Should you rent or buy in Ecuador?

I get this question a lot…

“Should I Rent or Buy property in Ecuador?”

Complicated question, with a simple answer.

Most people who move to Ecuador wish to at least maintain their standard of living, if not improve it, while seriously lowering their cost of living.

To do that, you should buy on the coast of Ecuador while rent in the highland areas of for instance Quito, Cuenca, Loja, Cotacachi.

Why?

Well, the rentals in the highland towns are cheap and high quality with nice two bedroom apartments usually starting around $300 a month unfurnished.

Heck, my friend rents a decent 3 bedroom house in the highlands in a valley near Quito for $150 a month.

While on the coast the area is more rural, there is less to choose from and you likely will have to settle for a very cheap, very Ecuadorian rental existence usually with cement floors and leaky roofs (which most of us foreigners can’t handle) or pay a premium for a decent rental, usually not under $600-700 a month for a decent 2 bedroom place.

Meanwhile, land on the coast can still be had VERY cheap, starting around a few bucks a meter, especially if you are willing to live a few blocks off the ocean, obviously beachfront would be more expensive.

Yet it can be difficult in the highlands to find a decent 2 bedroom place in a nice area for sale under $50k or cheap land in town either.

That’s why if you ask me this very general question I give you this very general answer.

Buy on the coast, rent in the highlands.

It’s best to buy and build/ renovate something to your own standards on the coast, while consider renting in the highlands.

So where would I invest on the coast right now in 2013? Which areas are moving and which aren’t? For that, sign up for my weekly Ecuador Insiders Newsletter below, you can unsubscribe at any time:

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