GDP blowout pales compared to THIS market’s growth …

The Q1 numbers are in and the U.S. GDP came in at a robust 3.2% … MUCH better than expected. 

While it can be argued there’s some fluff hiding under the hood … with growing inventories masking lackluster consumer spending … 

… the financial media are describing 3.2% growth as a “big upside surprise,” “upbeat,” and a “blowout.” 

That’s a lot of excitement over 3.2% growth. 

So let’s shift to real estate …  

The Q1 numbers are in for tourism in the country of Belize … and after hitting an all-time high of 6.6% YOY in March (the 28th consecutive month of YOY growth) … 

… Belize’s first-quarter 2019 visitor arrivals grew 6.3%! 

In the parlance of resort property investing, that’s called DEMAND.

Of course, healthy demand is a key component of that all-important supply and demand relationship smart real estate investors watch so carefully. 

If you’ve already been on our Belize field trip, you’re familiar with the favorable supply and demand dynamic in Belize’s top tourist destination.

You also know big brands like Hilton, Marriott, and Coastal Living are staking claims in this exciting growth market and product niche.  That’s a BIG clue. 

Of course, we’ve been talking about resort property investing for quite some time. With boomers retiring every day, resort travel is a “booming” niche.

Resort property is a great way to earn rents from the affluent … while adding some lifestyle benefits to your real estate investing. 

So while the blowout United States GDP number is interesting to paper pundits … we think the significant and consistent tourism growth in Belize is much more exciting and actionable for real estate investors.  

Maybe it’s time for YOU to put on your sunnies, sandals, and swimsuit so you can …  

Join Robert Helms for an intimate guided tour of the resort property market of Ambergris Caye, Belize on our upcoming Belize Discovery Trip! 

Click here now to claim YOUR seat on the next Belize Discovery Trip >> 

You’ll LOVE it …


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Market Moves of Major Players

When big companies like Costco, Walmart, Home Depot and McDonald’s start moving into a residential real estate market it’s because they expect growth.

And they’re usually right.  After all, they have the budgets to buy the best data and hire the smartest analysts.

Some of the data the consider includes migration trends, infrastructure plans and demographic shifts.

Do people want to move there?  Are they Major corporations like Southwest and Hilton carefully analyze market data before making moves into places like Belize.the RIGHT demographic?  Are there freeways, airports, and other key pieces of infrastructure to support a growing population?

When everything checks out, these big organizations begin to move in… to get in ahead of growth.

Savvy residential real estate investors watch these moves … and then start to investigate.  It’s a way to piggy-back on the hard work paid for by the big players.

For those interested in resort property investing … and there are some compelling reasons to consider it right now … the principle is the same, but the players are different.

Resort properties make their money renting to tourists, not tenants.  The migration patterns aren’t gleaned from U-Haul statistics, but from airlines.

The companies moving in aren’t big box retailers, but rather big brand hotels.

So when you see a major airline adding flights to a resort destination, it’s in response to growing demand.

That’s a clue.Major airlines like Southwest Airlines, Delta and American Airlines are adding flights into Belize

Ditto for when a major hotel brand plants it’s first flag in an emerging resort market.  They have strong reasons to believe the tourists and occupancy are there or soon will be.

When those things are happening at the same time, in the same market …. SOMETHING must be happening to attract this attention.  And it is …

Tourism to Belize continues to boom.  And major players are making moves to take advantage of Belize’s growing popularity.

Of course, there’s a LOT more to this story than can be told in a few hundred words.

That’s why we’re heading to Belize for a fun-filled, educational field trip … and YOU are invited to join us!

Come see what makes this tropical paradise one of the most exciting resort property market in the Western Hemisphere … and why major players are making their moves.

Ambergris Caye Belize is one of the most exciting resort property markets in the Western HemisphereMany investors use low-end residential properties as a vehicle to build wealth so some day they can own and enjoy a beautiful resort property.

Imagine buying a resort property as an investment and still enjoy some personal use.

It’s possible.  And it starts with picking the right market, meeting the right team, and finding the right property.

The timing’s never been better.  Tens of thousands of baby boomers are retiring every day.  Studies say many wish to travel … maybe even retire … abroad.

Belize is a popular destination because it’s close the U.S., English-speaking, friendly to Americans … and REALLY beautiful!

You’re going to LOVE it.

Click here now to discover enchanting Belize!

How to Pick Up on Smokin’ Hot Real Estate Markets

Let’s face it.  Whether it’s a car, lover or hot real estate markets, we all want a hot one.

