Obtaining Residency in Nicaragua

Posted by Jamie Cain on Sep 11, 2018 1:58:50 PM

Nicaragua is an excellent country for a permanent second residency. Not only is it conveniently located close to both the United States and Canada, it also has one of the lowest costs of living in all of the Americas. This means that those who choose to live here on a long-term basis, full time, or part time, can greatly decrease their cost of living while simultaneously increasing their quality of life. Sounds paradoxical, doesn't it? The reality is that the cost of food, utilities, and services such as a full-time housekeeper and cook are much less than what they would cost in North America. A comparison in monthly charges and services between the 2 countries is below. (Based on an 800 sq. ft. home/apartment).


Electricity: $15-60/mo depending on the time of year.
Water: $12-15/mo.
Internet: $53/mo.
Full Time Cook: $100-125/mo.
Full Time Housekeeper: $100-125/mo.

United States

Electricity: $125-180/mo.
Water: $50-100/mo.
Internet/Cable: $125 + /mo depending on speed/channels.
Full Time Cook: $30-45 per hour.
Full Time House Keeper: $75 per cleaning or up to $35,000/yr live-in.

 If you are considering obtaining a second residency in Nicaragua and want to learn more about the process, the following steps will help you in your quest.

You are able to apply for the Foreign Promotions Investment Law through a minimum investment of US$30,000.  What this means is you need to own land valued at US$30,000 or more.
To obtain this residency, you must make at least one trip to Nicaragua since submission of documents must be done in person. Your attorney with a Special Power of Representation can do the remaining part of the process.

Paperwork - You will need the following documents to apply for your residency:

  • Marital status, profession, domiciles.
  • Simple, scanned copy of your local ID.
  • Birth Certificate (Authenticated).
  • Police Record issued by the Local Police of Country of Origin or of country in which you have resided for the past 3 years (Authenticated).
  • Health Certificate (Authenticated).
  • 4 color, passport sized pictures (clean white background).
  • Photocopy of passport. First page bio data and at least six months of validity remaining.
  • Duly Registered Deed of Nicaragua Real Estate Purchase and Sales Deed
  • Copy of the Investment Registry Certificate issued by the Economic Ministry (MIFIC)

Once the application has been fully completed and submitted there is a waiting period during which time you must remain in the country. The applicant MUST remain in Nicaragua for at least 30 days following the application, as Immigration officials do the follow-up visits to validate domicile information. The total time between submitting an application and receiving your residency is typically 90 days after applying.
Once this waiting period is over, you will receive your residency.

Fees - The total fees for the Investor Residency are approximately US$850 per person.
This includes:
The cost per residency per applicant of $200.
The legal fees per person of $650.
Dependents can be added at a later date for additional fees. Dependents are considered to be the spouse, (must have valid marriage certificate) and their children (younger than 21 years old).

Once You Have Your Residency
To maintain your residency, you must be in country for at least 6 months out of the year.

If you would like to take your legal status one step further and gain citizenship in Nicaragua, the Investor Residency can lead to this. After only 5 years of holding an Investor Residency, the resident can apply to become a Nicaraguan citizen.  Additional procedures and fees are required to accomplish this.

Would you like to plan a trip to Nicaragua to determine if it would be the country of your choice for a second residency? Take the first step by joining us on one of our Discover Nicaragua Tours.
Gran Pacifica Gazebo

ECI Development delivers affordable luxury residence and resort communities in Central America, providing our clients with various premier lifestyle options from the Caribbean to the Pacific. ECI delivers inspired residences for adventurous souls.

Coupled with over 20 years of inherent corporate social responsibility in the communities where we work, ECI Development is building a sustainable business that is going to be around for the next 100+ years.

Jamie Cain

Written by Jamie Cain

Jamie Cain is a native Texan. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance, and after graduating college, she began a career in modeling. “This was an incredible experience, as I had the opportunity to work and live in many amazing countries and experience all the different cultures.” After, she started a career in real estate in Dallas. Fast forward to 2017, she had the wonderful opportunity to join ECI Development as a Property Advisor for Nicaragua and Belize. Presently, Jamie lives on the East Coast with her husband and two white cats. She enjoys yoga, blogging, photography, and cooking.