Buyer Info

Buying Process In The Dominican Republic

The legal framework for the real estate procedures in the Dominican Republic is the new Law No. 108-05, of the Real Estate Registry. The ownership of a property is acquired through a process that includes the signing and registration of the Sales Contract among other documents and Certificates required by the Title Registry Office and the payment of the Real Estate Transfer Tax. After having reviewed and approved the complete file, the Title Registry Office will cancel the former Title of Deed and will issue a new Title of Deed which represents the ownership right to the new owner.

What are the principal proceedings in a real estate acquisition?

Due Diligence:

Each national citizen or foreign investor that would like to acquire real estate in Dominican Republic Territory should first proceed with hiring a lawyer, the research the legal status, tax, and fiscal situation of the selected property (taxes up to date, loans, burden, mortgage or encumbrance, litigation, opposition, real ownership, etc). These proceedings will take place at the Title Registry Office, the Local Internal Revenue Office, and with the assistance of a surveyor (Cadastral and parcel localization, verification of the actual square meters of the property). This step is finalized with the approval of the lawyer and his surveyor before both have obtained and verified the related certificates and the gathered information.

Drafting of the Contracts for the purchase of a property in the Dominican Republic:

Having the certainty that purchasing of the property is secure and the negotiations on price and payments are done, the lawyer proceeds with the drafting and signing of the Contracts between the parties. If the buyer wishes, a Promise of Sales Agreement or Purchase Option Contract, could be drawn up first when the down payment is made. On the day of closing, the final Promise of the Sales contract will be signed by all parties.

Real Estate Transfer, Required Documents and Deposit of File:

For transferring the property and to obtain the Title of Deed on behalf of the new owner, both the Seller and Buyer have to provide several documents and certificates that are required by the Title Registry Office of the corresponding Jurisdiction. The lawyer will obtain other necessary documents from different public entities. The required documents depend on if a company is involved in representing one or both parties. Some of the documents are:

  • 1. Original Title of Deed.
  • 2. Final Sales Contract duly signed and legalized.
  • 3. Receipt of Payment for the corresponding taxes or the Tax exemption certificate
  • 4. Copy of Identification documents of both parties.
  • 5. In the case of a company, the Assembly approves the sale or the purchase (depending on the case) of the property.
  • 6. Taxes Paid Registry.
  • 7. The lawyer will compile these documents and give the duly follow up for the emission of the Title of Deed.
  • 8. Title of Deeds on behalf of the new owner.

The Title Registry Office of the corresponding Jurisdiction, will, after having reviewed the complete file deposited by the lawyer, cancel the previous Title of Deed and will Release the new one on behalf of the new owner, which could be a person or a Company and will represent its ownership rights. Finally, the lawyer conveys the Title of Deed to the new owner.

Purchase of Real Estate by Foreigners

No restrictions for foreigners to purchase property in the DR
The Dominican Republic, a paradise for retirees, pensioners, and annuitants.

New Law no.171-07 on special incentives to pensioners and annuitants of foreign source.
Investing in the Dominican Republic could be a dream come true; with the enactment of the said Act, the Dominican Republic granted increased incentives for foreign investment, becoming one of the countries with stronger incentives for pensioners, retirees or annuitants of foreign source. This law offers numerous benefits for those who come to settle and invest in our country.

Pension or retirement: Those who are retired or pensioner, receiving a monthly income for a pension or retirement of a government agency or private company of foreign origin, who have declared their intention to relocate his definitive residence to our country and eventually receive the benefits of his pension or retirement in the Dominican Republic.

Annuitants: Those who enjoy a stable and permanent annuity, whose principal source is generated from outside or by any of the following reasons:

  • 1. Deposits and/or investments in banks abroad.
  • 2. Remittances from banking institutions or foreign financial.
  • 3. Investment in companies established abroad.
  • 4. Remittances provided by real estate.
  • 5. Interest earned on certificates issued in foreign currency generated abroad, who are in financial institutions legally authorized to operate in the Dominican Republic.
  • 6. Profits earned by investments in certificates issued in foreign currencies and / or national level, with the State or its institutions, provided that the capital has been generated abroad and carried out the changeover in any financial institutions in the country.
  • 7. Interest, dividends or income from investment securities or property held in the Dominican Republic, whose principal has been generated or accrued mainly abroad.

