Luxury homes now dot the coastline in Los Cabos, and a growing number of elite buyers want in on the upscale market. Buying a high-end home is a challenge in itself. Buying a high-end home in another country – that’s an even tougher task.
However, buyers looking for Los Cabos houses for sale can ease the process with the right people and the right preparations. To help, there are a series of steps elite buyers can follow to purchase their dream home along Baja’s southern-most shores.
Steps to take to buy a high-end home in Los Cabos
Long before you start browsing through Los Cabos houses for sale, there are a few things you should prepare. In many cases, the prep work takes longer than finding the home, but it’s necessary for a smooth buying process.
Here are ten steps for elite home buyers looking to buy real estate in Los Cabos:
1. Find a luxury real estate agent
Buying a luxury home requires an experienced real estate agent. You need someone who has experience dealing with high-valued homes and the negotiations that follow. Upscale real estate is a fairly small world, so most agents are found through referrals.
Keep in mind, real estate agents that deal with top-dollar properties sometimes specialize in specific kinds of properties like beach homes.
Before selecting an agent, talk with references and examine past sales, even if the realtor was referred to you by a close friend.
2. Get financials in order
To buy a luxury home, you have to prove you can afford it. You’ll need proper bank statements that provide financial proof before negotiations can start. Sellers’ agents will do their due diligence, so expect your finances to be combed through in detail.
Most upscale properties are cash deals. Sellers tend to get a little nervous if financing is needed, so aim for properties that fit within your liquid assets.
Consider transferring money into certain accounts for the transaction to take place.
You should also review the financial regulations in Mexico. Foreign buyers have to buy property through a bank trust called a fideicomisco. Alert your investment banker so the paperwork is on hand.
3. Make a list of wants
Before you tour Los Cabos houses for sale, make a list of priorities. Consider your family size, frequency of visits, hobbies, interests and must-have conveniences. Be as specific as you can. Consider things like privacy, design, location and more specific preferences like home automation, entertainment centers and outdoor kitchen space.
Your list should also include amenities that you’d like access to. There are many upscale homes in Los Cabos, but what sets them apart are the amenities offered. High-end developments in the area, especially along the newly developed East Cape region, offer beach clubs, super-yacht marinas, exclusive golf memberships and restaurants teeming with elite chefs.
4. Know the region
To buy a home in Los Cabos, you need an understanding of the region’s geography. Lost Cabos describes the two popular cities: Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. Many of the homes in the area sit along The Corridor, which is a 20-mile stretch in between the two cities.
Pockets of luxury homes are along The Corridor, but for a quieter, less developed spot look at homes in East Cape. This area extends several miles east of San Jose del Cabo along the Sea of Cortez, north to Punta Pescadero, Los Barriles and Rancho Buena Vista. It’s a calmer area, away from the hustle and bustle of The Corridor.
Take some time to tour each region before deciding where you want to reside.
5. Have your realtor compile a list of homes to tour
After reviewing your list of priorities and regional preferences, your realtor can generate a list of Los Cabos houses for sale. You can browse the internet to find homes that suit your needs, but the truth is, the high-end housing marketing in Los Cabos is fairly private.
Celebrity sellers value their privacy and are only interested in working with legitimate buyers. For that reason, many sellers won’t list their home on traditional online sites. Instead, agents have “pocket listings,” or listings they keep in their pocket for the right affluent buyer. Pocket listings are often marketed by word-of-mouth, which further supports the idea of working with an experienced real estate agent.
In addition, there are developments that offer customizable luxury homes that can be built to fit your specific needs. Realtors will know where look for these opportunities.
6. Tour homes, amenities and neighborhoods
Now comes the fun part, you get to tour homes. Walkthrough each home, compare it to your list of priorities and see which home is your perfect fit.
Don’t just tour homes though, explore the amenities too. Walk along the beach, hit a few golf balls at the exclusive course, and enjoy a meal or two at the on-site restaurants.
Take the time to explore the home’s surroundings as well. Does the home have adequate privacy? Are your neighbors close by? How populated is the neighborhood? What’s in store for the future of the area?
It’s a good idea to talk with locals and your realtor about future plans for the area. If a new development is planned that could block your view, for example, that’s something you’ll want to know before buying.
The neighborhood will also affect your resale value, something you should consider as you tour Los Cabos houses for sale.
7. Get an inspection
Once you’ve settled on a home, get it inspected. Don’t be blindsided by the opulent appearance of the home and assume it’s in pristine condition. There may be hidden problems that you need to know about before making an offer.
8. Make an offer and negotiate
After you find your new dream home, your real estate agent will put in an offer. Your agent will provide guidance on an offer price. In some cases, luxury homes have a firm price, while others have more flexibility.
The high-end market in Los Cabos is hot right now, which usually means offer prices must come close to or exceed the asking price. However, inventory in the high-end sector is fairly high too, so there may be room for negotiation.
Since you already have your finances in order, this process should be fairly quick. However, the process to buy a home in Mexico differs from that of the U.S, so there may be a few hiccups.
After the sale is complete, all that’s left is to move in. If you’re moving from the U.S. to Los Cabos, look for a moving company with experience in crossing the border. You’ll also want to coordinate the relocation of your boats and other water toys that complement the Cabo lifestyle.
10. Handle permits and visa
If your new Cabo home is a permanent residence, you’ll need to file for a permanent visa. In addition, all vehicles including boats, need proper permits. If your Cabo home is a vacation property, where you’ll only spend limited time, there’s different documentation needed. You can learn more about residency information after the purchase.
With these steps, you’ll be spending time poolside in your new luxury home in Cabo in no time.