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Forums  > Areas > Jalisco's Lake Chapala Region


briandear

Feb 18, 2013, 6:53 PM

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Moving, Leasing Questions

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Hi all!

First, I am excited to finally have joined the board.. My family and I will be heading to the area in mid-March and we're exceptionally excited. I've been lucky with my internet/software engineering work, so we're relocating down to the Chapala area and leaving the nonsense of the NYC area behind. Originally coming from Texas, I'm looking forward to escaping the ridiculousness of the Northeast! After the blizzard last week, I'm not going to miss shoveling snow and freezing!

A few questions:

1. My boy is 17 months old and my little girl is almost 3 months old, so we're curious how generally welcome the little ones are in the community. It seems that the majority of folks are retirees down there and while we're somewhat semi-retired, we're also fairly young (I'm 35 and my wife is 29.) I'm sure we'll have no problems fitting in, but I was just curious about how friendly the folks are down there. Based on this board, it seems like there's some really nice people and some folks that love their confrontations -- perhaps like anywhere else. Any thoughts?

2. We'll eventually buy a home, but in the meantime, we're going to be leasing. It seems that the "30 days notice in the event of a sale" is a pretty common condition of a lease in the Chapala area, however, I'm curious if that 30 day notice goes both ways. It seems a little strange that a landlord can kick someone out with 30 days notice in the event of a sale, yet the tenant is unable to have the same consideration. Or am I wrong?

Under US law, a sold home does not terminate a lease agreement, it's merely transferred to the new owners. Obviously, Mexico isn't the USA, but it would seem like a clause providing for a 30 day move out in the event of a sale really goes against the concept of a lease. It's more like a month-to-month rental. Do leases down there (especially with foreign owners) tend to have 2-way termination clauses, or is it only the landlord that gets early termination rights? We don't have any interest in terminating anything early, but as that sort of 1-way termination clause is invalid under US law, not to mention rather one-sided so we were interested what the prevailing wisdom is down there in Chapala. We just don't want to be subject to being kicked out with 30 days notice, yet we don't have the same rights as the landlord. Really, in my opinion, it seems kind of silly that a sold house somehow terminates an existing contract, which under US law, it wouldn't, but down there it seems like an exceptionally common situation.

Under Mexican law, a minimum lease term is one year and a time-limited contract can't be terminated unilaterally without the consent of the other party. So I'm wondering how it's possible for a lease to have these 30-day "in case we sell the house" clauses. I don't mind clauses, as long as they're 2-way and fair to both parties.

3. Are leases/rental contracts between foreigners down there typically done in accordance with Mexican contract law -- i.e. are the contracts properly notarized and in Spanish? Or, are the agreements typically "gentlemen's agreements" that circumvent the legalities? I hope it's the former.. It's always a good idea to be sure both parties are on the same page and in proper legal standing.

Anyway, thanks for any information. We're looking forward to meeting many of you and hopefully becoming a valued contributor to the community. I hope I didn't come off as too "legalistic" but since we've not dealt with property in that area, we just want to be sure we are clear on the way things work.

Thanks!

-
Brian



Axixic


Feb 19, 2013, 3:26 AM

Post #2 of 8 (3140 views)

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Re: [briandear] Moving, Leasing Questions

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http://goo.gl/xAf3 z
or
http://alturl.com/wdeus

Leasing laws start at TITULO SEXTO.

If a property is sold, it is the new owners decision to rent or not and there is a 30 day notice for sold property. The lease transfers to the new owner. If a current landlord wants you to move without cause, you must be given a 90 day notice.

The lease must be in Spanish with an English translation.

You must have a lease with original signatures. Do not take a copy.

A notary in Mexico is not the same as in the U.S. A Mexican notario is a specially trained lawyer who is appointed by a state's governor. You do not need a lease "notarized."

Mexican Landlord/Tenant law is more tenant friendly than in most U.S. states.


(This post was edited by Rolly on Feb 19, 2013, 7:23 AM)


suds

Feb 19, 2013, 3:38 PM

Post #3 of 8 (3070 views)

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Re: [briandear] Moving, Leasing Questions

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it's very simple. don't rent from a gringo who's house is for sale. why get yourself all in a tizzy about something that may or may not happen and leave your angst about us law vs, mexico law,etc. behind. give yourself enough time to find a rental other than from a real estate agency whose client may or may not be selling their house.
we own, but i have lot of friends who rent and when they get screwed they move. there are an infinite supply of rentals here of all stripes.


Axixic


Feb 19, 2013, 5:31 PM

Post #4 of 8 (3054 views)

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Re: [suds] Moving, Leasing Questions

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You don't always know if a landlord will decide to sell. I know people who rented and a year into the lease the landlord decided to sell the property.

Renters shouldn't get cheated out of anything if they read the law. The law is favorable to the tenant.


briandear

Feb 19, 2013, 8:49 PM

Post #5 of 8 (3034 views)

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Re: [suds] Moving, Leasing Questions

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It's not about getting in a tizzy. It's about understanding the application of the law. Most people don't even understand their home country's laws and then act surprised when it goes against their expectations.

I'm certain that you wouldn't enter into any contract without a full understanding of the environment within which you were operating.


Axixic


Feb 20, 2013, 5:03 AM

Post #6 of 8 (3012 views)

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Re: [briandear] Moving, Leasing Questions

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Very true and that is why people should read the laws that affect them.

Here very few landlords know the Jalisco Landlord/Tenant laws so it is a good idea for the tenant to know his rights to be able to protect himself. There are too many tenants who get abused by unscrupulous landlords.


Vichil

Feb 20, 2013, 7:08 AM

Post #7 of 8 (2996 views)

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Re: [Axixic] Moving, Leasing Questions

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In chiapas I was told by attorneys that the original signature has to be witnessed by two people as well, no needto notorize it. I do not know if the law is the same here but having a couple of witnesses canot hurt.


Axixic


Feb 20, 2013, 10:03 AM

Post #8 of 8 (2972 views)

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Re: [Vichil] Moving, Leasing Questions

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Right, you need witnesses' signatures. Make sure they sign as witnesses and not as the guarantors of the lease. That has happened.

The procedures are in contract law probably the Mexican version of a Civil Practices and Remedies section. I haven't looked it up.

There are all kinds of gotchas, like taxes being paid to Hacienda (IRS) on the rent. Most foreign landlords do not have permission to earn money in Mexico and they do not pay taxes. I've heard that if a landlord is not living in Mexico, the tenant can be responsible for paying the tax which can be 25% to 40% of the rent but I've never heard of that being enforced against anyone. If you have a foreign landlord who violates the lease, and it can happen, you can ask the landlord if he has paid his taxes to Hacienda. That usually solves any problems.
 
 
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