A Comprehensive Guide to Buying Property in Uruguay in 2024

Buying property in a foreign country is an exciting prospect, especially when it is a charming and culturally rich country like Uruguay. With its stable economy, investor-friendly legal framework, and stunning landscapes, Uruguay has become a hotspot for foreign buyers looking to invest in real estate. In this article, we will delve into the reasons behind Uruguay’s popularity among foreign investors, the types of properties available, popular locations for buying real estate, the buying process, financial considerations, due diligence, closing the deal, and finally, moving and settlement.

According to research conducted by Statista Market Insights, Uruguay’s Real Estate market is poised for substantial expansion. Projections indicate that by the year 2024, the market is expected to reach a value of US$247.50bn. The residential sector is set to dominate this market, with an estimated volume of US$175.50bn by 2024. Looking towards the future, a steady annual growth rate of 4.51% is anticipated from 2024 to 2028, ultimately leading to a market volume of US$295.30bn by 2028.

This growth in the Real Estate market in Uruguay is driven by several factors. Firstly, the country’s stable political climate and strong economic performance make it an attractive destination for property investment. Additionally, Uruguay offers foreign investors favorable conditions for purchasing property, including tax incentives and legal protections.

In terms of residential real estate, there is a high demand for housing, particularly in urban areas such as Montevideo. This demand is driven by a growing population, increasing urbanization, and rising disposable incomes. Developers are responding to this demand by constructing new residential properties, especially high-rise apartments and condominiums.

Another trend in the real estate market is the increasing popularity of vacation and second homes. Uruguay’s beautiful beaches, scenic countryside, and favorable climate make it an ideal destination for tourists and those looking for a second home. This trend is expected to continue in 2024, with a growing number of international buyers investing in vacation properties in Uruguay.

Commercial real estate is also experiencing growth in Uruguay. The country’s strong economy and political stability have attracted foreign companies to establish headquarters or branch offices in Uruguay. This has led to an increased demand for office space and commercial properties, particularly in major cities and business hubs.

Investors looking to buy a property in Uruguay in 2024 can expect a competitive market, especially in popular areas such as Montevideo and the coastal regions. It is advisable to work with local real estate agents such as Team Haverkate who know the market and can guide buyers through the purchase process.

2. Reasons for Popularity Among Foreign Investors

Uruguay offers a robust legal framework that ensures a transparent and secure real estate market. The country’s property rights laws are well-defined, protecting the rights of both local and foreign buyers. Foreigners enjoy the same property ownership rights as Uruguayan citizens, which sets Uruguay apart from many other countries. Additionally, the government has implemented various measures to attract foreign investment, including tax incentives and streamlined processes for property purchases.

Uruguay’s legal system is based on civil law, providing a solid foundation for property transactions. The law operates under the principle of registration, meaning that ownership and rights over real property are established through registration in public registries. This ensures clarity and transparency in property ownership, reducing the risks associated with buying real estate.

Laws and Regulations for Foreign Buyers

Uruguay has made significant efforts to attract foreign buyers, and as such, the laws and regulations surrounding real estate purchases have been designed to be foreigner-friendly. Foreigners can acquire property in Uruguay without any restrictions, and there are no minimum residency requirements. This openness and flexibility make Uruguay an appealing destination for international investors seeking to own property.

The Role of Public Registries and Notaries

Public registries and notaries play a crucial role in the property buying process in Uruguay. These institutions ensure that all property transactions are legally executed, providing an added layer of security for buyers. Notaries play a vital role in verifying the authenticity of documents, ensuring the legality of property transfers, and safeguarding the interests of both parties involved.

3. Types of Properties Available

Residential Properties

Uruguay offers a wide range of residential properties, catering to various tastes and budgets. From modern apartments in bustling city centers to charming colonial-style houses in picturesque towns, there is something for everyone. The residential property market in Uruguay is diverse, allowing buyers to choose from a plethora of options that suit their preferences and lifestyle.

