Residency in Costa Rica

Why Costa Rica?

Explore Costa Rica! Come and feel the warmth of the people, enjoy the climate, visit the rain forests and beaches, and find
a home in splendid and breathtaking surroundings.

Residency in Costa Rica


You deserve the best in life because you have earned it so if you are looking for a place where you can live in peace and enjoy the goodness of nature and life, then we have just the right place for you. Welcome to Costa Rica!
Costa Rica may truly have it all, a year-round tropical climate, quiet rural areas, hillside villages, modern cities, Pacific beaches, Caribbean coastline, lush valleys, rain forests, and mountains.
You do not need to give up anything if you move to Costa Rica, except cold winters.
That is because Costa Rica has one of the highest standards of living in Central America. With a strong economy catering to a large middle class as well as tourists from around the world, you will have no trouble finding theaters, galleries, and fine dining in virtually any cuisine.
Plus, there is excellent health care with world class hospitals. In addition to its natural beauty, culture, welcoming attitude of the locals, and convenience, Costa Rica attracts many expatriates with its lower cost of living and slower pace of life. This way you can spend more to make your lifestyle more exciting.
It is a country of smiles, and warm people and this makes residency in Costa Rica fun and enjoyable.

Costa Rica Residency Categories


Costa Rica created a retirement residency program more than 45 years ago.
It is for any person who is already retired from his or her occupation and is already receiving pension benefits.

The retiree must show a lifetime pension of at least $1,000 USD per month.
Typically, this is United States social security retirement benefits, a government pension, private pension, Canadian Old Age Pension System, United States Railroad Retirement benefits, 401K plans, lifetime annuities, or IRA / Keogh distributions. The pension must be payable to the applicant for life.

A married couple only needs to show proof of one monthly pension of at least $1,000 USD for both husband and wife to qualify to apply for residency. The pension recipient can be either spouse.


Individuals who are not yet retired but do not need to work while living in Costa Rica can also apply. They need to receive a guaranteed, unearned income from investments, rents, stocks, interest, dividends, or other sources, and can prove that the non-earned income is guaranteed to be received for at least two years. The income is only needed for one person in a family.

A common method that is used to prove the income is by a notarized letter from the bank or financial institution indicating the applicant has on deposit at least $60,000 USD in an account such as a Certificate of Deposit, and that the bank agrees to transfer to Costa Rica at least $2,500 USD per month for a minimum two years.

The bank account does not need to be in Costa Rica but the banks here are easier to issue the letter. The account can be held in the U.S., Canada, or anywhere in the world if the financial institution is listed in the Thomson's Bank Directory.


This is for people that have a direct family relationship with a Costa Rican citizen. It can be either by marriage or by family relationship.

If you are married to a Costa Rican citizen you can apply for residency. The marriage must be registered in the Civil Registry.

Also, if you are related to a Costa Rican citizen you can apply for residency. If you are the son, daughter, brother, or sister of a citizen and under twenty-five years of age you qualify. Parents of a Costa Rican citizen are approved based on their family relationship. If you have a child born in Costa Rica then you can apply based on this relationship.

You need to have a first degree relationship with a citizen so it does not include other family members such as grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins.


You can make a direct investment in Costa Rica of at least $150,000 USD to qualify for residency. The investment can be made in any type of home, real estate, or business.

The applicant must prove that the amount is already invested and has a registered value of at least $150,000 USD. This is not the current value of the investment, it is the amount that was actually invested.

This includes home purchases as an acceptable investment to apply for residency as long as the purchase or construction cost of the home is more than the required amount. This investment can be the purchase or construction of your home in Costa Rica for personal use. It can also be the purchase of land or buildings for your use of for future development.

Also, it can be any type of commercial investment in a business like a hotel, B&B, commercial real estate, tourist attractions, etc.