest growing markets in the Caribbean! Post-construction property rates continue to appreciate better than other Caribbean Island market averages.  Pre-construction/ or under-construction properties appreciate even faster due to "early-bird" discounts several Developers often offer.  The percentage of the discount offered varies by the total upfront downpayment (over 25%).  Some investors buy 2 or more properties for additional discounts.  One they often keep for themselves, and other units they leverage as a vacation rental option. Or some investors flip these properties once the builder’s inventory is exhausted.  A few well-funded investors buy complete condo buildings (or blocks) from the builders and “flip for a modest, but quick 12% - 20% ROI within a short period of time of 12 – 18 months. 

Migration to Punta Cana has been incredible! The worldwide frustrations caused by the pandemic, government control, wars, and economic inflation have contributed to migration internationally.   Punta Cana is no exception to this influx.  The DR has a stronger and more stable government, affordable living, safety, while boasting near perfect weather year-round.  Punta Cana and Bavaro have therefore, become a key destination in the Caribbean... Evidenced through record-breaking sales and new construction.  Some owners have taken their properties off the market, deciding instead to keep their "landing pad”, just in case they need to relocate here on a more permanent basis.  Several sellers increased their asking prices... Our array of "Owner Financed Properties” sold first.  While some owners took their financing benefit away.  Understanding this is more of a “flat market” incentive.  Even pre and under-construction properties, located a walk from the beach, are now nearly SOLD OUT!

Appreciation values have been strong and consistent since 2021.  However, owners leveraging their properties as a vacation rental, are forced to lower their rental rates due to all the newly completed competition.  We, however, remain optimistic, the tourist demand will continue to increase to offset this temporarily saturated vacation rental market.  2022-2023 showed record-breaking sales by all agencies, and 2024 looks even more promising for sales and also rental occupancy rates.

How Big Is the Dominican Republic?  And why the fuss in the Punta Cana and Bavaro areas?

The Dominican Republic (recorded) population as of 2021 was nearly 11,300,000.  The population of the Punta Cana and Bavaro area has also grown with an estimated population of 114,000. This region is more like a collection of small communities rather than a city. Currently from Punta Cana, to Uvero Alto, there are over 60 all-inclusive resorts and numerous residential communities stretched over 30 miles of beautiful beaches.

Reliable Realty DR primarily promotes properties in the most popular and reputable beach-town communities within Bavaro called Los Corales and El Cortecito.  More HGTV episodes have been filmed in these safe and friendly neighborhoods than on any other Caribbean Island.  Properties are considered “in the beach-town areas” if they are located within a 15-minute walk to the various public beach accesses, and within an 18-minute walk to the beach-town commercial centers.  These commercial centers offer an array of excellent international dining options, bars, grocery stores, ATM’s,  cash exchange places, pharmacies, cute boutique shops, salons-massage businesses, Dentists, small medical clinics, and other needed services. 

Reliable Realty also represents residential communities within Championship golf courses of Cocotal Golf and Country Club, in Punta Cana Village and Resort, Cap Cana, and within the Cana Bay / Hard Rock Hotel (golf and beach) area.  We also service the impressive Downtown Punta Cana area, ideally located between Bavaro and Punta Cana, and known for its malls and outstanding restaurants.  Several new residential communities (houses and condos) have been constructed from 2021 to current.  Downtown Punta Cana has been a top selling area since 2019, despite the fact it is located about a 15-minute drive to the closest beach in Cabeza del Toro.

Other expanding areas of Bavaro include White Sands, with its beautiful beaches, and Macao (between Bavaro and Uvero Alto).   Due to the new Dreams Resort in Macao, the agricultural land directly behind Macao beach has doubled in price from 2022 - 2023, with several new construction developments emerging.

La Romana, located a 45-minute drive from Punta Cana, has become a favorite destination as well for executive homes in luxury communities like Casa de Campo.  We are slowly expanding our interest and expertise into the Jarabacoa mountainous areas as well.  Please see all our listings.

What’s the average cost of properties in Punta Cana and Bavaro?

We have, and can assist with most all realistic beach-town price budgets; from a furnished 1 Bedrooms from   $90,000 to $135,000 U.S., to a furnished 2 Bedroom in these favored beach-towns between $150,000 to $200,000 average.  Prices, of course, depend on the age, size, and walking distance to the beach.  Condos within a beachfront condo community, will obviously be more expensive than condos located across the street from the beach.  Not all condos within a beachfront condo community have an ocean view.  A condo in a beach front community that is similar in size to a condo located across the street will be 2 - 2.5 times more in price, with HOA monthly fees also 2 - 3 times more... sometimes this is simply for being a 4-5 minute closer walk to the beach.

