Buy an island

Buy an island - 16th November 2008
(Credit: NineMSN - media pitch by Mediaman)

Buy an island

Owning your own island is pretty common for rich celebrities, but did you know that you can purchase your own private island from as little as $82,000?

We spoke with an international property broker, to learn more about buying your own patch of paradise.

Buying an island is a unique investment, according to real estate broker Cheyenne Morrison. The Australian-born broker's company, Coldwell Banker, has more than 200 islands currently listed for sale worth over $1.6 billion.

"It's like having your own private kingdom," Mr Morrison said. "Celebrities and CEO's are attracted to islands not just for the privacy but for the prestige owning your own island gives you."

"An island offers absolute privacy because it is surrounded by water, and in a recent case in Britain Elle McPherson won a judgement against a magazine for invading her privacy because she was on the 'private' island of Mustique in the Caribbean."

"But not only are they guaranteed paparazzi free, but they are also one of the fastest appreciating forms of property investment, and 100% per annum increase in price is not uncommon," he said.

For many of us owning an island in the sun is the stuff dreams are made of, but it won't necessarily cost you an arm and a leg to invest in this kind of property.

"$82,000 is my cheapest island at present, but you can get ones even cheaper if you keep an eye on the market," said Mr Morrison. "I do know of some as low as $20,000 but they are just rocks."

Not all islands come at bargain basement prices.

"I currently have the world most expensive 'private' island for sale in Belize in Central America, it has a resort and an 18 hole golf course. The perfect Xmas present for the billionaire who 'almost' has everything."

Things to keep in mind about purchasing an island
# Getting there: Even mega rich celebrities such as Mel Gibson need to hire a plane or boat to get to their island. Assess how easy the land is to access and how much it would costs you to get there and back.
# Hidden fees and charges: Do you need to pay extra taxes or fees for the purchase? If you are buying an island outside of Australian waters, you may well be up for all kinds of taxes and other charges. Similarly, if you decide you want to build or develop the land, you may need to pay large sums of money as part of the approval process.
# Paper work and insurance: Ask the broker or agent about the paperwork that may be involved in the purchase. This also applies for any building or development you may want to do on the land. Find out more about how many forms are involved and how long the local authorities normally take to process the paperwork.



Cheyenne Morrison

Luxury Real Estate

Mediaman successfully pitched Cheyenne Morrison to Network Nine 'Today'