The Legislative has ratified a Treaty for the Establishment and Implementation of Central American Mortgages signed between Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama and the Dominican Republic.
From a press release from the Legislative Assembly of El Salvador:
The Legislative Assembly has ratified with 71 votes, the Treaty for the Establishment and Implementation of Central American Mortgages signed between the Republics of Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama and the Dominican Republic.
The U.S. mortgage crisis has hit Costa Rica's once booming vacation home market, with sales plummeting as Americans who dream of buying a tropical getaway struggle to find financing.
U.S. retirees and vacationers often pay for beach homes along Costa Rica's jungle-fringed beaches by taking out mortgages on their homes in the United States, but trouble in the banking sector has made that more difficult, realtors say.
Panamanian based Banco General has acquired the residential mortgage loan portfolio from Citibank Costa Rica.
As explained by Banco General, the transaction, the amount of which was not disclosed, includes a portfolio of more than 1,000 clients, while Citi explained that the sale meets its goal of refocusing its business to corporate and consumer customers.
After its ratification in El Salvador, the Regional Mortgage treaty still needs to be approved in one more country to come into force.
Salvadoran entrepreneurs welcomed the legislative ratification of the Treaty on Free Movement of Goods and Services, known as the ‘hipoteca centroamericana’ or Central American mortgage.
In order for the agreement to become effective, it requires ratification by three states."In 2010 Guatemala did so, this Thursday just past, it was El Salvador, and it is expected that soon Honduras or Costa Rica will also endorse the document. In Costa Rica they have already introduced a bill in the National Assembly for ratification," reported Elmundo.com.sv.
Costa Rican mutuals will now be able to offer housing credits for 30-year terms, double what the law previously permitted.
As soon as the Law of the National Financial System for Housing reform is officially published, the two mutuals that operate in Costa Rica—the Alajuela Housing Mutual Group and Mutual Cartago (Mucap)—will be able to offer mortgages with 30-year terms. This reform was already approved by the Legislative Assembly.
Because of fluctuations in the exchange and interest rates there is more reluctance to provide financing.
After a period of credit surplus and very attractive financial conditions for borrowers, financial entities are now taking a more conservative position with regard to risk, and, in many cases, reducing the amounts that are financed through bank loans.
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