Commercial Properties

For those looking to invest in commercial real estate, Uruguay presents numerous opportunities. The country’s stable economy and business-friendly environment attract entrepreneurs and investors seeking to establish or expand their commercial ventures. From office spaces in prime locations to retail shops and industrial properties, the commercial property market in Uruguay is thriving.

Rural Properties

Uruguay’s countryside is known for its natural beauty and tranquility, making it an ideal location for those seeking rural retreats. The country offers vast tracts of land, known as estancias, that can be transformed into private estates or agricultural ventures. The rural property market in Uruguay presents a unique opportunity to escape the city’s hustle and bustle and embrace a more peaceful and idyllic lifestyle.

Uruguay also has a burgeoning wine industry, and the country’s climate and terroir make it suitable for wine grape cultivation. Uruguayan wines, particularly Tannat, are gaining international recognition. Investors interested in viticulture can find vineyards for sale in regions such as Canelones, Maldonado, and Colonia. These properties often come with established vineyards, wineries, and tasting facilities, offering a turnkey operation for wine enthusiasts.


As Uruguay’s capital and largest city, Montevideo is a prime location for property investment. The city boasts a vibrant cultural scene, excellent infrastructure, and a thriving business environment. Whether you seek a modern apartment in the city center or a suburban house with a view, Montevideo’s real estate market offers a wide range of options to suit different preferences.

Punta del Este

Punta del Este, known as the Saint-Tropez of South America for its glamorous beaches and luxurious resorts, is a popular destination for local and foreign buyers. This upscale resort town attracts high-end real estate investors looking for prime beachfront properties and exclusive gated communities. Punta del Este offers a unique blend of natural beauty, entertainment and luxury, making it an enticing choice for property buyers.

Coastal Areas

Uruguay’s coastline stretches for more than 660 km, offering a plethora of options for coastal property investments. From charming seaside towns to secluded beachfront villas, the coastal areas of Uruguay present an opportunity to own a slice of paradise. Whether you are seeking a tranquil retreat or a lively beach community, the coastal real estate market in Uruguay has something for every beach lover.

José Ignacio

Located on Uruguay’s eastern coast, José Ignacio is a small fishing village that has become a trendy beach destination. With its pristine beaches, trendy restaurants, and boutique hotels, it has attracted celebrities and high-end tourists. Real estate options here include beachfront estates, modern villas, and upscale condominiums.

Punta Ballena

Situated just west of Punta del Este, Punta Ballena offers stunning ocean views and a tranquil environment. Its scenic beauty, including the famous Casa Pueblo art gallery, makes it a desirable location for investors. Real estate in Punta Ballena comprises luxury waterfront properties, gated communities, and serene countryside estates.

La Barra

Located near Punta del Este, La Barra is a vibrant beach town known for its bohemian atmosphere and lively nightlife. It attracts a younger crowd and offers a mix of beach houses, loft-style apartments, and stylish condominiums. The town’s popularity ensures a steady demand for real estate investment.


Situated on the banks of the Río de la Plata, Piriápolis is a charming coastal town with beautiful beaches, charming architecture, and a relaxed atmosphere. It offers a wide range of real estate options, including beachfront homes, colonial-style houses, and residential complexes.

Cabo Polonio

For those seeking a more rustic and off-the-grid experience, Cabo Polonio is a unique coastal area. This eco-friendly village is known for its secluded beaches and sand dunes, attracting nature lovers and adventure seekers. Though the real estate options are limited, investing in vacation rentals or eco-friendly properties can be a lucrative choice.

5. The Buying Process

The process of buying property in Uruguay is relatively straightforward, thanks to the country’s investor-friendly legal framework. Typically, it involves the following steps:

  • Property search: Begin by identifying your requirements and preferences in terms of location, property type, and budget.
  • Engage a reputable real estate agent: Working with a knowledgeable and experienced agent will streamline the buying process and ensure you find the right property.
  • Make an offer: Once you have found a property that fits your needs, make an offer through your agent. Negotiations may follow until both parties reach an agreement.
  • Due diligence: Conduct thorough due diligence to ensure the property’s legal and financial status. Engage professionals, such as lawyers and surveyors, to assess the property’s condition and review all relevant documentation.
  • Purchase agreement: Once satisfied with the results of due diligence, sign a purchase agreement that outlines the terms and conditions of the transaction.
  • Closing the deal: On the closing day, both parties meet with their legal representatives to sign the transfer deeds and complete the payment.
  • Registration: The property transfer is registered with the relevant public registry, ensuring the buyer’s legal ownership and rights over the property.

