Purchasing real estate in the Turks & Caicos Islands (TCI) is attracting worldwide attention. In some cases, this interest is based on the Islands’ tax-haven status, as TCI off-shore legislation is most progressive – particularly in the area of residency. As well, there are no restrictions on the purchase and ownership of property by foreign investors. However, it’s hard not to be swayed by the country’s sheer natural beauty, uncrowded beaches, and magnificent surrounding waters.
The Turks & Caicos Islands lie some 575 miles southeast of Miami – about 1 hours flying time – with the Bahamas about 80 miles to the northwest and the Dominican Republic some 100 miles to the southeast. The country consists of two island groups separated by the 22-mile-wide Columbus Passage. To the west is the Caicos group of islands: West Caicos, Providenciales, North Caicos, Middle Caicos, East Caicos, and South Caicos. To the east is the Turks island group: Grand Turk and Salt Cay. The Turks & Caicos total 166 square miles of land area on the eight islands and forty small cays. The Islands’ population is approximately 30,000.
Telecommunications includes LIME, Digicel and Island Com. Worldwide direct calling, high speed internet, and facsimile services are available. Multi-channel satellite television is received from the U.S. and Canada. The local media consists of two private television stations, local radio , newspapers, and magazines.
The principal language of the Turks & Caicos Islands is English.
The United States dollar is the primary currency of TCI. Travelers’ checks in U.S. dollar amounts are widely accepted and other currency can be changed at local banks. American Express, VISA, and MasterCard are welcomed by many locations.
The average year-round temperature is 83F (28C). The hottest months are September and October, when temperatures can reach 90 to 95F (33 to 35C). The almost-constant easterly trade winds temper the heat and keep life comfortable. Casual resort and leisure wear is accepted attire for daytime; light sweaters or jackets may be necessary on some breezy evenings. Visitors are advised to wear protective clothing and a sun hat, and use waterproof sunscreen when out in the tropical sun.
There are no direct taxes on either income or capital gains for individuals or companies. Indirect taxation comprises customs duties, stamp duty on certain transactions, and departure tax.
The ocean and seaside need no enhancement by man. The Turks & Caicos Islands boast the Caribbean’s most spectacular continuous coral reef and Providenciales has been blessed with over 20 miles of gold and white sand beaches. The islands’ extensive system of national parks was designed to keep the country “beautiful by nature” and has preserved the world’s largest land area per capita. On Provo, there are eight protected-by-law areas covering approximately 30 square miles of land and sea, for the enjoyment of future generations and the preservation of nature.
Sporting activities are centered around the water. Visitors can choose from deep-sea, reef, or bonefishing, sailing excursions, windsurfing, water-skiing, parasailing, snorkeling, Kiteboarding and Paddle Boarding, Scuba diving and beachcombing. Pristine reefs, abundant marine life, and excellent visibility make TCI a world-class diving destination. Golfers will enjoy the beauty and challenge of the 18 Hole Carl Litten designed course (twice host to the Caribbean Amateur Open). The islands are an ecotourist’s paradise. Visitors can enjoy unspoiled wilderness and native flora and fauna in 33 areas set aside as National Park Nature Reserves, sanctuaries, and areas of historical interest.
Life on Provo is slow-paced, laid back, and informal. Residents soon rediscover the art of conversation, as personal social interaction replaces the more public group functions of the North American social scene. “Going out” can be dinner with friends, a game of tennis, squash, golf, or bridge, a day on the ocean, a picnic on a nearby uninhabited Cay, cocktails at sunset, or simply a walk on the beach.
The crime rate in the Islands is the lowest in the Caribbean and there is an excellent British-trained police force, diminishing personal security concerns.
The Turks & Caicos Islands are a British Oversees Territory with local elected government and financial security. Real estate title, once registered, is guaranteed by the Crown.
Two way services are provided through FedEx, while incoming service is provided by DHL and UPS.
A good choice of health care services is available. There are general family practitioners operating clinics as well as a new state of the art hospital.