Second Home Tax Benefits in Belize
Savvy citizens have become horrified by the widespread practice of governments spying on their own citizens. With greedy court systems seizing property and private assets, it’s good to know that Belize is one of the last remaining outposts for secure tax havens. Valuable assets earned by hard-working individuals can be protected in Belize, a country that still ensures privacy.
Starting approximately 15 years ago, the government of Belize had the foresight to develop a comprehensive plan for tax haven legislation. A delegation was sent to Guernsey and other global tax havens in order for Belize to draft legislation to adopt competitive practices and standards to become a secure tax haven. Following the government inquiry, legislation was adopted, including: the Trusts Act, the Offshore Banking Act, and the International Business Companies Act, thus positioning Belize as an extremely competitive environment in the global financial services market. The Belize government passed further legislation to entice retirees from other countries, giving expats the ability to enjoy a tax-free lifestyle.
The government in Belize is dedicated to offering both individuals and companies the right to their privacy, and no levy of taxes. With an English-speaking system and an advanced system of property laws, Belize has earned its spot as one of the world’s safest tax havens.
What taxes are levied in Belize?
Currently, the tax on income earned in Belize stands at 25%. For qualified residents of Belize, the first $10,000 of annual income is exempt. Pension income and income earned outside the country is also exempt from income tax for qualified residents. To qualify as a resident of Belize, individuals must demonstrate that they have spent 183 days or more in Belize during the previous calendar year.
Belize does not use a graduated or progressive rate of taxation for income tax. Income taxes can be legally avoided by transferring income and assets into a Belizean International Business Corporation (IBC). Real estate and property taxes cannot be avoided by assets being transfered to an IBC.
Property taxes are assessed according to the type of property, and begin at the rate of 1-1.5% of the property’s determined value for undeveloped land. Property taxes for homes and other developed properties are only slightly higher. Property transfer taxes are 10%, and attorney fees and miscellaneous expenses run at about 2%.
If you are considering a second home in Belize, be sure to carefully evaluate your options. Offering villas, condominiums and undeveloped land in an established community, Orchid Bay features competitive prices in an excellent part of the country.