Cost of living

Cost of living

We have to admit, Costa Rica is one of the most expensive countries in Central as well as South America! But if you compare the cost of living with those in the US or Europe, you'll note that living here is for sure much cheaper. Having about USD 1'500 per month you can  live easily and smoothly, with USD 2'500 already quite extravagant. And do not forget that Costa Rica offers a wide nature, lush landscapes, generative volcano soil and a stable economic system, factors that add much quality to your life!

The costs for health care are relatively low and this is also valid for most other insurances. On the other hand costs for vehicles and especially their insurance are quite high. But you can save money using the very cheap public transportation and taxis.

Some examples:

Monthly budget for two people (in USD):


Rent (three bedroom flat)
Caretaker & cleaner
Food
Electricity
Water
Telephone (incl. Internet)
Cable-/Satellite TV
Transportation (Bus, Taxi)
Health care
Going out (once a week)
Miscellaneous
Total Budget

from 
400
150
250
20
10
40
30
40
60
150
350
1.500

to
600
250
400
60
30
60
70
110
120
250
550
2.500

Source: Living & Making Money in Costa Rica and Blogs

Of course you need to think about the following: the more you adjust your life style and the consumer buying habit to the one existing in Costa Rica, the less you spend!
Locally produced goods are much cheaper than in Europe or the US, imported goods like cars, cameras, electronics or foreign food are expensive due to the high import taxes in Costa Rica. Also food and drinks in local restaurants are quite cheap compared to e.g. European standards. A complete meal will cost you around USD 3 for lunch and for USD 15 you'll get a dinner (drinks included) should you choose a good local diner!

The prices in Costa Rica have been risen quite strongly during the last years, but the housing costs are still lower than for example in Germany. The prices for houses did also rise in the last years, but they are clearly below the European level. A house with three bedrooms in an acceptable good address costs from USD 50'000 up to 100'000. In a much better zone you'll have to pay USD 150'000 to 300'000 and get a house with a nice garden. Also the rent is below European level! A flat with two bedrooms will cost about USD 300 to 400 a month, one in an exclusive region USD 500 to even 1'500! Nevertheless the additional costs are cheap, because in the Central Valley for instance you do not need any heating system or air condition.
 
Some example on daily goods (in USD):

Bread
Bananas
Pineapple
Steak (pound)
Milk (liter)
Soft drink
Beer (imported)
Beer (local)
Tuna
Cornflakes
Chips
Toilet paper (4 rolls)
Daily newspaper (international)
Weekly newspaper (international)
Weekly newspaper (local)

2,00
0,20
1,00
3,00
1,40
0,90
2,00
1,00
1,00
2,50
3,50
2,50
2,00
6,50
0,90

See also:
http://www.xpatulator.com/outside.cfm?lid=57 
http://www.infocostarica.com/retirement/costtolive.html 
http://www.costarica.com/blog/costa-rica-living/2010/06/costa-rica-cost-of-living/

Bargain properties

  • Copal - Nicoya Halbinsel

    US $650000

    Copal - Nicoya Halbinsel

  • Playa Coyote

    US $70000

    Playa Coyote

  • Santa Teresa

    US $2500000

    Santa Teresa

  • dos Brazos en Rio Tigre - Puerto Jimenez - Golfito

    US $195000

    dos Brazos en Rio Tigre - Puerto Jimenez - Golfito

  • Los Reyes - Alajuela

    US $1500000

    Los Reyes - Alajuela

  • Playa San Miguel

    US $495000

    Playa San Miguel

Properties Costa Rica

  • personal consulting
  • indivudial assistence
  • object inspection
  • verification purchase object
  • registers / cadastral studies
  • transparent execution
  • company foundation
  • residencies
  • bank accounts / cel phone lines
  • project planning

Services

  • management
  • survey of land
  • land and environment studies
  • construction assistance
  • solar systems
  • reforestation
  • real estate management
  • dealing with authorities
  • insurances
  • support / advice

Local Team

  • Costa Rica expert
  • estate agent
  • travel agancies / hotels
  • lawyers / notary
  • accountants / translators
  • topographers / engineers
  • construction companies / architects
  • carpenters / electricians
  • solar technicians / and so on...