Bavaro and Punta Cana areas have NOT experienced a flat market since mid 2022. Therefore, sellers are not as eager to offer direct owner financing as a buying incentive.  However, we typically represent a small hand-full of condos where owner financing is offered.  Typical terms are 50% down, for 5-6 years, at 6% - 7.5%.

Most of our Buyer clients purchase condos as vacation homes, which they leverage as a short-term vacation rental when they are not using it... until they can retire here on a more on a full-time basis.

It should be noted.  You cannot buy a 2-bedroom condo a walk to the beach for under $130,000 anymore!  If you see a 2-bedroom price advertized from $55,000 - $120,000, don’t be fooled.  These properties are much further away from the beach in cities like Veron, or in Ejecutivo; about a 10 - 20 minute drive away from the beach.  Properties in these towns are not where vacationers want to rent.  Vacationers do not want to rent a car and desire to be in the fun, safe beach-towns in Bavaro where everything they need is a short walk away.  These other towns do have commercial areas we expats need and use, however, they do have a higher population of Dominican families, who several may be renting the property long-term.  

NOTE:  By early 2024, nearly all resale properties, as well as new construction properties, located in the beach-towns are nearly SOLD OUT.  We are securing more resale property listings, however, due to supply and demand, the list prices from 2019 have increased around 12.5% to the 2024 market values.

Several of our owner clients decide later to live here on a more full-time basis.  Thus, selling their condos near the beach, and buying or building a single-family home (villa), even if it is located a drive to the beach, understanding they will have a vehicle then and be better versed in the crazy driving here.  Single family homes (or villas as they call them here) vary in price and is the residential community onsite amenities, and location.  A villa community within a championship golf course, offering a private beach club (for owners only) will obviously be more expensive than a villa built in a residential community without a golf course, and a bit further from the beach. If you plan to reside here more than 6 months a year, please ask us for our advice on the best neighborhood for you, and specific to your goals and budget.   

What Can New Owners Expect with New Construction?

Purchasers receive a well-constructed, solid concrete block construction, with all the fixtures.  Some developers offer a basic appliance package.  Many builders offer split air conditioners.  Others charge extra for this; however, the property is plumbed for easy A/C installation.  Split air conditioners are more common and are more economical to replace or repair than central air conditioning.  All light fixtures, ceiling fans are the purchaser’s decision and at their cost.  All condos are situated within beautiful, gated condo communities with a shared pool and several offer other onsite bonus amenities (i.e. gym / community BBQ area).  Whereas most resale properties for sale, that are ideally located in the beach-towns come furnished.  Mid-priced furnishings can run around $25,000 for a 1200 sq. ft. condo, including home accessories, décor, linens, and window treatments.

Aren't all Real Estate Agencies similar?  Aren't they all licensed and regulated like in North America?

NO... Real estate agents in the Dominican Republic are not required to be licensed and their activities are not always regulated by the government, especially if they do not have a legal Registered tax-paying Corporation here. Maria Williams, Broker for Reliable Realty still holds her U.S. Real Estate License.

Always ask your agent or agency if they have an RNC (taxpayer identification).  It is best to seek the assistance of a reputable and well-established real estate agency who is legally registered, knowledgeable about the current real estate market, trends and real estate transfer taxes. An established Agency who understands the Dominican Republic Real Estate Laws, and who has a network of reputable legal attorneys who specialize in Real Estate, Residency, and Tax laws, to assure prompt and seamless sales transaction, all the way to the property title in your name. Those attempting to buy real estate on their own to save costs often end up paying more for the property, with the sales process taking much longer than it should, while experiencing numerous headaches. It is always advisable to work through a trusted agency.

Do foreigners need to be residents of the DR to buy properties?

No, there are no restrictions for foreigners who buy real estate properties in the Dominican Republic.  You receive a freehold title in your name and have the same rights as any landowner in the Dominican Republic. Foreigners do not need to be residents, although there are government incentives for being one.  Because this area has grown so fast, the Register of Deeds is taking a little longer to process the titles, around 2-3 months. In the interim, no worries...your legalized / notarized Definitive Purchase Contract is honored as proof of ownership until your individual title is processed, printed, registered, and received. 

What is the procedure for buying properties in the DR if you are North American (English speaking only)?

