In Bolivia, finding houses for rent is not very different than in other countries. You have several options to achieve this, like Airbnb, local realtors, online directories, traditional newspapers, and for-rent banners, among other ways. What is very different is the risk involved, as some of these options are relatively safe, but others involve the risk of even getting scammed or assaulted.
In Bolivia, the best way to find homes for rent depends a lot on the time you are going to rent. For short periods, Airbnb is usually the best and only option. For longer periods, again Airbnb, but also ReMax and Century 21, are the best and safest options available.
We are real estate experts from Bolivia, who help lots of Bolivian people with their real estate projects (you can see our Bolivian real estate website). In the following lines, we’ll guide you through the search homes for rent process in the country. We’ll talk about the best ways to find rentals in Bolivia, with all the pros, cons, and risks involved.
The 6 main ways to find houses for rent in Bolivia
You’ll realize that there are 6 main ways to find a house for rent available within Bolivia. We have listed them from the best to the worst, depending on how convenient and safe each option is:
- Through Airbnb, which is available in Bolivia.
- With worldwide well-known realtors that work in Bolivia.
- With local well-known realtors.
- With Bolivian real estate directories and newspapers.
- With Facebook Marketplace.
- By physically finding houses available for rent.
|Remax & Century 21
|Best local realtors
|Other local realtors
1) Through Airbnb, which is available in Bolivia
Did you know that Airbnb works in Bolivia? Like in 220 other countries, this company has a lot of properties available for rent in our country. Then, if you are planning to rent for a short time a house in Bolivia, for example, you are coming as a tourist, or for only a few days or weeks, this is by far the best option available.
The majority of Airbnb rentals you are going to find in Bolivia are in the $20-$50 cost-per-day range. Many of these properties have been rented hundreds of times to travelers from inside and outside Bolivia. At the time we write this, this company has around 5,000 hosts available in the country, many of them in the 3 major cities that exist here, La Paz, Cochabamba, and Santa Cruz.
You can find the properties available for rent on Airbnb here:
For short-term rentals, Airbnb is also the least expensive option available, as for a one-week rental you’ll spend about $150 on average, and for a monthly rental you will spend around $500. Otherwise, if you rent a house here the classic way, you will need to sign up for a long-term rental contract, which will last for at least several months.
If you need to rent a house in Bolivia for a short time, like a few days or weeks, the best and less expensive option is to just search for rental properties on Airbnb.
2) With worldwide well-known realtors that work in Bolivia
If you are planning to stay in Bolivia for a long time, for a few months or even more than a year, your best and less costly option is to rent a house by going through the classic way, which is finding a good realtor that will handle the procedure for you.
But we encourage you not to hire any real estate realtor available in Bolivia. You should only hire a real estate agent or realtor that is well-known because there are a lot of real estate scams in our country. Then, our best advice for you is to just hire a real estate agent from ReMax and Century 21, both companies operate in Bolivia, with around 3,000 listings at any given moment.
As you may know, these companies are worldwide well-known for being great at providing realtor services, both companies are quite reputable, and safe and they guarantee good services.
Also, both companies work here with the same standards as in other countries, so you can rely on them to find a property available for rent in Bolivia, and also to do the rental paperwork with them. Both companies are generally prepared to handle clients from overseas, as they work worldwide and their agents are prepared for this situation.
You can search for rental properties available in Bolivia that ReMax is listing here:
You can search for rental properties available in Bolivia that Century 21 is listing here:
To rent a property with these companies, just call the agent that has listed the home for rent. Many agents will be able to talk with you, or else, you can search for the owner of the franchise in which the listing is. The agents of both companies will assist you with the paperwork to get the rental. For the details of the paperwork, you can visit our dedicated guide: How to rent a house in Bolivia? Steps and precautions.
If you’re planning to live in Bolivia for a few months or more, your best and cheaper option is to rent a house with the assistance of ReMax and Century 21 realtor companies.
