What are the monthly costs for water?
Basically, cistern water is free and rain collects water from the roof and collects in the cistern. This is free. If you run out of water, during a draught, a 5000 gallon truckload costs around $400 (check currents prices with the water truck company). Or if there is town water at the property, it is much cheaper. It can be as low as 0.12 cents per gallon up to the first 1,000 gallons (check currents prices with Water & Sewage). If you go above 1,000 gallons, the price goes up.
Some properties have both a cistern and town water.
Do I have to pay a deposit and is it a month's rent?
Yes, you have to pay a security deposit. It is usually a little higher than the rental cost. It is not to be used towards rent and should not be considered that way.
The security deposit is paid initially to secure the property (as a downpayment) and it is taken off the market. We will then get your information to prepare the lease. Upon signing of the lease agreement the first month’s rent is paid.
Do I have to pay the real estate agent a fee?
No, the tenant pays no additional fees to the real estate agent.
What is the usual length of lease?
We do mostly annual leases that will automatically renew. You will have to fulfil the first term of the lease. Upon renewal there is a break clause.
Please note that lease agreements may vary per property. Also, shorter term leases may be negotiated.
How do I pay rent?
Most of the properties that we offer, we manage for the home owner. This means that we oversee the property, find tenants, make repairs and collect the rental payments. There are also property owners that ask us to help them find a tenant.
For the properties we manage, you can pay rent via cash or cheque at our office in Road Town. There is also the possibility, when you have a bank account with First Bank or Banco Popular, to set up an online payment.
For properties we don’t manage, payment is made directly to the landlord.
What are my options for Internet?
There are several telephone companies on island. Some offer fixed lines or offer packages via mobile devices. Be sure to check that your rental is in an Internet accessible area. You usually set up your Internet account yourself at any of the telephone providers.
What area should I live in?
It is hard to say because some people like to be near town and some have children and want to be closer to their schools and workplaces. Some people want to be near the beaches or out of town. There is no right or wrong place to live; nothing is too far away. The majority of properties are between 5 and 25 minutes away from Road Town where most businesses are located. Wherever you are, there is a beach within 10 minutes.
There are many choices of either living on the flat near the beaches, or up in the hills with beautiful views. It’s almost impossible to find a property that doesn’t have an incredible ocean view.
Tortola has a lot of mountains and roads can be somewhat steep and with sharp corners. However, you do get used to it quite fast.
Is each house hurricane proof?
Most properties either have hurricane protection currently in place or would be boarded up in case of a storm. Some properties have hurricane resistant windows and doors.
Are there a lot of insects?
During the dry times there tend not to be any problems with insects. After rains there can be mosquitos but most properties have screen protection on their windows and doors. Because the BVI is a tropical setting, there will be mosquitos and other insects at times.
What are the approximate costs for electricity?
On average a 2-bedroom apartment may run between $80 and $100 approximately without air-conditioning. Air-conditioning will put up the cost considerably if it is used quite a bit.