Dominican Republic New Construction Homes: Essential Tips & Potential Pitfalls to Watch Out For
When people from all over the world travel to the Dominican Republic have the desire to move and start a new life on a beautiful island. Sometimes they want invest in hopes that their vacation rental will yield profits. Today we dive into some comments that have been sourced from Facebook concerning pitfalls when it comes to Dominican Republic New Construction Homes.
Please Note: I have inserted Facebook comments into the blog that were made by people who have purchased new construction homes or built their own home in the DR. These comments provide great insight into the reality of new construction homes and what you need to be aware of. Spelling and grammer has been added to some parts of these comments so the reader can understand.
Check out our Caribbean Property Vetting Guide here
Purchasing a new construction home in the DR can be an exciting and rewarding venture. With its stunning beaches, vibrant culture, and growing economy, the DR has become a hotspot for real estate investment. However, like any real estate endeavor, there are important considerations to keep in mind to ensure a successful and satisfying experience. In this blog, we’ll explore valuable tips and potential pitfalls when buying new construction homes in this tropical paradise.
Check out Our Blog ‘Dominican Republic Real Estate Tips That Can Save You Thousands‘
Tips for Buying New Construction Homes
1. Choose the Right Location: Location is crucial when it comes to real estate investment. Research different areas in the DR and choose a location that aligns with your lifestyle preferences. Consider factors like proximity to beaches, amenities, healthcare facilities, and infrastructure. be sure to take into consideration the salt water effects on your furniture and appliances.
2. Work with Reputable Developers: Selecting a trusted and reputable developer is paramount. Look for developers with a strong track record of successful projects, positive reviews from previous buyers, and a history of delivering projects on time. Always conduct thorough due diligence on the builder. This will take some time but it is better to be safe than sorry. Many developers will try to cut corners all thoughout the building process.
Tip: Always have a Home Inspection. Let’s take a look at a recent comment from Facebook about this.
The common problems I have seen after completing 22 Home Inspections and Walk-through Inspections are:
1. Wiring (never seen a villa/condo 100% correct yet).
2. Plumbing – rarely vented properly, slow drainage
3. And anything to do with safety prevention (Fire alarms, Carbon Monoxide Detectors, Propane gas Detectors, Slip-resistant flooring products)
Facebook Comment on Home Inspections: Also quality of construction is horrible because workers will steal materials and mix with, I don’t know! Dirt. They do not perform home inspections because #1 it’s not required because they do NOT have these requirements! THEY SHOULD YES!!! But, they do not unfortunately. It’s up to you.
I just in Inspected a brand new, 2 week old Villa in one of the popular gated communities and found that 90% of the wiring was incorrect. Reversed Neutrals, open grounds, open neutrals. Virtually every receptacle tested was incorrect. When the owners would get into the jacuzzi, they received an electrical shock. When they touched the Clothes Washing machine, they would receive a shock. I never understand why people buy homes and do not have the home inspected.
3. Legal Due Diligence: Engage a local attorney who specializes in real estate transactions to conduct a thorough legal review of the property. This includes verifying the developer’s ownership of the land, confirming that the necessary permits are in place, and ensuring there are no outstanding liens on the property.
Reach out to Lishali Baez ( who has joined Ushombi & is from Boston) of Legal Bureau for all your legal questions.
4. Understand the Contract: Read the sales contract meticulously. Pay attention to details such as the payment schedule, construction timeline, warranties, and penalties for delays. ALWAYS have a legal professional review the contract to ensure your interests are protected.
Facebook Comment on Contracts: Never complete when they say it will be. Raising the price by a few thousand dollars after you sign the contract. They put a clause in your contract saying price can change due to rising cost of materials. Not giving you the title right away saying they need time for it to be processed. Just make sure the company you go with has a solid reputation.
5. Visit the Site: Whenever possible, visit the construction site in person. This allows you to assess the progress, quality of materials used, and get a feel for the neighborhood. Regular visits can also help you identify any potential issues early on.
Facebook Comment: If you know your builder is good, that’s the key. Just like any country. Make sure they don’t cut corners. Make sure they give your what you’ve paid for, which means watching the build every step of the way. Absolutely ask what materials are being used and how much concrete and rebar as you want more then the minimum that should be used.
Also, don’t let them use pine in the kitchen unless you want wood worms. Upgraded to a hard wood or else go with a fake blend (as much as that kills me to say it but if not you’ll be sorry).
Also, showers and balconies not sloped properly to drain. There’s more but really you just need to know what’s standard in the DR like no check values on plumbing, electrical not grounded, no gif outlets near water, massive inclines allowed in builds etc..
6. Consider Resale Value: While your intention might be to use the property for personal enjoyment, considering the potential resale value is prudent. Choose features and amenities that are likely to appeal to a broad range of buyers in the future.
Pitfalls to Watch Out For
1. Construction Delays: Delays are not uncommon in the construction industry, and the Dominican Republic is no exception. Factors such as weather, labor shortages, and permitting issues can lead to project delays. Ensure that your contract has provisions to address delays and specify the consequences for the developer.
Tip: No matter what, add 6 months to the delivery date.The chances of you recieving your home/villa on time is slim to none.
2. Infrastructure and Amenities: Some new developments might lack essential infrastructure and amenities. Ensure that basic services like water, electricity, and sewage systems are in place or will be completed before you take possession of the property.
Facebook Comment: When it comes to new homes specifically, some common problems in new construction in the DR may include:
Incomplete or delayed construction: Delays in completing new homes are not uncommon in construction projects. Factors such as weather conditions, material shortages, or contractor issues can contribute to delays, leaving homeowners waiting longer than expected to move into their new homes.
