Real Estate Financing for Mahogany Bay Village, Belize
The Ambergris Caye Real Estate Market
Ambergris Caye, Belize has been on the radar for a number of years as the Caribbean’s hottest developing real estate market. While property values on the island have enjoyed a steady year-after-year appreciation, they’re still a bargain compared to more established coastal destinations such as Cancun or Cabo San Lucas. Until recently, the biggest obstacle for many would-be real estate buyers in Belize has been the lack of available mortgage financing. Real estate sales on La Isla Bonita have historically been limited to 100% cash purchases, with occasional short-term notes held by owners or developers to bridge the financing gap. All of this has recently changed with the introduction of international financing for real estate purchases at Mahogany Bay Village on Ambergris Caye, the largest development on the island!
New construction purchases in Belize are made up of primarily international investors, entrepreneurs, and retirees attracted by Belize’s warm climate, convenient proximity to the United States, and its rapidly expanding economy. While tourism has been growing exponentially year after year in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, the available overnight hotel room count on the island has stayed precariously stagnant. This supply-demand imbalance has created the perfect storm for savvy real estate investors with their eye on the next big opportunity to capitalize on both cash flow and appreciation.
The Mahogany Bay Village Difference
Mahogany Bay Village is a 60+ acre property in San Pedro on the island of Ambergris Caye, a vast project founded to service the island’s shortage of both hotel rooms and viable conference, wedding, and event space. MBV is made up of three distinct parts:
1. the Coastal Living residences
2. the Hilton resort
3. the retail downtown
While British Colonial “island-chic” architecture and interiors are celebrated throughout the project, the key difference between Mahogany Bay’s three components lies in unit size and usage.
Mahogany Bay Homes features 2 and 3 bedroom townhomes as well as much larger family homes up to 5 bedrooms with customizations (private pool, golf cart garage, or outdoor kitchens) and are ideal for larger families and/or long-term occupancy by both owners and renters. In fact, many buyers have chosen to rent out their homes for a number of years before moving in full-time, helping to build equity in their future retirement home.
Mahogany Bay Resort currently features 225 stylish hotel units. The vast majority are chic indoor-outdoor studio apartments of various sizes, perfect for comfortable short-term single or double occupancy. Also available in the overnight resort are several spacious 2.5 bedroom family homes, fully-equipped for stays of up to six persons for a few weeks or more.
The Mortgage Financing Terms
After years of due diligence, we are pleased to announce that Atlantic International Bank has approved a financing program for real estate purchases within Mahogany Bay Village! Mortgage options are now available on Mahogany Bay Village’s fee-simple investment property for sale within the Curio Collection by Hilton® hotel portion of the village, as well as on the investment/lifestyle property within Mahogany Bay’s Coastal Living Community™ of townhomes and larger residences. Though terms may differ between clients, the general financing terms currently offered by Atlantic International Bank are 60% LTV, 20-year term, 9% interest, for applicants with a minimum US credit score of 650.
The History on Belize Real Estate Purchases
Until now, the biggest obstacle for many would-be real estate buyers on Ambergris Caye has been the lack of available mortgage financing, especially for international buyers from the United States and Canada who make up the vast majority of new condo and home purchases. Because of this ever-present hurdle, real estate sales on La Isla Bonita have largely been limited to 100% cash purchases, with occasional short-term notes held by owners or developers to bridge the financing gap.
Even sans financing, to date, Mahogany Bay Village has over 255 units constructed and paid for in full with cash. Since the project broke ground in the summer of 2013, early cash investors have found confidence in the fact that Mahogany Bay Village has maintained zero outstanding debt on the project, and maintained a handsome appreciation rate exceeding 15% annually.
The Impact of Financing
It’s now 2018 and investor confidence in Mahogany Bay Village has shifted toward its two international luxury brand partners and the hotel’s success in its first six months of full operation. (Mahogany Bay Resort, Curio Collection by Hilton officially opened for business on December 6, 2017.)
Financing the door to a much larger buyer demographic, from younger investors to retirees who may not have the liquid capital accessible for a 100% cash purchase. The introduction of financing for Mahogany Bay is projected to add value to the remaining lots for sale since pent-up demand can now be exercised at a lower up-front cash requirement. Needless to say, sales are expected to skyrocket for the remainder of 2018.
The opportunity to purchase a financed property at Mahogany Bay Village signifies a huge hurdle overcome. New buyers are now entering the MBV family at a historic point in time — the hotel is fully operational with a proven track record, and demand is on its way up due to the expanded possibility to own. Brand new investors can be the first to benefit from this newfound leverage while there is still time to lock in current prices. In other words: THE TIME IS NOW!
Early Bird Investor Perks
As for our earliest cash investors from years prior who have enjoyed 100% equity off the bat, they now have the opportunity to cash-out refinance their property at its current market value. Those who qualify for a cash-out refi can benefit from this newfound leverage by withdrawing some of their equity to invest in additional real estate or perhaps start a business in Belize. A few of our early hotel investors have already started the process of pulling out some of their equity to apply toward a larger lifestyle residence that the whole family can enjoy for years to come! Current Mahogany Bay Village Owners: check with your tax advisor and Atlantic International Bank to navigate your unique options for a cash-out refinance.
If you have been sitting on the sidelines waiting for your opportunity to investigate your Ambergris Caye real estate options, there’s no better time than now. Join us on one of our popular Coastal Living-Inspired Lifestyle Trips for an extended weekend in paradise that promises equal doses of real estate education, relaxation, and fun!