The Restricted Zone
The Mexican Constitution regulates the ownership of land and establishes that "...in a zone of 100 kilometers along the border or 50 kilometers along the coast, a foreigner cannot acquire the direct ownership of the land...". These areas are known as the "Restricted or Prohibited Zones". Nevertheless, the latest Mexican Foreign Investment Law, which became law on December 28, 1993, makes the allowances mentioned above.
Real Estate Transactions in Mexico
Most real estate transactions are “opened” after a written offer to purchase is accepted by the seller and when a purchase-sale agreement (promissory contract) is signed by both parties. In most cases, a deposit is required by the broker in order to transmit the offer to the seller. In some areas it is common practice to deliver to the seller, as an advance payment, 20-50% (including the initial deposit) of the total price upon signing the purchase-sale agreement which should contain a penalty clause applicable in case there is a breach of contract by any of the parties. The Notario Publico will certify the signing of the escritura or official deed around the time the property is delivered. The buyer can also choose to purchase American Title insurance on their properties in Mexico, through companies like Stewart Title and First American Title.