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Thread: The Positives about "home ownership on Aruba"

  1. #21
    Member EdandLiz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arubasurfclubcanada View Post
    I am a Marriott Aruba surf club timeshare owner (3 weeks). I am also looking to purchase in Aruba either a condo or a home. I was looking at the following, Azure, Gold Coast and the option of buying a lot in an upscale neighbourhood and building a home within 2 years.

    Azure will be very nice when the first building is up in 2 years, the views will be incredible but a 2 bedroom is only 1020 sqft. Gold Coast is nice but you have about $500/monthly in HOA fees and the 2nd year who knows?


    Building a home in Rooi Santo area will have slight view of the ocean and could build the house the way I like and with a pool.
    Please give me some feedback
    Hubby and I started looking inland a bit and toward the Northeast coast and were VERY PLEASANTLY surprised! If you are considering moving here, I would suggest the areas of Alto Vista, down south to the area of Siribana (Alto Vista is the area where the chapel is and just north of Siribana are the Casabiri Rock Formations, Natural Bridge and west is the Park). The views are SPECTACULAR... It is a bit of a mountainous area but the views are spectacular, it is A LOT quieter, prices are VERY AFFORDABLE and we are only 10-15 minutes from the beach.... best of both worlds....

    If you want to stay in the "tourist area" (especially for investment purposes) I agree with SkiChris... purchasing or building a home is highly recommended. I will state my business on the island is rental and selling real estate to the North American market, and that hopefully I can provide you with good advice.

    A few things:

    1. Some comments on purchasing a condo/townhouse or in a community where an HOA is required. The biggest advantage is "peace of mind". You are in a community that "feels safe" and everything is "handled", but you have to remember, this is not North America. "Things" are not handled as you would expect at home. It is truly a personal decision.

    2. If you plan to purchase for personal use and rent out... fees for renting out can be very high... most condo's have associations that hire local companies who will remain on site (or off site) and rent your property (most properties are put into a "pool"). The rental fee, is above and beyond what you pay for maintenance fees, etc. The normal charge is a commission of 25% of the rental. This price normally covers, admin fees, cleaning and the use of property ammenities for your guests (beach chairs, beach towels, maid service, etc). If you don't use the "rental pool" your guest will not be entitled to most of the ammenities (you will have to provide your own housekeeper, beach towels, chairs, etc). If there are problems for your guests, the onsite mgmt will not help, but tell them to call the "rental agent" whom they rented from. The only say you have in when and if your unit is rented is the dates you block off for yourselves. Otherwise, it is what it is, and there is no guarantee or promise of rental percentages.

    3. The HUGE trend on Aruba, and all the talk lately, is the fact that a large majority of return visitors, and yes even a lot of 1st time visitors are choosing to rent single family homes vs going the "resort/all inclusive" way. Granted there are a lot of people who adore the resort experience... but home rentals are exploding... if you want to go the route of investing in a personal home/rental. There are huge advantages. You can determine who you rent to. You build a "rapport" with your renters, and can increase your guest return rate. Costs are generally much lower, there are NO HOA fees. You still have to hire someone to rent and manage your home.. and the the majority of companies do charge the 25% (though some charge less) fee, but you get to determine your rental potential.

    SkiChris is correct, unless you hire someone to "keep an eye" on the contractor, it is really important that you are here on a monthly basis to keep en eye yourself, regarding builds. Buying an already constructed home is probably your best bet.

    We have 2 rental homes we rent to tourists and our average occupancy rate for 1st quarter 2016 was 74%.. which is huge. We have bookings in both homes for the next 8 months (shockingly we are totally booked for July 2016) and already are more than 50% booked for 1st quarter 2017!

    It really all comes down to a personal decision. Purchase a beach front condo or home, because you think it is going attract more tourists may or may not work. It all depends on the rental company and how rentals are determined (how often will your unit be rented, pricing, costs, HOA fees, etc)

    From what I have been seeing is that people who want to live on Aruba full time are looking more inland because the pricing is better and they can be to a beach from anywhere in about 15-20 minutes.