Benefits and exemptions granted by this Act:

  • Investment Residence Program, set up by Decree No.950, September 20, 2001, allowing foreign investors to obtain permanent residence within 45 days.
  • Law No.1493, August 26, 1993, Customs Tariff on the Dominican Republic, which exempts from taxes to furnishings Household and personal property.
  • Law No.168, May 27, 1967, on Partial Tax Exemption of Motor Vehicles.
  • Exemption from taxes on real estate transfers, for the first property acquired.
  • 50% exemption of taxes on mortgages, when the credit financial institutions are satisfactorily regulated by the Monetary and Financial Law.
  • Exempt 50% of property tax, if this applies.
  • Exemption of duties on the payment of dividends and interest generated in the country or abroad.
  • Exemption of 50% tax on capital gains, if the annuitant is the majority shareholder of the company and is subject to the payment of this tax, and the company must not be devoted to commercial or industrial activities.

Minimum Amount Pension or Monthly Income: The pensioner will receive a monthly income of no less than One thousand five hundred dollars (US$1,500.00) and the annuitant shall receive a monthly amount corresponding to two thousand dollars (US$ 2,000.00) or its equivalent in national currency.

In the case of the annuitant, they will have to prove that they receive permanent and stable revenues generated or from abroad, for a period not less than five years, through a copy of the Contract properly translated into Spanish by an authorized interpreter, legalized by the Dominican consulate in the country of origin of the document. As well, must submit a receipt of income from foreign currency into the country through a copy of a check (s) or transfer announcement from a financial institution established abroad.

Why Invest In This Area?

In Punta Cana, it’s all about the beach and sunny weather. Punta Cana Dominican Republic is undeniably breathtaking with tall swaying palms scattered along 21 miles of some of the whitest and finest coral sand beaches in the world. The area has become a haven for vacationers who are seeking a beach chair, a Pina Colada, and a good read or memorable dining at a choice restaurant. Punta Cana real estate is hotter than ever with investors looking for Punta Cana apartments and rentals with high rental income potential.

Punta Cana is the perfect atmosphere for families, couples, or friends who are looking for a resort-style vacation. Just about every tour embarks from this area so no one in the group can complain about being bored.

The majority of the over 60+ resorts in Punta Cana are all-inclusive, allowing for an easy-going vacation or honeymoon with plenty to do. Are you interested in snorkeling excursions? You can practically name your attraction and find it here. As one of the fastest-growing areas in the country, more luxurious and bigger complexes are planned to open in the future. Beyond new accommodations, a 24-mile long boulevard is being built to easily move vacationers throughout the area.

For the past 15 years tourism has had sustained levels of consistent growth, turning into the most important economic sector for the country. Tourism is responsible for employment in many different sectors of the local economy. The Dominican Republic has gone from average tourist activity to the #1 Caribbean destination since 2005.

Bavaro Beach, Punta Cana, is the fastest growing tourist and investment area in the entire Caribbean among USA citizens, and Canadian and European investors.

Here are just a few reasons why Punta Cana Dominican Republic is a great place to Live, Play, and Invest:

  • The lowest prices in residential properties over the Caribbean
  • Punta Cana International Airport – Private International Airport
  • An excellent Investment with a High Rental Income
  • Appreciation 5-10% yearly
  • 60+ Hotels with 50,000+ rooms with 90% occupancy rates
  • More than 5 million visitors per year and growing
  • 25 miles of white sandy beaches and turquoise blue waters
  • Theme parks, water sports, swimming, marinas, sailing, windsurfing, designer golf courses, nightlife, and gambling casinos
  • Year-round tropical climate
  • Mayor developers and companies investing in the area

Bávaro-Punta Cana is having sustained growth, where you can find the best hotel/resort chains, and the most diverse commercial establishments are flocking to the area trying to establish their presence in the area. This is why there is a shortage of supply and increased demand for residential developments.

Visit Punta Cana Dominican Republic for a vacation. Who knows, you may find real estate that's just right for you!

