By Ivo Henfling
When in school, you might have learned about yards, inches, square feet and acres. Well, in Costa Rica, all that is no good and you will have to learn about the metric system. Unless you have found a real estate agent you trust.
If you are buying property in Costa Rica, you will find the measurements will normally be in the metric system, though many real estate companies list the size of the house for sale in square feet and the size of the land in acres as well as in hectares.
I know, you do it different back home but just like you have to learn the Spanish language to make your new life easier, you will also need to understand how we measure properties in Costa Rica.
To help you a little with this difficult part of buying property for sale, we’ve made a Costa Rica Land Measurement Chart below
Houses in Costa Rica are measured by taking the width by the length of the house, as opposed to many places on earth where they measure interior space, a/c space or even by volume. Houses in Costa Rica are measured in square meters or m2 and everything under roof is what counts. To get to find what the size of the house is in square feet, take the size in meters and multiply it by 11 is an easy shortcut.
Costarican builders and real estate agents just take full measure of interior spaces as well as exterior spaces. Some might not include a covered terrace; most do include the garage as they always have tiled floors and are mostly finished as nicely as the living room.
The size of the house is never registered in the National Register or on the survey. For that reasons, most option to purchase sale agreements will show an approximate size of construction. The only ways to find out how large the house is would be to measure it or to try to find the construction plans in the Municipality. You will need a lot of magic for the second option.
The size of a condo in Costa Rica is what will show in the National Register and will show the size of the living space only. Many condos will include parking spaces and storage spaces as common areas and some will have a separate registered title with its own survey for the parking and another for the storage.
Land is registered in the National Register in meters. But you will find that property will be described in a listing in m2 when it is under 10,000 m2 and in hectares when it is more than that. One hectare stands for 2.5 acres though you’ll still find a lot of local farmers use the word manzana, which is 7,000 meters (1 3/4 acre), the size of the minimal allowed agricultural lot size. When you purchase a property in Costa Rica, make sure the size on the survey is the same as the one showed in the National register.
Easy shortcuts for you would be:
When you buy property in Costa Rica, make sure you do it through a real estate agent who knows his/her job. Talk to a GoDutch realty agent now.