Barbados Property News - October/November 2020

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Realtors - Page 4

Harmony Hall Green - Page 9

Massy Realty- Back Cover

Alleyne Real Estate - Page 2


NEWS • October - November 2020 • Issue 130

Endorsed by the Barbados Estate Agents and Valuers Association Inc.

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Editor’s Comments I’ve just recently come back from the UK where the real estate market is experiencing a mini boom. When I asked a number of agents there why they thought this was there were various reasons - lockdown being number one. When things started to open up, everyone who held back went for it. There was a sudden rush for properties with a bit of garden around them. All of a sudden people understood the importance of having some outdoor area, no matter how small. Of course some people had to sell their house for financial reasons due to job losses etc. We have seen activity on a smaller scale here in Barbados with the Barbados Welcome Stamp, where foreigners can come to Barbados and work from here for a year at a small cost Local agents have reported that they are busy finding suitable locations for the many that have chosen Barbados as a long Pamela Hiles, Editor term alternative from where to base their work. In the current state of the economy worldwide this is a good move from our Government and an excellent idea - how exciting to be in paradise! In an uncertain time, it has brought long term visitors to our relatively safe environment where they can go to restaurants, explore our attractions and relax on our glorious beaches. In this edition we welcome back Lucy Agace, our environmentalist consultant and thanks to Mark Hoirns, Architect, for explaining some of the new building regulations. As always, BPN is full of choices whether it’s a home you are looking to buy or rent. This is the time of year Bajans like to ‘spruce up the home’ and there is no shortage of ideas when it comes to furnishing and decorating. We are on line on <> and follow us on Face Book and Instagram. Keep positive, follow the protocols and stay safe.

Publisher – Hiltop Publications Ltd, 11 Cottage Ridge, St George, Barbados, BB19071 Tel (246) 228-9122, Fax (246) 228-0243 Email: Editor/Advertising – Pamela L Hiles Design and Art Direction – 809 Distribution – Hiltop Publications Ltd, Brian’s Print Brokerage Printing – Coles Printery The Material and editorial contained in this publication have been deemed accurate at the time of going to print. The views expressed as editorial are those of the Editor unless stated otherwise. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the consent of the permission of Hiltop Publications Ltd.

On the Cover: Alleyne Real Estate

If you would like to advertise in Barbados Property News call Pam at 228-9122 or 232-0692



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including asthma and allergy sufferers, newborns, infants and the elderly. It is also ideal for hotels, offices and other institutional buildings that need to be refreshed and reoccupied quickly while maintaining the highest regard for public safety. Ulttima Plus Pure is available in two high quality, easy to use finishes - Flat and Eggshell (low sheen) - and is available from leading retailers.

Effects of Hurricane Ivan in the Cayman Islands


Improving the Value of Your Home Hello Everyone From Beava Inc. I pray that you have all been staying safe, using your mask and social distancing to continue to combat the spread of Covid-19. My name is Arthur Ramsay. I currently sit as a member of the Beava Inc. Executive Board and a Member of the BVC (Barbados Valuers Council) overseeing all valuers that are members of our Association. Beava Inc. Is the main body representing the leading agents and valuers in Barbados. I have chosen to write on the topic of “What can I do to improve the value of my home?’’ and trust you will find this helpful. There are many things that affect a property’s value. The primary factor is Location, Location, Location! So how does location actually affect your value? Location is important as it relates to the property’s proximity to amenities such as schools, businesses, supermarkets, gas stations, health care, etc. N.B. You can make alterations large or small to a property but the one thing you cannot do is to move it. Does a view matter? Yes, it does! Most buyers prefer properties with a view and not all locations can satisfy this request. To this end, most properties with a view or on a ridge usually sell at a higher value than those without. Always remember that you should never have the most expensive home in your area. I’ll explain, each location has a value and a ceiling of value. Therefore if you buy or own a home in an area that has homes in the $300k to $400k range, no matter what you do, how big or nice the home is the general value of homes in your neigbourhood will limit its top value. It is


therefore important to seek professional advice and to work within the parameters of your area. Let’s say that you have already bought a home in a location that isn’t considered ideal. Perhaps because it it relatively remote or maybe it is surrounded by poorly maintained properties. What can you do to improve your value? Think of your home as your own personal oasis. You can create an inviting space regardless of your budget and thereby maintain or enhance the property value. Here are a few ways that you can do this. (1) Landscaping, (2) Walkways, (3) Fencing & Enclosures,(4)Decks and Gazeboes,(5) Pools and Pergolas,(6) Security Systems and cameras. These things all help with improving the value of your home. From a valuers’ standpoint, the above-mentioned location and property improvements are some of the key factors taken into consideration when making assessments for valuation purposes. In addition, the Valuer will assess the current condition of the property and use comparable sales data to arrive at a value. These components will collectively determine property values. COVID has provided new challenges for us as valuers, thus we have adjusted our protocols for on-site execution of our work. These measures have been taken for our own safety and that of our clients. However, the basic assessment components listed above remain the same even in these times. Do reach out to one of our Member Valuers or Real Estate Agents for invaluable guidance, prior to making a real estate investment. With Best Wishes, Arthur Ramsay, BEAVA Inc.