You’re on your own for the first two, but in this episode we’ll do our best to help you with number three. That is, how to find hot real estate markets.

In the studio for this arousing discussion:

  • Your smokin’ hot host, Robert Helms
  • His faithful wing-man, co-host Russell Gray
  • Regular contributor and Big Man on campus, John Turley

“Hot” things are usually the result of high demand and too little supply.  Sometimes the desire to possess is there, but the capacity to pay is not.  In any case, when more people want something than there is of it to go around, that thing becomes “hot”.

In investing, the goal is to be among the first to identify something that’s heating up, then grab it before the mass of other market players have gotten to the party.

So how do you get into hot real estate markets BEFORE they get hot?

Before we go there, consider that real estate as an investment is very slow moving.  That is, even once the word starts to get out, it takes a while for market demand to reach its peak.  This is good because it allows regular folks (not just all the pretty people in Wall Street) to get in on the action.

Also, because real estate isn’t really a main stream investment, the “Flash Boys” aren’t coming to the party at all.

In fact, real estate is more like a block party.  It’s local only interesting to people who are in the neighborhood.  So parties for hot real estate markets don’t tend to get too crowded very fast.  This is also good for those of us who don’t mind driving (or flying) from place to place in pursuit of a fun party where we can get some action with a hot market.

So it’s important to go where your chances are good.  We say it all the time, “Live where you want to live and invest where the numbers make sense.

Hot real estate markets - where there's smoke, there's fire. smoking mountain. Step one is to watch for signals that a market is getting hot.  And those signals don’t always come in a neat package or in ways that are readily recognized.  Sometimes you have to be good a reading the smoke signals to recognize that a market is heating up.

In this episode, we invite John Turley to bring us up to date on his market, Ambergris Caye, Belize.  It’s an interesting case study, especially if you’re not familiar with this market, because it illustrates how market drivers vary from market to market.

A fundamental concept of market analysis is supply and demand.  If there are lots of people demanding a particular area, product type or price point, that area, product type or price point has the potential to get “hot”.

But how do you know WHICH area, product type or price point?  And how can you see it BEFORE the majority of others see it?

This is where purposed proximity is essential.

Purposed proximity is getting close to a market with a conscious decision of looking for critical clues about supply and demand trends.

Many people live in areas with opportunity all around them.  They have proximity.  But they aren’t purposeful.  So they drive by opportunity every day and can’t see it.

Others are purposeful from a distance.  They look at charts, graphs, stats, news and data.  They can sense opportunity because they’re purposeful.  But they can’t actually see it because they lack proximity.

Here’s where it’s important to realize that hot real estate markets are like people. You have to be close enough to pick up their unspoken clues that signal opportunity.Hot real estate markets are like people. As with people, promximity to markets help you pick up on the subtle clues that signal opportunity.

Body language experts tell us that communication is only 7% verbal.

This means that words only account for a fraction of the meaning in a conversation.

The majority of communication is in tonality, facial expression, gestures, eye contact, etc.

To really get the “vibe” of another person, you need to be in close proximity.  Or at least be able to see and hear them, which is why video chat has become a popular communication tool for people in both their personal and professional lives.

For a real estate market, price and sales data is analogous to the words in human communication.  It tells SOME of the story, but it’s a far cry from telling the WHOLE story.  This is why we’re big fans of field trips.  We like to visit markets up close and personal.  We like to feel them to know if they are actually hot real estate markets or not.

Plus, when you visit a market, you build relationships with people who can become your boots on the ground. 

For example, even though we go to Belize a lot, it’s nice having Big John and his team with boots on the ground.  They have their thumb on the pulse of the market.  And not just data, but rumors, inside information, and real time activity.  It’s that way for every market we’re involved with.

With that said, some data is very useful because it’s a leading indicator of demand.

For example, if a large employer signs a deal to open a new operation in a small town, the resulting employment can be a driver of demand for housing.  But because the demand hasn’t manifested yet, there’s time to get in ahead of the wave.

And before it’s in the paper for the whole world to know, there’s usually a handful of local market players who know it’s coming, like the commercial real estate broker helping to find space or land for the business.  Or the residential brokers looking for housing for the key executives.  Boots on ground.

Of course, just because a big employer is moving in, it may not be enough information to take action on.   But when you have several corroborating signs from different sources, then you probably have something substantial to act on.  In any case, it CERTAINLY warrants a closer look…because where’s there’s smoke, there’s usually fire.

So listen in to this discussion as Big John Turley provides some of the many signs which say “market on fire” in Ambergris Caye.  Then think about whatever hot real estate markets you’re active or interested in.  What smoke signals are in the air and how can you investigate further?

