Sabaneta – An Up and Coming Investment Opportunity in Medellín

Apartment buildings in Sabaneta

Some foreigners have started to discover Sabaneta, which is part of the Medellín metroplex located south of El Poblado and south of Envigado. Most foreigners owning property in Medellín call the upscale neighborhood of El Poblado as home but this is also where some of the most expensive real estate is located in the city. In Sabaneta, real estate can be a bargain in comparison, with the potential for faster appreciation.

Lifeafar (FARM), the largest foreign-owned real estate firm in Medellín, has recognized the potential in the up-and-coming area of Sabaneta and we plan to look at this area in more detail in a three-part series of articles.

Parque Principal SabanetaMore About Sabaneta

While El Poblado is a neighborhood of Medellín, Sabaneta is a separately administered city within the Medellín metro area. Sabaneta is smaller than El Poblado with a population of about 49,000, compared to a population of about 124,000 in El Poblado. However, Sabaneta in recent years has been growing much faster than El Poblado. Sabaneta has a total area of about 5.8 square miles, which is about 67% urban.

Sabaneta is primarily a residential community – you won’t yet find any hotels in Sabaneta like are found throughout El Poblado. In Sabaneta, you will find several neighborhoods similar to El Poblado with high-rise apartment buildings but they tend to be more spread out. Also in Sabaneta you can find some quiet streets lined with one-story, two-story and three-story attached homes that are more difficult to find in El Poblado.

From a location standpoint, Sabaneta is located directly south of Envigado and east of the Medellín river. Sabaneta has three Medellín metro stations serving the area:

  1. Itagüí station – located near the north-west corner of Sabaneta;
  2. Sabaneta station – located along the western border of Sabaneta within about a 10-minute walk from Parque Sabaneta; and
  3. La Estrella station – located further south along the western border of Sabaneta.

Mayorca mall in SabanetaSabaneta also has two shopping malls. Centro Comerical Aves Maria is located about a 5-minute walk from Parque Sabaneta. Also in the northwestern corner of Sabaneta is located Centro Comerical Mayorca, which is conveniently located next to the Itagüí metro station. Mayorca may be one of the most economical malls in Medellín with good prices and Mayorca is undergoing a major expansion that is planned to open next year.

With much of El Pobaldo built out, developers have started to focus their attention further south in Envigado and Sabaneta. Sabaneta has started to experience a construction boom with at least 50 new apartment buildings under construction in the area.

Apartment buildings in SabanetaThe Neighborhoods of Sabaneta

Sabaneta has 31 barrios (neighborhoods). Be careful of using Google Maps for Sabaneta as the area hasn’t yet been mapped correctly by Google. When looking at any neighborhoods in Colombia it is important to understand the estrato system. Residential properties in Colombia are ranked on a 1-6 socioeconomic scale (with 6 being the highest), which are known as estratos.

Understanding estratos are important, as this is a factor for housing costs and also for utilities. Households in lower estrato neighborhoods pay a lower rate for gas, electric, water and triple play TV/Internet/phone services.

El Poblado is primarily an estrato 6 neighborhood with 74% of the housing in El Poblado ranked as estrato 6.   In comparison, Sabaneta has a more even distribution of properties with 98% of housing in estrato 2-4 as seen in the following table:

Sabaneta EstratosThe higher estrato neighborhoods in Sabaneta tend to be neighborhoods such as Vegas de la Doctora, Lagos de la Doctora and Vegas de San Jose. However with a boom of apartment construction going on in Sabaneta neighborhood ratings can change quickly.

Aves Maria mall in SabanetaWhy Sabaneta?

Sabaneta is attractive for several reasons:

  • Many parts of Sabaneta are flat areas for walking and retirees, compared to the hilly El Poblado
  • 10 minutes on the metro to El Poblado
  • Several apartment buildings within walking distance to metro stations
  • Grocery stores within 10 minutes, including Exito and a new Euro (which opened in November 2014)
  • Several quiet neighborhoods: no bars or discos
  • One of the nicest parks in the Medellín metro: Parque Principal Sabaneta
  • Lower real estate costs than found in El Poblado
  • Established nightlife area away from residential areas
  • Selection of good restaurants in the area
  • Two modern shopping malls with movie theaters

This first part in a three-part series about Sabaneta serves as an introduction to Sabaneta. We will be looking at the lifestyle in Sabaneta as well as real estate costs in detail in two follow-on articles in this series.

Call Lifeafar at 305 393-8872 or 954 363-1169 or email [email protected] and the company will send you additional information.

4 thoughts on “Sabaneta – An Up and Coming Investment Opportunity in Medellín

  1. David Ursprung says:

    Sabaneta has been my home for almost 5 years. It’s also a great example of uncontrolled building with someone getting rich. When I moved here I could see mountains all around. Now I can see – nothing but other buildings. I hope I am wrong with my belief that the huge humber of people moving into Sabaneta will include residents of the not so desirable sort. I have seen almost no preparations of infrastructure. to handle what looks like a possible 4x jump in residents. Sabaneta appears to be a wannabe Poblado. But don’t take my word for it. Load your family car and come on for a tour, keeping in mind that 4 years ago there were only 2 buildings over 6 stories tall.

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