The following are the required documents for a real estate transaction in Uruguay

  • A copy of the seller’s ID or passport.
  • A copy of the buyer’s ID or passport.
  • The original escritura (deed) of the property.
  • Certification of tax payments (Contribución Inmobiliaria).
  • Certification of utilities payments.
  • Certificate of good standing (Certificado de Actuación) from the regulatory body for real estate transactions (AGU).
  • Certificate of absence of debts (Certificado de Deudas) from the tax authorities.
  • Copy of the purchase agreement signed by both parties.
  • Proof of payment for the purchase.
  • Power of attorney, if applicable.

6. Financial Considerations

When buying property in Uruguay, it is essential to consider various financial aspects:

  • Property prices: Uruguay offers a range of property prices, depending on location, size, and other factors. Conduct thorough market research to determine the fair value of the property you are interested in.
  • Financing options: Foreign buyers can finance their property purchases in Uruguay, but it is advisable to explore local options and consult with local banks for the best terms and conditions.
  • Taxes and fees: Take into account the various taxes and fees associated with buying property in Uruguay. These may include registration fees, transfer taxes, notary fees, and legal fees.
  • Currency exchange: Consider the impact of currency exchange rates on your property purchase. Fluctuations in exchange rates can significantly impact the final cost of the property transaction.

Performing due diligence and legal checks is crucial to ensure a smooth and secure property transaction:

  • Legal verification: Engage a reputable real estate agent such as Team Haverkate to check all legal documents related to the property, including title deeds, survey plans, and any encumbrances.
  • Property inspection: Hire a professional surveyor to conduct a thorough inspection of the property, identifying any structural issues or potential problems.
  • Zoning and land use checks: Verify the property’s zoning regulations and ensure compliance with your intended use. This step is particularly crucial for commercial or rural properties.
  • Community and neighborhood research: Research the local community and neighborhood to gain insights into the area’s amenities, infrastructure, and future development plans.

8. Closing the Deal

Closing the deal is the final step in the property buying process:

  • Transfer deeds: On the closing day, the buyer and seller meet with their legal representatives to sign the transfer deeds. This legally transfers the property ownership from the seller to the buyer.
  • Payment settlement: The buyer pays the agreed-upon purchase price to the seller, either through a bank transfer or by issuing a certified check.
  • Title registration: The transfer of property ownership is registered with the relevant public registry, establishing the buyer’s legal rights over the property.

Moving and Settlement

Once the property has been successfully purchased, it’s time to plan for your move and settle into your new home:

  • Relocation logistics: Make arrangements for transporting your belongings to Uruguay, considering various shipping options and customs regulations.
  • Immigration requirements: Familiarize yourself with Uruguay’s immigration requirements and obtain the necessary visas and permits if planning to reside in the country.
  • Settling in: Explore the local culture, establish new connections, and familiarize yourself with the surroundings. Engage with the community to make the transition smoother and more enjoyable.

The Bottom Line Is

Buying property in Uruguay offers a myriad of opportunities for foreign investors. With its investor-friendly legal framework, diverse property options, and stunning natural beauty, Uruguay is an ideal destination for those seeking a solid investment and a peaceful lifestyle. By understanding the legal processes, conducting due diligence, and carefully considering financial aspects, you can confidently embark on your real estate journey in Uruguay.

If you reach out to Team Haverkate at Real Estate in Uruguay, you can gain valuable insights and guidance on purchasing property in Uruguay in 2024, ensuring that you maximize your experience in this stunning South American treasure.

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