Hola! We are very excited to share with our friends, family and sphere that we are now landowners in the San Jose del Cabo area, specifically in Palmilla located in the Corridor between San Jose del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas in Mexico. We are fulfilling a dream of many years to have a place near the beach in a community we love. We have hired an architect and are meeting with them this month to start the vision of our new home. If you are interested in learning more, keep reading!

caleta loma

There are hurdles to buying and owning property in Mexico and to many, this is scary. We honestly looked at numerous locations, for many years, and kept being drawn back to this community for a number of reasons so we overcame the hurdles to own in this location.

Why San Jose del Cabo?

Why did we choose San Jose del Cabo? Here is the summarized laundry list:

  1. Same time zone
  2. One short flight – no connections
  3. Desert climate, next to the ocean (we don’t really love humidity)
  4. Different country with new customs, a different flair, different language, different food = adventure
  5. In the event of a zombie apocalypse in the U.S., we could drive there

But as I mentioned earlier, buying and owning property in Mexico is not as straightforward as in the United States.

Land Ownership

First, you don’t actually “own” the land in fee simple title like you do in the U.S. The Mexican government has a law that if you are not a citizen of Mexico, you cannot own property within 30 miles of the coastline. Instead, you lease it through a legal structure called a Fideicomiso. This lease structure lasts 50 years and is renewable with virtually no risk of nonrenewal. As an attorney and real estate professional I didn’t love this aspect of real estate ownership, but it’s the only option. The pros of living in Mexico outweighed the cons of this issue.

Financing

A second hurdle is financing. There really isn’t any. There are some Mexican banks who will loan to foreigners but the interest rate is above 10%. U.S. banks will not loan on Mexican property and I believe it is because the legal structure makes it very difficult to foreclose on a Mexican asset. Instead, many Americans use equity in property they own in the U.S. to purchase in Mexico. For us personally, purchasing land first and building later, gives us the time and control of our finances, rather than plunking down a chuck of cash at one time. And, we get to design exactly what we want.

Language

A third hurdle is the language. I’ve been casually studying Spanish for almost a year now, and still talk like a toddler. The good news is that many people speak great English in the area and we have found that the service providers in the real estate industry are fluent since most customers are English speakers. This doesn’t mean that I’m going to give up on my Spanish – I think living, even part time, in a different country, means you should do your best to speak the language. Even if it’s baby talk in the beginning.

We are now embarking on the creative design process of the house and meeting with our architects this week! Stay tuned to my blog for more photos and updates as this journey continues.

cabo
our new beach 2
Our new beach - we will be a short walk away
Our new beach
%d bloggers like this: