I'm Frustrated

ISSUE #709: May 6-12, 2018


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

Distrito Cuatro / Guachipelín / Escazú
Price reduced: $ 125,000 to $ 110,000

about Distrito Cuatro

Rendering proposed
Distrito Cuatro - click to Download full PDF

Real de Santa María / Borreal de Heredia
$ 185,000
Private financing available

See location on Google Maps

Real de Santa María / Borreal de Heredia

Download more pictures (8.35 Mb)

Hyundai Santa Fe 2008
$13,500 $12,000

Hyundai Santa Fe 2008, Turbo Diesel, automatic, excellent family vehicle, safe, comfortable, interior with leather seats. Good tires, engine, turbo, suspension, and AC. Marchamo 2018 and Retive. It now has been road tested for 5 weeks and performed flawlessly. I can now sell with confidence...

  • 5-door / 5 passenger
  • Power steering, windows, mirrors, brakes and locks
  • A/C front and rear
  • Cruise control
  • audio/radio control
  • Air bags - driver / pass
  • Security system
  • Fog lamps
  • Tinted windows
  • Roof rack
  • CD player / radio USB/AUX
  • Hydraulic lift
  • Leather seats
Market activity
sales & rentals

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


Paradisus: Available immediately, $1,400 mo.

Los Jardines:
Unit #106C Available immediately, $1,050 mo.
Unit #106D Available immediately, $1,150 mo. (until Dec. 1)
Unit #112 Available immediately, $1,250 mo.

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. / Apr 1 - Dec 1 / See Unit
Unit #112: $ 1,250 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 Apr 1 - Dec 1

Total Area (Sq Ft): 1227 sf . + parking
Total area (Sq M): 113 + parking
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.

UNIT #112
$ 1,250 mo.
Available immediately

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

This 1,290 sf single floor home includes a 300 sf front terrace plus parking for one car. It is attached on two sides by a 6 inch cement demising (common) wall, which prevents sound transfer.

Our Lives

Weather: We haven't had much rain this past week but the plants are beginning to show the effects of what we have had. More and more the days are overcast and rumbles of thunder somewhere nearby.

I'm Frustrated: Last week I described my experience with glass shelves. I could have included these experiences as well:

A. Most every morning I go to a convenience store which has delicious fresh baked croissants (imported frozen of course and baked here). I prefer the chocolate but they have started making plain ones... also delicious. Some of the staff do not know the name so cannot find them on their cash register list. If they do, there is no code for them nor price. This deficiency has been going on now for three weeks. Each time, it takes about 3 min. for them to get the info. to plug into the cash register. The other day, having worked my way through that, I gave 10,000 colones expecting change. It was punched is as 5,000 and I was given change accordingly. When I pointed it out, it was acknowledged, and 5 min. later someone came to over-ride the cash register so I could get the correct change.

B. There is a Chinese restaurant in a neighboring town-Belen. They do a great job on shrimp dishes - lots and lots of shrimp. The problem has always been ordering. They do not speak either English nor Spanish... only Mandarin... Knowing this, I have had to made changes to my ordering... I point to the item I want on the menu... which has a number on it. This should be simple... order by the number... don't speak the number... point out the number. Tuesday lunch... I did this... 15 min. later people who arrived later than I and who ordered the same thing, got their meal... mine was no where in sight... when called them on it... there was great conversation amongst the staff indicating confusion, chaos, finger pointing, etc... and there should have been... I just loudly cancelled the order including the order to go for Lita... adding a few explicatives.

Reviewing these three incidents -and there are countless other examples I could have cited- I am trying to figure out: What is the common denominator here? (1) Am I the problem -poor Spanish? poor presentation? Possibly but I don't see where since I have tried in each case to compensate for the exchange... written order (shelves), written menu by number, and the screw-ups continue. (2) Is it lack of staff training? In the case of the croissants, possibly; in the case of the Chinese order..possibly; in the case of the shelves -possibly... In each case, the exchange seems simple to me... but I continue to experience difficulties... (3) Is it cultural? two incidents were with Ticos / one was with a Chinese... or (4) aaahhh... maybe it is because I am an old fart and not really willing to excuse these screw-ups. So now, the glass place is off my list and so is the Chinese restaurant. I take comfort in the belief none of these people will be put in charge of high technology...

Heredia House: The first and only client likes it... but doesn't have much money... we are still working with him... I just got the PDF file from my Maria -IT support in Argentina... she had computer problems so it took longer... as did last week's newsletter... I will begin marketing it more aggressively now. It shows well and has all the features usually wanted.

District 4: A no show appointment... not unusual.

Santa Fe: No calls...

On a happy note: Lita enjoyed "popcorn"; the significance of that is that her implants are now complete.......wow...what an ordeal... more so than I had expected and more so than others had to go thru... why I don't exactly know but we are both glad to see the end of this.. and to enjoy the result...

News Items of the Week


1. Priorities: This is the list... we'll see

2. Proposed Tax Reform: My guess is something will happen this administration and my guess is that most of it will be stupid when much simpler alternatives are available... ​having said this, simplicity is not part of this culture... nor of any government in general.