And then remember, you don’t want to by shy when the market’s sending out the “vibe”…or you risk missing out on some hot action.

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Real Estate In Belize – A Beautiful Market on the Rise

Market Spotlight: Tourism, Retirement and Investment on the Rise

No matter where in the world you buy real estate (including real estate in Belize), you’re buying the market as much or more so than the property.  After all, a great property in a bad market has a hard time performing well compared to even an average property in a great market.  And you can always improve the property, but how do you improve a market?

So when we look for real estate, we always consider the market first.  Then, we look for a great team to help us find, acquire, finance and manage the right property.

real estate in belize dock on beach

In this edition of The Real Estate Guys™ radio show, we shine our market spotlight on beautiful Belize.  And to make sure we get a really good look, we pack our microphones (and shorts and sunscreen!) and travel south to bask in the beauty of Belize (and enjoy a Belikin beer).

Broadcasting in the breathtakingly beautiful Caribbean paradise of Belize:

  • Your bright light of broadcasting brilliance, Robert Helms
  • Your somewhat dim co-host, Russell Gray
  • Special guest, the shining star of a brokerage of real estate in Belize, John Turley
  • VIP guest, Minister of Tourism for Belize, the Honorable Manuel Heredia

What Makes Real Estate In Belize So Strong?

Whether you’re interested in Belize or not, this episode has some great info about what makes markets move.  And except for very rare circumstances, it’s PEOPLE.  That’s why real estate on the moon is still very cheap.  Lots of available land.  No people.

BUT, you might say, how can some little sparsely populated third world country and the real estate in Belize be an amazing opportunity? And that would be a very good question to ask.

Is Belize a great market because some guru or travel magazine says so?  Who’s vote REALLY matters when it comes to real estate in Belize?

It’s PEOPLE (not the magazine). Real people.  People… people who need people.  They’re the luckiest people in the world.  Sorry, bad joke.  And if you’re too young to remember Barbra Streisand, then forget we brought it up.

Now back to our regularly scheduled blogging…

Our point is that people are what make real estate valuable.  And not just any people.  People who vote with their pocketbooks.  So when enough people (and businesses) invest their hard-earned money into anything, that thing moves.  It’s economics 101: supply and demand (with capacity to pay).

That’s why the old real estate adage still holds true: the three most important considerations when purchasing real estate are Location, Location, Location.  When lots of people want to be in or on a property and there isn’t lots of it in the best location, then you have a great formula for financial success in terms of both cash flow and long term capital gains.  We like both.

Click here now for a Belize Market Overview video featuring Robert Helms.

 

Belize Was Named TripAdvisor’s What?

So when John Turley tells us that Ambergris Caye, Belize was named Trip Advisors’ #1 island in the world, it’s impressive.  Not because Trip Advisor said it.  But because people who travel said it.  It’s the TRAVELER’S Choice award and not the Editor’s Choice award.  If you’ve ever enjoyed a movie that some critic panned, you know what we mean.  It’s the movie-goer who buys the ticket.  They’re the one who’s opinion counts when measuring return on investment.

However, that’s just one, albeit important, point on the curve.

John also tells us that major airlines are adding flights to Belize.  That’s impressive all by itself.  After all, airlines aren’t like big governments with unlimited budgets to create flights to nowhere.  If they’re adding a flight, it’s because they expect to fill it.  Probably because their customers (people) are asking them for more access to Belize.

But what’s even more intriguing is the impact that even one extra flight a week can make on the tiny country and real estate in Belize.  In other words, all those extra passengers need places to stay.  And the average stay in Belize is a week (as in six night and seven days).  But the volume and pace of construction is no where near what’s needed to support the current demand, much less this growing demand for accommodations.

Now that’s VERY interesting!

But Big John is on a roll, so he shares some other very valuable information with us.  Now you’re getting an idea how fun it is to be us.  We get to hang out with all these important, knowledgeable and super-connected people and gather up all kinds of inside information.

Fortunately, we almost always carry our microphones with us (which is fun going when going through U.S. airport security), so we can capture these precious pearls of wisdom to share with you.

And while the TripAdvisor award and the additional flights is information that is readily visible to the general public (IF John Q. Public happens to be paying attention and knows what the data means in context), what John shares next is not.

Big John tells us that his real estate office, which happens to be the top volume brokerage in the county of Belize, and the 3rd highest non-U.S. RE.MAX office in the WORLD…all from a tiny little island in Belize (think about that for a minute) has seen it’s sales volume increase 300-400% year over year. 

