Mexico is a huge country with a friendly population, gorgeous natural landscapes and a growing economy. It makes sense to invest in this area, and buying land in Mexico for residential or business purposes is a wonderful idea. However, you may wonder can Americans buy property in Mexico and what the rules and process are. Buying real estate in Mexico is actually as simple and straightforward is the process for buying land in America. With a closer look at what you can expect and how to buy land in Mexico, you may be ready to jump right into the process.

Mexican landscape

Image Source: DepositPhotos

Buying Land in Mexico

If you are wondering can Americans buy property in Mexico, you are not alone. Many foreigners are interested in taking advantage of all that Mexico has to offer through a land purchase. The good news is that Americans and all other foreigners are legally permitted to buy land in Mexico. However, you may want to know more about Mexican real estate laws before you move forward with your plans for buying land in Mexico.

Who Can Buy Land in Mexico?

At one time, the Mexican government expressly forbid any foreigners from buying land in Mexico. The reason behind this previous logic was that they did not want to deal with a possible foreign invasion if many foreigners purchased land in Mexico. However, the rules have changed over the years, and foreigners can now freely purchase land in Mexico in most areas of the country.

How Much Is Land in Mexico?

If you are interested in learning how much is land in Mexico, you may not be surprised to learn that there is not a clear cut answer to this question. There are many vast, desert-like areas of Mexico that have little appeal to most Mexicans or even to foreigners because of how remote they are. These parcels of land may sell for only a few hundred dollars per acre in U.S. dollars or less.

Other areas are well-developed and close to attractions or cities. These more desirable parcels of land may sell for many thousands of dollars per acre or more. You will need to determine your budget before your start buying land in Mexico, and your budget may dictate where and how much land you can buy.

Are There Special Mexican Property Laws You Should Know About?

There are special Mexican property laws that you should learn about when buying land in Mexico. The most significant law relates to the restricted zone. The government has created a restricted area that spans 50 kilometers from the coast or beach and 100 kilometers from any foreign border. This restricted zone is off-limits for foreign buyers. However, you may be able to request an exception from the government to purchase land in this area. The exception process can be complicated, and you may want to work with an experienced real estate professional to generate the best results.

mexico restricteed zone immigrants

Illustration showing the restricted zone in Mexico. Source:

How Can Americans Buy Land in a Restricted Area?

Many Americans who want to know how to buy land in Mexico are interested in buying land in a restricted area. For example, buying commercial land close to the U.S. border gives you all of the benefits of doing business in Mexico while minimizing shipping costs to American buyers. Many residential land buyers want to buy a house on the beach to enjoy a laid-back lifestyle.
If you want to buy land in a restricted area, you will need to set up a trust with a Mexican bank. There is an annual fee for the trust, and the foreign owner will need to renew the trust within a specified number of years.

How Can You Finance a Land Purchase in Mexico?

Because of the increased popularity with foreigners interested in buying land in Mexico, there are now many cross-border loan programs available. These include loan programs for land, second homes, primary homes and more. You may need to put down 20 percent or more on the property, but the underwriting guidelines are fairly simple. You may also pay cash for your land in Mexico. Because some plots of land are very affordable, a cash transaction may be the easiest solution available.

What Is the Process for Buying Land in Mexico?

If you are new to the land buying process in Mexico, you may not know what to expect. There are two primary steps in the closing process. The first is to make an offer on the land and to enter into a sales contract with the seller. You typically will need to pay your full down payment amount to the seller at this time. This may be as much as 10 to 40 percent of the sales price. Keep in mind that there is not an earnest money deposit option in Mexico, so obtaining this money back from a seller if the deal falls through can be challenging. The next step is to sign all of the necessary transaction documents that convey title to the new buyer. If there is a loan in place, you will also need to walk through the loan process with your lender.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know more about buying land in this beautiful country, you may be eager to find the ideal plot to purchase. It is wise to make a list of must-have features for your land, such as a view, utilities in place, convenience to a city or town and more. Then, you can work with a real estate agent. The agent can help you to find the ideal land to purchase that is priced within your budget.

With how affordable land in Mexico is, it makes sense to explore the real estate options in this country. Whether you are buying land in Mexico for residential or commercial purposes, consider working with local real estate experts to enjoy a faster and easier overall process.

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