All about facturas

by linda neil 


Miscellaneous information for new property owners   

The Baja Peninsula is a place of incredible natural beauty; wonderful mountains, delightful beaches, lots of good activities.  
You have wonderful properties to select from and capable real estate professionals to guide you.
It is Easy to fall in love!!

Once the ink is dry on the deed, you may have some questions and concerns.  Let’s talk about those questions and concerns.


Lets begin with a three minute history lesson

In Mexico, five major civilizations flourished and waned over a period of 3000 years.   They were the Olmec, the Maya, the Toltec, the Purepecha and the Aztec-

These indigenous peoples developed new systems of writing, mathematics, trade, astronomy, city planning and religion.

The remains of these civilizations are found throughout Mexico in places such as Chichen Itza, Teotihuacan, Palenque-   On the Baja Peninsula we have the fabled cave paintings of the Sierra of San Francisco.

After Columbus, Cortez arrived in Mexico and finally defeated the Aztec warriors in Tenochtitlan in 1512.   This lead to the control of what was referred to as New Spain by the Spanish rulers, for almost 300 years, until 1810.

The Spaniards brought their European political and economic system, as well as a European social structure.   Art, music, literature were imported and took hold in the colonial cities.

Indian culture was devastated in many areas.

During the colonial period “haciendas” were granted to the wealthy who were responsible for the welfare of the indigenous.   Communal lands were set aside and set the stage for the ejidal lands that came later. .

When Spain won against Napoleon in 1808, Mexico’s status was unclear and lead the way to a declaration of independence by the Mexican peoples.

The “Grito!” as it is known, “Viva Mexico!” was made on September 15, 1810 by Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla and triggered the revolution for independence which lasted until 1821

If you look at a map of old Mexico much of the west and southwest, including California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas…..all were once part of Mexico.

The Mexican American war took care of Texas, with it becoming an independent state, then later part of the U.S..

The Treaty of Guadalupe and the 1853 Gadsen purchase took care of the rest and completed the formalization of the border.

Does this clarify perhaps why Mexico has placed such protections and restrictions on its coastlines and borders?

Anyone born in the west or southwest before 1953 would have been Mexican from the beginning, if born 100 years earlier!

Article 27 of the Mexican Constitution of 1917 decrees that no foreign person may be registered as the owner of any real property that is located within the restricted zone.

This zone is an area 30 miles wide along the coastlines and 60 miles wide along the US and Guatamalan/Belize borders.    It covers 43% of the entire country! 

It includes our favorite beach cities such as Acapulco, Manzanillo, Mazatlan, Los Cabos and Cancun, and the entire Baja peninsula because it is so long and skinny!

The Mexican bank trust (fideicomiso) was established in 1972 as a way to avoid modifying the constitution and to avoid evasion of the law by putting their titles in the name of a Mexican citizen (prestanombre).

Naked title is held by a Mexican banking institution with the foreigner named as the beneficiary of the trust.  Under the trust contract the beneficiary may lease it, subdivide it, sell it, at any time, and receive the profits or rents from the property.  This is subject only to the zoning and permit law that any owner, foreign or national, must obey.   

The term of the trust contract is 50 years and can be renewed multiple times.   Basically, renewable in perpetuity!

Substitutes for the beneficial ownership can be named under established legal procedures and probate is not required if substitutes are named in deed.   This is a real advantage that helps to avoid probate and litigation in the Mexican courts.

About the author:

LINDA NEIL is the founder of The Settlement Company, which specializes in real estate transfers, escrows,and consultations.  Just added as a new service, Settlement will now prepare monthly tax declarations on rental properties, file them and perform additional essential landlord accounting services.

For reprints of this article or for further information on tax paying services, please contact The Settlement Company® at, and website: