Saturday, June 28, 2014

this weeks question and answer

Sylvia Jenssen: I am a first time home buyer, what do I need to know?

Miriam Engeln:

Your first step should be to examine your finances. Get a good understanding of your typical income per month and your typical spendings per month. Gather up the last two years worth of income tax statements and other associated financial details. Then go talk to a mortgage lender/ bank. In fact, talk to 2 or 3 and select the best deal from there. After you get pre-approved -- and once you know how much house you can comfortably afford -- then call me or a Realtor. Talk with the Realtor so he/she can learn what your primary criteria are. Go visit a few homes, and once you find "the one," I/ your Realtor will take care of the offer paperwork. There are a couple more steps (home inspection, appraisal), but I/ your Realtor can explain those steps to you. Finally, you will reach closing day, where you'll sign the paperwork at the notary office and you become a home owner.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

This week’s question and answer:

Bill Lion:

What about taxes in Aruba?

Miriam Engeln:

Depending on which taxes you are referring to, the following website will answer most of your questions;

Capital Tax
There is no Aruban withholding tax on capital.

A non-resident is subject to tax for income derived from certain sources, including gains from the alienation of shares from a so-called substantial participation in an Aruban company.

Real Estate Property Tax (Grondbelasting)
This annual tax is levied on the value of the real estate. The tax rate amounts to 0.4% of the value of unfinished or finished properties and is charged to the owner.

For additional information on taxes, contact Direccion di Impuesto y Aduana
Camacuri 2, Phone: +297 522 7474This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

Saturday, June 14, 2014

This week’s question and answer:

Paul Wallace:

Hi, I will arrive in Aruba Feb 6 and departing May7.
I am departing on day 91. Do I need special papers?
Tx's for writing such great informative articles.

Miriam Engeln:

Hi Paul, that is depending on if you do (or do not) own property/ timeshare on the island.

The Minister in charge of Integration and the Minsiter in charge of Tourism have sent a letter to all airlines to clarify this new government policy to avoid that visitors with a valid airline ticket with a round-trip ticket beyond 30 days, are challenged by the airline.

The visitor can indicate the amount of intended days (maximum 180 consecutive days, not to exceed a total of 180 per calendar year) on the ED card. The visitor must have the documents to prove property ownership, a valid passport, a valid round-trip ticket, proof of sufficient funds for the amount of stay on the island. If the immigration officer gives the amount of days requested, the visitor does not have to go to DIMAS to request an extension of his/her stay.

As an example; if a tourist shows to the Aruba immigration that he has 60 days of time share, he/she can receive a permission to stay 60 days. If the visitor cannot show this at immigration, he/she always has the option to request an extension from DIMAS. Again, the total stay cannot surpass 180 days in a calendar year.

For tourists that do NOT own property in Aruba, other rules apply. Tourists without property can remain a maximum of 90 consecutive days in Aruba and a maximum of 180 days per calendar year.

In general, immigration would give 30 days at the border. For an extension, the tourist can apply at DIMAS (60 additional days).

Saturday, June 07, 2014

Real Estate Miriam answers all.

Ask Real Estate expert Miriam Engeln anything about properties in ARUBA, such as how to invest in real estate, how to maximize occupancy in vacation properties, rental income tips, constructing a house, home exchange, house flipping, retire-/ moving to ARUBA and so on.

This week’s question and answer:

Eric Pieters; How can I make money in Real Estate?

Miriam Engeln:

In order to get into real estate you need to determine how much money you are willing to spend and what you want to do. Do you want to flip and sell a house, get rental income or simple hold onto the property? I would recommend buying a property that you can fix up and improve. After putting the work into it, rent it out. Rental rates are up so now is a great time to rent.

Depending on your price range and location, nice houses/ apartments are available.

I would put about 30% down of your own money and get a mortgage on the property. Then if you rent it out, use the rental income money to pay off the mortgage. In conclusion; learning how to make money in real estate is not easy.

A lot of work has to go into buying a home, and I can assist you with this here in Aruba. Let me know when you arrive.

Email your real estate questions to email address; and a selection of your questions will be answered each Saturday in Aruba Daily newspaper and on this blog.

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