I Am Almost Giddy...

ISSUE #674: Aug. 27-Sept. 2, 2017


Brian Timmons, Newsletter Author
Brian Timmons

Dear friends,

When I started Residencias Los Jardines, I started writing a weekly newsletter -determined to tell all the good, bad, and the ugly. I knew some readers would be interested in the construction process. I expected others might be interested in the lifestyle of two people who had decided to live outside the box. For others, the adventures of Lita, the parrot and the cat took on an entertainment saga all its own.

Residencias Los Jardines is finished. We periodically have re-sales and rental availability. Some readers may be interested in this information.

Brian Timmons
Developer / Property manager
Residencias Los Jardines

Web: https://www.residenciaslosjardines.com
Emails: info@residenciaslosjardines.com

rentals & sales

Paradisus Condos / Rohrmoser
Visit our website

Paradisus Condos - click to visit

Each of the units consists of two bedrooms / two bathrooms, and a large living/dining/kitchen area. The floor plan of each of these units has eliminated the optional "den / office" divider. The result is a larger area offering more flexible furniture arrangements while still maintaining the option of including an office area. At 105m2 plus two parking spots each and storage locker, they offer a great opportunity for someone seeking views, security, central location, and first class, all round living...

Semi furnished unit: For sale: $235,000
Fully furnished unit: For sale: $245,000
Floor 12 -west view

Market activity
sales & rentals

Sales: Los Jardines: Units #106A, #114 and #124

Rentals: Paradisus: nothing available.
Los Jardines: Units #106C and #106D are available for rent

Upcoming vacancies: Los Jardines: Unit #102 end of June / Unit #118 end of May

Residencias Los Jardines
property management, rentals & re-sales

Unit #106A: $ 165,000 / See Unit
Unit #114: $ 199,000 / See Unit
Unit #124: $ 135,000 / See Unit

Unit #106C: $ 1,050 mo / Available Immediately / See Unit
Unit #106D: $ 1,150 mo / Available Immediately / See Unit

For sale

UNIT #106A
$ 165,000

Total Area (Sq Ft): 1250
Total area (Sq M): 120
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 2
Floor(s): 1
Type: Apartment
Furnished: Yes

This is a fully furnished 2-bedroom unit situated in a 2-story building, which has two units on the ground floor and two units on the 2nd. floor. Each unit is the same size (1,250sf) divided into 800 sf of interior space and 450 sf of covered front and back terraces. Units 106A and B are on the ground floor; Units 106 C and D are on the 2nd. Floor. The solid masonry demising wall (common wall) as well as the 5" concrete slab prevent sound transference.

UNIT #114
$ 199,000

Total Area (Sq Ft): 1290
Total area (Sq M): 120
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 2
Floor(s): 1
Type: Semi-Attached
Furnished: Yes

This 2 bedroom/2bathroom,1,290 sf single floor end unit home includes a 150 sf front terrace plus parking for one car. This house is fully air conditioned and has recently been professionally decorated by international decorator Alcides Graffe and has undergone a complete renovation—new modern furniture, finishings, window coverings, and art work by Carlos Gambino. It is arguably the nicest furnished unit at Residencias Los Jardines and only steps from the pool

UNIT #124
$ 135,000

Total Area (Sq Ft): 662
Total area (Sq M): 61
Bedrooms: 1
Bathrooms: 1
Floor(s): 2nd Floor
Type: Semi-Detached
Furnished: Yes

This 662 sf, + covered parking for one car, is a one bedroom home on the 2nd floor overlooking the large pool. It is ideal for a single person or couple.

For rent

UNIT #106C
$ 1,050 mo.
Available Immediately

Total Area (Sq Ft): 1250
Total area (Sq M): 120
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 2
Floor(s): 1
Type: 4-plex
Furnished: Yes

This is a fully furnished 2-bedroom unit situated in a 2-story building, which has two units on the ground floor and two units on the 2nd. floor. Each unit is the same size (1,250sf) divided into 800 sf of interior space and 450 sf of covered front and back terraces. Units 106A and B are on the ground floor; Units 106 C and D are on the 2nd. Floor. The solid masonry demising wall (common wall) as well as the 5” concrete slab prevent sound transference.