Here in Bolivia, you’ll find good houses for rent that are similar to the ones existing in developed countries for about $500 a month for a 2-bedroom unit and around $800 a month for a 4-bedroom unit. Remember that these properties need to be rented for at least a few months and you’ll need to sign a rental contract with a public notary.
3) With local well-known realtors
Although this option is available, we deeply don’t recommend you go this way. Most of the local Realtors are not capable of handling foreign clients. And something even worse, some of them may be scammers who may try to deceive you.
We only recommend you to work with ReMax or Century 21, but anyway, there are actually 3 companies that may handle you as a client in a good way:
- Firma Propiedades (only for La Paz city).
- Servial Inmobiliaria (only for Cochabamba city).
- UNO Corporación (only for Santa Cruz city).
Anyway, we don’t think these companies are capable of meeting all your requirements, they only attend to Bolivian clients and on a local basis, each company for each city. But you can try to find properties for rent, and rent them, with the help of these realtors if you want and if you know what you’re doing.
4) With Bolivian real estate directories and newspapers
You can also find properties for rent in Bolivia in the same way as Bolivians do, by looking into newspaper listings and real estate online directories.
But we don’t recommend you go this way, many scams and bad people are behind the listings, also almost all of the listing owners are not waiting for foreigners to knock on their doors, instead, they are waiting to deal with Bolivians. Furthermore, usually, you are not going to find better offers than if you were just with ReMax and Century 21.
You can go this way only if you know what you are doing and are aware of how things work in this country, how to deal with Bolivian people, how to do the rental paperwork, how to hire good Bolivian lawyers (difficult, some of them are risky and may try to deceive or scam you) and similar skills and things.
Anyways, below we list the most important newspapers and real estate online directories that you can use in Bolivia:
- Ultracasas.com (generally only real estate realtors and agents publish here and the houses for sale listed are located in the best neighborhoods of Bolivia. Be careful, some of these people and companies are scammers).
- InfoCasas.com (the same as the above option, but with less inventory and fewer properties listed, also, the vast majority of these people are not used to dealing with foreigners).
- El Deber newspaper (only for Santa Cruz city, you’ll find hundreds of homes for rent inside the city, but most of these properties will be located in poor and bad zones of the city. Also, anyone can at least here, it’s like Craigslist, but with more risk).
- El Diario newspaper (only for La Paz city, the same as the one before anyone, but for La Paz, anyone can list here and there is more risk for foreigners, also many properties inside bad neighborhoods).
- Los Tiempos newspaper (only for Cochabamba city, the same as the 2 ones before, there is more risk than Craigslist for foreigners and not savvy Bolivians).
We encourage you not to use this way to find a house for rent in Bolivia. In most cases, you won’t really find way better deals than if you were just hiring ReMax and Century 21, and you will be exposed to the risk of scams, overpriced offers, and difficult paperwork.
5) With Facebook Marketplace
Recently this social network has turned into the first way for Bolivians to advertise their properties for rent, through its Facebook Marketplace space, where you can find endless listings (but also a lot of scammers).
This is the first choice for average Bolivians to list their homes for rent, because it’s free to use and very easy and fast to use, and the inventory there is so large that main newspapers only have around 10% of all the rentals listed in Facebook Marketplace.
So, if you want to see almost any house currently available to rent in Bolivia, just go to Facebook Marketplace, but also be very careful because many scammers are operating here, and also owners behind the listings are not expecting to deal with or to be contacted by foreigners.
To use Facebook Marketplace to find houses for rent in Bolivia, simply follow the next steps:
- Go to the Facebook app or website, on your device:
- Or you can just type Marketplace in the Facebook app.
- Go to the real estate for rent section.
- Use the proper location filter to target Bolivia and its cities.
- Use subsequent filters to refine your search for homes for rent within the country.
- That’s all.
You’ll find almost all properties available for rent in Bolivia there, but very little information about each one, and also many scammers and false lists. So, be cautious with all of this.
6) By physically finding the houses for rent
This is a more reliable option than the above 2 ones, because in most cases, by searching for for-rent banners inside neighborhoods, you’ll find real people with real properties available for rent. But even for Bolivians this is an uncommon way and can be a good option only in certain situations.
