The Turks and Caicos property market is booming, with unprecedented sales in the third quarter of 2021 and continuing growth in demand.
The primary subsets of the market – single-family homes, condominiums, and vacant land – have been a hive of activity, driven by the closure of The Cayman Islands to tourism – a major competitor of Turks and Caicos. Sales of upscale condos have multiplied by 3.5, and luxury single-family homes by 2.6.
Investors and purchasers previously drawn to The Cayman Islands now see Turks and Caicos properties offering greater value across prime locations. What’s more, there’s more capacity to expand. For example, JEM Worldwide – also operating Cayman’s Reef Divers – bought the East Bay Resort in South Caicos, representing a significant investment in the outer Islands.
And now, with the easing of travel and quarantine requirements for Canadian residents, it’s expected demand will continue to increase, with people seeking to escape, travel, and relocate – vaccination cards in hand.
With that said, JamesEdiion spoke to Ian Hurdle, founder of The Agency Turks and Caicos and one of the top agents serving the Caribbean’s luxury markets. Ian has more than 25 years of experience in real estate, construction, property management, and hospitality.
The Agency is a full-service real estate brokerage. Ian and his team work not only with residential property but also with new developments, resorts, leasing, and upscale vacation rentals.
What makes Turks and Caicos stand out from the Caribbean crowd?
First up is the strong economy, with 2.5% estimated growth, USD as the national currency, and effective regulation and compliance. There’s also a robust legal system throughout the British Overseas Territory, with an efficient judicial system based on English common law. The climate is pro-business investment, with Government support at all levels, and incentives in priority sectors.
In terms of land, there are plenty of primely located undeveloped plots across the islands and cays. And with more than 150+ flights a week to and from US and Canada, plus two weekly flights from the UK, the enticing archipelago is easily reached.
If you’re looking for a business opportunity as well as a home, even better. With many sectors in their infancy, this is a top time to invest. And with the workforce making up 50% of the population, there’s a first-rate talent pool to dip into. Alongside that, there are a host of attractive temporary and permanent residence status incentives for qualified investors to capitalize on.
And of course, there’s the quality of life. Think world-class beaches such as Grace Bay and Leeward, and 350 days of sun a year. But not only that, Turks and Caicos also boasts modern healthcare centers, public and private schools, full-service banking, and well-developed telecom and utilities networks.
Also, today, Turks and Caicos is among the safest Caribbean destinations in terms of crime. And, mandatory vaccination policies for incoming adult travelers are in place. Hurricanes are few and far between, and the archipelago is popular with families.
How is the real estate market today?
With the Islands a focal point for wealthy buyers and investors searching for an oasis away from the hustle and bustle of cities, there’s much to talk about here.
The first half of the year was super strong. With over $187,000,000 in sales from April to June and volumes more than double the same period of 2020, by June 11th, sales for 2021 already surpassed total volume for the entire previous year.
An astounding accomplishment indeed. And, with an additional $427,000,000 pending or conditional, the trend looks set to continue.
Buyers looking for high-end single-family homes leaned towards pre-construction developments, where cost and quality are set, and purchasers benefit from stamp duty payments on acquiring the land rather than completion of the home.
What’s driving demand? Lifestyle and location considerations
There are many drivers, including an excellent portal system to protect both visitors and residents, and Turks and Caicos’ reputation as a hotspot for affluent individuals and celebrities – Oprah, Keith Richards, Donna Karen, Christie Brinkley, Bruce Willis, and the late Prince all have or had homes in the archipelago.
Location also plays its part, driving demand for sales of sub-one million dollar deluxe apartments, with Grace Bay a favored area.
There’s also a range of watersport amenities and first-rate beaches – Mudjin Harbor, Long Bay, Half Moon Bay, Governor’s, North Bay, Pine Cay, Cedar Point, Sapodilla Bay, to name a handful. And don’t forget the ease of accessibility and adherence to Miami Dade County build codes.
