Safety First Policy Gains Confidence of Real Estate Buyers
Ranking high among “The Safest Places to Travel in 2021” by TravelPulse, the Cayman Islands was named as one of the most secure destinations in a world that continues to struggle with coronavirus, citing how the government “has wasted little time showing that its pandemic protocols are to be taken seriously, which should provide visitors some additional comfort in the new year.”
While closing its borders and imposing hard lockdown measures called for huge risks in business and tourism, the aggressive stance taken by the Cayman government in the wake of Covid-19 has certainly paid off. Within three months, most of the public health safety measures have been relaxed and by the end of the year, daily activities have mainly returned to normal, with the use of masks and face coverings made optional except for a few high risk facilities like hospitals and airports.
Meanwhile, while cruise ships continue to be kept at bay, a phased reopening and entry has been in place for limited and select categories of travelers arriving by air.
Aside from Caymanians, among those who are allowed to enter are permanent residents (a status that can be acquired through ownership of real estate properties and business investments within the Cayman), persons who own residential property within the Cayman islands, and persons approved on the Global Citizen Concierge Program, among other pre-approved visitors.
Make your home in one of the safest places in the world
The global perception of the Cayman Islands being one of the safest places in the world today has proven to be a boon to the islands’ real estate industry, with the property market reporting a 4.3% increase in total sales volume in 2020 since the end of the lockdown, raising the value of the average transaction by over 26% compared to the previous year.
Not surprisingly, high net worth buyers seem more eager than ever to acquire vacation homes — or even primary residences –in an island paradise that is not also tax-free, but also COVID-free!
Describing the uptrend in the sales of island properties, Mansion Global observes that “for many high-end real estate investors, the pandemic has changed their priorities and encouraged them to reconsider their lifestyles,” prompting these affluent property buyers to seek long-term residency in places where “they feel that they’re relatively safe.”
While most of these buyers are no longer strangers to the Cayman Islands, new inquiries are also being made by those who have witnessed how well the country has performed in suppressing the pandemic and are ready to buy property – often, sight unseen –just to be able to enjoy the luxuries and conveniences of being a resident.
Real estate companies in the Cayman have been able to resume regular operations since June2020, catering to both the domestic and international markets. One advantage that Cayman has over other island destinations is that the country is not solely reliant on tourism. Recognized as one of the world’s most important financial hubs for international commerce, the Cayman Islands is not only a playground for the extremely wealthy; most importantly, it is a place where they can live and work in comfort and style with all the amenities of modern technology, but in a slower-paced environment that is teeming with nature. This winning combination makes for an elevated standard of living very few destinations can equal.
And with the work-from-home setup still in place for many workplaces, the Global Citizen Concierge Program has been quickly gaining ground, allowing digital nomads employed overseas to take up residency in the Cayman Islands for up to two years while working remotely.
Showing safely during COVID-19
Safe ways of showing real estate have been put in place as soon as marketing activities began to open again. Property tours that were normally conducted face-to-face had to be adjusted with the creative use of technology, as well as with strict adherence to health protocols.
Today, however, with most restrictions either revoked or relaxed, responsible agents like ERA Cayman Islands continue to observe some practical measures to keep their in-person buyers safe at all times for their own wellbeing and peace of mind.
Meanwhile, overseas clients continue to enjoy 360virtual tours and online meetings which are readily available at their convenience.
If you would like to make the Cayman Islands your own safe haven for living and working through these globally challenging times, we can assist you.