How Taxation works in the Dominican Republic

Real Estate Transfer Tax (Law 33-91). Once a property has been purchased the following will need to be delivered at the DGII in order to request authorization to pay the transfer tax:

Original of the Sales Contract
Seller property Title Certificate
Seller Personal Identification
Buyer Personal Identification

Transfer Tax Procedure

3.1% of the purchase price of the property (as in the sales contract) or the price resulting from the valuation carried out by the DGII, whichever one is higher.
Property purchased by the purchase of company shares, then there is a 1% tax added.
The DGII has the right to inspect the property before authorizing the payment of the tax.
Tax must be paid within six (6) months of signing the sales contract.
Paid by the buyer (unless otherwise agreed by the parties)
Payable to Local Internal Revenue Office (Dirección General de Impuestos Internos DGII)

Once the tax is paid the following is filed with the title registry office in the jurisdiction where the property is located:

  • Originals of the sales contract.
  • Original property title certificate.
  • Receipt of transfer tax payment – issued by the DGII.
  • The title registrar registers the purchase in its records.
  • Cancels the seller’s title certificate.
  • Issues new title certificate in favor of the buyer.
  • Issuance of title certificate takes between 30 and 90 days.

Tax on Real Estate Property, Sumptuary Housing and Vacant Urban Lots

Commercial Establishments
Vacant lots
Located in urban zones
Value OVER six million five hundred pesos (RD$6,500,000.00 – Approx. US$160,000)
One percent (1%) rate applies to the value which exceeds the RD$6,500,000.00.
Those exempted from this tax payment are:

  • Housings valued less than six million five hundred pesos (RD$6,500,000.00).
  • Housings whose owners are sixty five (65) years of age or older.
  • These housings have not been transferred in the past fifteen (15) years.
  • Owner only possesses such housing as his/her only real estate property.
  • Buildings and lots owned by Dominican State, Beneficial Institutions, Religious Organizations and/or Diplomatic Delegations.
  • Property Owned by Dominican or Off Shore Holding Corporations – Tax on Assets (ISA).

One percent (1%) annually
Applied over the total value of the taxable actives of companies
Natural persons with a sole-owner business or businesses
Includes real estate properties listed in the balance sheet, not adjusted by inflation and after the deductions that may apply.
The ISA must be paid by all natural persons with one-owner business or businesses and by companies, without mattering if they have operations or not.

Income Tax (ISR)

ISR is the annual tax applied to all income, utility, or profit obtained by juridical persons (companies) or natural persons in a determined tax period.
Foreigners must pay the tax over their Dominican sourced income, and starting from their third residency year in the country they must pay over their income from foreign sources. The branches of foreign companies receive the same fiscal treatment as Dominican companies.

The ISR rate applied to juridical persons or companies from the year 2007 on is 25% over the net profits of each fiscal year.

The ISR rate applied to natural persons from the year 2007 on is 25%, with a tax payment exemption for the first RD$257,280.00 according to the following scale, which is adjustable by inflation annually:

  • From RD$0.00 to RD$257,280.00 – exempt.
  • From RD$257,280.01 to RD$385,920.00 – 15%.
  • From RD$385,920.01 to RD$536,000.00 – 20%.
  • From RD$536,000.01 onwards – 25%.

The employer must withhold this tax payment from the salary paid to the employee.

Capital Gains Tax

A real draw for investing in the Dominican Republic is the tax structure. Most foreign investors are unaware of the recent capital gains tax imposed. Because most governments access these taxes when a property changes hands, a completely legal strategy has been put in place to circumvent the capital gains and property title taxes, an approach many wealthy Dominicans have been using for years. The solution is a simple one: the new buyers don’t take possession of the property. Control is transferred via stock ownership and/or the directorship of a company that happens to own the property. Thus eliminating a taxable real estate transaction.

The tax is of 25% of the difference between the purchase price and sale price of the real estate property.

If profit is obtained by a natural person, it will pass on to be part of his/her taxable income mass over which the income tax will be applied, after discounting the tax payment exemption, which is RD$257,280.00 and, from there on, progressive rates going from 15% to 25% will be applied.

If profit is generated by a company, this profit is presented separately from the operational results of the said company and the 25% tax will be applied, regardless of the operational result of the company.
Tax on Rent of Real Estate

Insuring Your Dominican Property

We primarily utilize the services of a very reputable industry leader in insurance within the Punta Cana and Bavaro areas – MAPFRE. Its broad market is focused mainly on Spain, Europe, and Latin America. Furthermore, the Group has a presence in the USA and Turkey.

We have a workforce of 30.603 employees, (16.838 in Spain and 16.091 in America, and 1.674 in other countries).

Our product range covers all fields of the insurance business. We have a specific competitive solution to meet each of our client's needs, as well as those related to their properties and assets. In Spain, our activities also involve Investment Funds, Pension Funds and Pension Plans management, and other business services.