Kitesurfing and wakeboarding continue to be popular from a water sports perspective, but the archipelago also offers first-rate fishing and diving. And there’s also the annual whale migration, and Jojo the wild Atlantic Bottlenose dolphin. Declared a National Treasure by the Government, he’s a friendly resident of the surrounding waters.
The restaurant scene continues to develop, with more openings and fine dining experiences, as well as old favorites. And if you fancy getting out on a fairway, look no further than Provo Golf Club, coming in 4th in USA Today’s 2020 Best Caribbean Courses.
Expectations for 2021 and 2022?
We anticipate zero softening in the market or any sector. Shrinking inventory continues to drive demand, and savvy buyers recognize what Turks and Caicos offers over other destinations in the region.
Top 5 places to buy a villa in Turks and Caicos in 2021
If you’re looking to purchase a property in Turks and Caicos, where’s the best locality? Ian rounded up his prize picks.
1. Grace Bay Beach, Providenciales
This spot continues to rank as the most desired location in Turks and Caicos, with Impulse Beach Estate currently the most expensive offering. On the market for $15,000,000, the unique eight-bedroom beachfront villa is set on two acres, with 21,000 square feet of interior space. Bright, airy, and modern inside, the grounds feature a Five Diamond pool with cabanas, a tennis court, and dual water access: White sands northwards, and canals with a private boat dock southwards. Up on the rooftop deck, enjoy a fire pit and plenty of seating for admiring sunsets and stargazing.
2. Long Bay Beach, Providenciales
Love kiting and seeking an investment opportunity that caters to that passion and also allows you to generate income? Windhaven Kitesurfing Village is for you. Priced at $8,250,000 and located on flawless Long Bay Beach, this boutique resort boasts optimal kite launch conditions and also offers a luxury vacation rental – eight bedrooms and bathrooms spread across three villas, sitting in a 2.23-acre plot with a pool, looking out to 158 glorious feet of beach frontage. Here, you can enjoy the Turks and Caicos lifestyle while earning a living. Another unique opportunity, given the scarcity of Long Bay beachfront land for sale.
3. Sapodilla Bay Beach, Providenciales
‘La Koubba’: An impressive elevated property screaming class, history, and culture, in a marketplace dominated by modern new buildings. This high-end vacation rental looks out to popular (and protected) Sapodilla Bay – think white powder sand, crystal clear shallow waters, magical sunsets, and tons of water sports. Listed at $6,750,000, the 8,000 square foot Moroccan-style residence with an Arabic domed structure features a gated entry, and seven bedrooms and bathrooms across the main house and guest cottage. Outside, enjoy a waterfront gazebo, private pool, and a footpath leading down to the pristine beach.
4. Private island of Ambergris Cay
Located on Ambergris Cay, Adventure Cliff is a thing of beauty: A quintessential beach cottage set on a cliff, overlooking a picture-postcard beach and turquoise waters. Priced at $5,000,000, inside you’ll find contemporary interiors and open plan living, four bedrooms and bathrooms, and 6,800 square feet of space. Sitting in a 20,038 square feet plot, the gardens feature a pool and an elevated sunset viewing deck. During season, watch humpback whales migrate – unmissable. The icing on the cake? Your very own island airport – the longest private landing strip in the Caribbean, fully serviced by Immigration and Customs.
5. Treasure Beach, Providenciales
Characterful Villa Oasis would look at home in the Hollywood Hills. Situated on Grace Bay beach, the $9,000,000 seven-bedroom and bathroom treasure spans 10,200 square feet indoors and lies in an overall plot of 6,970 square feet. Developed before planning mandated setbacks, you’re super close to the water, making this the ideal property for entertaining. Sit out on the expansive pool deck surrounded by tropical gardens, before taking a few steps down to the Atlantic for a dip. Back indoors, enjoy the vaulted ceilings of the Grand Room, the chef’s kitchen, and sliding doors for indoor/outdoor living.
Feeling inspired? Discover villas in Turks and Caicos for rent and sale listed by The Agency Turks and Caicos.