This Lot in the Safe Haven of Uruguay Is Less Than $22,000

Little Uruguay is a low-key place—solid and stable. It’s cattle and soy country, home to gently rolling pastureland interior dotted with Germanic looking barns. Its banks are well capitalized and there is an incredibly high standard of living.

It’s not surprising, then, that last December, when “The Economist” announced its “country of the year” for the first time, Uruguay was the country that took that spot. It was chosen on the basis that it has been a trailblazer at enacting policies that not only benefit its citizens but humanity as a whole.

Uruguay’s economy has been on the up with 11 straight years of growth since they grappled with the impact of Argentina’s crisis in 2001/2002. Since then, Uruguay’s stayed safe, solid, and stable—even throughout the recent global crisis.

This stability led to Uruguay’s being awarded a “positive for investment” grade status by Standard and Poor’s—both in the short- and the long-term. Just last month, a spokesperson for renowned credit ratings provider Moody’s, which has already awarded the country a “positive for investment” grade also, said Moody’s was considering upgrading Uruguay’s positive debt rating higher.

That positive rating is partly due to the fact that Uruguay introduced capital controls, (unlike Argentina) that were designed to slow the flood of “hot” money into Uruguay, which has contributed to a strengthening of their currency and inflation.

But don’t think Uruguay is a meddler. It minds its own business. It keeps its yard tidy and doesn’t argue with its neighbors. It’s a place where you, as a foreigner, are welcome—to come here and live, to invest, to buy real estate, and even to farm. The tax man is far from greedy. And his rules are clear.

There’s not too much other drama here either (bar the odd heroics on the world soccer stage.) No earthquakes, volcanoes…and no bank runs. The roads are good. The health care is good. Residents can use the national health care system’s free clinics. Monthly fees for mutualista programs—health cover through top-quality private hospitals—start from about $100. The climate is seasonal and mild. It doesn’t get boiling hot or freezing cold.

It’s a great place to keep you—and/or some assets—in times good and bad.

Despite the European feel of the country—in the capital Montevideo, in particular, you’ll see French and Art Deco style buildings, a classical opera house, tree-lined streets, and shaded plazas, and eat European foods—Uruguay doesn’t come with “old” Europe-style bureaucracy and red tape. This is a safe, solid and truly internationalized place. It’s a safe haven where people from Argentina and Brazil come to protect their assets from turbulent times back home. It’s also a safe place they come to vacation with their families.

If you’re looking to use this as a safe haven for your assets, too, here’s a tip: forget investing in property in Montevideo. Instead, go to the beach. That’s where you will find the best opportunity for profit.

In Uruguay you have miles of stunning beach, and great beach towns. Much of the coastal landscape looks very Mediterranean, with rural pastureland sweeping down to the dark-blue ocean. Punta del Este is jet set chic. But, there’s nicer beach and coastline along the shore. In particular in the “beach province” of Rocha.

This is where five members of my Real Estate Trend Alert group can lock down a lot of over half an acre (with sea views) in a golf and beach community for just $21,093. And because of members-only pricing that I negotiated, that’s 35% less than what the Argentines and Uruguayans who are looking to buy here will pay.

The only condition for this great pricing is that we keep our mouths shut about the special pricing we’ve been given.

The beach province of Rocha is on the up. Land here will do particularly well.

It’s a beautiful place to visit. White sands, backed by dunes, stretch for miles. Beyond breaking waves the Atlantic is blue and flat to the horizon. The towns in Rocha have a quiet charm. La Paloma is the area’s biggest and most vibrant…La Pedrera has a more upscale ambiance…and tiny Cabo Polonio is famous for its arty residents.

This region likes to protect its natural amenities. One protected area is Laguna de Rocha. Rolling white-sand dunes separate the tranquil waters from the foam-capped waves of the blue ocean. With its 18,000 acres of pristine wilderness, this is a nature lover and boater’s paradise.

These lots I’m telling you about, with golf and sea views, are in a golf community minutes from one of the best beaches in Rocha and close to the Laguna de Rocha. The little beach towns of La Paloma and La Pedrera are a short drive away. The surrounding landscape is pastoral…with meadows, small farms, and pine forests.

Plans call for golf and tennis within the gates of the community. Around 55% of the land will be preserved as green space. Seven lakes will dot the project, adding to the relaxed country feel of the property…and 90% of the lots will have views of the ocean, lake, or golf course.

These are large lots (members of Real Estate Trend Alert can buy from $21,093), from half an acre in size. Closer to the well-known beach town of Punta del Este (but still outside town) prices range from $40 to $135 per square meter. That’s $162,000 to over $500,000 for a one-acre lot—in projects with hardly any amenities. Here, the total price five members of Real Estate Trend Alert will pay is $21,093.

That’s a saving of $11,358 on real estate values that are set to rise as development moves along the coast from Punta del Este to Rocha.

Editors note: Sign up here for International Living’s free daily postcard e-letters now and receive a special report “International Living’s Insider Guide to Buying Real Estate Overseas.”

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