Whoa.

So CLEARLY, people are using the power of their pocketbook to put real estate in Belize on the map.  Well, technically, Belize is already on the map.  But now people all over the world are discovering enchanting Belize, just like we did 7 years ago.

Yes, it’s very fun being on the leading edge.

 

What Happens When Markets Get Hot?

What’s amazing – and we’ve seen this happen time and again – when a market gets hot, the momentum just builds and feeds on itself.  That can be fun, but we’ve also seen overheated markets blow up, then implode.  So what makes that happen?

real estate in belize to buy hot beach

Usually, when a market gets hot, developers over-react to the demand and overbuild.  In other words, the supply and demand pendulum swings the other way and now there’s too much inventory relative to the demand.  If you’ve ever had milk and cereal for breakfast, you know what we’re talking about. 😉

 

How Is The Government Helping Real Estate In Belize?

Of course, Big John is just a smooth talking sales guy (who happens to be one of the world’s foremost authorities on the real estate in Belize market in Ambergris Caye), so even though he’s quoting all these great stats and providing anecdotal support, we decide to balance him out by talking to a lifelong resident and now Minister of Tourism for the country of Belize, the Honorable Manuel “Junior” Heredia.

What we find out from Junior is that the Belize government has taken lessons from the beautiful real estate markets which developed before them. Sometimes, allowing that development to undermine the very beauty and charm that made the market desirable to start with.  Of course, it’s really hard to screw up an ocean view, but when the beach is covered with 10 story highrises, it’s hard to see the water.

So Junior tells us that the Belize government was humble enough to get outside help, then they set up a 20 year Master Plan with a drive towards what creating what he calls “sustainable tourism”.

What does that mean?

Junior explains that Belize has reserved nearly 40% of it’s land to preserve the natural beauty that attracts tourists in the first place.  Of course, as a tourist, you’ll appreciate that.  The negative is that supply and demand will eventually push prices up.  Now if you’re a wealthy tourist, you’ll REALLY like that.  High prices keep the riff-raff out.

Of course, if you’re less wealthy, it might frustrate you.  But rather than be frustrated, just go to work on building wealth.

 

How Expensive Is the Real Estate In Belize?

Now right now, real estate in Belize isn’t ridiculously expensive.  And it will probably be several years before the equity enhancing effects of a big green belt will be seen in local real estate prices and nightly rental rates.

But as investors?  It’s AWESOME.

When you can go into a market and buy before the demand has arrived and prices have gone to the moon, you’ve locked in your cost.  And if the numbers make sense at acquisition, then it makes holding on for increasing cash flow and equity growth a profitable proposition.

Because eventually, as demand increases and supply can’t rise to match it, the natural progression is higher prices.  And when you consider that nightly rentals cash flow so much better than long term rentals, you’re starting from a very strong base.  And unlike those C class Section 8 apartments you might own, we’re guessing you’d actually enjoy staying in your Belize investment property if you’re lucky enough to have a vacancy!

 

Should I Invest In Belize Real Estate?

Is Belize a market that makes sense for everyone?  Of course not.  We’re just trying to make sure that those who should consider it are aware it exists…especially when there’s the opportunity to get in ahead of the wave – even if the swells are starting to rise up on the horizon.

 

How Can I Learn More?

So listen in to this especially exhilarating episode of The Real Estate Guys™ radio show and discover why we keep going back to Belize again and again.  And if you get inspired, make plans to join us for a fun filled 3 day weekend adventure in Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Listen now:

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2/10/13: Musical Chairs – Profiting from Demographic Shifts

Shift happens.  When it comes to demographics, sometimes those shifts affect supply and demand.

As an investor, if you get on the right side of supply and demand, you can make a lot of money.

Sitting in the musical chairs in The Real Estate Guys™ mobile studio:

  • Your host and radio show front man, Robert Helms
  • Your shifty-but-happy-to-have-a-chair co-host, Russell Gray
  • Returning special guest and top international broker, John Turley

When you make your living selling real estate on a tiny little island in the Caribbean, it’s hard to climb into the upper echelon of worldwide top producers for one of the biggest real estate franchises in the world.

But John Turley has done it.  And in a big way!  In the huge worldwide RE/Max franchise, Big John is in the top 3 of all international brokers.  All from a tiny island in the Caribbean.

How?  And why should you care?

Whether you’re an investor or a real estate broker, the message is that when people move it creates demand for real estate.  If you’re there first, then you can profit when all that purchasing power shows up.  Hey, it’s working for John and it can work for you, too.

