Sunday, May 24, 2009

Paying Tribute to the Fallen on Memorial Day

We can never say truly say how appreciative we are of your service. Some have given ALL for the freedom there is today and for that reason we want to take the time on this very special day to thank not only those that have fallen but also those who have served or is serving in the Military.

We Remember and will keep your memory alive.

Friday, May 22, 2009

How to Buy Real Estate in Belize

On the eastern coastline of Central America with a mainland and over 200 islands, Belize is a popular tourist destination. It offers many natural attractions with rainforests, sandy beaches, Mayan ruins and tropical climate. Belize is affordable and has a lower cost of living than Europe, Canada and the United States. There are no restrictions on foreign ownership, and the country is politically and economically stable. The difficulty of buying property in Belize is: Moderately Challenging.

1. Step 1
Spend time in Belize and ask any Platinum International Real Estate and Investment Agent for properties. There are a few real estate listings, but a large amount are for sale by owner and usually there are no signs posted. We have an inventory on those inside listings that are to the benefit of our clients. We should be prepared to hunt for your piece of real estate to call home.
2. Step 2
Pay cash or get financing on your assets back home. Mortgage financing is not readily available for foreign buyers. We have a few possible options but we would need to find out what your needs and wants are.
3. Step 3
We will negotiate your price. There are two prices, one for locals and one for foreigners. Unfortunately that’s the way it is but we will do your research and have our Belizean agents find out the local prices just for you. You will get a better price with Platinum International Real Estate and Investments having more knowledge of the real estate market in Belize.
4. Step 4
Hire a lawyer. The attorney fee is normally two percent of the purchase price. If you don’t know of any we have a few we could suggest to you. That decision is ultimately yours to make.
5. Step 5
Research and learn the real estate market. Know the fees and costs of purchase. Your Land Title Transfer fee, called a stamp tax, is 12 percent. The property taxes vary based on the assessed value of your property. We will make the process as easy as possible and take the hassle out of buying or selling real estate in Belize by providing a breakdown of costs and fees up front.
6. Step 6
Apply for a Title Transfer and receive a Certificate of Title under the Registered Land Act System. This is the most common purchase agreement. There is also the Conveyance System involving a title search usually done by an attorney, and the Torrens System involving a First Certificate of Title.
7. Step 7
Moving into your home after the transaction is complete.
Platinum International Real Estate and Investments will ensure that you have adapted and will continue to check with you to make sure everything is going smoothly. The only other reason would be because we have forged a lasting relationship with you, our client.

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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Considering Relocating or Retiring in Belize? Make sure to read about Belize in International News Sources.

If you are considering relocating or retiring in Belize you should be interested to know that it has become a shining star in the international media. Internationally acclaimed magazines and newspapers are consistently publishing articles on Belize and how truly wonderful this small tropical paradise is. Come and see what the buzz is all about. Utilize the Worldwide Web to see why the following publications encourage you to schedule a visit:

CNN Money, Hottest Foreign Second Home Markets for 2007, January 20, 2007
“Belize boasts many attractions for adventurous Americans. It's less than two hours from Miami, has wonderful archeological sites, marvelous forests with spectacular biological diversity and white coral sand beaches. It's also the only primarily English speaking country in Central America.”

Men’s Journal December, 2006
“Belize is the New Costa Rica …It starts with a Perfect Beach.”

The Times-Picayune, New Orleans Newspaper November 05, 2006
"With turquoise water, beaches, caves, Mayan Ruins and a very different pace, this Central American Country provides a total escape form our Reality. Belize it or not,”

Caribbean Travel & Life, Give Me The Cayes, July, 2006
"Real estate is booming, and the island is grabbing a decent share of the growing market for retirees and vacation homeowners attracted to Central America's tropical lifestyle and low cost of living."

New York Times
"This scene is good enough to fulfill almost any woman's 'chuck-it-all' fantasies."

Caribbean Dateline Magazine
"Belize is the best long range investment site in the Caribbean".

International Living Magazine
"Belize is the top choice for retirement destinations worldwide".

Time Magazine
"Blissing out in balmy Belize: It is supremely laid back here. The aggression level here is zero; nobody bothers you."

USA Today
"We're talking about one of the richest archaeological landscapes in the world"

The Seattle Times
"Belize makes an excellent Caribbean alternative to the travelers who want a little history and adventure with their sun."

Conde Nast Traveler
"World's Sexiest Beach", "the New World's New Groove"

International Living
"Belize is the only country within the Caribbean to experience consistent increases in overall tourist arrivals since 1998"

AARP Magazine
"A tiny jewel bathed by the turquoise Caribbean Sea"

Scuba Times
"Belize represents the ultimate wildlife adventure, both above and below water. Even for an old salt who dwells in a tropical paradise (the Virgin Islands), 'it was the trip of a lifetime'."
Outside Magazine
"Cut loose in the Americas last good rum-punch republic."

Caribbean Travel & Life
"What a place!"

Yahoo Travel
"Belize has become a rising star among those seeking active and educational vacations."

Islands Magazine
"Come along on the last, best adventure in the Caribbean."

Fly Fishing Magazine
"Summer angling offers the chance for a flats grand slam - catching a bone fish, permit and tarpon. Permit abound in Belize."

