This Eco-Investment Doubles Your Money, At Least,

A developer friend is launching a new project in Belize.

I’ve written about early-in investment opportunities with this project once before, when the developer, Phil Hahn, made his initial Founder’s Guild package offer earlier this year.

Phil sold the three packages he had available within 24 hours of my alert. That’s how compelling the offer was. What Phil has put together for this next round of early-in opportunity is no less interesting.

These additional Founder’s Guild packages that Phil is making available now come with the potential to return 24% annualized over three years. Before I go into further details of the investment opportunity, however, let’s regroup on the developer and the development.

Phil Hahn has been designing and building homes in Florida for the last 25 years. He began investing and developing in Belize seven years ago. His experience and eye for design and development trends have produced some visionary ideas, including his latest project, Carmelita, located in the Cayo District of Belize.

I’ve known Phil for more than five years. I met him in Belize when I was in-country to review a project Phil was launching at that time on Belize’s northern mainland coast. That development is arguably the most successful private community in the country, thanks to the innovative plan Phil established. Drawing on that and other experiences in the country, Phil is focused now on Carmelita.

The Carmelita property, located in Cayo 15 minutes from San Ignacio, is positioned between the Belize River (with more than a mile of river frontage) and the local road (meaning access is easy and already in place).

The big-picture development plan is for sustainability…not eco for the sake of eco, but sustainable for the freedom that brings. Among the concepts that Phil has planned for Carmelita is limited connection to the power grid. Homes will have solar electricity. Gardens and groves have been designed throughout the community as places where residents and owners can grow vegetables, citrus, and exotic fruits. Water and wastewater systems will be the latest technology, again, not for the sake of being eco, but for the sake of being able to sustain the community without being reliant upon the grid.

At first, the concept sounded a little over the top to me. However, after visiting Carmelita and understanding Phil’s vision better, it all made sense…especially given the fact that the development is located in Belize.

Personal independence is a critical part of the history of Belize. This country was founded by pirates, and it continues to embrace a freedom-loving approach to life and government. Bottom line, Belizeans don’t like government. They don’t like anyone interfering in their affairs. What they do like is minding their own business and living independently. These qualities are perhaps unexpectedly combined with a warm and welcoming hospitality. Phil has been inspired by that combination to design a community where, as he says, “People can be independent together.”

The community overall is being conceived to operate as independently as possible. At Carmelita, you won’t have to worry about power outages, because you won’t be dependent on the local electric company. You’ll know where your food comes from, because you’ll be able to look out your window at backyard gardens and community fruit groves. Houses and other structures will be built from local materials, including the beautiful and exotic local hardwoods.

With more and more people looking to escape government control and intervention and to find options for living more independently, the timing for a community like Carmelita is perfect. And, again, Belize is an ideal choice if you’re looking for a place to take control of your life.

Of course, as an investor in Carmelita, you don’t have to buy into all of the premises and philosophy behind the design and the master plan. The important thing for an investor to understand is that there is a fast-growing and very viable market for this kind of independent, sustainable living community. The idea and vision behind Carmelita are very saleable, as is the riverfront location.

The new Founder’s Guild offer that Phil has available is straightforward. You invest in one of three different packages (I’ll get to those details shortly) and receive lots in the community with a total current discounted value that is slightly more than the amount of your investment.

Then, here’s the kicker: In addition to the lots that you receive immediately upon investment, Carmelita will also repay the amount of your initial capital. Effectively, you double your money…or more, depending on the prices at which you resell your lots.

Phil is making three investment levels available: US$50,000, US$90,000, and US$150,000. Three of each of the three packages are being made available, for a total of nine current investment opportunities. Each level of investment delivers a different mix of lots (see the box below). You can put your lots back into the retail sales mix, with the developer’s lots, immediately, based on a ratio of 1 resale lot to every 2 developer lots within the specific lot category. Priority for figuring the ratio will be based on when you invested. In other words, the first investor will be able to put his lots into the sales mix before the second investor, etc.

The capital repayment formula is based on sales of individual retail lots. The developer will set aside 50% of the revenue from lot sales, less marketing fees (agent commissions), to repay investor funds. Payments will be made quarterly. The ratio for distributing the repayment funds will be based on each investor’s percentage of the overall investment pool. For example, assuming all available Founder’s Guild packages are sold, an investor in a US$50,000 package would receive 5.75% of the repayment pool each quarter. The quicker the retail lots are sold, the sooner you get your initial capital back.

Assuming, first, that it takes the developer three years to repay all your capital and, second, that you sell all your lots to net the current discounted value, you would double your money in those three years. This translates to an annualized ROI of at least 24% (assuming all cash is received at the end of the three years). That’s a great return, especially considering you have the land, valued to equal your entire investment amount, as collateral up front.

Sell your lots for more than the current discounted value, and your ROI increases. If Phil and his partners are able to sell retail lots quicker than three years, you get your initial cash back sooner, and, again, your ROI goes up.

You can see why the initial three Founder’s Guild packages that Phil offered in January sold so quickly.

Since offering those first packages, Phil has obtained the initial permits required to allow him to launch retail sales. However, although he could now launch retail sales, he has decided to do one more round of investment packages to bring in some quick cash to allow him to continue and even expand the excellent momentum he has enjoyed to this point.

It typically can take up to a year to obtain the first round of permits for a new development project in Belize. However, Phil has local partners who are very well connected in the country. With their help, Phil has been able to cut through a lot of the local bureaucracy and red tape and to get his permits quickly. Now the Carmelita team is pushing forward with final plans and permits.

Here are the Carmelita Founder’s Guild investment package details:

US$50,000 Package —

One Garden Lot: Retail Value US$25,000;
Discounted Value US$20,000
One Estate Lot: Retail Value US$40,000;
Discounted Value US$32,000


US$90,000 Package —

Two Garden Lots: Retail Value US$50,000;
Discounted Value US$40,000
One Village Lot: Retail Value US$30,000;
Discounted Value US$24,000
One River Garden Lot: Retail Value US$35,000;
Discounted Value US$28,000


US$150,000 Package —

One Garden Lot: Retail Value US$25,000;
Discounted Value US$20,000
One Estate Lot: Retail Value US$40,000;
Discounted Value US$32,000
One Village Lot: Retail Value US$30,000;
Discounted Value US$24,000
One River Garden Lot: Retail Value US$35,000;
Discounted Value US$28,000
One River Village Lot: Retail Value US$65,000;
Discounted Value US$52,000


As most of the focus for development communities and expat retiree housing in this country to date has been on Ambergris, Carmelita has little competition on the mainland and no competition in the Cayo District. Riverfront property in Cayo is in high demand among both locals and foreigners.

And the river frontage at Carmelita is ideal. The banks are high, meaning no possibility for flooding.

The location of the property in general is also great. Carmelita is close enough to San Ignacio, the main town in Cayo, to make shopping for supplies and running into town for dinner or to meet friends easy but far enough away to allow for a feeling of real country escape.

As I explained, Phil created nine Founder’s Guild packages for this offer. I alerted members of my Global Property Investor’s Marketwatch service to this opportunity earlier this week, to give them a first-dibs chance to get in. As of the most recent report I’ve had from Phil, at least three of the nine packages have been reserved, and Phil is in discussions with a number of other Marketwatch Members, whose inquiries retains priority position.

Lief Simon

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