In 2008 we obtained consolidated earnings exceeding 18.270 million euros, of which more than 14.300 million came from reinsurance and direct insurance premiums.

Our gross profit was 1.383 million euros, and our total consolidated assets exceeded 47.759 million euros.

What type of property insurance is available in the Dominican Republic?

Insurance in the Dominican Republic includes “Fire and Related”. Included risks are fires, thunder, and lightning, earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, malicious damages caused by strikes or vandalism, smoke, and car and airplane collisions. Insurance coverage is based on replacement cost. If there are damages, caused by causes covered by the policy, the insurance company will pay replacement costs of repairs with materials of equal or similar to the damaged.

In terms of major catastrophes (hurricanes, earthquakes, floods) these are subject to a 2% deductible of the insured value.

Is property insurance mandatory in the Dominican Republic?

No. However, it is mandatory to insure with an established insurance company authorized by the “Superintendencia de Seguros”. If you have a mortgage, the bank issuing the loan will add the property insurance to your mortgage loan using the bank’s approved property insurance company.

How much is the property insurance policy?

Property insurance can fluctuate from year to year and depends on the reinsurance international markets. Currently, the average cost is US$700 to $800 for every US$100,000 of insurance.

Dominican Republic Mortgages

It is widely known that the Real Estate market in the Dominican Republic is primarily cash-driven. This is one of the major reasons that the values of Dominican Republic real estate were not heavily affected by the economic crisis; properties were essentially wise substitutes for a great interest rate “savings accounts”. As the time to buy is now, many people are inquiring about the availability (and process) of mortgages. Here are some points to keep in mind when considering whether or not to purchase via a mortgage or cash:

1. Interest Rates. Interest rates are much higher than one would typically find in the U.S. or Canada. Rates in the Dominican Republic will more than likely rest somewhere in the teens (above 10%) and may not be fixed rates. You’ll likely wind up with an adjustable-rate mortgage, which means you may start off with a nominal annual percentage rate, only to see it dramatically increase throughout your mortgage term. The rates would go up if the Country’s central bank rate increases. Now of course the rate also could go down, but an adjustable APR would indeed be a risk.

2. Term. In the U.S. and Canada it is reasonable to expect a term of 30 years on your PRIMARY residence. As the purchaser of a second or vacation home, your interest rate will creep higher and your term may be shortened. It is best to look at a property in the Dominican as though it would be a second or vacation home. Terms here will likely be for 15 to 20 years, and as with any of this information here will be dependent on the qualifications of the borrower.

3. Age Limits. The majority of the banks in Latin America do require that the borrower has paid off the loan in full by the time you reach the age of 65 – some may extend this to 75.

4. Life Insurance. This is likely one of the first points to take into consideration before moving forward on applying for a mortgage in the Dominican Republic. Should the bank require Life Insurance, you could be facing some issues, as people in their 50s and 60s (representative of a majority buyer demographic in the Dominican Republic) almost always have a pre-existing medical condition which can make obtaining life insurance quite challenging. Those of you that are familiar with jumbo loan programs in the States are fully aware of odd-ball requests such as this throughout the mortgage process.

5. LTV. The Loan-To-Value ratio can be lower than some of us may have experienced in the past. Whereas 100% and higher mortgages were quite commonplace for primary residences and 80-90% LTV was commonplace for second/investment/vacation homes, this is not the case in the Dominican Republic mortgage market. It is not uncommon to receive rates as low as 50% LTV.

6. Appraisals. While appraisers are commonplace in the Dominican Republic, and one can quickly establish an average value on their property via an appraiser, the banks will most likely want to send their own “in-house” appraiser to do their valuation. As you may suspect, the bank's own appraisal does not always come in as high as you may want, and as such the bank will expect you the borrower to offset any shortfall.

7. Age of Condo. Condos older than 25 years (approximate) may have bargain pricing. The reason being – they must attract a CASH BUYER. Banks prefer to lend on newer properties – older properties will either fall outside lending guidelines entirely or attract a much lower LTV and much higher interest rate.

8. Grueling Process. There is really no such thing as a quick pre-approval here. It takes much longer here to even lay the groundwork for the mortgage process which can include such things as opening a bank account and transferring funds – all requiring personal introductions to your local branch manager. Time can take weeks instead of days.