What John Turley discovered is that the baby boomers (you know, that HUGE demographic of people who’ve powered wave after wave of business profit as they move through the stages of life) are facing an interesting dilemma as they approach their golden retirement years…

There aren’t enough desirable retirement destinations to go around.

So if you’re the purveyor of such things (as a landlord, developer, flipper or broker), you have an amazing opportunity to ride the wave.

Here’s the good news:  Though the race is on, the boomers are only on the front end of their shift into retirement.  Most don’t yet realize the shortage that’s coming.  This means there’s still plenty of time to get in on the action.

But don’t wait too long.  Because when the music stops, there might not be enough chairs for everyone.  And those that are available will probably be expensive.  That means the earlier you get in, the better chance you have of singing a happy tune down the road.

So listen in and discover how demographic shifts affect your opportunities in real estate.

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The Real Estate Guys™ radio show and podcast provides real estate investing news, education, training and resources that help real estate investors succeed. Visit our Feedback page and tell us what you think!

McAfee Antivirus Founder Suspected of Murder in Belize

Sometimes bad stuff happens…even in beautiful places.  And sometimes, bizarre events can affect our investments and even our investing psychology.

The bizarre story about John McAfee’s potential involvement in a grisly murder on the tranquil island of Ambergis Caye Belize has become a major focus of the international media.

It’s a sad story on many counts, most importantly because 52 year old American expatriate Gregory Faull is dead.

We didn’t know Mr. Faull, but our thoughts and sympathies are with his friends and family.  They are innocent victims of this unfortunate turn of events.  It’s always traumatic and tragic to lose a loved one.

And we don’t know John McAfee personally, so our interest in this story isn’t about him either. It’s more about our our roles as unofficial ambassadors for Belize.  Since our first visit nearly 7 years ago, we’ve been telling the world how wonderful Belize is.  Then a story like this one breaks, and being so close to the community of Ambergris Caye, our sympathies are not only with the victim, but with the people of Belize.

Of course, what the world is obsessed with is the eccentric tragedy that is becoming the life of John McAfee.

McAfee’s anti-virus software company made him a household name.   Sadly, ugly things happen every day all around the globe, but when the parties involved in tragic events are famous, like O.J. Simpson, Michael Jackson or John McAfee, the story can easily get blown entirely out of proportion.

For the residents of Ambergris Caye, the ramifications of the world’s temporary fixation on this story range from difficult to devastating.

It’s bad enough to have a horrible murder occur in your community. But when the prime suspect is a celebrity who alleges to the world that your police department is corrupt and your community is unsafe, it’s extremely upsetting.  More, for a community whose economy relies significantly on tourism, the magnification of this story can have a highly detrimental impact on the good and innocent people of Ambergris Caye.

Having spent a lot of time in Ambergris Caye, we feel compelled to put the McAfee story in perspective for those who don’t yet know, or are just getting to know, Belize and Ambergris Caye.

We have many friends there and for many years, we’ve been introducing people to this beautiful Caribbean paradise.  It saddens us that many people around the world are drawing negative conclusions about Belize simply based on the sensationalism surrounding the McAfee story.

So here are some things to take into consideration when forming opinions about Belize and Ambergris Caye in the wake of the the McAfee murder mystery…

Belize is a country that is roughly the geographical size of Delaware, but has a population of about 330,000.  The country has two primary components: the mainland and the islands (Cayes).

Ambergris Caye is the largest island, measuring approximately 24 miles long and 3 miles wide.  By comparison, the largest island in The Bahamas is New Providence, which is 21 miles long and 7 miles wide.  The well-known city of Nassau is located on New Providence.

Although Ambergris Caye makes up only 63 square miles of Belize’s entire land mass of 8,867 square miles, 70% of all tourists to Belize visit Ambergris Caye.  Both John McAfee and his late neighbor, murder victim Gregory Faull, maintained residences on Ambergris Caye.  It’s a favorite of many American and Canadian expatriates and when you see it in person, it’s easy to see why.  It’s beautiful, warm, friendly and (dare we say?) safe.

Our good friend and American expatriate John Turley, who has been living with his family and working in Ambergris Caye since 2005, recorded a video of both Mr. McAfee’s and the late Mr. Faull’s homes.  In the video, John shares his personal perspectives on the sad story.

 

As you’ll see, these homes are not hiding behind gates and guards deep in some topical jungle.  Rather, these homes are right out on the open beach, facing the barrier reef and Caribbean Ocean.  We’ve passed by these homes several times during our many travels to Ambergris Caye.  We’ve never seen anything that raised a concern for us.

