Nicaragua – Two Radically Different Opinions

Perception and reality can be two radically different things, and you have to see a couple e-mails I received last week from two folks who came to Nicaragua in November. They really highlight plain as day the difference between using your own eyes and relying on what others tell you.

One is a note back from a property owner at Gran Pacifica who wisely put himself in the path of progress by building a small home to put into the rental market. The other e-mail is from a Gran Pacifica investor who passed along some comments from a friend back home. While our investor “gets it,” her friend about whom she writes, has some other thoughts entirely.

Let’s start with what the friend of our investor Barbara P. had to say.

Just got off the phone with a dear friend who has known me for decades and says she would never visit me in Nicaragua because she heard from someone that you have to be surrounded by people with guns to travel in the country. Nothing I said seemed to alter her thinking, which astounded me. I am putting together a short letter of my experiences, which are all positive for the short time I was there, and I will send to you for whatever help it can be.

Hmmmm. So a friend of a friend who had probably heard something from a neighbor’s sister’s cousin’s aunt’s brother-in-law about Nicaragua. Barbara P. by the way, as you can see above, loved her time in Nicaragua.

And of course she did. Nicaragua is a safe, wonderful country. Barbara decided to check out Belize and Nicaragua to make an informed decision about investing. She clearly sees the facts and knows that when there’s a difference between perception and reality, there is often money in the middle. Arbitrage in the financial world. A nice return on investment to us investors.

Check out now what Scott H had to say about his and his wife’s recent trips to Nicaragua.

My wife and I learned so much at the LIO Nicaragua conference this week. We have been to Nicaragua now five times since late 2011, we made a real estate investment in early 2015, and are very seriously considering living here at least several months each year. We are not at retirement age, and my work relies upon dependable telecommunications infrastructure. On each trip, we see improvements in the roads, utilities, and phone and Internet services. If we didn’t feel safe in Nicaragua, we would not keep coming back or be considering making it our home.

We’ve traveled using the public buses, we’ve walked through small towns and larger cities, and have never felt threatened. In fact, Nicki even came down once with only a girlfriend of hers for a week by themselves. And we don’t speak more than a minimal amount of Spanish! For those that may be considering Nicaragua as a place to live or invest, our advice is to not rely on events of decades ago, but to come and see the beauty of this country and its welcoming people.

Scott also had this to say:

In addition, I’d add one thing specifically about Gran Pacifica, and I’m sure it’s not earth shattering to you. Completion of the paved road will make a ton of difference in selling lots and homes. We’ve been out to GP twice in 2015, we are invested in one of the casitas being built, and are investing in teak there, so we like it. But some folks are surely turned off by the last 7 km of unpaved road.

Scott, thanks for the honest feedback. As you know from visiting several other properties around the country, paved roads are scarce and even the billionaire Carlos Pellas’ project is just now getting paved road after nearly a decade of dirt track to get there.

And here’s the great news for you. The first 4 km of what was originally dirt road to Gran Pacifica is already paved, as you know. The next 6 km are being surveyed as we speak and 2 km more will be paved this year. It looks like that over the next 2-3 years, the entire road will be paved.

Brilliant move Scott. You have indeed put yourself in the path of progress. As the road finishes, your properties will be worth more and more. Some folks want to pay more and will wait for the road to be completed. That’s great for you. It’s fine for me too.

So the bottom line is that, “Seeing is truly believing.” Depending on what others have heard just simply doesn’t cut it. If you are looking to make wise, prudent decisions, then you have to kick the dirt yourself. You need to know the real facts, not the, “He said, she said,” urban legend nonsense. The big companies and sophisticated investors do their own thinking, as recently confirmed in a WSJ article about the billionaires coming to Nicaragua. You should too.

If you want to see the WSJ piece and a couple articles I wrote on this topic as well, click here and visit the ECI library. These articles detail why irrational fear prevents people from making the smart, timely decisions clearly in their benefit. The articles also show how if you can get past irrational fear, you can earn outsized profits and/or delight in an outsized lifestyle overseas for a whole lot less.

Check them out and let me hear from you. Love to have you visit and meet you on the beach for a cold beverage and a great conversation about reality. Be great to know how you might like to participate in some of the good times and excellent profits to be enjoyed in Nicaragua.


Mike Cobb

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