Posted by: jimndianne | December 6, 2009

Housing in Cotacachi

06 December 2009 Ecuador

Today we decided that we would have a look at what is available in the Cotacachi area for housing. Some time ago we had read about a gated development called San Miguel and thought it would be a good place to start our investigation. We joined up with our new friends, Carol and Jim, and set off walking in the area where we thought the complex was situated. We had been there a couple of nights before but as it was in the dark we didn’t see too much. Well our journey become rather longer than intended including walking across fields, Carol falling into a creek and wandering around many indigenous houses accompanied all the while by a gaggle of children and numerous dogs. We eventually fronted up to this huge timber gate, rang the bell and were given access to the complex.

(All prices mentioned below are in US$) Don’t forget you can click on the photos to get an enlarged view!

The houses are called adobe style, principally because the structure was made of air dried mud bricks then rendered with a mud slurry and painted white. They were not

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the true adobe house which is made out of rammed earth where the external walls end up on a slope. The complex had about 18 houses already, built with some of these

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occupied, some rented and others sold. There were 3 – 4 vacant lots still available for about $25,000 each. They are sold on a house and land package basis with about five different designs available costing $50 a square foot to build. The average size is 2000 sq feet, with three bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms,  which brought the total cost including kitchen appliances to $125,000.  The standard of workmanship was generally very good and all the exposed timber went well with the white walls.

From this estate on the way back to the hotel we stumbled across another called Colonia El Batan which was of a similar concept but not as many houses and all double storey. These were more impressive than the previous estate as the workmanship was higher even though the total cost was much the same with two or three bedroom styles all with 2 1/2 bathrooms. Cotocachi nestles between two extinct volcanoes, one of which can be seen in the distance of the first picture. Not all the houses were white. Here we have a pink one and also a terracotta coloured one.

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The finish inside was really impressive and all local workmanship. These  timber cabinets and wardrobes etc are all hand made in Cotocachi or on-site and are very inexpensive. The hand carved cupboard, below right, cost about $500.

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We had a good look at one under construction to check out the workmanship and also the weather-proofing on the decks. In the distance can be seen the other extinct volcano called Cotocachi. This next house had an enormous deck space on the roof!

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From here we went further up the hill to look at some condominiums. These are built in blocks of four condos, two down and two up. All priced much the same at around $118,000. All were two bedroom with two bathrooms. At present there were only three blocks built with another eight or so to follow. The photographs are of unfinished condos. The kitchen came complete with a granite bench top.

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The bathrooms had spa baths and in common with all the houses we saw, there was a fireplace in every one of the lounges and many of the bedrooms. Evenings can be quite cool here during December – March because of the high altitude.

We did visit another site for new homes which had just begun construction. Only one was being built at present which gave us an insight into how they were constructed. A different roof style this time. Again the layout was similar to the others we had seen earlier but the structure was made with clay bricks and these were cement rendered. The houses came in 2 or 3 bedrooms and in the same price bracket as the others. Here is the front entrance to the estate and the one under construction.

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Altogether, we were most impressed with all that we saw and the cost is truly amazing considering what is included in the package.

That completed the day and so off back to the hotel for some tucker and a rest.


Responses

  1. Wow, some of those houses look great! I especially like the middle group (with brightly coloured tablecloth in photos). I still do have my fingers and toes crossed for some beach living (or ‘visiting’, should I say) locations. Keep up the great work blogging!! You guys are rock stars :o) xxxx

  2. Hi di hi, Now some of these homes do seem to measure up! We are really enjoying following your travels and the big hunt.

  3. Looks like you two are really enjoying yourselves and are into some serious house hunting. I reckon the houses in Cotocachi look very Di and Jimbo! Very spacious and well appointed…spa bath looks good! What’s the surrounding area like? How far to the closest town etc?Just a few questions!! haha! Great reading your blog. Love to you bothxx


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