Sunset Ridge Buying Information
Alien Land Holder’s License
A foreign national who wishes to acquire real estate on Nevis will need to apply for an Alien Land Holder’s License. The Alien Landholder’s License is issued for the purchase of a specific property by a specific owner and is non-transferable. The license can only be applied for once a deposit has been placed on a property and usually the purchase of the property is made subject to approval of the Alien Landholder’s License. The cost of the Alien Landholder’s License in St. Kitts & Nevis is 10% of the value of the land or property as assessed by the Inland Revenue Department plus approximately 2% legal costs for an attorney to prepare and submit the application. The license is usually issued within 4 to 6 weeks of its submission to the Government but can take longer if there are any complications.
On purchasing property in a Government approved development such as Sunset Ridge, the owner of the property can make the necessary application for economic citizenship of St. Kitts & Nevis which brings visa-free travel to certain countries and tax-free status on foreign income, capital gains and inheritance tax.
Buying a house in Nevis is relatively easy, whilst there is no purchase tax in Nevis, there are various acquisition costs which are payable when buying property. There is a 1EC cent for every EC$5 of the purchase price contribution to the National Assurance Fund, the registration fee is EC$7.20. These are contributions to a title assurance which is a legal requirement on St. Kitts & Nevis. The Inland Revenue registration fee is approximately EC$50. The preparation of plans costs about another US$300 and the mandatory lawyer will charge a conveyance fee of about 2.5% of the purchase price.
A general guide for legal fees is 2.5% on the first EC$25,000, 2% on the next EC$25,000 and 1% on the next EC$950,000.
A mortgage incurs an extra 1% stamp duty on the value of the loan plus legal fees payable to the bank on a reducing balance based on the value of the loan, as per the legal fees above.
Once the house is purchased taxes and other expenses are quite low. The Controller of Customs assesses the annual rental value of the property and a 5% land tax is levied annually on this rental value. However, in most cases that tax does not amount to more than about US$1,000 per year. No other running taxes are due. If the property is rented, any rental income is tax-free for the owner. In the event of a sale, there is no capital gains tax to pay either. The tax system on St. Kitts & Nevis is financially interesting to those who wish to become resident because income is not taxed, there are no wealth taxes.
Alien visitors, including homeowners who have no other status must pay EC$50 per month for the first 3 months then EC$75 for each subsequent month. Visitors must hold an outbound air ticket.
Property owners can apply for permanent residency enabling them to stay on the island indefinitely. Application cost EC$200 followed by a one time payment of EC$3,800 when approved.