Aruba, one of the few Caribbean islands generally considered outside the hurricane belt, has struggled to recover from the global real estate crisis of 2008, when home prices fell anywhere from 15 percent to 40 percent, though there have been some gains in recent years, agents said.
“The market was doing very well until this year,” Mr. Hasham said. “The real estate market has slowed down in 2016, and we’ve noticed it at all the real estate offices on the islands,” which also include nearby Bonaire and Curaçao.
Compounding problems have been an ongoing recession in neighboring Venezuela; a loss of value in the Canadian dollar; and the recent presidential election in the United States, which has prompted potential home buyers to hesitate, agents said. Those three countries supply the bulk of foreign home buyers in Aruba, they said.
“The market has been better in recent years, but not much better,” said Muna Habash of MPG Aruba Real Estate.
Aruba is “very much a buyers’ market now,” said Walter Zephirin of Seventh Heaven Properties. The average price per square foot in Aruba is roughly half that of luxury destinations such as Anguilla or Turks and Caicos, he said.
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