To buy safely in Costa Rica just follow a few easy steps, or ask your lawyer:
– make sure the seller is the owner
– make sure the property is clean, no loans or other problems with the law
– don’t send the money directly to the seller or to the lawyer. Send it to an escrow account under the regulation of SUGEF (the organisms that regulate and controls the banks)
– have a clear, detail written offer. This can be in English. Specify when and in what conditions payments will be done.
– Make sure that your lawyer deposited the final contract in the National register (Registro Nacional). It can take up to 2 months before the property is at your name on the national register.