How to buy an island.


So you want to buy an island.  Everybody dreams of owning an island.  Waking up to soft tropical breezes, strolling around naked picking fruit for breakfast, and beach combing in splendid isolation.   So who can blame you?  It sounds like the perfect retreat.

Private islands are in every ocean, along every coast, and many are for sale.  So first decide where you want to live, and chances are, there’s an island for sale waiting for your consideration.

Maybe you want to live in a cooler environment, like this amazing island in Maine.  Its not a tropical setting, but its a well located island.  And  location is everything, so if you want to be in Maine and own an island, Nautilus Island could be for you.

Nautilus Island. Maine
ginger island carribean
Ginger Island. Caribbean

But if your like me, then you’re probably looking for that tropical paradise.  The islands of the Caribbean come to mind, like the island of Ginger.  Two hundred and fifty acres in the British Virgin Islands.  It has a great natural harbor. white sand beaches, and lots of places to search for pirate treasure!

The type of island that you probably don’t want, would be Selkirk Island.  That’s the dreary place that inspired the classic novel “Robinson Crusoe”. In the 1600’s Alexander Selkirk was put ashore of this craggy, windswept, and harsh island located in the South Pacific off the Coast of Chile.  Selkirk lived there for four years before being rescued and returning to his life as a privateer. (That’s a nice way to say pirate).

Selkirk Island. Chile

If Alexander Selkirk had decided to homestead the island, then he would have nothing in his way.  He was the only person living there, so there was no one to contest his possession.  However, I wouldn’t blame him if he didn’t want it.

So don’t buy an island just because it’s an island.  It has to have location. Just like all real estate. That means it has to be marketable to others.  So buy with selling in mind. Buy only what you saw in your dreams, or you could wind up with Selkirk Island.

So you’ve found your island, you like the location, and you love the weather. You cant wait to close escrow and quit your job.  But wait! Is there anybody already living there?  You cant always just kick them off, you know.

Marlon Brando bought an island (actually an atoll consisting of twelve islands), in the South Pacific called Tetiaroa.  Today it’s a resort called The Brando.  But when Marlin first bought it, it was populated with indigenous people.  So he was titled as Governor of his own island.  Make sure your O.K. with that, because to me, it sounds like a nightmare.

Tetiaroa. Tahiti

If you want to be a Governor, maybe you’ll like this Island in New Zealand.  This island is so expensive, that you need to ask for the price.  Considering it’s in New Zealand, you can bet it’s at least a hundred million.

Pakatoa Island. New Zealand.

Now your ready, you’ve decided you want an island and your good with solar power, isolation, rain water collection, and no services.  So how much do expect to pay?  Well, prices vary of course, but the islands that have location and lots of acres can be pricey.

You can pick up Katafanga Island in Fiji for a cool $25,000,000.00.  That’s in Fiji. That’s location in the world of islands.  You got weather and lots of rain,  so you’ll pay a premium for this little island.

Katafanga Island. Fiji.

Or you can buy this island in Thailand for $160,000,000.00  For that kind of money, I would expect more.  Also it’s in Thailand.  Thailand is a beautiful country, but it may not be as safe as other countries when living on outlying islands.

Rangyai Island. Thailand.

Don’t forget, Islands are out of the reach of reasonable law enforcement response times, so your on your own. You are the one who will have to deal with whoever decides to come ashore.


Camanga Island. Phillipines.

Maybe that’s why this island in the Phillipines is so relatively inexpensive.  It’s only 1,300,000.00. Not bad for 75 acres.  It’s probably heaven until pirates show up to bury treasure.

So when you decide to buy your island, be careful. Choose your location carefully, expect hardships, joy, and the satisfaction of dreamy isolation.  This is not the life for those that need instant gratification.  This is a life of vision, sacrifice, and adventure.



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