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Tips for Buying Property in Mexico As a Foreigner

Buying property in Mexico has never been easier, or offered better return on investment, making right now an ideal time to fulfill lifelong dreams of owning a vacation home close to the best beaches in the world. Investors from around the world are permitted to legally buy property in Mexico, and foreigners also get full protection under the law when it comes to Mexico real estate transactions.

Tip 1: Residency Requirements & Property Ownership

In Mexico, the residency requirements and property ownership rules for foreigners to invest in real estate and/or obtain citizenship are simple and straightforward, intended to encourage people from around the world to come and participate in everything Mexico has to offer.

Do I need to be Mexican citizen to own property?

No! You definitely do not have to be a citizen of Mexico in order to buy property anywhere in the country. In fact, buying real estate in Mexico has never been easier or more straightforward than it is today, and millions of people from all over the world have successfully bought and sold property over the last few decades, often earning incredible return on investment (ROI) in the process. And since you don’t have to be a resident in Mexico to own property here, there is no need to immigrate or even qualify for resident status in order to invest in real estate. Still, it’s important to note that the Mexican Constitution does have certain requirements that apply to foreigners who own land inside the “Restricted Zone” (more on this below). For properties located within the restricted zone, foreign buyers must simply use a bank trust known as a fideicomiso, wherein the bank acts as a trustee by holding the deed for the purchaser, who retains all legal rights of ownership. As with all other real estate transactions in Mexico, those involving properties held in a fideicomiso are governed by federal law.


What and Where is the Restricted Zone in Mexico? According to the Mexican constitution, the Restricted Zone includes property within 64 miles of any international border and within 32 miles of the coast.

Tip 2: Finding a Mexico Real Estate Investment Advisor

Buying a home in a foreign country is one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll ever make, so it’s key to find the right person to represent your interests, get the best deal and secure the highest return on investment. RE/MAX is a trusted brand worldwide that is dedicated to maintaining the highest standards. Let our experience be your guide, we are here for You.

What Do Real Estate Consultants Do?

First and foremost, working with an experienced real estate professional can save you time and unnecessary fees. In addition, he or she can answer any questions you might have about owning real estate in Mexico, and will guide you thorough every step of the process, from helping you find the perfect property to suit your individual needs, to getting you the best possible price and making sure all of the required paperwork is in order prior to closing. 

Do You Really Need a Buyer’s Agent?

Working with an experienced buyer’s agent is an essential part of buying real estate in Mexico, because they are totally dedicated to getting you the very best price on every transaction. In fact, working with a buyer’s agent can result in considerable savings (an average of at least 10 percent), and – perhaps best of all – you never have to pay them a dime for their services, because all of the commissions are paid by the seller!

Generally speaking, it’s always a good idea to work with a trusted real estate investment advisor who can locate the best turnkey vacation rentals, luxury condos and/or standalone villas to suit your unique circumstances. Using an experienced real estate investment advisor will make the entire process go smoothly and can even give the buyer access to investment properties that are not yet publicly listed, and therefore offer incredible value.

Tip 3. Choosing the Right Property

The most important thing you can do if you’re serious about investing in Mexico real estate is make sure you choose the right property to suit your needs, whether that means you need to earn rental income for retirement, or are looking for a private vacation home to enjoy with friends and family.

How to choose the right real estate property?

The best way to find the right type of investment property for your situation is to start by deciding exactly how the property will be used. This is another reason it’s so important to work closely with a respected real estate agent you can trust, who knows the area and can help you figure out what kind of returns you will receive, both from appreciation and/or rental income.  Of course, finding a great investment property in a fantastic location is just as important as understanding the rules of buying and working with an experienced real estate agent. Look for luxury condos designed to function as turnkey vacation rentals in top destinations if you want to avoid maintenance headaches, collect ongoing investment income and obtain great return on investment. Right now, Mexico’s real estate market offers better value than comparable vacation hotspots worldwide, with vacation home rentals beating much of the stock market and providing some amazing annual returns.

Things to Consider when Choosing the Right Property:

1. Decide the purpose of the property: Investment or pleasure?

2. Location matters, so look for real estate located in the path of growth.

3. Find an experienced local real estate agent you can trust.

Tip 4: Consider Buying with an IRA Account 

Buying real estate with your IRA account is a great way to use retirement savings to earn tax-deferred income and provide a hedge against inflation, as well as essential portfolio diversification and protection from the endless volatility of stocks, bonds and mutual funds. 

 Can I buy real estate with my IRA? 

 Yes, you can buy real estate in your IRA, Roth IRA, or other retirement account! To buy an investment property with your IRA, you must set up a self-directed account and any real estate you buy must be used strictly for investment purposes. You may want to consult your CPA for additional details.

 If I buy a property with my IRA, can I live there? 

 Generally the property is considered an investment property and can not be used as your primary residence, most investors use it as a vacation rental when purchased using an IRA account.

Still, it is perfectly legal to buy real estate with an IRA account, provided you follow the Self-Directed IRA rules laid out by the IRS. The benefits of this type of real estate investing include the ability to collect ongoing tax-deferred rental income to support retirement and give your financial portfolio a hedge against inflation at the same time, since real estate rises in value (appreciates). Income-producing real estate investments also protect your hard-earned assets from ongoing stock market volatility, which analysts expect will continue and increase unchecked periodically with little warning for investors.

 Why Haven’t I heard of This Before?

 Many investors still don’t realize they can invest in real estate using money an IRA retirement account simply because it’s harder for banks and stock brokers to make money this way, so most investment advisors will steer you toward stocks, bonds and mutual funds that pay easy commissions instead.