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Buying Property in Mexico

If you plan to buy property in Mexico it is very important you receive as much information as possible to be well informed in making your decision. Below are some introductory guidelines that can be useful:

Property in Mexico

Financing your Mexican Property

Mexican Law: Property ownership

Ejido (Agricultural) Lands

The Role of the Notary Public in Mexico

Costs and Taxes

Important! The information in this section is provided for outline guidance only. Information, figures and rates change without notice. For updated information please contact us through our Contact Page.
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Property in Mexico
This introductory guide assumes that you are considering the purchase of land or property in Mexico.

Buying property in Mexico, whether it is land, a serviced apartment or a house, can offer good value for money in comparison to prices in the US and Europe. Although, prices in some areas have increased dramatically in recent years, care should be taken in assessing a property’s true value; Mexico’s land costs can be lower, building and maintenance is cheaper and cost of ownership (taxes, utilities) is very low.

The reasons to buy property in Mexico come down to a personal choice, and depend on your individual circumstances. Perhaps you will be living in Mexico for some years and you see long term rental as ‘wasted’ money, or perhaps you’re looking for an overseas property investment that will surrender a rental income, while providing you with a place to stay on a holiday visit…

Property value in México increases year-to-year, as they do in most places. And as with all property, the relative value and appeal of land or property in Mexico comes down to the “Location, Location, Location” factor.

Another important factor to consider when buying property in Mexico is the developed state of local and surrounding infrastructure in the location you are looking at. Not all areas are well developed, and property prices will be cheaper in those that are not. However if, for example, a high speed road is built connecting a previously ‘remote’ location to other, better developed places, you may see a property investment in that area increase substantially. México is a vast country – at nearly 2 million square kilometers – and not all of it is easily accessible. Road infrastructure is improving every year, with most major places now adequately connected, and work continues to connect the more remote areas, but this will take time.

If you’re considering the purchase of property in Baja California Sur you have come to the right professionals. Thousands and thousands of foreigners have successfully purchased land and property in Mexico, there is no reason why you should not become one of them if you want to.


Financing Your Mexican Property Investment
Historically and in many cases today, most property/real-estate deals in México are cash only. Mexican Banks are now beginning to offer mortgage products for the purchase of real-estate in Mexico, although 30-40% deposits are required and interest rates are not as attractive as those in the US, Canada and Europe.

There are some banks in the US who are now offering mortgages on Mexican Property, but they are usually offered on the back of equity built up in a property in the USA and the rates are higher on the additional loan amount, to reflect the additional risk. Many Americans HAVE mortgaged a house in México using this financial vehicle so it is possible.

Financing inside México is still difficult and relatively expensive, so if you plan to buy real-estate in México you will be well advised to have your own foreign funding available; either through an equity-release scheme or other fund. Some people who are planning to retire to México will sell their house in their home country and use the proceeds to finance property in México; those who want to keep a ‘base back home’ may release equity from their existing home, rent it out, and use the dual proceeds to fund their retirement home in México.

If you are looking for financing for U.S. or Canadian citizens feel free to take a look at this financing link below:

Finance North America

Real Estate Lending for U.S. and Canadian Citizens

Telephone from US/Canada 1-866-Yes-4Mex (1-866-937-4639)

This applies to finished homes

See also: Payment for your property investment, later on this page


Mexican Law: Property Ownership

Mexican Law provides for private ownership of land by foreigners, its laws are very specific about the way in which land rights should be transferred from seller to buyer, and also what type of lands are and are not eligible for public ownership. A Notary Public (see below) will guide you through these details, but generally:

Property may be purchased and owned outright for residential use by foreign nationals outside of the 100km restricted land border zone, or outside of the 50km coastal zone.

Inside of the restricted border/coastal zones, foreign nationals may own land through a fidecomiso (a trust) which is set up through a bank and provides for ownership of the land and property in all but name.
The Mexican Constitution previously banned foreign nationals from owning property that was within the restricted border zones. This old law was intended to protect Mexican soil from foreign invasion.

Because the Constitution cannot be altered in this respect, the Government introduced a system of land trusts, so that foreign nationals could invest in property inside of the ‘restricted’ zones. So now, if you as a foreigner, want to buy a dream home with a Pacific beach view, you can, except that it will be by means of a trust, set up through one of the main banks in México.

The trust holds the deeds to the property, and you and/or other named persons which you specify are sole beneficiaries to the trust (and therefore the property). You have full rights to do whatever you like with your property: it can be developed (in accordance with local planning regulations), rented, leased, sold, or given away. In other words, you own the property in all but name.