Of course, though we’ve been to Ambergris Caye many times and have walked around freely in town (at all hours of the day and night) without ever feeling unsafe, our experiences are purely anecdotal and potentially biased.  It’s no secret we love Belize.

So setting our personal experiences aside, here’s some third party information that’s worth considering…

From the United States Department of State Bureau of Diplomatic Security’s Belize 2012 Crime and Safety Report:

“Many of the safest places in Belize are the off-shore cayes (islands), which are some of the major tourist destinations. While crime still exists on the cayes, it is much less frequent and generally non-violent.”

This isn’t to say there isn’t crime in Belize.  In fact, the murder rate per capita is high by international standards.  However the vast majority of these murders are gang related and in the major mainland cities of Belize City and Belmopan, not on Ambergris Caye.  When you understand that, then the Department of State’s comment makes more sense.

So, in addition to Mr. MacAfee’s celebrity and eccentricity, another reason Mr. Faull’s murder is such big news in Belize is that this kind of crime rarely occurs on Ambergris Caye.

For additional contrast, consider the Department of State’s report on The Bahamas:

“The U.S. Department of State rates the criminal threat level for New Providence Island as CRITICAL”

Again, New Providence is the largest island of the Bahamas and home to the city of Nassau.  New Providence Island in The Bahamas, like Ambergris Caye in Belize, is a beautiful tropical island in the Caribbean and is part of a larger country.  Both islands attract tourists, expatriates and international investors.  We believe the similarities warrant our comparison.

More from the U.S. Department of State on The Bahamas:

“There were 127 homicides in The Bahamas in 2011, up from 94 in 2010, with nearly all the victims being Bahamian. This is a 35 percent increase from 2010. The police report that many of the homicides were a result of drugs, domestic violence, and retaliation/retribution crimes with firearms being the weapon of choice.”

Yet a cursory search of the internet does not find a plethora of news articles reporting on the dangers of visiting The Bahamas.

In fact, in an article published in the New York Times to help readers enjoy a successful trip to The Bahamas, there is no mention of crime. Neither is the Bahamian murder rate an item of discussion in the many articles describing Prince Harry’s visit there earlier this year.

What do you think the chances are that many of the news articles that will be written about Belize in the coming months will mention the John McAfee murder investigation?  And not to belittle the tragic murder of Gregory Faull, is it really fair to the community of Ambergris Caye to cast it in the shadow of a single horrible crime simply because the leading suspect is famous?

Back to Belize, again from the U.S. Department of State:

There were 125 murders recorded [in Belize] for 2011, four less than 2010, likely due to the gang truce in Belize City that began in September 2011. However, even though the number of murders dipped, ending a three-year trend of new records for murders, the murder rate actually increased slightly, due to a slight decrease in the population. A government of Belize (GOB)-supported gang truce was agreed to in September 2011 and dramatically reduced the intentional homicides during the final four months of 2011. There were also highly-publicized raids in known gang areas by the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU). There were only nine murders reported in the 100 days following the truce. The gang truce will undoubtedly have an impact on violent crime in Belize City in 2012.

If you’ve made it this far, we assume you’re seriously interested in understanding the context of the McAfee story, so let us point out a few important items.

First, both The Bahamas and Belize have populations in the mid-300,000 range.  Each had approximately 125 murders in 2011, most of which were drug and gang related.

However, the crime threat in The Bahamas is considered CRITICAL by the U.S. government, while Belize is not.  Yet, if you were to Google “The Bahamas” and “Belize”, the search results (many of which feature the McAfee story) might have you believe that Belize is a far scarier place, which is factually not true.

To add some additional context, consider another U.S. city that attracts millions of visitors every year.

New Orleans also has a population in the mid-300,000’s, putting it on par with Belize and The Bahamas.  In 2011, New Orleans had 199 murders, making it statistically far more deadly than either Belize or The Bahamas.  Yet many people, especially Americans, don’t hesitate to go to New Orleans for a conference, vacation, entertainment or business.

We hope by now, the point is obvious.

If a celebrity in any town in the U.S. is the prime suspect in a grisly slaying, it gets pasted all over the news.  Just think about the O.J. Simpson case.

But Nicole Brown-Simpson’s horrifying murder didn’t suddenly make Brentwood a grossly unsafe place, though we’re certain is freaked out the neighbors.

