Frequently Asked Questions

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A few decades ago, the law did not allow foreigners of any kind to own property within 50 km of coastlines, the purpose of this law was to protect the sovereignty of Mexico by establishing a restricted zone. Today, the most common way to own residential property within Mexico’s coastline is through what is known as a trust.

When a foreigner buys a property outside the so-called restricted zone, which implies a distance of 100 km inside the country and 50 km from the coast, said person must only agree with the Mexican government, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, that is considered a national in relation to that acquisition. This process responds to what is known as the Calvo clause.

This type of trust is a contract between a person of Mexican nationality (physical or moral), a bank and a trustee.

The trust is totally secure and gives foreign individuals, corporations, and associations all rights of possession.

This zone is encompassed by a line 100 km away from the state border and 50 km from the coast, and foreigners are not allowed to buy properties within the zone as they are considered “crucial zones” due to previous foreign invasions. In 1973 the legislation allowed the opportunities for foreigners to buy real estate through a bank or corporate trust, which is valid for 50 years, renewable.


When a property is sold or rented, the issue of nationality is not really important, what matters is the concept of residence for tax purposes.

The lease of a property does not require a public deed before a notary, only the signing of a lease under conditions that protect the rights and obligations of the owner and the tenant.

If a foreigner wants to rent in the so-called ‘restricted zone’, they can do so without any problem since they are not acquiring direct ownership of the property, but only the use and enjoyment of that property.

You must obtain certificates of freedom from encumbrances, proof of no debt in fiscal matters, and a certificate of land use for your property.

Submit documents such as the property title, property bill, water bill, marriage certificate (when applicable), and appraisal (when applicable) to a notary public.

With all of the above, the notary executes the deed, and both the seller and the buyer pay their respective taxes.

If what is being sold is a house, the seller can exempt or pay the Income Tax (ISR), and whoever buys will pay their taxes for acquisition, rights, fees, and notary expenses, the value of which varies depending on the state.

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