Poor workmanship and construction quality: Some new homes may suffer from poor workmanship and construction quality. This can include issues like uneven or poorly finished surfaces, improper installation of fixtures and fittings, and inadequate insulation. It’s important for homeowners to ensure that proper quality control measures are in place during the construction process.
Inadequate infrastructure and utilities: Depending on the location of the new homes, there may be challenges in accessing basic infrastructure and utilities. This could involve limited access to reliable water supply, electricity, or proper sewage systems. Home buyers should consider these factors when choosing a location for their new home.
Lack of compliance with building codes: Building codes exist to ensure the safety and structural integrity of new homes. However, in some cases, there may be instances where builders do not fully comply with these codes. This can result in compromised safety measures or structures that do not meet the required standards.
Limited warranty and after-sales support: Obtaining sufficient warranty coverage and reliable after-sales support can be a challenge in some new home construction projects. It’s important for homeowners to clarify warranty terms and seek reputable builders who provide responsive customer service.
3. Hidden Costs: Be aware of any hidden costs that might not be explicitly mentioned in the sales contract. These could include property taxes, maintenance fees, and other ongoing expenses associated with the property.
4. Overambitious Expectations: While developers may showcase impressive renderings and models, the final product might not always match your expectations. Manage your expectations and understand that there could be slight variations in the finished property.
5. Communication Barriers: Language barriers and cultural differences can sometimes lead to miscommunication. Work with a bilingual real estate agent or attorney who can help bridge the gap and ensure that you fully understand all aspects of the transaction.
Buying a new construction home in the Dominican Republic can offer an incredible opportunity to own a piece of paradise. By following the tips mentioned above and being cautious of potential pitfalls, you can navigate the process with confidence. Conduct thorough research, work with reputable professionals, and approach the endeavor with a clear understanding of the local market dynamics. With the right approach, you can turn your dream of owning a new construction home in the DR into a reality.
A couple of questions to those who have purchased a pre construction home or are legit real estate agents and who understand these purchases.
My home is FINALLY going to be completed! (Only 10 months late ????)
I’m doing the walk through with the builder in a couple weeks.
1. What should I be looking for in the home and be aware of as I inspect/walk through?
2. For those who have bought into a pre-construction community, and there continues to be ongoing construction in the project when your home is completed….how did you navigate Airbnb renting it with the ongoing noise and mess of surrounding construction? (I’m concerned this could be problematic when I’m away and want to rent my home)
I appreciate any insight you have on these 2 questions!
Bring empty jug of water fill them on site then empty them one shut in every drain and look out it will come back at someplace. Do same on the roof and look for infiltration. Look for breather for septic on roof. Good luck
A brand new construction is always very nice but you are the butt of the joke when problem arise. You will be stuck with that problem for a long time. It’s nice but not a good idea especialy in Caribean country, where they just disappear when a big problem comes.
Check the shower drains, (must drain water) away properly and no leaks under any sinks. These are the 2 most common things that turn up.
Get an independent inspection so you don’t miss anything. Test the A/C, water temps and pressure, everything.
From my experience in Dominican realty now, most projects run very late!!! From what I’ve seen, Noval Properties is one builder who actually provides ongoing updates for buyers as to the progress of construction….but many others do not and it’s a long waiting game sometimes.
I mean pre-construction being delayed is normal everywhere.. you just have to look into what the contract you signed said…the one I purchased had a clause of +6 months to the date they listed and they used that extra time.. I purchased a pre-construction in Toronto and it was about a year delayed and again they had the ability to do this based on what was in the contract. I would have your lawyer look into it. If there weren’t any clauses about delays as maybe you are entitled to something..
I would check every outlet, every water related item, EVERYTHING! Windows properly closing, doors properly locking, closet doors, railings , appliances, toilets, heartbeats, CHECK EVERYTHING
First off you should have been doing walk through during construction. Looking for funky plumbing, odd wiring, and things not where they should be. After construction alot of that is all covered up and looks pretty. NEVER trust a builder. If you did get a good builder, they’re are good ones, even they say, never trust a builder.
Hi, if you had a legit real estate agent assist you with your purchase he/she should be there for you all the way to the closing table! Job is done once transaction is sealed and keys delivered.
1- You want to make sure you have your construction warranty cleared up who covers and services what such as: email, phone numbers etc…main points of a home.
Ceiling, A/C, plumbing and electricity. Make sure all stove/range turn on and heat up the oven, fridge is cooling adequately.
Open all faucets, flush all commodes. You want to do a thorough inspection, cosmetic and all, with a new construction be very meticulous, take notes, video and pictures. Have builder sign and date as he acknowledges your concern and gives you time frame on when all will be taken care of.
2- In my opinion is all about what your location, amenities and property has to offer, makes it stand out…will reviews show noise due to construction…yes however, let them know ahead of time make them aware as this is a NEW development that can also stand out, ahead of time.
Good Luck Congratulations on your purchase in DR you will love it here!
Answers to your questions below.
1. What should I be looking for in the home and be aware of as I inspect/walk through?
Make sure to test every little thing as you walk through, every light switch, open and close every window, make sure the water heater is functioning, open every drawer and run any other appliances if the home came with them. It’s really common for new construction home’s to have a few small things that get overlooked during the construction.
You might be surprised! As long as you are honest and list the contruction noise you should be ok. We have a few airbnb properties we currently manage with the same issue and we have found that many people are ok with it, since they knew what to expect before booking. Its also good to note the times to expect noise most neighborhoods dont allow it on weekends or after 5pm.
Congratulations on your new home!