Buying property, a home or a business in Anguilla is not difficult, but for a foreign national will take time and commitment. Anguilla nationals are permitted to buy property freely; however there are certain restrictions to foreign nationals owning property.
Anguilla Property Closing Costs
Foreign nationals must obtain an Alien Land Holding License from the Government. If the application is for undeveloped land then Planning Permission is required of the proposed building before an application can be made for the Alien Land Holding License. The Alien Land Holding License costs 12.5% of the property value and is payable in addition to a 5% Transfer Tax. In special circumstances the fees for the Alien Land Holders License may be waived, for example if the property is being purchased by a Caribbean National who has been residing on Anguilla for more than 7 years.
Anguilla Alien Landholders License
The Alien Land Holders License needs to be submitted to Government in duplicate with the required fee of EC$1,000 (US$373) and the following documents :-
Bank letter or reference
Police letter or reference from each country of residence over the past 7 years
Personal reference letter from a public figure who has known the purchaser for at least 7 years.
Copy of passport details page
Tax clearance forms from the Government of Anguilla for both the Vendor and Purchaser
4 Passport sized pictures of the purchaser
If the property purchase is for a tourist development project, a comprehensive business plan needs to be submitted for the proposed development, with the application.
If the applicant is a company; separate application forms need to be completed by each Director and the company's Certificate and Articles of Incorporation, Company By-laws and a Statement of Fact (provided by the Companies' Registry in Anguilla at a fee of US$150) must accompany the application.
The estimated value of the property to be built is established by the Lands & Survey Department and needs to be shown on the application. Each applicant for an Alien Land Holders License needs to attend an interview with an official from the Chief Minister's Office. The interviews are usually brief in length, especially if the property being purchased is already owned by an alien.
After the interview the application is submitted to the Executive Council for a decision and once this decision has been made and entered in the minutes of the Executive Council, the Applicant is notified of the decision.
Upon approval of the Alien Land Holders License the Applicant is sent a letter stating the sum to be paid and a second letter notifying the applicant to collect the license from the Chief Minister's Office. Once the license has been issued the Applicant needs to complete the RL1 Land Transfer Form and submit a copy of this form to the Lands & Survey Department, where they are stamped to confirm the taxable value of the property.
The RL1 Land Transfer Form then needs to be submitted to the Treasury to payment made for the taxes, for which the Applicant is given a receipt. The receipt and paperwork need to be submitted to the Lands & Survey Department, who will then transfer the property to the Applicants name.
The entire process of obtaining an Alien Land Holders License generally takes around 3 months, but will take longer, if there are problems.
Anguilla Planning Permission
Applications for Planning Permission should be made to the Lands & Survey Department. The Planning Committee meet every 3 weeks.
Permitted Development & Development Commitment
Foreign nationals are currently permitted to buy up to 0.5 acres of land for building a private dwelling, which must have a floor area of 2,00 square feet or above and must be completed within 18 months of being granted an Alien Landholders License. If the dwelling is not completed within the prescribed time limit, a penalty of EC$500 (US$187) is charged per month for the first 12 months and thereafter at EC$1,000 (US$374) per month. In the event that the building is not completed at the end of eighteen months from the agreed completion date, forfeiture proceedings may be started which may result in the land being transferred to the Government.
Anguilla Building Costs
Building costs can vary dramatically from one building to the next and are dependant upon the type and complexity of the construction, difficulty of the site and standard of finish. However for general guidance allow US$200-$225 per square foot for construction costs, and add to these costs the cost of any cistern, additional systems (such as standby generators etc), swimming pool, landscaping and furnishings.
In Anguilla, foreigners are permitted to rent their property. However the owner must state when purchasing a property, if the property is going to be used primarily as a private residence, or a rental villa. An annual fee required for any property that is rented, based on the interior floor area of the property, with a minimum charge of US$2,500 for a 2,000 square foot home, plus US$0.50 per square foot of covered verandahs and similar areas, and US$0.25 per square foot for any uncovered areas such as pools, decks and tennis courts etc.