The process isn't difficult when you use a reputable Realtor / Broker and Attorney.  Your agency must be experienced and knowledgeable about Real Estate here.  Responsive, trustworthy, and should obviously speak English, but also Spanish. A reputable and legal Real Estate Agency can refer a good Attorney versed in Real Estate; and if you are planning to operate or open a business, your agency should assist in referring a reputable and experienced Accountant.  English speaking professionals who possess an understanding of the North American culture and expectations are who we work with and can refer.  For our Agencies’ Step-by-Step Sales Process please contact us.  Sorry, we no longer provide free online education from our website to other newbie piggy-back agencies who come and go.

What if I want to rent out my property? Can I make enough income to cover my cost of ownership?

Yes, in most all cases.  Many property owners rent out their properties to vacationers and long-term renters. This income will cover all, or at least a good portion of your costs of ownership, and for many condos close to the beach, shopping, and dining, owners can expect to make even more.  However, if someone is promoting you can make 12% or higher ROI... they are not being truthful.  There are now more properties for rent here (more short term rental competition), so until the market averages out (estimated for 2026) this added competition has affected the average ROI. 

You will need to secure a local, and legally registered Property Management Company here who can be your feet on the ground.  It is impossible to rent your properly remotely.  Your tenants will need assurances there is someone they can call if something breaks or they have an emergency.  Please ask about our Full Service Property Management Services.



  • Property owners aged 65 or older are exempt from property taxes.
  • Property owners who have Dominican residency through the investment program are not subject to property taxes for three years.
  • Moreover, owners who have purchased a Confotur-certified property have a 15-year tax exemption, including transfer tax or rental income. The Ministry of Tourism created Confotur as an incentive to attract foreigners to the island.

What can I expect to pay in property taxes?

Maybe none.  One of the best incentives offered by the Dominican Government to foreign investors is Tax Abatement law #151, which basically states that you may be exempt from paying property taxes for up to 15 years on new property purchases that fall under approximately 7.4 million pesos or $125,722 U.S. (as of March, 2024).  But remember, this is the IPI Valuation (similar to assessed value) which should be around 40% lower than the market value for the average properties in the beach-towns of Bavaro.  IPI valuation here are similar to assessed values in N. America.  You want the assessed value to be lower than the market value or selling price, as this is the amount that the taxes are based on. 

FOR EXAMPLE (As a scenerio only).  If the property market value or selling price is $200,000, and the IPI valuation is around 60% of the market value, this means the taxable amount of $200,000 would be around $120,000, which is just under the 7.4 million peso exemption, or $126.064 U.S. at the current peso to U.S. rate of 58.7.  The buyers legal attorney can find out what the IPI valuation of the property.  The IPI Valuation can vary from property to property.  For example, I can be higher for a property that sold 4 times in 10 years, V.S. the neighbors property that only sold 1 time over 10 years.  Each time a property sells and the sale is registered, the IPI value increases.  Meaning you could buy a resale property for around $210,000 ,or even higher... and you MAY still qualify for the property tax exemption for the remainder of the 15 years.  I.e. if the Property was built in 2014 there would exist another 5 years exemption remaining on this property example (2014 + 15 years = 2029).  The buyers representing Attorney will find out what the IPI (or assessed) valuation from the tax department once the Purchase Offer is fully signed by the Parties.

If the property IPI valuation is over the approx. 7.4 million pesos, the annual property tax is only 1% of the lower IPI valuation amount.  So it is still very affordable.  

The CONFOTUR Tax exempt incentives offered by the Government are for select new condo communities by the beach.

Many New Construction Developments have qualified for this new tax incentive.  In a nutshell, the development must be in a touristic designated zone (near the resorts).  Numerous requirements:  i.e. (short list) the buildings must be built to withstand hurricanes, and up to a #7 earthquake, they must have elevators and steps, ADA compliant for the disabled, there must be an onsite lobby and full-time security and Administration onsite for all incoming and outgoing personnel, additional Safety, hazard inspections, additional parking spaces, a swimming pool, and other onsite bonus amenities, beach access, health, and safety certifications.  In general, the New Development must operate like a resort.  Those New Construction Developments that do qualify (check with our agency first) are exempt from the onetime 3% title transfer tax, and are guaranteed the 15-year Property Tax Exemption, regardless if the IPI (or Assessed value) is higher than 7.4 million pesos.  This tax exemption status is not transferrable to the second buyer (on a resale).

What taxes, fees and closing costs are involved when acquiring property in the DR?

There are very few fees involved with buying a property in the DR. Using the $200,000 U.S. property purchase scenerio above (exempt from Property tax). On average, the legal fees will be around 1% of the selling price, (or $2,000 U.S.), and the one-time 3% title transfer tax could at the 60% IPI valuation example, would amount to approximately $3,600.  Meaning, you can calculate 4.0% of the total selling price, or in this scenerio, the total closing cost would be approximately $5,600 U.S. The Closing Costs include the attorney fees, complimentary  translation of contracts to your language, the title registration, required stamps, notaries, and the one-time 3% government title transfer tax. 

