Purchasing Land in St Lucia by Non National | Realty St Lucia

10/9/2014 Malcolm
ALIEN’S LANDHOLDING LICENSE
 
All non-nationals are required to obtain an Aliens Landholding License, in order to purchase property in Saint Lucia. The license is obtained from the Ministry of  Physical Development, Housing and Urban Renewal and must be registered by a local solicitor.
 
1. The local solicitor/lawyer writes to the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Physical Development, Housing and Urban Renewal to request an Alien's Landholding License. The application is forwarded to the Survey Department (Chief Surveyor) of the Ministry, which prepares a memorandum to the Cabinet of Ministers for approval.
 
2. Upon approval from Cabinet, the solicitor/lawyer submits a sworn declaration, and the draft license to the Attorney General's Office for vetting. Once vetted for discrepancies or amendments, the draft license is returned to the lawyer.
 
3. The license is printed on approved paper and re-submits, along with the sworn declaration and other relevant information, to the Attorney General's Office, which then forwards it to the Prime Minister's Office for final approval and signature.
 
4. The official license is submitted to the Survey Department, where it is collected by the lawyer for onward submission to the Applicant. NON REFUNDABLE APPLICATION FEE - EC$ 5400 (effective October 11th, 2012) License to purchase or to hold land:
 
Up to 1 acre – $5,000
Over 1 acre and up to 10 acres – $10,000
Over 10 acres and up to 20 acres – $ 20,000
Over 20 acres and up to 50 acres – $ 30,000
Over 50 acres and up to 100 acres – $ 40,000
Over 100 acres – $ 50,000
 
License to hold land in trust is 5% of the value of the trust property. Stamp Duty - 2% on the property cost. Lawyers charges are applicable and vary. The Alien’s Landholding License is permanent, and does not require renewal.Residents of Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, St. Christopher and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Surinam and Trinidad and Tobago are exempted from applying for Aliens Land Holding Licenses for land development in Saint Lucia:
Steps in Buying Land
 
The Purchaser
 
1. Obtains a Letter of Offer from the vendor (the person wishing to sell the
land).
 
2. Obtain a copy land register to ensure:
 
• That the vendor has absolute title to the land.
• That the amount of land which is being offered corresponds with the official records.
• That no claims exist on the property.
 
By Way of a Loan
 
3. Bring in the information to the loans officer at a bank to support an application for a loan. The Bank
 
4. If/when the loan is granted, the bank writes a letter to the purchaser’s lawyer indicating the terms and conditions which must be fulfilled before the loan is disbursed. The bank will write the check to the lawyer for the amount of the land.
 
The Lawyer
 
5. Checks all registries to ensure that there are no outstanding claims against
the property or the vendor.
 
6. Prepares the Deed of Sale.
 
7. Prepares the Hypothecary Obligation (if the property is to be used as security for the loan).
 
8. Ensures that there are no outstanding taxes, dues and unregistered liens, which could nullify the sale.
 
9. Pays all required stamp duties and charges on the sale of land to the Inland Revenue Department.
 
10. Coordinates the sale transaction – ensuring that the vendor, on receipt of the money, signs the Deed of Sale.
 
11. Submits the Hypothecary Obligation to the Bankers for signature (if the property is to be used as security for the loan).
 
12. Registers the signed Deed of Sale and (if necessary), the Hypothecary Obligation (signed).
 
13. Delivers copies of the registered Deed of Sale to the purchaser and the Hypothecary Obligation to the Bank.Other Permits
 
Land Development
 
An investor, who is desirous of developing land, must apply for permission from the Planning Department of the Ministry of Planning, Development, Environment and Housing. The application must be made in triplicate and should be accompanied by maps and plans. Failure by the authorities to give a decision for development approval within ninety (90) days may be deemed a refusal. The applicant however, has the right to appeal. Environmental Impact Assessment
 
Approval:
 
In cases where the proposed development may have environmental implications, the Ministry of Planning, would authorize an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) to be conducted, the results of which would determine approval.
 
Health and Safety Permit
In the case of food operations, a permit is required from the Division of Public Health of the Ministry of Health. These permits are granted on an annual basis.
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