San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

A One-Stop-Shop for Home Buyers

Everything related to homes, condos, apartments, and lots can be found at ExpoCasa, Costa Rica’s national housing expo, which kicked off Wednesday at the Centro de Eventos Pedregal in San Antonio de Belén in Heredia.

The expo runs through Sunday evening and features 258 stands with information about renting or owning a home or property, financing a home, and home design and décor.

Of those stands, 12 are occupied by national banks and finance companies, all of which are offering special low interest rates to attract buyers.

“We’ve seen the housing market slowly start to come back,” said Max Bolaños, supervisor of mortgage credit at Banco Costa Rica (BCR). “The economy is getting a little better and we are hoping to meet the needs of interested buyers by lowering interest rates and helping them take on mortgage payments a little more easily.”

The banks each offer their own financing plans with different interest rate scales (see box) and most will finance up to 80 percent of the property value. Each bank is offering its own variety of incentives, with packages that include eliminating lawyer fees, waiving commissions, offering cable and Internet packages, and consolidating existing debts.

In addition to the financial offerings on display, many of ExpoCasa’s stands are decorated with condo, resort and home design models. Dozens of condominium, apartment and development companies are on hand to provide guests a glimpse of possible home, floor plan, pool and view options for visitors interested in a purchase. Condominium and housing developments from around the country are offering living options in the Central Valley as well as mountain and beach climates.

Jason Alvarado, expo spokesman, said that home prices on offer range from $49,000 to $560,000.

“The reason ExpoCasa has always been so helpful for visitors is that it allows them to take care of many of the steps involved in buying a house or property in the same place,” Alvarado said. “It makes the entire process of becoming a home owner much easier.”

Around 14,000 people are expected to visit ExpoCasa during the 5-day event.


ExpoCasa Schedule

Friday – 1 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Saturday – 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Sunday – 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Entry fee:

Friday: Free

Saturday and Sunday: ¢1000 per person

Free for senior citizens and children under 12


Bank Offerings at ExpoCasa



* Fixed 6.75 percent interest rate in dollars for first three years

* In colones, a variable rate starting at 16.25 percent is offered for a 25-year loan

* Offers “Switching” to consolidate debts at 8.5 percent interest in dollars for five years

Kattia Picado, 2296-2722,,

Yahaira Barquero, 2296-2722,


Banco de Costa Rica (BCR)

* Loans offered with variable, staggered and fixed interest rates

* 25-year mortgages

* Offer runs through Oct. 30

* No attorney’s fees

* Debt consolidation offered

For more information visit, call 2284-6600, 2287-9000, or e-mail


Banco Popular

* Loan of $300,000 carries 7 percent interest rate over 20 years

* Financing for 80 percent of property value

* No commissions

Vilma Mejías, 2211-7397,

Cristian Vega, 2211-7139,



* Home loans range from $60,000 to $400,000

* Financing for 80 percent of property value

* Monthly payment cannot exceed 30 percent of family income.

For more information visit or call



Banco Nacional

* 7 percent fixed interest rate for first three years, 7.25 percent for the next two, and a variable rate over the remaining 15 years

* 70 percent of property value assessment fees

* 50 percent of cost for Cable Tica for a year

* Two months free Internet

*Free mortgage calculator available at

For more information, contact: Amalia Palacino, 2212-2920,


Grupo Mutual

* A range of loan plans

* Debt consolidation

* Offers run through Oct. 31

For more information visit or call 2437-1000


Banco Lafise

* 25-year fixed interest rate

* 1 percent commission costs

* 25-year mortgage covering 80 percent of property value

* Also offers variable rates and lot financing Sergio Calderón, 2246-0800 x748,




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