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home. I tried it two years, using a property manager and I got a bad renter one
year and only about a month of renters the next. Now I am content with a
Mexican house sitter that pays the utilities while I'm gone in exchange for the
free rent. He takes as good care of the house as I do. Another consideration is
that Uncle Sam wants his cut of rental profits. You should check with the IRS
before buying to rent a home.
Home financing
Like anywhere else in the world, most sellers want cash. There are, howev-
er, some sellers that, for their own reasons offer to carry a contract. Unlike in
the U.S., financial institutions are not interrupting your dinner with telephon-
ic sales pitches offering "rock bottom low" home mortgages. It is difficult, but
not impossible to acquire home loans, but don't expect the same percentage
rates enjoyed in the USA.
Home insurance
Home insurance companies are like any other insurance. You don't really
know if you need it until the disaster happens. I've been insurance poor all my
life, and will probably continue to be so until my next of kin collects all my life
insurance benefits. The good news is that because most of the houses are made
of bricks, concrete and stucco, there is little chance of a fire wiping you out.
The bad news is that Mazatlán lies in the path of hurricanes. You should also
consider accidents and thefts that could occur on your property. Further good
news is that the price of homeowner's insurance is less expensive in Mazatlán.
By now you should have gathered that I recommend insurance. Not to worry,
I'll also recommend an outstanding insurance agent.
Juan Fco. Chong Robles: An agent for Seguros Commercial America, one of
the biggest insurance companies in Mexico. His company also sells auto insur-
ance. I have purchased insurance from Juan since I bought our first home.
Although I have enjoyed the pleasure of not collecting on my policy, I have had
friends who have and vouch for his reliability and honesty. Once I bought car
insurance from him and prior to crossing into Mexico, my car was totaled.
Since I was never able to drive to Mexico, my money was promptly refunded.
He can be reached at 982-0260 or by email, juanchong@Mazatlá
Selling your home
What if you decide, for whatever reason, that it is time to sell your dream
house? The time to think about what it will take to sell it should be before and
during the time you are making the purchase. You will need your deed, either
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