Of course, as a suburb of Los Angeles, sensationalized news coverage could blend Brentwood’s low crime rate with the larger metro’s higher rate, and then in the context of the Simpson case, it could make Brentwood seem like a war zone.  That’s what happens to Ambergris Caye when it gets lumped in with Belize City.  But it’s not an accurate story.

The sad part for us, as big fans of Ambergris Caye, is innocent people and businesses will be detrimentally affected by this over-hyped story.  Because when tourists and investors turn away from Ambergris Caye simply because of the John McAfee story, the good people who work in the Belizean economy will be unfairly victimized, making an ugly story even more tragic.  We’re guessing no one will report on that.  It isn’t sexy.

Of course, we see opportunity in nearly every adversity.  And just like when a corporate scandal is reported about one company in a given sector can unfairly drop the prices of every other perfectly fine company in the same space, savvy investors can move in when most casual observers are moving away.  Then later, when things calm down and perspectives normalize, the level-headed investor finds themselves holding a valuable asset.

So if you’re someone who’s considered Belize for vacation, second home, business or investment, before you judge Belize in the wake of the John McAfee story, be sure to keep the sordid affair in context.

Meanwhile, we invite you to join us on an upcoming trip to Ambergris Caye and come see beautiful Belize for yourself.  Statistically speaking, it would be safer than spending a weekend in New Orleans (not that we would discourage from visiting NOLA…we just did and it was great!).

In any case, we encourage you not to allow sensationalized news to taint your view of Ambergris Caye, a.k.a. La Isla Bonita, one of the truly wonderful places on Earth.

Discover Enchanting Belize!

We’re going back to Belize and invite you to join us!

Belize is beautiful, fun and very well positioned in today’s crazy economic climate.  Plus, it’s got some very unique attributes which are beginning to attract worldwide interest.

But as popular as House Hunters International and The Real Estate Guys™ are, Belize remains a largely undiscovered land of opportunity.  If you’ve ever looked at any mature real estate market and wished you could’ve gotten in years ago before the crowd, then you REALLY want to get to Belize sooner rather than later.  And we can help you!

There are lots of reasons to like Belize.

Some are obvious.  It’s beautiful.  It’s the only English speaking country in Latin America. They like Americans and Canadians. The currency and the government are simple and stable.  It’s closer to the most of the U.S., Canada and Europe than Hawaii.  It’s one of the top diving meccas in the world.

Other things are less obvious, but arguably more interesting.  Belize is a net positive exporter. That means they produce more than they consume. What a concept.  And they are a low tax (how about NO capital gains?), privacy banking and asset protection haven, but not for drug dealers and terrorists.  Just for folks who like to to have their stuff some place where trial lawyers and over-reaching governments can’t grab it on a whim.  That’s not everyone, but it’s enough that interest has picked up recently.

As you can see, it would take us several days to tell you all about it.  So rather than write a small book and make you sit in front of your computer for hours, wouldn’t you much rather sit in a boat on warm, turquoise blue Caribbean water, and chat with us while you’re sipping some foo-foo drink with an umbrella in it?  Of course you would.

So click here to learn more about how you can spend 4 days in paradise with The Real Estate Guys™ while we help YOU discover enchanting Belize!

Belize Discovery Trip – Feb 7-10, 2020

They say a picture’s worth a thousand words. And even though we can talk a lot, words can’t describe the beauty and charm that is Belize.  The best way to understand this amazing Belize real estate market and all of its investing, lifestyle and personal financial opportunities is to experience it yourself – up close and personal!

Join Robert Helms, host of The Real Estate Guys™ Radio Show, for a fun and educational weekend discovery trip to the beautiful country of Belize!

 

February 7-10, 2020

 


Meanwhile, read on to learn more about Belize, this trip, and resort property investing…

 

Why Belize?

Three words: Location, Location, Location (we’ve heard those are important for real estate).  And when it comes to Belize real estate investing, there are three other words: Timing, Timing, Timing.

Ambergris Caye Belize has been named the #1 island in the world TWICE by Trip Advisor.

Belize is the former British Honduras and is located just under Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.  Mainland Belize features lush green tropical rain forests, while it’s Eastern border faces the Caribbean ocean and is safely nestled behind the world’s 2nd largest barrier reef.

 

Discover the resort property investing opportunities on Ambergris Caye Belize on The Real Estate Guys Belize real estate field trip

 

 

The islands are postcard perfect and attract vacationers, diving enthusiasts and celebrities alike.  Harrison Ford, Reese Witherspoon and Bill Gates are known to visit Belize for private, relaxing getaways.  Leonardo DiCaprio purchased a 110 acre island known as Blackadore Caye, so his love for the country led to a major Belize real estate investment.

