Our New Home in Costa Rica Costa Rica

Dining room

After two weeks of visiting dozens of houses all over Grecia, Costa Rica, we finally picked the house we will live in for the next year. Who’d have guessed it would be the first house we looked at!

When we first saw the house, we were impressed by the views and the gardens, but the lack of furniture and decorations made the house seem very bare. It was also pricey for not having a swimming pool, the layout of the house and basement seemed strange, and it didn’t have enough beds to sleep our family, not to mention guests. So we decided to pass on it.

After looking at lots of other options, some more grand, and others much less impressive, we almost decided to go with a smaller and quite a bit cheaper house (actually the second one we looked at) for 3 months – mostly because of the time flexibility, but also because of the price, and it had most of what we need. But I wasn’t overly thrilled with its rustic feel and small living spaces. I had a hard time picturing myself being comfortable there.

After thinking about it, I realized that the first house would actually work well for us with a few modifications. So I e-mailed the landlord with some requests for additional furniture, and a decrease in price. And I got both! It’s still on the high end for around here, $900/month, but we think it will be worth it.

The Details

From the side

The house has 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms and is off a private lane in San Isidro de Grecia, on Calle Rodrigues. It also sits on over an acre of gardens with over 100 varieties of flowers and plants, and plenty of room for the girls to run around and explore. You can hear birds singing, and spot all kinds of birds as well as other animals such as wild bunnies and squirrels, and it is completely private. There is also a little pond on the property where a family of ducks has chosen to make their home because of the free food.

Our favorite part about the house is the views which can be seen from every window. On a clear day, you can see all the way to San José! I also hear the views at night are breathtaking. The living room and attached dining area are very spacious, and both open onto a large deck, making it all a very comfortable space to enjoy as a family or to entertain guests.

The house also has a large kitchen, which has everything but an oven. But they said they will work on getting one for us. The mixture of tile and wood floors, along with the intricate woodwork on the doors and frames makes the house pleasant and elegant in appearance.

One other big plus to this house is the hiking trails directly off the property, which lead to a waterfall. We haven’t seen it yet, but the pictures look great, and we’re excited to check it out. And while the gardens are already beautiful, we’re told there are even more flowers and it’s even greener in the rainy season. The garden also contains a few fruit trees such as grape fruit, guava, avocado, passion fruit, and banana, which we’ll enjoy.

Almost Ready…

It will take another week or so for Rolan (the landlord) to get everything ready, setup the Internet connection and utilities, and bring in the additional furniture and decorations. So during this time we plan to rent a car and drive down to the southern part of Costa Rica near Manuel Antonio and Dominical, to visit the beach and explore some other parts of Costa Rica that are a little farther away.

We are excited to move into our new home and think that we will be very happy there. To get a better idea of what it’s like, check out the photos and video below.

Also, if you haven’t noticed, at the end of each day, I’ve been posting about the day’s events on Twitter (and Facebook). So if you want to keep more up to date with what we’re doing than these irregular blog posts, be sure to follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/brandags.

Brandon is a location independent entrepreneur, musician, worldschooling father, and the principal author of this blog. He's all about reaching his potential and enjoying life to the fullest in each moment.


  1. Wow!!! Eso es tan hermoso!

    That is so wonderful he was willing to go down in price AND supply you with additional furniture and decorations. And I am left speechless by the beautiful vegetation. Just wow. I expect you to learn the name of every flower and report back to me.

    Do you know the way to San José? (La la la la la la la la la…)

  2. Looks like a fabulous place. You’re going to love your time there. That dining room is awesome. (And will be even better with Jen’s food on the table). I may have to adjust my travel plans this year and come for a visit (with my camera, of course) – if you’ll really be there for a year.

    Be sure to fill all those hummingbird feeders as soon as you move in. For me, hummingbirds can provide entertainment for hours upon end.

    P.S. Next time you post a move shot from a moving car, please warn me to take dramamine before I watch :)

  3. Wow! That looks beautiful. I’ll bet you’re excited to have such a nice place to call home.

  4. Hi Brandon and Jen. Congratulations on finding a great home in Costa Rica. It is beautiful. I agree with your mom. Hummingbird feeders are essential. In fact, we purchased a new hummingbird feeder to send you when you got settled, but I see that you are already well-provisioned!

