Ecuador Benefits from Transparency and Thanks – A Trend the Hot Ecuador Real Estate Market

by | Jan 29, 2007 | Archives

Ecuador real estate’s attraction comes from more than just property. Yesterday’s message looked at the power behind a trend of goodness. This trend can help Ecuador real estate. We just completed our Self Fulfilled Publishing Course in which we shared ideas on the potential in the market place from transparency, honesty and care.

Ecuador real estate is changing because the technology enhances the power of good values and makes them more important than economic value. Consumers will increasingly base their buying decisions on private internal values.

This trend is accelerating. Many businesses now give part of their profits to charity. The ice cream company, Ben & Jerry, links its products to the value of a cleaner environment.

Consumers also want honesty and authenticity.

Perrier suffered when it was discovered that their water was not fresh and naturally bubbly straight from the spring, but was artificially carbonated. The Disney empire lost credibility and customers over management battles, golden parachutes and less than wholesome movies produced by Disney subsidiaries.

The story in consumer’s minds has always meant a lot. Disney may be a wholesome firm or a money grubbing, totally ruthless organization. Perrier may be pure or may come from cesspools. The Marlboro Man may be a rugged individual or a complete pansy. What affects the value of the brand is not the reality but the consumer’s image.

What is changing is the way information is so readily available. Image and reality merge! This trend means transparency will grow in importance.

For example, we point out good points about Ecuador real estate but also try to share things to avoid here. For example we warn our delegates and readers to stay away from Mariscal Sucre area in Quito. This is very touristy and loaded with very clever pickpocket type thieves.

Regretfully some delegates do not mind our warnings, as was the case on Saturday with a delegate from our publishing course. On his way back to the US he visited this area and his carry on was taken (as usual in a tricky not aggressive way) and lost everything, passport, wallet, car keys, credit card, driver’s license. He was stranded with $3 left in his pocket.

Fortunately he called us out here. I called our friend and attorney, Dr. Andres Cordova. Andres immediately left his Saturday afternoon lunch and within the hour had picked up our delegate given him $200 cash and sent him back to us in Cotacachi (The US Embassy won’t help the delegate until today).

This is not the first time Andres has gone out of his way to pull a delegate’s irons out of a fire. Not long ago a delegate arrived for our Import-Export Expedition. The delegate had journeyed to Peru first and purchased many huge bags of goods to take back to the US . Naturally Ecuadorian customs wanted to tax them. Though it was nearly midnight, one call to Andres got him working and he immediately sorted the problem out.

I would like to thank Andres for his continuing help and goodwill he gives to our readers. His willingness to look after us when we are in a bind is one reason I wholeheartedly recommend his Ecuador real estate projects in Galapagos and Mindo. I am not involved financially in any way but delight in putting good people (my readers) together with good people (Andres and his real estate team).

Andres recently wrote:

“Dear Gary and Merri: The name of our Ecuador real estate project in Mindo is Arboretto. The website is now complete at

“We have yet to upload the rendering of the project layout, which will include the lots, the river as well as the communal areas. The lots in Arboretto have been priced at $51,000. This price takes into account that our cost per lot is $49,000 because the 30 plus lot owners will have nearly 100 acres of common land to protect the environment there. This is, the cost to produce all the infrastructure we are offering. Those purchasing lots have to commit to build with us within a two year time frame. This is to allow the prompt consolidation of Arboretto. The price per square foot of construction in Arboretto will be of $70 to the buyer. Kind regards, Andrés.”

This is quite an incredible website and those who love nature will want to look at this as the homes are among the most unusual I have ever seen, literally growing out of the forest.

Mindo describes a large natural area about two hours north of Quito. This cloud forest is the wintering home of many temperate species. This area is much lower than Quito, about 5,000 feet in altitude. For these reasons (and others) Mindo has an estimated 550 bird species. Birds in the Mindo area include Cock-of-the-Rock, Chestnut-Mandibled Toucan, Toucan Barbet, Giant Antpitta, Scaled Fruiteater, Club-Winged Manakin and Torrent Duck, among others.

Mindo is named an “Important Area for Birds” by an international bird organization due to the high diversity and threatened nature of the species there. It is the first area in South America to be given this name. In the annual Christmas Bird Count sponsored by the Audubon Society, Mindo has been among the top 3 highest bird counts in the world for the last 6 years.

This Cock of the Rock picture is at the website for the Mindo Biological Station.

We have been making arrangement for delegates who come to our courses to visit this site on their way to or from visiting us in Cotacachi. You can get more information from Dr. Andres Cordova at


Property in Cotacachi seems to be jumping as well. We have been researching real estate for sale to show upcoming course delegates. Some has been selling as fast as we can look. The small A-frame for sale in last week’s message sold the next day. The condos where we are moving sold out in a week. Lots of new construction is starting. There may be several reasons for this. The attractive, peaceful, low cost environment may be one reason. Another may be the new president. People may be hopeful. Or people may be afraid and getting out of cash into property. Real estate ownership is protected in the constitution.

I’ll be sharing shots of land we are seeing over the weeks ahead so you can see what and why people are buying.


Our Self Publishing Course is mainly about marketing. Writing is easy but writing to really sell requires knowledge of marketing. One point we try to help our new writers understand is the importance of spotting and adapting to change.

The course outlines the 80-20 rule. 80% of the people in all markets get most things wrong! This is why the rich always get richer. The richer are the 20% of the people who get things right 80% of the time.

One reason people get things wrong is they see the future through flawed understandings filtered by the past. People make value judgments based on images and educations of the past.

Take left leaning images like Fidel Castro. People associate these images with the dictatorial, communist economic political formula that failed. So recently a reader wrote and expressed concern over the new president and his left leaning.

I replied: “The Mayor here has a picture of himself with Fidel Castro painted on the city hall. Yet this town is booming. The city government has been awarded national recognition for its transparency, for its involving citizens in forming decisions and making the city a better place. The government’s plans for economy stability are based around the rights of private land ownership. New construction is everywhere. The city is immaculate and clean. There are new tiled sidewalks and new gas lamp-lined streets. More and more tourists are coming. This is normally a slow part of the season but our restaurant and the hotel have seen hundreds of unexpected guests. I hope the Mayor puts up any kind of picture he wants as long as he helps the town and helps the people. Let the politicians put up their symbols. Let them spout their rhetoric. But smart investors watch what they do instead of what they say. Smart investors look at the faces of the people in the street and they watch how business is going. They watch and see if children continue to walk the streets alone, any time, night or day. 80% of the investors may be scared by symbols. 20% will invest. When the 80% finally catch on, profits for the 20% will be made.”

As investors we need to avoid fashion like the plague. Good investors are always out of step with the market and buying that which falls or is down and out. Smart investors buy early and wait for the trend to change.

We are starting a new internet Ecuador information service. The annual fee will be somewhere between $99 and $149 a year but before we start up are making a really special offer. Order our Ecuador Report now and I'll sign you up for a free year's subscription to the internet service. You'll save somewhere between $49 and $100! You can order the report at

Until next message, may your fashion be classic value.


P.S. Join us in the Ecuador sun this winter to learn more about value. Here is a schedule of the courses Merri and I will conduct this winter.

Feb. 20 – 25, Tues.-Sun. Import-Export Course.

Mar. 9 – 15, Fri.-Thurs. Expanded Super Thinking + Spanish.

Mar. 16 -18, Fri.-Sun. International Business and Investing Made EZ.

Mar. 19 – 21, Mon.-Wed. Andes Extension & Real Estate Tour.