UNIT #106D
$ 1,150 mo.
Available Immediately

Total Area (Sq Ft): 1227
Total area (Sq M): 113
Bedrooms: 1 + den (bedroom possible)
Bathrooms: 2
Floor(s): 2nd Floor
Type: apartment in 4 plex
Furnished: Yes

This 2nd story, 1,227 sf (113 m2 + one parking space) )is a georgous home with one of the best views at Los Jardines. The very large front covered terrace faces west and is suitable for entertaining; the off-bedroom covered terrace faces east for sun sets. This very tastefully furnished and fully equipped home offers a lifestyle envied by many. The owner offers financing if desired.

Our Lives

Weather: Mostly partly sunny, normal rainy weather, no wind, temperatures 25º C / 78º F – beautiful...

We are entering Sept which, along with October are traditionally the wettest months of the year. We'll see if that happens this year. We have had an unusual amount of rain this year... I don't even remember have the normal short "Indian" summer... a period of no rain during the rainy season... While the rains have caused some local flooding and several landslides, there has not been any wide spread damage... that I am aware of...

Being Almost Giddy... last week I noted that I saw the beginnings of change at Los Jardines with the new president taking ownership and providing leadership. This has continued. I didn't know when this would occur or who would come to the rescue. I speculated that our state of maintenance would have to deteriorate to some point where the disbelievers would have to acknowledge that not all was right... that there was a better time and could be a better time again... A few of us bleated pleadings for 4 years... we were ignored and pillared... I think we have reached the point where some of those who ignored us, have realize that perhaps we were right, or at least, that intervention was / is required... Regardless of why the action promises to happen, the current President and the newly appointed Secretary seem to be taking ownership and exercising leadership. I am working with them where I can help and offering suggestions where I feel I have some expertise. At this point in time, I feel good about our future... and thus the term... "almost giddy". Get me to "giddy" and I'm really, really happy!!!!!!

Mortgage payout: Tuesday is the court appointed auction date. I'll be going. A new experience......We'll see

Fixing Houses:

I totaled up the petty cash repairs and maintenance for this month. It amounted to slightly less than $3,000. That is a lot of $15, $35 $65, $150, etc. items.....a lot of trips, a lot of supervision and direction, etc. Last month the expenses were around $2,000..... This level is way above normal. I can only attribute it to returning several houses to near new condition. One unit rented; two are available. The last two months have been way more than I wanted..I've been to bed by 8:30 every night for the past two months and have all types of paper work to catch up on...

A Problem Tenant: most tenants are good most of the time...my experience. Every once-in-a-while you get a nasty, bad, ill tempered, person who just wants to make life difficult for whatever reason. I got one of those several months ago. Fortunately for me, I sold the house and along with it the management; I feel badly, however, for the person to purchased the house...she has no experience in property management and was never expecting to encounter the problems she is getting...I think she had a primrose idea of land-lording...it is not just collecting the rent....but a lot of other issues one has to deal with but she really didn't need to be thrown into this situation... I feel bad but am glad it is no longer my problem.

Rancho Re-thatching: that has been on-going all week. Nicaraguans arrived on site, along with a tractor trailer load of dried and hopefully sprayed fan palm fronds. They stripped off the old thatch and have been installing the new. This is the fourth re-thatching. Each roof lasts about 7-8 years and seems to cost about $7,000. It is one of the nice features of Los Jardines; the cost is part of the basic operating expense which we accept. The workers bring their camping gear, use the bar-b-q and a hot plate, toilet facilities at the pool, and are housed in the locker building on site... they can use the outside pool shower or as they are doing, using the pool. They will be finished thatching and will clean up and leave by Sunday.

Serious Accident: the son of one of our long term gardeners / maintenance people... Flavio... had an accident at school. He was running, some how ended up sliding on the grass with his leg underneath... He broke it in 3 places (later found to be four places). The State medical system (CAJA) could not deal with it for 3-4 months!!!... Incredible... He asked for help to go to a private hospital. Several of us helped he get some quotes... most came to about $6,000. He doesn't have that type of money. Doneste (Pam - President) agreed to lend him $2,500. Paul and I stepped in for the balance. Doneste can get this back from vacation money owed... Paul and I will have to work out a repayment plan... We'll be a lot older when we get the last dollar... if we get it... we'll work on it but helping was the right thing to do... neither of us have any misgivings or regrets... At Hospital Catolica (near where he lives) the docs had to open the entire leg below the knee, up, added 18 screws, and a metal brace the entire length of the calf... I knew the CAJA was bad, but for an emergency of this kind, I thought it could and would arise to the occasion... I was wrong...