    When it comes to purchasing a home for personal use and rental/investment, your best bet would be to look at a currently constructed home, with the Noord/Bubali/Malmok, East of Route 2. You just need to find the right rental management company that works for you, and there are many to choose from on the island....

    Hope this helps!
    Ed and Liz Ginocchio Golden Reef Hospitality - Your Aruba Dream Mgmt. Rental Vacation Homes
    We manage your home just like it was our own! www.myarubadreamvilla.com


  2. #22
    Super Moderator Jacki's Avatar
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    Great information Liz. Thanks!
    Jacki ~ loving Aruba from NJ

  3. #23
    Senior Member act1966's Avatar
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    Just throwing in a counter view here around building a home: we looked at dozens of homes in Noord in our search but there was always something "not right" and we went toward building a home because there were things we wanted that we couldn't find in the marketplace. Just something to noodle on.

  4. #24
    Member EdandLiz's Avatar
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    Acct1966, I'm so glad it worked for you! We actually bought 2 houses that need LOTS of work, and we had a great contractor as well, but still when we had to return to the States for a month... we had to really stay on top from the States.. almost like another part time job! Everything turned out AMAZING..

    So basically I agree that for some, though very few, building is the right way to go.. but for most.. from what I see here in the market, buying a current home, and/or renovating it is a great way to go as well.....
    Ed and Liz Ginocchio Golden Reef Hospitality - Your Aruba Dream Mgmt. Rental Vacation Homes
    We manage your home just like it was our own! www.myarubadreamvilla.com


  5. #25
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    I agree with most of the comments offered by Ed and Liz, but would offer a couple of varied opinions.

    1) Condo/villa gated community. These do provide the sense of security you and your guest want. Gold Coast has installed a camera system that very much reduced any issues with theft. The HOA fees vary depending on what you own. Gold Coasts fees include the pool maintenance for all 3 pools, garbage pick up, gardeners for the grounds and property maintenance. Definitely not perfect as this is still controlled by the developers, but will improve significantly when the owners are able to take over the HOA management.

    2) Our commission that we pay for rental is significantly less then the number quoted and our management is available for any issues guests have. Not using on-site management was a decision that we made prior to purchasing and our home does not sit in a pool. Our management plus we list the property on VRBO for rental. Our property is set up to provide all of the needed items for going to the beach and guests have access to all of the properties amenities.

    3) I don't know what the trends are, but can document that what we get reported to us by VRBO would indicate that a lot of people are looking at villas, condo's or town homes for renting.

    We would consider building on Aruba, but I will state that I would pay a general contractor to oversee the entire process.

    As far as rental goes, we don't set our rental towards short term rentals. We find that longer term renters are much easier on the property and don't abuse the property, electric use and water use. We are much more inclined to offer discounts for 9 or 10 day stays and beyond for this reason. We don't discount week stays as we tend to see much higher electric and water usage and frankly these stays are much harder on the property.

    Just my 2 cents.

  6. #26
    Senior Member glynis's Avatar
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    No cons for us ...all pros well that's so far, we purchased our house nearly 3 years ago,We had a lot to do,as we could not afford a spanking , new villa , plus the area we wanted was eagle beach San Miguel.in fact it was a house I had fallen in love with 5 years ago .but at the time it was for sale ,we did not have the money ,Anyway it was rented for a while instead , But low and behold it came back on the market . The purchase was easy , Good notary with power of attorney to sign on completion .it happened Christmas Eve.
    its taken time for us to renovate ,plus porch pool and garden but was worth it ,We had good people working on it , so we could leave them to it most of the time ,plus we have amazing property management company .who see to everything , Once you understand Aruba is no rush and laid back things are fine.Dont exspect things done now.
    We hope to move to Aruba in the next 5 years to retire ,and holiday in the UK to see friends and family well that's the plan ,
    However Plans do come un stuck , for everyone ,But I would not change a thing .

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrea J. View Post
    We have read some negatives about homeownership in Aruba.

    What are the benefits that you as an owner have experienced?

    Hi! This is a great thread that you started.
    Just to help balance things out, could you share some of the negatives that you've read about?

    Thanks!
    Last edited by JohnMtl; 09-07-2017 at 02:38 PM. Reason: corrected typo

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