How to Buy Property in Mexico As a Foreigner

Whether you’re looking for a vacation home or investment property, buying property in Mexico should be a fun, exciting and – perhaps most importantly – a stress-free experience. At Mexico Real Estate Solutions, we are dedicated to helping you navigate every step of the process to buy property in Mexico, and our laid-back approach means there will never be pressure on you to buy. We will help you find the perfect property for you and our main goal is to ensure you are happy and comfortable with the entire experience, from finding the best property in Mexico, to closing and beyond!

Buying Real Estate in Mexico: A Guide for Expats

It has never been easier for foreign buyers to buy a property in Mexico than it is right now, which means this is an ideal time to fulfill your dreams of owning a vacation home or buying real estate in paradise. In addition, it’s important to mention that the answer is a resounding Yes! Expats are permitted to legally buy real estate in Mexico, and foreign owners also get full protection under the law in all Mexico real estate transactions!

Here are some of our most commonly asked questions (with answers!) about how to buy a property in Mexico as a foreigner:

How Can Foreigners Buy Real Estate in Mexico?

As a foreign buyer, if you want to buy a property that lies within 50 miles of the coast (or border) you basically have two options: 

  1. You can buy via a Fideicomiso (Bank Trust)
  2. You can set up a Mexican corporation

What is a Fideicomiso? Do I Really Own the Property?

  • A fideicomiso is a type of living trust not a lease, wherein the bank serves as the trustee for you, the property owner. The buyer chooses the bank and always maintains complete control over the trust. Buyers can also name beneficiaries and are permitted to sell the property at any time.
  • Although guaranteed forever upon its creation, a fideicomiso is typically established for a period of 50 years and can be renewed at any time.
  • Fideicomisos typically have a yearly fee that is payable to the bank for serving as trustee.

Can I Buy a Property With a Mexican Corporation?

  • If you are looking for multiple properties that will generate ongoing income (return on investment), or if you plan to buy and sell raw land, you may choose to open a Mexican corporation to hold the assets. We can help you decide if this route makes sense, and if it does, we can also guide you through each step of the process.
Our real estate agent, Mike Burgoyne, touring a client

Who are the 4 key parties Involved in the Mexico Real Estate Sale and Buying Process?

  1. Real Estate Agent: We are your first point of contact when looking to buy a property in Mexico. Our responsibilities are very similar to those of Real Estate Agents back home, but there are also a few minor differences that we will be happy to discuss, and our experienced team of agents are all well qualified to help you through every step of this exciting process!
  2. English Speaking Mexican Attorney : We always recommend our clients use a trusted English speaking Mexican attorney when buying property in Mexico. It is the attorney’s job to represent you as a buyer and protect your interests throughout the sale process. The attorney will also be in charge of drafting and reviewing all contracts involved with the real estate purchase. At Mexico Real Estate Solutions, we have established long-term relationships and only work with the most reputable firms.
  3. Bank: When buying with a Fideicomiso, the bank you choose to hold the trust will guarantee that the closing is both legal and appropriate under the law. The bank will also review all documents prior to closing, and their name and information will be included on the property deed alongside the buyers, providing another layer of protection. It’s also important to point out that a bank trustee is prohibited by law in Mexico from transferring ownership of the property, changing beneficiaries or modifying the trust without written instructions from you, the buyer.
  4. Notary: A notary is responsible for many aspects of the sale process, including the authentication of legal documents. Notaries handle all real estate transactions in Mexico, so property sales that are not approved by a notary and recorded properly in the Public Registry are considered invalid and therefore not enforceable under Mexican law.

How Much Are Closing Costs in Mexico?

  • Closing costs in Mexico real estate transactions typically include taxes, notary fees, attorney fees, the fideicomiso, escrow and government fees. In Mexico, the closing costs generally add up to about 5%-9% of the property’s value.

How Much Are Property Taxes in Mexico?

  • Low property taxes are one of the reasons so many expats wind up buying property in Mexico. Buyers can expect to pay approximately 0.1% of the property’s value in taxes on a yearly basis, so if a property is worth $250,000 USD, the  yearly taxes would be around $250.00 USD! The government also encourages people to pay early, so if you pay the annual property taxes in December for the following tax year, you can save about 25%!

The attorneys we work with, act as a one-stop shop and will look after everything for you. So if the process sounds like a lot, it is. But don’t worry, you are in good hands, we/they will look after everything for you, if you let us!

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