The trust enables you to name a beneficiary upon your death, and you do not need to have a Mexican Will in order for your wishes regarding the trust to be executed.

You do not have to be a resident of México to own property there, so there is no need to qualify for resident status under immigration laws in order to have a property investment in México.

Mexican Law on property ownership is comprehensive and provides protection for the seller and the buyer in all property transactions, provided that the law is followed, and you ensure that all necessary documentation is present and that the procedures are adhered to. Your Notary Public (see below) is an important person in this process, and he/she will guide you.

Title Insurance in México:

When you buy real estate in México, you would do well to consider taking out Title Insurance on the property. Title Insurance covers you, should the property you buy subsequently turn out to have liens associated with it. This is especially relevant if the property you are buying has been privatized, having previously been classified as being “Ejido” lands (see below), but even if this is not the case, Title Insurance will protect you if any other previously unforeseen lien or charge is brought against the property before you took possession of the Title Deed. Rates for Title Insurance are around US$5-US$5.50 per US$1,000 of the property’s value; pay-able once only at the point of purchase. If you need more information we will advise you further about Title Insurance.

For more security in your real estate transactions in Mexico please contact Stewart Title Baja and Stewart Title Los Cabos


Ejido (Agricultural) Lands
Ejido lands have a long history in how they came into being. Essentially, they are similar to “commons land”; after the revolution, communities and peasants were handed strips of land, in the main, to grow crops on, and they are called “Ejidos”. You CAN buy Ejido land, but the sale requires the agreement of the whole community that ‘own’ it, the process is arduous and risky. Some big property developers may negotiate to buy a big plot of Ejido land, with a view to “fractionalizing” it (usually introducing mains water, sewerage and electric to the land as well), to develop property and/or to sell off the individual plots to small property investors. Under these schemes, the land is often re-classified and made available for private ownership. The process is usually undertaken by professionals who understand Mexican property law intimately and can from a year to several years. The current advice is: double check to make sure that the land you are buying is not Ejido land and if it is, avoid it.

Note: It is advisable to purchase Title Insurance if the property you are purchasing is ex-ejido land (although regardless of the type of property, Title Insurance is a shrewd investment). Read more about Title Insurance under the heading of Title Insurance, above.


The Role of the Notary Public in México

The Notary Public is the most important person you will deal with when you make a property investment in México. Do not confuse the role of the Notary Public in the US or UK with its counterpart in México: In México, The Notary Public has the power to witness and certify important business documents which require absolute authenticity. The appointment also holds responsibility for the management and secure storage of original records. Notary Publics must be Mexicans of at least 35 year in age, they must have a degree in Law, have 3 years work experience at a Notary Public office and they must pass a stringent exam. Those who pass, in time, are appointed as Notary Public by the State Governor.

Under Mexican Law, the deed to the property must be prepared by a Notary Public. As a buyer, it is your right to choose the Notary Public, and it should be your first port of call – or second after your lawyer.

The Notary Public will ensure that all documentation and permits are in order so that the transaction can proceed.

Everything official to do with your transaction should be done via the Notary Public: We will be happy to contact you with a Notary Public of your choice.

Costs and Taxes

When you buy property in your home country, you are usually faced with the associated costs like agent fees and taxes. México is no different, although the net value of these costs as a percentage of the property values may be lower overall, but this is not guaranteed as professional fees have risen recently also.

Costs and Taxes: Buying

Acquisition Tax: This Tax is paid on the sale value of the property and is equivalent to about 2%. This tax is paid whether the property is sold, transferred, donated, placed into trust, split off or merged.

VAT (Sales Tax): No Value Added Tax (Sales Tax) is payable on residential property. Commercial Property transactions are liable to VAT at the current rate in addition to the Acquisitions Tax.

Appraisal Tax: The Tax Authority may choose to perform a commercial appraisal of the property after you purchase it. If the appraisal value is more greater than 10% of the price you paid for it, you will be asked to pay 20% tax on the difference between the two amounts. This sum is due within 15 days of the date of the appraisal report.

Registry Fee: In order to have the Public Records updated, a 1.3% fee (based on the value of the transaction) is paid by the buyer.

Public Notary Fees: You will be required to pay fees for services provided by the Notary Public. These are about 1.5% of the transaction value, plus the cost of the official appraisal (as described in Valuation section, for tax purposes)

Bank Trust: If you purchase property within the 50/100km restricted zones, you will need a bank to set up and manage a trust for you. Shop around, as prices vary from Bank to Bank. Set-up fees can cost up to US$750, with annual service charges between US$300-US$500. The annual service fee will cover legal obligations (e.g. the filing of necessary documents annually) by the bank on your behalf.