All in all, there is much to be considered when weighing in on the pros and cons of obtaining a mortgage in the Dominican Republic. If you would like to learn more, please do not hesitate to contact us at Go Punta Cana Real Estate.

BORROWER BEWARE: It is not an uncommon practice in the Dominican Republic for many financial institutions to perform what can only be considered a “bait and switch”. It is not uncommon for banks to advertise and promote how “easy” or “simple” it is to get a mortgage – how willing they are to lend money. For the above to be true, please keep in mind points one through eight, and also keep in mind that this process becomes easier for locals or foreigners who have permanent residency on the island and can show proof of income from local sources. Most major banks now require foreigners to have DR residency.

Closing Costs In The Dominican Republic

Real Estate Transfer Tax (Law 33-91). Once a property has been purchased the following will need to be delivered at the DGII in order to request authorization to pay the transfer tax:

Original of the Sales Contract
Seller property Title Certificate
Seller Personal Identification
Buyer Personal Identification

Transfer Tax Procedure

3% of the purchase price of the property (as in the sales contract) or the price resulting from the valuation carried out by the DGII, whichever one is higher.
Property purchased by the purchase of company shares, then there is a 1% tax added.
The DGII has the right to inspect the property before authorizing the payment of the tax.
Tax must be paid within six (6) months of signing the sales contract.
Paid by the buyer (unless otherwise agreed by the parties)
Payable to Local Internal Revenue Office (Dirección General de Impuestos Internos DGII)
Once the tax is paid the following are filed with the title registry office in the jurisdiction where the property is located:
Originals of the sales contract
Original property title certificate
Receipt of transfer tax payment – issued by the DGII
The title registrar registers the purchase in its records
Cancels the seller’s title certificate
Issues new title certificate in favor of the buyer.
Issuance of title certificate takes between 30 and 90 days.

Lawyer Fees

1 to 1.5% of the purchase price


Taxes and fees will vary depending on values. Safe to assume 5% of the purchase price for taxes, fees and documentation.

Punta Cana Interior Design and Furniture

Realizing Your Caribbean Dreams

The Team At Go Punta Cana Real Estate Can Put Our Expertise To Work For You. We Specialize In Helping You Design And Furnish Your Condo Or Villa From Start To Finish. From Hand-Crafted Furnishings, Name Brand Appliances, Interior Design & Layout, To Personal Shopping – We’ve Got you Taken Care of.

Scott Medina – Founder | Real Estate Broker | REALTOR® International Go Punta Cana Real Estate

Know more about Punta Cana Furniture

Punta Cana (PUJ) International Airport Info

Punta Cana International Airport (PUJ) remains to this day one of the busiest airports in the Caribbean. Recently, in 2014, a second terminal was completed in this Eastern Dominican Republic Airport that allowed for an additional 6,500 inbound and outbound passengers per day. PUJ is unique in that it is one of the few privately owned commercial airports in the world. Punta Cana International Airport also maintains it’s open-air feeling with tropical breezeways and a cana (thatched) roofing system. Here’s the link to visit the Official Website of The Punta Cana International Airport.



Puerto Plata: 809-586-4075

Mexico: 1-888-760-0020
Punta Cana: 809-959-0200

Punta Cana: 809-959-0200


Santo Domingo: 809-683-8020
Punta Cana: 809-959-0035

Punta Cana: 809-686-8432

Bavaro: 809-688-0984

Punta Cana: 809-959-3020


Santo Domingo: 1-200-5151
Punta Cana: 809-959-2420

Bavaro: 809-959-3020

Santo Domingo: 809-549-0212
Punta Cana: 809-959-4293

Punta Cana: 809-796-7540, 809-959-2002

Santo Domingo: 1-800-247-9297

Bavaro: 809-552-0900

Santo Domingo: 809-689-2221/2116
Punta Cana: 809-959-0144

Santo Domingo: 809-200-2772
Punta Cana: 809-959-8021

Punta Cana: 809-959-1869

Santo Domingo: 1-809-200-9191
Punta Cana: 809-959-2009

Punta Cana: 809-959-0103


Fly & Buy For Special Offers

Wouldn’t it be great if you could actually save money by traveling to paradise? Well what if we could offer you a chance to save anywhere from $1500-$2000 USD when you purchase one of our select properties in the area. Get in touch with us to find out how it works. The Caribbean Is Calling.

If you have any inquiry about the Fly & Buy Program, fill our form here