Yes, foreigners may obtain direct ownership of property in the interior of Mexico. However, foreigners cannot own property outright within the restricted zone, which includes all of Mexico's coastlines. The good news is that foreign buyers can set up a real estate trust, known as "fideicomisos", in order to hold title on the property they want. Its important to note that a real estate trust is not a lease, and the beneficiary can instruct the bank to sell or lease the property at any time. So yes, you can buy your dream home now!
There are four players involved in any real estate transaction in the restricted zone (100 Kilometers from any coastline), and all four are helpful in their respective areas in assisting with real estate transactions.
It is easy to think that the basic terms and principles which are familiar in the United States and Canada also hold true in Mexico. A lot of the terminology used and the paperwork drawn up is similar. Although the transaction may look the same, it is in fact not and a foreigner should assume nothing.
For Mexican real estate transactions the buyer must retain professional assistance. A Mexican attorney should be involved to draw up contracts and to review the conditions and terms of sale. Additionally, it is recommended that buyers have their own attorney. Its important to also know that American attorneys are not licensed to practice law in Mexico and should not give advice on Mexican Law.
There is a misconception among foreigners investing in Mexico that once the trust expires, the beneficiary loses all rights and benefits of the sale of the property held in trust. On the contrary, the beneficiary has legal rights under the trust agreement with the Mexican bank to all benefits that may result from sale of that property. These rights are protected by NAFTA.
While there are many more legal details regarding the buying of your property in Mexico, we recommend contacting us to get professional advice and assistance. We are partnered with some of the top attorneys and most experienced and well known professionals in the area. Contact us to help you today!
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