What about Property Insurance?  

Full Homeowners Insurance can be purchased for approximately .08% to 1% of the purchase price (including tax). Homeowners insurance covers fire, earthquakes, hurricanes and flood damage, theft, furnishings, tenant liability and much more. You can purchase property insurance once the Definitive or Final contract is signed, and the Sellers have confirmed receipt of their proceeds from the sale.  Our agency can provide the top Insurance Brokers contact information.  In turn, they will provide 3-4 quotes from the most reputable insurance companies here.  Many of these insurance companies are over 80 years old.

Is Title Insurance available in the DR, and is it recommended?

Since Reliable Realty only sells titled properties, and only represents reputable New Construction Developers, Title Insurance in most all cases is redundant to what the Attorney and the Sales Contracts already guarantee, so we don't always recommend title insurance as it can be viewed as paying twice for the same guarantees.  Title insurance will add an additional month delay to the sales process as well.  Please check with our agency if your prefer Title Insurance.

What about Homeowner Association (HOA) fees?

Condo fees (or maintenance fees) vary by the complex or the property / villa community, etc. As of 2024 the average HOA fees are around $125.00 - $150.00 U.S. per month for a one (1) bedroom condo; to $-180.00 - $225.00 U.S. per month for a two-bedroom condo in communities located across the street from the beach (6–10-minute walk).  Condo or HOA fees are about 2.5  to 3 times higher for a condo located inside a beachfront condo community or golf course.  Properties, including single family homes, located within a golf course community offering an owner’s beach club will have 2 fees.  An adminstration fee for the specific residential community inside the golf course, plus the golf and/ or beach-club administration fee for their operational costs.

HOA fees typically include maintenance of the grounds and pool, 24-hour security, community exterior lighting, and misc. exterior bldg. maintenance, water, trash disposal, weekly fumigation (for mosquitos/ bugs), and sometimes propane gas for dryers and gas stove/ovens.  For Beachfront condo communities, or properties within a golf-course community, there is an additional fee that includes maintenance of the golf course, a private beach-club, and costs to support fitness center/ gym, etc., perhaps an onsite restaurant, community swimming pool, with additional costs for yard and personal pool maintenance.

What about bequeathing real estate to my children? 

There are no restrictions on foreigners bequeathing titles of real estate property in the DR to their children. The property will automatically go to the children of the Owners, (covered in the Sales Contracts under rights to the heirs), unless there is a legalized WILL established in your country, which names a different person. Legal married spouses must be included in all real estate purchases.  If one partner passes on, the spouse will inherit the property.  If both owners pass on, the property is passed to the children.  No worries about the government here taking the property or probate courts.  It is recommended all purchasers establish a WILL in their own country, with inclusion of this property. 

Inheritance taxes for beneficiaries who reside here have been lowered to 3% of the appraised value of the estate.  If the beneficiary resides outside the DR, inheritance taxes are 4.5%. 

How do I find the right property and community?

Complete our PROPERTY QUESTIONNAIRE so we can help narrow down the very best options for you based on your budget, preferred location (if known), and other criteria’s. 



Can I become a resident of the DR and still retain citizenship in my home country? 

YES.  You can have dual citizenship with little or no restrictions (check with your home country). The cost (as of 2022) was around $3,200 per person for an English- Spanish Speaking Attorney who will assist in all requirements.  Per person discounts offered for couples and/ or families securing residency at the same time.

Is it safe in Punta Cana (Bavaro)?

YES INDEED. Read about The Low Crime Rates on our Why Buy in Punta Cana page.  The Bavaro beach-town areas and other gated golf course communities have become very nice "safe havens".

Is Punta Cana very developed in terms of infrastructure, technology, etc?

Yes, for the past 7+ years Punta Cana and Bavaro have been ranked in the top 3 as one of the fastest growing areas in the Caribbean (per the GDP). The newer DOWNTOWN PUNTA CANA area has helped bridge the infrastructure between the 2 main cities of Punta Cana and Bavaro and is considered another hot booming real estate area since 2016.  Electric consistency, high speed internet, and other services are top notch now in the entire La Altagracia Province (East Coast) areas.

What are the Hospitals/ Clinics, and Healthcare like? Is Healthcare affordable?

Hospitals are very good and getting better annually.  Hospitals (or Clinics) do have their specialties.  Healthcare is much more affordable here than in the U.S. More Details Coming Soon!