So, you have been thinking about buying a home in Costa Rica for a while. However, the thought of the whole process seems very daunting. How do you know what to do and what not to do? The key is to do a lot of research and get advice. You can start here, by learning some of these tips on home buying.

Although it is a cliche, it helps to remember that all real estate is local, and Costa Rica is another country. Just because USA Today says that real estate prices have declined for two straight years doesn’t mean that now is a good time to sell or buy! Talk to a local real estate agent to get the feel of local conditions. Check out local media in Costa Rica such as La Nacion for deals. Check out local realtors such as Costa Rica Firesale for real estate deals.

For both sellers and buyers make sure that you always gather data about things. Look at the newspaper in that area for things like foreclosed homes, current and historic median selling prices and also how long homes are staying on the market. Also look up things like unemployment rate and crime rates for the area.

If you want to purchase a brand-new house, consider searching in the fall season. Builders often mark down prices beginning in September in an effort to close out their old inventory before the start of the new year. They raise those prices again in the spring, so make the most of the deals while they are available.

Mortgage lenders will use a housing expense-to income ratio to calculate how much of a mortgage you will be able to afford to pay for. They calculate the property tax payments, principle and interest on the loan and insurance premiums on the home and use it to determine your potential payment to see if it is affordable.

An investment of $200-$400 for a home inspection is really worth every cent. It will take about two to three hours to complete and will provide information on more than 400 items of the home that may be a potential problem. This inspection can save you thousands of dollars in repairs once you buy the house.

These tips are just some of the things that you should keep in mind as you get ready to buy your home. However, you should not stop here. Continue to learn and apply what you have learned, like the suggestions here. Buying a home is a major investment. So take your time, make your decisions carefully and before long, you will be in your new home.