Nadad National Geographic Traveler, Unplugged Islands, May/June 2005
"I settle into a daily routine centered around the natural world. During the new moon, a hatch of baby sea turtles erupts from the sand, struggling frantically to get to the ocean. We put them in buckets and release them beyond the surf. One morning, as I sit on my porch sipping coffee, I spot an osprey diving for its breakfast. Then I see porpoises leap from the water in a synchronized dance. As the tides go out, I watch crabs and octopuses crawl through tidal pools. I can sit all morning and think of nothing in particular, no schedules, no plans for the day. I just stare. The longer I'm here, the more I surrender to this timeless existence."

New York Times, Far From the Bubblin' Crowd, October 31, 2004
"Experienced divers exploring such popular Caribbean spots as Little Cayman's Bloody Bay Wall or the Wreck of the Rhone in the British Virgin Islands have become well acquainted with the telltale sign of underwater traffic jams: circles of dive boats moored at the busiest destinations. Avoiding the crowds may require making an extra plane connection, but the compensations for the added travel are less crowded, more tranquil wonders above and below water. Here are four somewhat off-the-beaten-track destinations that should guarantee more fish life than fellow divers."

Newsweek, Travel/Belize, March 3, 2003
"Scuba divers have flocked to Belize—the English-speaking paradise between Guatemala and Mexico—ever since Jacques Cousteau explored the massive barrier reef and legendary Blue Hole. But landlubbers will also find plenty of earthly delights."

National Geographic Adventure, The World's 25 Greatest Adventures--And How to Do Them Now, February, 2003
"Maybe given a thousand lifetimes you could do it all...— all without sweating your schedule. But odds are, you don't have a thousand lifetimes. Odds are, you have just a few weeks a year. Which is all the more reason to make sure you don't miss the planet's greatest experiences. And why, in the current climate of unrest and uncertainty, it's more important than ever to be selective... And that means playing it smart—especially in choosing a destination and finding an outfitter with local savvy. Here are 25 classic trips that are right for today, along with the outfitters who can get you there and back safely—in one lifetime or less."

Blue, The Dive Trip; Belize: Long Caye, Annual Issue, 2002/2003
"Belize's stellar diving owes mostly to its unique geological position. For the past 80 million years, North American and Caribbean tectonic plates have moved past each other under the southern edge of the Yucatan. Fault lines separate the shallow Caribbean shelf from its North American counterpart. Belize's Cayes— there are dozens—sit atop this intersection, perfectly positioned to access the massive wall created by the opposing plates. This wall plunges 12,000 feet down and teems with marine life."

Desert News, Belize: World-class's Diving Attracts Adventurers, But That's Not All There Is To Do, June 25, 2006
"But by the next day you are thinking "Heaven." You've realized why people come to Belize. They come here so they can fall asleep to the sound of waves and wake up to the sun shining pink on the mangrove trees. Tourists come to Belize for the diving, too, of course. The world's second largest barrier reef can be found off the coast. The Caribbean ocean is turquoise, here, and the breeze is warm and soft. Tourists also come for the jungle. It's replete with exotic birds and animals and Mayan ruins. And there are more reasons to visit. For one: Belize is a place of good cooks and abundant produce."

These are just a few of the wonderful articles on Belize. I am sure there are many more out there to be found. If you would like to know more about this beautiful country called Belize please be sure to ask anyone with Platinum International Real Estate and Investments in Belize. You can email them at

Coming soon: the costs associated with buying and selling property in Belize.

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Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Belize Voted among the top Five Countries for “The World's Best Ecotourism Destinations”

Written by:
Nellie Day – NuWire Investment Magazine

Interest among a growing number of travelers, eco resorts have popped up everywhere, from Florida to Fiji. In fact, the ecotourism industry is growing so quickly that it would be nearly impossible to map which countries have become the greatest eco-destinations, especially when the terms "eco" and "green" are thrown around so readily that it can be hard to tell what is genuine and what is simply a marketing ploy. Ecotourism at its heart not only preserves natural habitats and indigenous cultures and species, but actually works in favor of conservation by bringing additional resources that the local economy would otherwise not have, so the applications of the term can be quite different, which makes ranking such locations even more difficult—if not impossible.

Instead of ranking these destinations, NuWire decided to recognize five countries whose efforts in particular realms of ecotourism have gone above and beyond the norm.

Belize ranked top among them for: Appreciating Marine Life

Though Belize has many natural wonders, one of its biggest ecotourism draws is its vast bodies of water and exotic marine life. "Its coastal areas are a huge draw due to their remarkably beautiful water and coral reefs," Jampol said. Visitors to Belize can observe three species of sea turtles, three types of dolphins, river otters and one of the largest manatee populations in the world. These animals can be spotted on sailing, snorkeling and kayaking excursions, all of which allow tourists to enter the animal’s native habitats with little to no disturbance to the wildlife and pollution to the water.

In fact, many organizations encourage visitors to explore Belize through its series of lagoons, caves, waterfalls, rivers, wetlands, channels and reefs. Eco-friendly tourists can explore Belize’s large reptile and bird populations by traveling down the Burdon Canal, which leads them into the Burdon Canal Nature Reserve. They can experience the 150-mile Belize barrier reef system and Hol Chan Marine Reserve, which allows visitors to enter many of its waters. The Aguas Turbias Reserve consists of 7,000 acres of immense flora and fauna that come from Belize, as well as nearby Mexico and Guatemala. A viewing station in Mountain Pine Ridge allows for ample views of Hidden Valley Falls, where waterfalls disappear into the jungles below. Clarissa Falls and Blue Hole also offer opportunities for swimming and guided tubing tours.

With all that said. Let’s just preserve Belize’s natural beauty for generations that follow to appreciate what we have today.

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