Cabo San Lucas Real Estate
The restaurant at the Esperanza Resort

Can a US or American Citizen Buy a House in Cabo?

May 2, 2023 | By: Danielle Briones

Yes, a US citizen can buy a house in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. However, there are certain rules and regulations that must be followed when purchasing property in Mexico as a foreigner. Here, Cabo San Lucas realtor Jeff Schmidt clearly outlines if US American or other foreign citizens can buy property in Mexico.

Coastal and Border Areas

Foreigners are not allowed to own property directly within the “restricted zone,” which is an area that includes land within 50 km of the coast and 100 km of the country’s borders. However, there are ways to legally purchase property within this zone through a Mexican bank trust known as a fideicomiso.

What Is a Fideicomiso?

In Mexico, a fideicomiso is a trust agreement between a foreign buyer and a Mexican bank, in which the bank holds the legal title to the property on behalf of the foreigner. The bank acts as the trustee of the fideicomiso, and the foreign buyer is the beneficiary of the trust.

How Safe Is a Fideicomiso?

The bank cannot treat the trust-held property as an asset of the bank. During this time, the foreign buyer has all the rights of ownership, including the ability to sell, lease, improve, and transfer the property to a designated beneficiary.

Are There Limits to How Long I Can Own Property in Cabo?

The fideicomiso lasts for 50 years and can be renewed indefinitely. The fideicomiso arrangement is a common way for foreigners to purchase real estate in Mexico and is considered a safe and secure way to own property in the country.

Can a Foreigner Own Ejido Land in Mexico?

As a general rule, it is not advisable for Americans or other foreigners to purchase ejido land in Mexico. Ejido land is communal land that is owned collectively by a group of people known as ejidatarios, who have certain rights to use the land but do not have full ownership of it.

Under Mexican law, ejido land is subject to restrictions on its sale, transfer, and use. The Mexican Constitution prohibits the sale of ejido land to foreigners, and the process of converting ejido land to private property can be complex and time-consuming.

Furthermore, ejido land can be subject to legal disputes and conflicting claims of ownership, which can make it difficult for a foreign buyer to establish clear title to the property.

Therefore, it is generally recommended that Americans and other foreigners avoid purchasing ejido land in Mexico and instead focus on purchasing property through other means, such as a fideicomiso or a Mexican corporation.

Contact Jeff Schmidt

Jeff SchmidtIf you have any questions about purchasing property in Cabo San Lucas or the surrounding Los Cabos area, contact Jeff Schmidt today. Jeff can walk you through the buying process so you feel secure and safe in purchasing your exciting new investment in Mexico.

(408) 607-8349 (U.S.)
(624) 165-9553 (Mex)


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