The colonial city of Antigua in the Central highlands of Guatemala has a thriving expat community. It’s no surprise that foreigners choose to live here full- or part-time. They enjoy the history-steeped cobbled streets, vibrant culture, and the plethora of activities and international cafés, bars, and restaurants. Visitors often extend their stay, swapping family home stays or hotel accommodation for short- or long-term rentals in Antigua.
Real estate agencies and popular restaurant and internet café notice boards advertise rentals in Guatemala. The market is overflowing with Antigua rentals, but standards and rental costs vary depending on location, amenities, furnishings, and fittings…so shop around to see what’s available.
Many rentals in Antigua come furnished and many have rooftop terraces with spectacular volcano views. Some include internet and cable TV, but check what utilities are included in the rental price. Also, it’s advisable to inquire on safety in the area, especially at night, although there are many rentals in secure gated communities, usually at a higher cost.
What you need to rent in Guatemala
For rentals in Guatemala, tenants pay the legal fees to draw up a contract. Costs vary depending on rental term and price. A copy of your passport, deposit (equal to one month’s rent) and the first month’s rent will be requested up front.
As expected, renting in or close to the city center in Antigua costs more, so if you’re on a lower budget look a few blocks away or on the outskirts—where you’ll be close to the convenience of the city’s amenities and still get around on foot.
Some sample rentals in Antigua
Rentals for one-bedroom furnished apartments in town start around $300 a month. A one-bedroom apartment with parking, near international restaurants and other local amenities is renting for $350 a month including internet, cable TV, and all utilities.
A beautiful furnished three-bedroom house five minutes from Antigua Central Park with living room, kitchen/dining room, two bathrooms, garden, garage and rooftop patio with gorgeous views, is advertised for $700 a month for a one-year contract.
If living in typical Guatemalan surroundings is more your style or you want more for your dollar, rather than renting in Antigua look at surrounding towns like Ciudad Vieja, Santa Ana, San Felipe or Jocotenango. All are a short bus ride away if you don’t have your own transport.
In Ciudad Vieja, you can rent an unfurnished two-bedroom house for $350 a month excluding utilities.
Some agencies advertise rentals in Guatemala while others deal only in Antigua house rentals, including surrounding towns. Check out the English language websites for an idea of what’s on offer for vacation or long-term rentals.