Building Your First Home – The Bajan Way by Mark Hiorns, Barbados Registered Architect We are in difficult times and the thought of building a new home is far away from most people’s minds. However, I thought this would be a good opportunity to talk about a good way to build a home when money is tight…I call it the “Bajan Way” because it is based on the method used by Barbadians who decide not to go for a bank loan. To understand the advantages one needs to understand the following based on a Bds$400,000 home. The notes below may vary depending on how the loan is organized. 1. Lending Institutions (LI) charge interest on mortgages over 20 years typically and the rate is such that for the 20 year term the total interest can be as much as half the loan. So to borrow Bds$400,000 could cost $600,000…$400,000 to be paid back for loan plus around $200,000 in interest over 20 years. 2. Lending Institutions (LI) will want you to complete the construction with an approved builder in one go. No phasing. During the construction stage, the mortgagee will be paying more to the LI in interest until the house is finished. (known as bridging) The actual mortgage interest kicks in after completion of the approved house.

total (say Bds$120,000) You may have to climb a ladder to get in, but think of the rent you are saving !!!!

Phase 2: Tile bathroom, put in proper windows, complete the plumbing and electrical work, build a proper stair to get in which will form part of the completed house. Note: at this phase you are living in 2 bedrooms upstairs, but you have put in a temporary kitchen sink in one of the bedrooms to use as a kitchen/living room. Accumulative cost about 40% of total. (say Bds$180,000) The wife is happier and the boys can still play dominoes downstairs.

3. In order to set up a mortgage, the mortgagee will be required to pay for bank costs, land surveyor and take out life insurance. The land to be built on, may be used as collateral. Assuming that you have some land and a few dollars available, I can describe the Bajan way but with a twist.!! In Trinidad (the twist) many people build their houses on stilts or columns. The shady space underneath the house is used for laundry, parking the car, and workshop etc. The minimum size for the lot (parcel of land) should be 4000 square feet for a 2 storey, 2/3 bedroom house. Because the LI is not involved we can phase the construction to span say 10 years.

Phase 1: Build the bare concrete block wall structure and roof at first floor (for 2 bedrooms and 1 bathroom) on columns or concrete block piers at least 9 feet above the ground with a greenheart suspended floor. Put in the basic electrical and plumbing, use duraboard for temporary window shutters, plaster walls inside and move in.!!! Cost about 20% to 30% of 24

Sugar Hill Clubhouse

Phase 3: Cast a concrete slab on the ground floor and enclose the area with concrete blocks to form a proper living room and kitchen over the whole area. Remove kitchen sink from upstairs and relocate downstairs. Use duraboard windows again. Now you have 2 bedrooms and a bathroom upstairs plus a basic kichen and living space downstairs. Accumulative Cost about 75% of total (say $300,000) Boys now playing dominoes in the virtual car port to the side of the house.

Phase 4: Complete finishes, electrical and plumbing on ground floor, proper windows and doors etc and paint the whole building. Accumulative Cost 100% (say $400,000) Further savings can be made by electing to build the house yourself or by hiring workmen as needed and buying the materials to suit. You will still need planning permission, so don’t forget to hire an Architect to design your first home. As Architects we provide guidance as well as drawings, and we can put together design and planning drawings complete for construction at competitive fees.


Embracing Sustainability by Lucy Agace, Sustainability Consultant Contributor Covid-19 is of course the topic of 2020, causing many types of devastation on Barbados and across the world. No country is immune to it’s impact and on the positive side perhaps it has taught us all one thing - the fact that we are all connected on this planet, we are in it together and we will beat it together. Whilst it is important to keep safe and vigilant about our own protection and that of others, life must go on. Perhaps it is even more important now to think about how we can change our lifestyles to think about how our actions impact others and the environment. Can we embrace sustainability on a personal, home level? What can we do? Here are a few suggestions - Use less plastic (no more cling film, biodegradable bin liners, use a refillable water bottle) invest in reusable supermarket bags for shopping. Grow our own food, plant a mixture of flowering plants that support the insect and bird populations - most notably bees, install a simple water feature (providing water for birds and insects, with a solar powered fountain), catch rainwater, do not buy endangered reef fish such as Parrotfish, Butterflyfish and Octopus. Buy produce and products from local providers, not imported, to help sustain the local economy and communities. In fact if we buy less then we have less waste to deal with, reducing the negative impact on our finite island. Recently the radio station announced that many of the drains downtown were clogged up with plastic, debris and discarded waste. So take extra care during this rainy season to dispose of your waste responsibly. If you know there is a loose dog in your neighbourhood by sure not to leave rubbish bags where they can get at it. Once open the rain or wind can carry the waste into the environment and very often the sea where it can strangle our coral reefs. It’s so good to see visitors back on island with hotels opening their doors after a long period of shutdown. With the new visa issued to attract professional people to relocate here for a year, the rental property market is experiencing a high volume of bookings. Stand alone properties with pools and gardens are highly sought after, especially if they have a


sustainability certification. I want to end by saying Sir David Attenborough has released a new documentary with Netflix - ‘A Life on Our Planet’. It is his witness statement to the world, full (as always) of stunning scenery, past and present, but essentially by an angry man present at the destruction of Earth’s habitats. However he ends by offering us hope and current examples of how, with the right incentives or decisions, countries, leaders and people can bring about positive results. I urge you not to miss this personal journey and one a totally relate to with my own amazing natural history adventures over 35 years. It is up to everyone to do what they can in their own lives, but also to put pressure on those with the power to make substantial differences. And when they do support them and cheer them.