Buying in Mexico

Buying real estate in San Carlos is a very easy process when you work with people who know what they are doing. Just as with purchasing property from your home country there is a process and when the process is followed you can expect a smooth transaction. Utilizing the services of trusted professionals at every point during the transaction will make for a pleasant experience.

The following information is provided for your education and so that you will understand the process as you begin your home buying search.


#1. Mexican Government
In the 1970’s the Government of Mexico enacted a law whereby foreigners could buy land in the previously restricted coastal and border areas. This law states that property may be purchased by foreigners utilizing a Bank Trust Deed, known as a Fedeicomiso. This law honors the Mexican Constitution, which previously denied ownership to foreigners in these specific geographical zones; encourages foreign investment which benefits the Mexican economy; and provides the foreign buyer an opportunity to own property in Mexico’s coastal resort with legal mechanisms in place.

#2. Bank (Trustee)
The Bank acts as the Trustee of your property however, the Bank does not own your property, nor does the Bank count your property among its assets. Although the Bank’s name is listed as the Trustee of the property, the Bank is virtually the keeper of the paperwork with no rights to your property.

#3. You (Beneficiary)
You are listed as the Beneficiary on the Bank Trust Deed and as such, you retain and enjoy all the rights of ownership while the Bank acts as Trustee.  The Beneficiary (you) can instruct the bank to sell the property at any time.  As primary Beneficiary of the Trust, you have essentially all the rights of fee-simple ownership, including the right to name heirs to your property.  Under Mexican law, the Bank, as Trustee, has a fiduciary obligation to respect the rights of the Beneficiary, You.

Process: Parties Involved

#1. Licensed Broker & Agent

Effective 2006, the State of Sonora enacted Law 150 which states that all real estate agents must attend a licensing course for realtors and obtain certification. It is imperative that you work with a licensed realtor in order to ensure that NAR/AMPI Code of Ethics are adhered to throughout the purchasing process.

#2. Your Attorney

It is imperative that an attorney review the seller’s documents to make sure that everything is in order and that all of your legal questions are answered. We are fortunate to have several qualified attorneys in San Carlos to perform this service for you. The lawyer or the paralegal in the law office will also generate all the documents necessary for the submission to the Bank for the trust.

#3. The Notario

A Notario is a lawyer who has been appointed by the Government to handle all real estate transactions. In fact, no real estate transactions occur without the services of the Notario. The fees for the Notario are included in your closing fees.

#4. The Bank

Once the property closing has occurred your paperwork is sent to the Bank for purposes of creating the trust. The time frame for receiving your final trust document depends on the bank involved and how efficient they are in their trust departments. However, once the closing has occurred you are considered the legal beneficiary of the property.