It may be the best bargain in Costa Rica real estate. A 1,000 square foot home on two acres of land among a forest of hardwood trees in the country’s southern zone near San Vito, Puntarenas, Coto Brus, #costa rica. One lucky writer will #win this property for just a short essay and $150 entry fee.

The winner gets a home in Paradise.

Patricia Morgan bought the home in 2010 and has retrofitted it to more North American standards. She and her partner have added drainage, gutters and a retaining wall, rewired the home, changed the plumbing, and doubled the size of the home by adding a kitchen and a bathroom. They cut back the jungle surrounding the home to reveal coffee trees, bananas and other fruit trees.

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They have since removed the coffee and added walking paths, additional fruit trees, a vegetable garden and plants to attract Costa Rica’s most beautiful birds and butterflies. 100 hardwood trees were planted at the end of the property.

The beautiful mountain views everywhere and views of the Milky Way at night are just a few of Morgan’s favorite things about this home. The home sits off a country road, but is a short walk to the bus stop which stops almost hourly during the day time. Most people use the bus or #Travel by foot to get around. The winner will enjoy the birds, butterflies, sunsets, and peaceful sounds, Morgan said.

The logistics behind the transfer.

The property was listed at one time with Rainforest Properties of Golfito, but Morgan pulled the home to try and have a little more fun with the process and give someone a chance of owning property in Costa Rica.

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The winner of the home will pay to transfer the property in Costa Rica, but those fees are not clear yet. Morgan estimates the taxes and fees will not exceed $3,000, which is why she is also offering the $5,000 cash prize. The winner will also be responsible for annual property taxes which are around $60/year.

The winner is welcome to use the house seasonally or permanently. Pensioners, or people collecting social security and can prove they have a guaranteed income of $1,000 a month, can get permanent residency rather quickly and easily. Non-residents can also stay in Costa Rica for 90 days on a regular visitor’s visa and also leave the country for a few days to get another 90-day visa upon return. Many people visit Panama a few times a year to skip the residency steps.

How to enter the contest and win a house.

To enter and hopefully win, write a 250-300 word essay and submit a $150 entry fee. The owner says she will refund entry fees if not enough entries are received. She is looking for 700 entries.

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Morgan has a Facebook page and official website with more information available. The essay may include details of a snapshot in the writer’s mind that brings great emotions, comments about the world’s state of happiness, or a philosophical entry about how one becomes and stays happy. Whatever the world brings to the writer’s mind is what should be written in the essay, according to Morgan.

Costa Rica recently ranked very highly in a poll ranking the world’s happiest countries. The World Database of Happiness analyzed surveys from 148 nations and gave Costa Rica the top spot for both average happiness and happy life years.

Morgan is not the first to give away her home via an essay contest. Similar contests have been around since 1993 when a Vermont bed and breakfast was won via an essay contest. 25 years later, the new owner again put it up for another essay contest to transfer ownership.