On our 2012 Investor Summit at Sea™, we helped our friends Robert and Kim Kiyosaki discover enchanting Belize and Robert described it as “spectacular”.  He was in awe that a place like this still existed.  Belize has that effect on even very experienced travelers like Robert and Kim.

But beyond beautiful, Belize real estate has other unique attributes which make it attractive to investors and tourists alike.

Belize is the ONLY country in Latin America whose official language is English.  This, and the fact that its currency is pegged at a fixed 2:1 exchange rate with the U.S. dollar, make it a friendly place for Americans. Plus there are direct flights from several U.S. cities including Atlanta, Miami, Dallas, Houston and many others.  For most Americans, Canadians and Europeans, Belize is actually closer than Hawaii!

The Real Estate Guys™ will show you Belize!

Robert Helms and his team have been visiting and investing in Belize real estate for several years. He’s led several discovery trips with as few as one couple and as many as 110 Summiteers. The feedback on every trip has been over the top positive! Robert will share his extensive market knowledge, and personally show you around. Plus, he’ll introduce you to his personal network of local market experts.

This is an EDUCATIONAL event. This is not one of those “fly n’ buy” sales trips where aggressive salespeople are waiting to pounce on you.  We believe the right approach to real estate is to start with the market first, then build a team, and then select properties that meet your personal and investment goals.  This trip is about exploring the market and meeting people who may become part of your team down the road.

Discover the real estate, banking and lifestyle opportunities available to you in beautiful Belize during a semi-private tour led by The Real Estate Guys™ Radio Show host Robert Helms.

 

February 7-10, 2020

 

 

Trip Logistics

Once you’re enrolled, our registration team will contact you with travel logistics.  Your round trip airfare is not included in your tuition, but it’s very important that your arrival is coordinated through our team.  While you’re in Belize, virtually all your trip expenses including group transportation, speaker sessions, materials and most meals are included.  Discounted hotel rates are offered at our preferred hotels, and you will receive hotel choices, rates and information once you register. Alcoholic beverages, souvenirs, and certain other incidental expenses are not included.  Upon receipt of your completed registration form, we’ll provide you with information about what to wear, pack and expect.  You will need a current passport, so if you don’t have one, get to work on that right away. Once you discover enchanting Belize, we’re betting you’ll be making regular use of your passport!

 

The Opportunity is Now

There are lots of reasons to like a place like Belize (is there any other place like Belize?), but the opportunity today is better than ever! Americans haven’t lost purchasing power in Belize because of the fixed exchange rate, while many other countries have gained purchasing power because of a soft U.S. dollar.  Baby boomers in the U.S. still dream of warm weather, low tax, beautiful places to resort and retire, but many of the more established areas remain relatively expensive in a post recession economy.

 

belize real estate dock on beach

 

Belize offers an English speaking, affordable, “non-touristy”, and reasonably nearby alternative.  And popular TV shows like House Hunters International are helping a growing number of people discover Belize as a great option not just for retirement, but also full-time residency for a growing new class of telecommuters and independent information workers.  Think about it:  would you rather sit in a corporate cubicle in Cleveland or a beautiful beach in Belize?

Additionally, Belize still enjoys a great reputation as a tax friendly jurisdiction with strong privacy banking and asset protection laws.  As citizens of “developed” countries face increasing concerns about privacy, taxes and frivolous litigation, the affluent are seeking off-shore alternatives in greater numbers than ever.

All of these trends point to increasing demand in Belize real estate, but the wave is still growing.  Alert investors can position themselves in the market to provide the properties that tourists, retirees, remote workers and ex-pats will want to buy or rent.  Besides, if the worst thing that happens is that you have to live or use your property for personal use, would you rather it be a duplex in Detroit or bungalow in Belize?  Meanwhile (check with your own tax advisor), once you have investments in Belize real estate, your trips to visit just might be tax deductible.  Very cool.

 

A Visit is Worth a Million Words

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a personal visit to paradise is worth at least a million.  Come see it with your own eyes!

February 7-10, 2020

 

 

Still not convinced?  Take a look at what some past attendees have to say:

 

 

Listen in to this radio show episode about Lifestyle Investing and Belize…

 

 

Whew!  That’s lot of long distance learning about Belize.

You could probably use a break…

 

Treat yourself to a fun-filled extended weekend adventure into real estate investing education with Robert Helms in beautiful Belize!

 

February 7-10, 2020

 

 

 

We look forward to seeing YOU in beautiful Belize!