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Rick Stone

Mexico
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Expertise

I am a full time real estate professional with five years experience in the Cabo San Lucas area. I work with Century 21 and prior to relocating had been involved with RE/MAX in Virginia/Washington DC, my Brokers license remains current in Virginia. Working with Century 21 Paradise Properties in town and having a friend who is CEO of a local Title Company, provides me with unlimited access to resources allowing me to address most questions pertaining to the process of home ownership. I am involved in assisting clients to buy and/or sell properties, investing or developing raw land or building a home in the Baja or 'Restricted Zone' as it is called. My service area ranges between La Paz (our Capital) to Cabo San Lucas. Other areas including but not limited to are Los Barilles, the East Cape, Todos Santos and San Jose. I have worked with a high end custom builder as well as our office also being affiliated with one of the highest regarded ones in the area.

Experience in the area

Our market is currently experiencing fall out from the US situation resulting in Owners finally becomming reasonable in pricing. 95% of all properties in Mexico were aquired with cash as lending did not arrive until late 2006 along with third party escrow and US title insurance. Foreigners may own property in Mexico in both zones, The Unrestricted and the Restricted. In the Unrestricted Zone, you may own property outright as in the US under Fee Simple Title. Here in the Restricted Zone (such as we have here in Cabo San Lucas and all of the Baja Pennisula) land that falls within 50 km. from the ocean or 100 km. from the borders is owned by a Bank trust or 'Fedeicomiso'. The Trust is established by the Mexican Gov't. and gives foreigners the same rights of ownership as Mexican citizens. The bank holds the fee simple title in trust for the purchaser. Under a bank trust the beneficiary (Buyer) has all the right to buy, sell, lease, bequeath, improve, transfer and encumber. This trust is established with a Mexican bank (Trustee) for the period of 50 years and is renewable for another in perpituity. The cost runs between 150 - 400 USD per year for the bank to maintain the trust. You do not have to have a Mexican Partner. Property can be owned 100% either as an individual or under a corperation as long as it's use is non-residential. Taxes are very reasonable, a typical 500,000 USD property has taxes just under 500. USD per year. The process is similar to that in the US, closing costs run between 8 - 10 % of the purchase price. Closing takes from 60 -120 days subject to either cash or financed transaction and if any holidays fall within that time frame.

Organizations

NAR - US Assoc. of REALTORS AMPI - Mexican Assoc. of REALTORS I am very active on LinkedIn.com and a number of their groups.

Publications

Before I moved to Mexico, I was one of the top rated real estate Experts (buying / selling) on this site for many years.

Education/Credentials

Current licensed Broker in Virginia CRB, Council of Real Estate Brokers, GRI, graduate REALTORS Institute I have also achieved but as I no longer practice in the US, no longer a dues paying member the following NAR designations, CRS, Certified Residential Specialist ABR, Accredited Buyer Representative

Awards and Honors

I guess being in this business for almost 15 years must say something about my dedication ans success. Working in the Washington DC metro area for over 10 years with every other client a lawyer, and never being in court, must say something about my ethics and knowledge.

Past/Present Clients

Upon request.

What do you like about this subject?

Living and working in real estate in one of the world's most desirable resort and retirement destinations, as unofficially called, the playground of the rich and famous. My satisfaction is helping someone become an owner of a beach front home for their family or company and it's employees. What better pleasure could one ask for?

What do you still hope to achieve/learn in this field?

Improving my 'Spanglish'.

Something interesting about this subject that others may not know:

Foreigners may own real estate in Mexico without a Mexican partner.

Something controversial or provocative about this subject

The drug violence you read, see and hear about is far, far away from us down in the south of Baja. We have only two roads into our area, both have police / military stops to ensure 'the bad guys' don't visit us. My wife, an ex well known fashion model from Europe, says she feels safer here than back at home.

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