Traffic: it has once again returned to horrible...

Reflections: I never could have planned for such an active and/or unpredictable "retirement"... hah... and the accumulation of stories... wow!!! If a rich life is measured by the number of stories acquired / experience in life... guess I am right up there with????? I didn't plan retirement to be this way but... I've gotten rid of three houses this year by selling them... but still have a ways to go...

News Items of the Week


1. Corporate Tax: the government spent two years fixing a simple re-draft - re-advertise issue.

2. Limon Infrastructure: Limon is the historically underfunded province. Full of promises by the national government which have not been kept... it has lagged in infrastructure for years... as well as investment. What role the US government is playing in this, is unclear from the article.

3. Small Hotel in Jaco: sounds nice. We always stay at VISTA PACIFICA... a small, value priced, owner-operated, well managed and maintained place with friendly staff and a beautiful view...

4. Earthquakes: lots going on -like normal- but have to admit, I haven't felt anything... and the volcanoes surrounding us are a non-issue...

1. Amnesty available to certain personas jurídicas
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

More than 200,000 corporations late on its payments will be able to take advantage of a tax amnesty that offers the possibility of paying back government debts without fines or interest.

The amnesty applies as of today, Sept. 1, until Dec. 31 and can be taken advantage by all personas jurídicas that did not pay taxes between 2012 and 2015.

In 2012 there were 265,768 corporations with debts of one to three years. In 2015, that amount was reduced to 205,555 companies.

The Impuesto de las Personas Jurídicas was created five years ago with Ley No. 9024, which established a tax on all commercial companies, individual companies with limited liability and foreign companies with representatives in the national territory.

However, on Jan. 28, 2015, the Sala Constitucional of the Corte Suprema declared the law unconstitutional due to poor legislative procedure.

At that time, the magistrates clarified that the law, the collection of the tax and its rationale were not under question. Corporations had to pay the tax in 2015, however, in 2016 no collection was made. For this reason, Gustavo Mata, the security minister, exerted strong pressure to increase the number of police in the country with the use of that money.

Finally on March 17, 2017, a new law revived the tax: law 9428 which is applied today. The new regulations authorize the Registro Nacional to dissolve corporations that have not paid their tax for three years or more.

According to the vice president of the Costa Rican association of public accountants, Luis Porras, the dissolution of a corporation for non-payment, is like becoming an undocumented person in the system.

"No cédula jurídicas, or a document that grants rights and obligations, will be granted and without it is impossible to withdraw money or certify that someone is representative of a company owning a vehicle or property," Porras said.

In addition, the dissolution of a company carries problems to collect insurance policies, because if the payments are made in check, they would come out in the name of a sociedad that no longer exists.

The Registro Nacional must wait until the amnesty is over to receive a report from the Ministerio de Hacienda, where it will be asked to dissolve a number of corporations that did not pay during the grace period.

The law states that only the part of the tax for the period from September to December this year will be up for potential exemption. For 2018, the full tax must be paid in January.

2. Limón province receives needed public investment
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

It looks like many eyes have been on Limón province this past week as investments pour in and the province is paid a visit by officials and even members of the U.S. Embassy within the area.

The province is among one of the poorest and least-developed provinces of the country. Residents and interested parties in the public and private sector have been attempting to uplift the economic situation within. These include new investments in the road network, the port at Moín, rural infrastructure being built for the tribes in Talamanca and promotion of tourism along the Caribbean and in the rainforests.

The Instituto Costarricense de Acueductos y Alcantarillados invested about 21.5 billion colones into the province so far. According to a statement issued by AyA, these are to promote 12 projects in the region that are expected to benefit more than 252,000 people.

These include: access to potable water, sanitation services and construction of water storage facilities for the indigenous communities. Many of the works are around the areas of Limón Centro, Pococí, Siquirres, Talamanca and Matina, AyA said.

One of the largest projects is the integrated water facility in Limón Sur at a cost of 7.04 billion colones to benefit 14,000 people.