    Just in case you don’t know it, here’s the recipe for hummingbird nectar: Mix four parts water to one part sugar. Mix until thoroughly dissolved. No need for red food coloring. In warm climates, such as in Grecia, you will need to thoroughly clean the feeders with hot soapy water every two to three days to inhibit mold that can be harmful to the hummingbirds.

    Have fun moving in!

    • That’s so thoughtful of you, David! Thanks! We are loving watching the hummingbirds. We actually only have one feeder now, though, because out of the three that were there, one was broken, and one was covered in mold. But one is better than none. :)

  5. I am so happy the house is designed so well for making the most of those beautiful views!! It just takes my breath away, and I think my very favorite room of the house is the dining room. The flowers and gardens are so beautiful, and I’m glad the girls will have room to play outside and feed the ducks. :)

  6. You had me at guava & avocado! :D

  7. I kind of like the new house because one day I got bitten by an ant.

  8. How did you go about finding this gem. Did you hire a real estate agent or just start driving around and asking?

  9. @Heather – We actually found this house on Craigslist! We did go looking with a couple agents, but this one was our favorite in the end.

  10. Love the house!! What a sight to wake up everyday and see the land like you do. Couldn’t ask for more. I think we would all love to move in with you guys right now just to have warmer weather!!! Sounds like a fun adventure you’re on.

  11. THE GARDENS AND VIEWS ARE GORGEOUS BEYOND MY DREAMS. The house looks beautiful and and roomy. You already have the feeders for the hummers, that’s great.
    I’m so happy for you.

  12. Aunt Kathy Says: February 9, 2010 at 8:11 pm

    Wow! What breathtaking scenery, and the house is awesome! I’m so sorry Emily got bitten by an ant. I hope she’s okay now. Love you.

  13. Kelley Mitchell Says: February 11, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    Hey guys – Kira and I just looked at your vacation site and your house – looks like you are having a great time and it is a beautiful house and view. I would love to be working there in your garden. Please be safe! Tell Lacey Hadley we said hello!

  14. Hi Brandon. Hummingbirds are my passion and have been for since I was 9 or 10. My wife loves butterflies and raises them commercially during the warm months (see http://Butterfly-Lady.com). Since hummingbirds and butterflies nectar on the same flowers, we enjoy the best of both worlds.

    Incidentally, if you get the chance, we recommend a day trip to the Butterfly Farm at La Guácima de Alajuela. We were there in August 2008 and you can read our review of the facility here: http://Butterfly-Lady.com/butterfly-exhibits.htm. Pack a picnic and blanket and enjoy it on the grass next to the large mound of flowers in front of the main building. The tour was nice and we enjoyed see the back-office operation of their butterfly chrysalis brokerage business, but the butterflies and hummingbirds outside were the most fun for us.

    If you will email me your mailing address, I’ll drop this hummingbird feeder in the mail to you. It is light and will not cost much to send. You never can have too many hummingbird feeders.

  15. Hello Brandon. You have a nice family and is a pleasure to know.
    I will help you in everything that I can.
    Welcome to Grecia!
    Pura Vida!!!

  16. Beautiful house. That was a nice find.

    It is good to hear that you are settling in nicely. I look forward to hearing more about your adventure.

  17. […] have been living in Costa Rica since January, 2010, and are renting a beautiful house here that overlooks the central valley for $900/month. We found it on Craigslist. We wanted a […]

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  19. Just found your blog. What a great situation you are in in your life
    How is Grecia now that you have been there for awhile? would you still choose it over other locations and if not what are the other towns you would consider. Also what about Internet connection down there. How are you functioning from home with the internet? I would like to spend a couple months down there. Any information would be greatly appreciated

  20. @Andrew – Yeah, we love Grecia. It does get a little cold at night in the rainy season up in the hills where we’re at though. So I might pick a spot a little closer to the center of town. Atenas looks nice as well and is a little warmer (though a little too warm in the summer, but maybe not so much up in the hills). We’ve considered living by the ocean for a while as well, just to see what’s that like. If we were to do it again we probably wouldn’t have rented for a year until we’d traveled around a bit and seen other parts of the country. But we have no major complaints about Grecia.

    The Internet hasn’t been a problem. We’re getting a 2MB connection that’s been quite reliable. I also have 3G access on my iPhone. E-mail me if you have any other questions. Good luck!

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