Buying and Selling Real Estate in Costa Rica (Updated) | International Lawyers Network


General –

Real estate law in Costa Rica is governed by the principles established in the Costa Rican Civil Code for acquiring, selling and in any way disposing of property. The official registration of real property is made through a registry system, which is administered by the Real Property Registry of the Costa Rican National Registry. This system consists of a registration deed system, which provides for the public registration of instruments affecting land.

Non-Resident Ownership –

Property ownership in Costa Rica is an individual right legally protected by our Constitution, which states that no person can be deprived of his or her property unless it is for a necessary public use, in which case it will be compensated. The constitution grants the same rights to foreign citizens. A person or legal person that has acquired property can dispose of it in any way by selling, renting, encumbering, mortgaging, or using it for any desired purpose, as long as it is in accordance with the law and the regulations for land use. All physical or legal persons, whether Costa Rican nationals or foreigners, may purchase, sell, own and in any way dispose of property that belongs to them.

Please see full Chapter below for more information.

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