This includes improvements to the drinking water systems and a new storage tank. It is scheduled to be complete by the first part of 2018, the government said.

The projects benefiting the largest amounts of people are in the city of Limón and in Siquirres, based on data provided by AyA.

These include construction of a new storage tank for the benefit of more than 48,000 Limón residents and improvements to the Río Bananito system for 80,000 people.

The former costs 2.4 billion colones and 724 million colones, respectively. There are also improvements to the sanitary sewer lines in Puerto Viejo and Cocles that include both the system, flood control and treatment plant.

Another 1.6 billion colones is going toward 57,000 people in Guápiles for improvements for its water system, AyA said.

More bridges, flood control systems and other water projects are also at hand for the province as well that goes beyond AyA and includes the local associations, the Instituto de Desarrollo Rural and the Comisión Nacional de Emergencias.

Costa Rican President Luis Guillermo Solís and officials from the United States Embassy are making the rounds around the province to see how the work is progressing and experience the unique culture within the province that houses not only many of Costa Rica’s tribal population but its Afro-Caribbean peoples as well.

3. Small Hotel in Jaco, Costa Rica Makes Tripadvisor’s list of Top Bargain Hotels

If you are planning to go to Jacó for a couple of days and you are looking for a hotel that is both affordable and comfortable, Perico Azul Hotel might be exactly what you are looking for.

The adult-only 7-room hotel made the Tripadvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Top 25 bargain hotels in the world; it ranked in position 22, in a list that included hotels in United Kingdom, Morocco, Nicaragua, India, USA, Poland, among others.

“Quiet and cozy, feels like home”, “Great hotel on the quiet end of Jacó”, “Very clean and everyone there was very friendly”, were some of the phrases used to describe Perico Azul Hotel that in total has received 237 reviews, out of which 94% have considered it Excellent and 4% Very good (1% average and 1% Poor).

The hotel is considered a three-star hotel in Costa Rica, a double occupancy room for two nights can run close to $70.00; they have three types of rooms, Studio & Double rooms, their most popular is available with or without a kitchenette; Double or Twin, ideal for friends traveling together, and the Suite, a “humble yet gorgeous studio” with a fully equipped kitchen and great views; all rooms offer private bathroom, AC, cable TV and are tastefully decorated.

“Our goal is to provide the perfect get away for the young professional, adventure seeker or the solo traveler looking to unplug, relax and practice some of Costa Rica’s famous extreme sports, at an affordable rate”, states the Perico Azul website.

The hotel works hand in hand with Tortuga Surf Camp, which offers ISA and Lifeguard certified instructors to teach locals and foreigners to safely practice this wonderful sport. They also offer guided tours to get to know the best secrets of this region.

4. 5.7 Earthquake Registers at 1:42 am Friday in Costa Rica Followed by a few Replicas

At 1:42 a.m. this Friday morning Costa Rica felt a 5.6 magnitude earthquake.

According to the National Seismology Network (RSN) the epicenter was located to the west of Sámara, Nicoya, Guanacaste and the movements began at midnight with a 3.4 earthquake, followed by the 5.7 strong movement that was felt in most of the metropolitan area and the Guanacaste and Puntarenas provinces.

The RSN shows a replica of 4.0 in the Richter scale at 1:47 a.m. and a 3.6 replica at 2:27 a.m. from the same location; just an hour later at 2:32 a.m. a 3.7 seism was registered west of Tamarindo, Guanacaste.

These seismic movements are originated by the phenomenon of subduction of the Caribbean and Cocos oceanic tectonic plates according to Ovsicori.

There have been no reported damages at this hour.

During the month of August, the National Seismology Network registered a total of 186 earthquakes, our of which 14 were strong enough to be belt by the population; the number of earth movements went down from the 214 registered , 20 felt, in July 2017. Several of the movements felt in the past few days have had their epicenter in the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica.

We will continue to provide updates.


Brian C. Timmons
Property Manager RLJ and Newsletter Author

Costa Rica:
Cell: (+506) 8305-3965
Land line: (+506) 2282-4142 Ext. 101

VOIP: (+416) 461-2203

Web: https://www.residenciaslosjardines.com
Emails: info@residenciaslosjardines.com

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