1. Carlos Alvarado will give emphasis to seven axes in his government

President Carlos Alvarado assured during his inauguration speech that his government will focus on seven fundamental axes and issues that cannot wait any longer.

After receiving the presidential band from the hands of Luis Guillermo Solís, the 48th president of the country indicated those seven axes are:

-Protection of the environment
-Better mobility and road infrastructure
-Regain tax stability

Actions and timely responses are needed. There are issues that cannot wait any longer,” said Alvarado, who spoke of a higher quality and more modern education, as well as a better and more decent teacher training.

He also promised to be strong against organized crime, indicating that in the face of the Bicentennial they will seek to reduce the rate of homicides and femicides in the country.

On the road issue, the President asked for understanding, but also confidence that the works could be done to reduce the traffic jams that affect many Costa Ricans daily.

He also reiterated that the idea of going off hydrocarbons to turn Costa Rica into a greener country is very important.

Health, job creation and fiscal stability were also highlighted in the speech.

2. Government wants the tax reform approved by July

The Minister of the Presidency, Rodolfo Piza (left) said that the Government wants to have the fiscal plan approved as soon as possible. But the deputy José María Villalta said that Zapote told him Friday that he wants this endorsement to be given no later than July, a term that he sees as "ambitious." Photo by Diana Méndez.

The Executive Branch wishes that the bill to strengthen public finances be voted on at the latest during the month of July.

This was made known to the press by the deputy José María Villalta, of the Frente Amplio, who met Friday afternoon with the President of the Republic, Carlos Alvarado, and with the Minister of the Presidency, Rodolfo Piza.

Asked about the new deadline for the vote in the first debate of the project to mitigate the fiscal deficit (6.6% of gross domestic product to last December), Piza went further and stated that the Government is interested in having the project approved as soon as possible.

"The idea is that it be as soon as possible, as soon as possible, of course time is short, the country does not have so much time, the decision on this project has been postponed, it is important to guarantee the right of amendment (of the deputies), but not to the point that a vote is impeded, or to the point that in the end the income and the will of balance of the Government and greater tax justice is affected by that delay, "said the Minister of the Presidency.

Currently, the deputies are looking for possible legal solutions to modify the abbreviated procedure that previous parliamentarians approved for the bill. The idea is to roll back the process until the stage that enables two days for the presentation of motions, in order to modify the contents of the project on commission.

The intention is that the legislators, who recently took office on May 1, have the right to propose changes to the proposed law made by the government of former President Luis Guillermo Solís in September of last year.

Piza added that he sees a willingness in all fractions not to obstruct the process of the reform and affirmed that despite the doubts expressed by the fractions, he believes that most of the deputies are willing to cut the deadlines of the debate as much as possible.

He added that once the round of meetings with all the legislative caucuses has been completed, the Executive Power will make a proposal to modify the fast track with which this fiscal project was processed, in order to guarantee the right of amendment.

Small parties raised their concerns

This Friday, the Presidential House received, in addition to the deputy José María Villalta, the independent legislator, Erick Rodríguez, and the Social Christian Republican Party bench.

The Republican said, at a press conference, that he does not agree with the tax on the basic basket, nor with the consumption of energy above 200 kilowatt-hours. His two deputies do not agree with the imposition of 4% VAT on private education.

The Ministry of Finance maintains that, because of the structure of the value-added tax (VAT), in the long run it could be worse not to tax the products of the basic basket, since the seller would make the price more expensive to pay the tax that was charged to them. producers.

On Wednesday, the Presidency received the fractions of National Liberation (PLN) and National Restoration (PRN); on Thursday to the Christian Social Unit (PUSC); and on Monday will receive the fractions of Citizen Action (PAC) and National Integration (PIN).

Regarding the deadline to vote on the tax reform proposed by the Government, Villalta described the expectation as "ambitious", because he said that the discussion has not started during the current constitutional period.

"We have to take into account that the Legislative Assembly is just being installed, if the government runs a lot, it will be installed in the last week of May, which means that the project should be voting in two months and we still have to open the space for changes in committee, then give the discussion in the plenary and after the discussion and voting.

And, although the fast track sets deadlines, that would imply working at forced marches and, because of my knowledge of the Legislative Assembly, I see it as a deadline that will be difficult to fulfill, but we will take the floor to the Government and we will be willing to give it the priority that it deserves to the subject", affirmed Villalta after its meeting with the president and the minister of the Presidency.

Villalta presented to President Alvarado the contents of the bill that concerns the Broad Front, such as the tax on the basic basket with 2% of the Value Added Tax (VAT), the effect on medicines, on health services and private education, as well as the weakness that your bank sees in the project's income title, among other contents.

The independent Erick Rodríguez, for his part, also indicated his concern about the intention of the Ministry of Finance to charge a differentiated VAT rate to the products that make up the basic consumer basket.


Brian C. Timmons
Property Manager RLJ and Newsletter Author

Costa Rica:
Cell: (+506) 8-455-59-35
Land line: (+506) 2282-4142 Ext. 101

VOIP: (+416) 461-2203

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

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