If you have spent the last four months in Covid-19 isolation, I bet, like me, you are dreaming about how to get away. Far away. Like to your own island. Sound like a fantasy? Well, my research indicates it can be more of a reality than one would think. Where shall we look? The Aegean? Caribbean? Seychelles? Pacific Northwest?
The biggest drawback? Not necessarily the cost. But access—are you going by boat? Plane? Helicopter? Drive 20 hours? Never lose sight of the logistics!
But today, there are scores of web sites and actual companies specializing in helping you find the island that meets your criteria—price, location, size, and geographic attributes.
There aren’t all that many reasons why people buy islands. Here are some of the more obvious:
- I want my solace, scarcity of distractions, and privacy.
You can spend millions of dollars to live in the city or out in the country. But on your own island, you are king or queen of the castle. Who can visit, who can stay, that’s your call. An island gives new meaning to exclusive.
- I want to build my vacation home with my vision.
As long as you follow your guest country’s taxation, permits, development restrictions and licensing, the sky’s the limit, so to speak. Of course, building costs could be astronomical. But you can build your very own vacation play land!
- It’s time for me to find a real estate investment that is truly special.
Without risk, there is no reward. And that is true of any time you buy a property. Perhaps it’s a family compound or an exclusive resort. Ensure your research is extensive to avoid pitfalls.
- I want to create a new business. A unique opportunity.
If you plan to make your island a business transaction, however, things can get more complicated. Many times buyers will envision a family compound and convert it over time to a commercial proposition. I have a friend who has spent the last 6 years doing exactly that, bringing in a local partner to work through much of the government’s approvals. Consider these possible constraints:
- Find out about ownership and any territory constrictions;
- Ensure you get a thorough survey;
- Political situation;
- Availability of emergency services;
- Where your supplies come from;
- Check public access;
- Can you land a seaplane;
- Can you sail in to a deep harbor;
- Are you in a marine reserve;
- Where are the closest medical facilities;
- Tropical storms, volcanos and weather patterns; and
- Finding a great manager/management company.
As long as we’re considering ways to escape our current madness, why not play it out?
Of course, if you’d like to pursue your own Eden, please give me a call!