Lawyer / Attorney Fees: If you hire a lawyer / attorney, you will also need to pay him/her with fees for services they undertake on your behalf. These should be negotiated in advance.

Land / Building Surveys: If you need to undertake any land or building surveys, these will have to be paid for separately. Cost will depend on type, extent and complexity of surveys undertaken.

Foreign Office Permit: Your permit from the Mexican foreign office will cost around US$150.

Service Fees: If you are buying a house in a gated community, or an apartment, be sure to check on the annual service fees, and have these put in writing. Service fees can range from US$100 a year to US$1000 a year, depending on location, number of houses or apartments in the enclosure and amenities offered.

Title Insurance: When you buy property in México, you would do well to consider purchasing Title Insurance. Rates are based on the sale value of the property and are charged at around US$5-US$5.50 per US$1,000 of the value. More Information about Title Insurance.

Learn How To Build Hovercraft Models For A Science Project

Every year your science class teacher would probably ask you to build something out of the principles being imparted in class. So your school comes up with an annual science project. The objective of science projects is to be able to clearly display the principles of a particular branch in this course. So you came up with an idea to build hovercraft models using the applications of physics.

Physics is one the major branches of science that when expanded reveals countless applications. From engineering to simple daily occurrences, this is one of the favorite discussions in a science class. The hovercraft, although not commonly used in urban transportation means, is a perfect example. And so you’re off to a good start.

What you need is to know the materials you could use. Understanding how to build hovercraft vehicles is the same with any vessel of this type. To come up with one for your project is simply improvising the materials and bringing the applied science to its miniature version. As mentioned, the objective is to show the principles.

Here are the basic things you will need:

1. Platform – You can use a wooden disk about the size of a manhole cover. You want a science project that is portable and easy to carry. So keep the size handy. This is probably the biggest in your hovercraft project.

2. Leaf blower or vacuum cleaner – You will use this to supply air flow into your platform. You may use any other gadget as long as you can put the air flow in reverse but this is the easiest to find. Your build hovercraft model must follow the air cushion system of the actual hovercraft.

3. Bendable plastic sheet – This will act as your craft’s improvised skirt. The skirt is supposed to trap air below your platform. When doing so, it builds pressure and thus creates a cushion of air. Because of the plastic sheet’s elastic properties, it will only allow limited air to disperse out of its contained space.

4. Fasteners – Use fasteners such as bolts and nuts to fasten all these materials together.

5. A detailed illustration of your science project hovercraft – To do this, you need to check on other hovercraft kits. Learn the principles. The components should be similar to the materials you have. For example, the fanning system in actual hovercrafts is represented by your leaf blower. The hovercraft hull is you platform disk and so on.

All these things above you will need for the project. Your hovercraft project should be able to carry a real person. Of course you can’t guarantee it could carry anyone who is heavier than you. Use your weight as a basis. That is why the platform is suggested to be the size of a manhole cover for this purpose. Last but not least, remember to always pay attention to you science teacher in class.

Bollard Posts – The Low-Tech and Economical Way to Protect Buildings, Equipment, and Personnel

What happens if a forklift backs into your building? Imagine the damage! Read on to find out how this sort of thing can easily be prevented.

Heavy equipment can cause heavy damage. Fortunately, such damage can be prevented by the strategic use of bollard posts.

Bollard posts? They’re posts made out of steel that can be placed anywhere where you need to create a safety zone. Such a zone could be set up to protect work areas as well as buildings and equipment.

Should a vehicle back into a bollard post protected area, it will hit the posts rather than the building or the equipment. This will prevent the equipment or the building from being damaged.

But that’s only half the story. Sure, structural damage is bad enough. But real catastrophe can lurk just around the corner. Bollard posts are even more crucial for protecting areas where flammable materials, batteries, and machines are stored. If a vehicle were to crash into a flammable materials storage area, any “structural” damage might be the least of your problems.

So bollard posts are an excellent way to prevent property damage and worse. In fact, they’re also very economical, especially if you consider the cost of the kind of potential damage that they can prevent.

The posts themselves are made out of 1/4″ thick steel and they are mounted on steel plates that are 3/8″ inches thick. They also are easy to install since the plates have pre-drilled holes.

They are easy to see as well since they have a bright yellow baked on powder coating. For a greater degree of security, they can also be filled with cement. All you have to do is to remove the black high density polyethylene caps and fill cement into the hollow posts.

They come in various sizes. There are round posts with a diameter of 4, 5, or 6 inches, as well as square posts. They also come in several heights, from 24 inches to 42 inches.