Today, I am going to cover a topic that many expats have told me they wish they knew before moving to Mexico.
And that is How Realtors in Mexico Work?
You see, Mexico doesn’t have a centralized real estate system like the MLS in the U.S. or Canada. So most realtors will only show you houses they are managing. And it makes total sense. They get a commission from the homeowner when that house gets rented. So they’re not going to work for free.
Nothing new there.
But working with the right real estate agent can make all the difference when you want a large inventory of rentals available.
The right real estate agent is going to work hard to get rentals they can manage and ultimately rent out to you. The right real estate agent will have a good inventory of rentals in different budgets to accommodate different people.
Another thing you should know about realtors in Mexico is that not all of them focus on rentals. Some realtors prefer to only focus on sales. And It is important to understand that the real estate industry in Mexico is not regulated in the same way as it is in the United States or Canada. So, anyone can call themselves a realtor without needing a license.
How Do You Avoid Working With The Wrong Realtor?
Well, luckily you’ve got the internet.
Chances are if your real estate agent is legit, they will have an online presence. Do a Google search for their name and/or company. If you don’t find anything, chances are they aren’t really experts. Facebook is also a great tool to do a search for a person or company. And if they have good or bad reviews, you’ll be able to see this.
And finally, ask others who live in Mexico for their recommendations. Make a note of the recommendations people make about agents that they’ve worked with.
And if you like convenience, we’ve done a lot of this research for you so you don’t have to. If you want the full list of our vetted and recommended real estate agents in Mexico, check out our COMPLETE Mexico Relocation Online Guide.
Things to Watch Out For
Be careful if an agent asks you for money upfront before you find a rental. This isn’t common practice. A house hunter, who is not an agent, may ask you for money upfront. This is common. And that’s because they do the work upfront.
A real estate agent and a house hunter are very different people.
The main differences are: a real estate agent will show you only their inventory of homes for rent. They get paid by the landlord when the house gets rented. So you don’t pay anything for their service.
You just pay your rent and any deposits you agree on. Whereas a house hunter is a person who will look for rentals in your budget and your list of needs but you pay them for their service upfront. Additionally, they may charge to help you translate a contract from Spanish to English and to assist in any of the rental processes.
Both have their advantages.
In the video below, I cover the top questions you should ask when renting a house in Mexico. We’ve compiled this list of questions from years of experience of questions other expats wish they would’ve known to ask. You’ll feel much better about covering your bases when you know what to ask.
That way you are saved from the headaches of not knowing what to ask.