In Bolivia, people are not used to seeing foreigners searching for houses available for rent on the streets. This is an almost non-existent behavior here. So, in some areas and neighborhoods, by doing this, you’ll very quickly become the target of robbers and burglars.
Be careful with this danger and only search homes for rent this way if you know what you’re doing!
Comparing the different ways to find houses for rent in Bolivia
You’re coming for a short period of time
If you are coming to Bolivia for a short period, by far the best option, and from our point of view, the only option you have, is to find a house for rent with the use of Airbnb.
We argue this because, for example, if you rent a house for 3 months using the normal rental procedure in Bolivia, you will end up spending between $1,500 and $2,000, and you’ll use it for only days or weeks, wasting your money. And you’ll need to also furnish the whole property.
Instead of this, if you use Airbnb to find your house, you can get great deals for around $30-$50 a night, also, many rentals and hosts will be comparable to first-world properties.
If you are coming for a long period of time
But if you are coming to Bolivia to live for a few months or more, you have another option which is renting a house in the normal or classic way.
This way is by hiring Realtors like ReMax or Century 21. With this option you’ll find just a little bit less expensive deals, getting pretty good houses for around $500 a month. But you will need to sign up a rental contract with a local public notary that will last for at least several months.
Furthermore, you’ll need to fully furnish the whole house, unlike what happens with Airbnb, where everything is ready to use.
Anyways, by renting a house in Bolivia the classic way, you can have more options in other places of Bolivian cities and other neighborhoods. Also, you can be more in touch with Bolivian people and other zones that are not commonly habited by foreigners.
Except for Airbnb, ReMax, and Century 21, there’s a high risk of scams to consider
In regards to using other ways more than ReMax, Century 21, or Airbnb, like Facebook Marketplace, local newspapers, or real estate local directories, it’s not recommended in almost any case for tourists and recently arrived expats. There are lots of bad people and scammers behind these listings and it’s not a controlled environment like in the first options mentioned.
Also, local real estate agents, local realtors companies, and local homeowners are not accustomed to dealing with foreigners, and in many cases, they’ll also try to overprice the rent or put you in trouble with misleading rental contracts and similar situations.
And lastly, by searching for homes for rent just by walking inside neighborhoods and zones of the country, you’ll put yourself at a high risk of becoming the target of thieves who are always searching for foreigners who are not conscious of the hidden risks around. We don’t recommend this option at all, even for Bolivians it’s rare to do this.
In this guide about how to find houses for rent in Bolivia, you’ve seen that there are 6 different main ways to accomplish this task, for both short and long rentals.
You now know that for short-term rentals your best option is Airbnb, because it has a wide inventory of around 5,000 houses, is less expensive, and is a worldwide well-known company that can ensure your safety, also having good homes for rent and hosts. On the other hand, for long-term rentals, your options are Airbnb, ReMax, and Century 21, because these companies ensure the best prices and safety in the rental process.
Also, you now are aware of the risks involved when you choose other options than these 3 companies. With local realtors, online local real estate directories, local newspapers, and Facebook Marketplace, you risk yourself the possibility of scams, bad realtor services, and overpriced rentals, and is not recommended for tourists and recently arrived expats.
Furthermore, just walking around in search of houses for rent, puts you at risk of becoming the target of thieves, and this is not a common behavior even for Bolivian people.
Finally, you know now that you will find great 2-bedroom units for around $500 a month whether you use Airbnb, ReMax, or Century 21, with Airbnb being a little bit more costly, also 4-bedroom units will be about $800 a month. These houses will be comparable to decent properties in developed countries, and with Airbnb, you’ll get the home fully furnished.
We hope this information has helped you, and if you want to know how to rent a house in our country, with all the details and steps, for either Airbnb or other options, visit our dedicated guide: How to rent a house in Bolivia? All the steps, paperwork, and risks.
BolivianExperts.com, information about how to live, work, invest, and travel in Bolivia.