Buenos Aires

Apartments Around the World: Renting in Buenos Aires

November 22, 2010 | Best Cities, Best Cities and Neighborhoods

If you want to enjoy some of the best aspects of three of the most beloved cities in the world all at once, Buenos Aires is the place for you! The capital of Argentina is a modern city with the broad boulevards of Paris, the architecture of Madrid, and the bustling activity and excitement of New York City. As South America’s second largest city, Buenos Aires is a hot spot for both short-term and long-term rentals, and with its temperate subtropical climate, it is a go-to spot all year round.

As a result of expats frequently wanting to take up residence in Argentina, the country has a rentista visa option for people who aren’t students or retirees, or don’t have employers that can provide a visa for them. Although it’s a great option for those from other countries who want to rent in Buenos Aires, the rentista visa doesn’t come cheap! As of July, the new cost for foreigners to live legally in the city is AR $8,000 per person per year, and the rentista visa must be renewed for at least three years before someone can apply for permanent residency. Even though that may seem like a difficult sum, just remember the Argentine peso has dropped to 25 cents, so the fee is about US $2,024.

Another challenge for expats looking to rent is the fact that many long-term leases in Buenos Aires must be signed for two years and require a guarantor based in the country. You may be able to sign a lease without a guarantor through negotiations with the landlord, if you offer to pay more up front. A 1-bedroom apartment in a good neighborhood can cost around $1,500 to $2,000 for an expat, although it varies by size and amenities.

 If the rentista visa doesn’t suit you, don’t fear – there is another option! Argentina’s tourist visa, like the rentista visa, allows tourists to rent for the short term in Buenos Aires. However, this visa only lasts for 90 days. Even though you are allowed to renew for an additional 90 days, you must leave the country after that or face a AR $300 fine. Even though this may be an inconvenience, don’t let it ruin your stay. Many Americans simply opt to do the “expat shuffle” and visit nearby Uruguay for the day by taking a short trip to Colonia del Sacramento on the Buquebus Ferry. This loophole solution is currently tolerated by Argentine immigration officials, although no one knows if the policy may change in the future.

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