Frequently Asked Questions about buying property in Mexico
When deciding to buy property in any foreign country, you will obviously have a ton of questions before you actually get out there to look. If you aren’t sure the right questions to ask when looking in Mexico, this guide can help you in the process. As with any property you are considering, it’s important to know what you are looking for but more importantly, it’s important to understand the laws in the country you are looking to purchase in.
Can foreigners buy real estate in Mexico?
Absolutely. A person of any nationality is able to legally buy real estate in Mexico. Foreigners can also own property along the oceanfront. By Mexican law, properties within 50km of any oceanfront and 100km of any country border are acquired via a bank trust (Fideicomiso) or via the establishment of a Mexican Corporation.
Why are their restricted areas to foreigners?
Following a history of invasions, wars, and losses of territory, Article 27 of the Mexican Constitution was created in 1917 to protect Mexico from foreign intervention and invasion. The purpose was to stop foreign interests from purchasing strategic coastal and border areas of the country. While today the risk of foreign attack is low, this law remains a founding chapter in the Mexican Constitution.
Today, the restricted zone is merely a legacy of Mexican culture and history. It is not a ploy to stop foreigners from investing in Mexico. Mexico’s Foreign Investment Law (enacted December 28, 1993) was created to protect foreigner rights in the restricted zone and ensure the safe and legal acquisition of real estate.
What is a Fideicomiso?
A fideicomiso is a trust agreement created for the benefit of the foreign buyer, executed between a Mexican bank and the seller of property in the Restricted Zone. Since foreign buyers do not have the capacity to enter into a normal real estate sales contract in this restricted zone, the bank acts on their behalf. The bank, as trustee, buys the property for the foreigner and has a fiduciary obligation to follow instructions given by the beneficiary. The beneficiary of the trust retains and enjoys all the rights of ownership while the bank holds title to the property. A Fideicomiso takes 15 days to one month to set up.
What kind of visas are in Mexico?
There are two: visitor and resident visas.
I am a retiree and want to live in Mexico, what visa should I apply for?
You can apply for a temporary or permanent visa. Temporary allows you to stay more than 180 days up to 4 years. Permanent is a definitive visa.
I want to work in Mexico, where should I request a permit?
Your employer should start the process with the Immigration Department in Mexico and then you have to apply at the Mexican Consulate in your country to obtain the visa. You will get your card in Mexico.
Is it possible to become a Mexican citizen?
You can become a Mexican citizen and there are different ways to do it. You can become a citizen if your residence is here, if you have children born in Mexico, marry a Mexican citizen, are a direct descendant of a Mexican citizen by birth, are a natural of a Latin-American country or Iberian Peninsula, have an adoptive son or daughter of Mexican citizenship under your custody or for the rendering of services or performance of outstanding works in the culture, social, scientific, technology, artistic, sports or business field that benefit the country.
If you are still unsure about what you need to do to buy property in Mexico, the experienced staff at Merida Property Management can help you. Reach out to them today!