Below are a list of some frequently asked questions.
How do owners get around while staying at the Culinary Cottages?
Everyone is different. Some rent cars, others prefer taxis and some even purchase or bring down and keep their own vehicle here, for their use while they are here at the culinary cottages. Read more about Bringing your own vehicle down to Cabo here.
Do we have to "reserve", book or contact you before our stay?
No. But to make your arrival and stay the most pleasurable possible, please take a moment to complete the Arrival Notice in advance of your stay at the Culinary Cottages. We have found it best for you to complete the Arrival Notice after arranging your flight or transportation to Cabo.
When are my check in and out dates?
Your check in and out dates of your Use Weeks are listed in the Use Calendar. If you are unsure which weeks you own, please review your Purchase Agreement. Please remember the check in time is after 4pm and check out is before 11am.
Can I rent part or all of my Use Weeks?
Yes. You can rent it on your own and keep 100% of the rental. But if you do, please remember that you are not permitted to advertise rates lower than our online rates. If you do rent it on your own, please advise email@example.com. Alternatively, you can rent through us. If we rent it for you, you will keep 33% of our Direct In Advance Rates. For questions about renting, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can I trade my use weeks for other weeks?
Yes, based on availability. If you are interested in trading, please contact email@example.com.
Do you offer any referral incentives?
Yes. In fact, many of our owners have referred friends and family and the results have been successful. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can non-Mexican's own real estate in Mexico?
Absolutely! Ownership of real estate in Mexico is permitted with a Mexican land trust called a Fideicomiso (fee-day-coe-me-so). The trust has a term of 50 years and can be renewed in perpetuity to allow for long-term control of the asset and/or to will the land from generation to generation.
What is a Fidecomiso?
In the 'restricted zone' of Mexico (100 kilometers from the border and 50 kilometers from the coast) a foreigner may purchase real estate only by means of a Fideicomiso (fee-day-coe-me-so), commonly called a Trust. The Fideicomiso is a 50-year, renewable bank trust granting a foreign Buyer the right to use, enjoy, occupy, rent, sell or otherwise enjoy the property. The foreign Buyer is called the Beneficiary of the Trust. As the beneficiary, the owner retains all ownership rights and responsibilities to the property and have the right to sell, rent and/or will the property to heirs. Essentially, the beneficiary of the property enjoys all the rights as if the ownership were fee-simple.
Why is a Fidecomiso (trust) necessary?
In 1994, amendments to the Mexican Constitution permitted foreigners to purchase and own real estate in Mexico located within the "restricted zone" which is all land within 60 miles of a national border and within 30 miles of the Mexican Coast, which includes the majority of real estate in Los Cabos. This Law permitted ownership through a property trust or "Fideicomiso". The way the Fideicomiso works is the Mexican Government issues a permit to a Mexican Bank, allowing the bank to act as Trustee of the property, and the owner as the Beneficiary of the Trust. The beneficiary rights are very similar to Living Wills or Estate Trusts in the U.S.. The bank, as trustee, takes instructions only from the beneficiary of the trust (the foreign purchaser). The beneficiary has the right to use, enjoy, occupy, rent and sell the property. The beneficiary may also sell the rights and instruct the trustee to transfer title to a qualified owner.
What is the 50 or 100 year lease rumor about?
Pre-1994, it was challenging for foreigners to own land near the ocean in Mexico. At that time, it was common for foreigners to enter into Lease Options, structured as long-term renewable leases with options to purchase should the law permit —back then, it was hopeful that foreign ownership would be possible in the near future. Thus, novices will often think this is still the case, which simply is not true. Other novices refer to the current Fidecomiso or trust arrangement in Mexico as a lease agreement... but this is not true either. Upon closing, your fractional (or whole ownership) purchase of a Culinary Cottage will be processed through a Trust with you named as the beneficiary of the trust - you are not a lessee. Thus, you have all the rights that an owner of property in the U.S. or Canada has, including the right to enjoy the property, sell the property, rent the property, etc..
Can we change our ownership for something more, new or different after completing the Closing Process?
If you are considering the idea of exchanging your ownership to something different (perhaps property at our future beach communities), we recommended you consider putting off your closing. Once an owner completes the closing process and receives their deed, should they want to change their ownership it would involve transferring their deed back to Flora Investments and basically another round of closing costs, and delays due to the Closing Process. Flora recommends that if there is a chance you may upgrade or change your ownership in any way, that you do so before moving forward with the Closing Process.
Can you describe the Closing Process?
The following description of the Closing Process is subject to change without notice and at any time. You can close only if a.) You have paid your full Purchase Price and b.) The construction of the home you purchased is 100% completed. When you are ready to close, you will...
complete this form.
Within several weeks following the completion of the form, we will email you the following documents for your signature:
The Limited Power of Attorney (allowing our Closing Officer to process your deed on your behalf).
The KYC Fideicomiso document in order to set up your bank trust.
Once you receive the documents above, you will be required to...
Sign and initial each document where required.
Fax all pages to Laura Gonzalez at (310) 421-0099 or email scans of all pages to email@example.com.
The Mexican government are sticklers when it comes to document details. Your signature must match the signatures of your passports (100%) and all paperwork must be completed exactly as required. Once Laura receives your faxes or scans, she will review to make absolutely sure all was completed and signed properly.
Once you have Laura's approval, please visit your local notary and notarize the following:
Copy of your passport (the page and opposite page of your photo)
Copy of your drivers license (the page and opposite page of your photo)
Power of Attorney
KYC Fideicomiso document
Once the above documents have been notarized, send all documents to be Apostilled. The documents must be Appostilled and Notarized in the same state. Click here for a list of US State's Apostille Offices. If you live in another country, please contact your state, province or region for information on acquiring an Apostille.
When you receive your Apostilled documents, you will send them to us via FedEx, Priority USPS or UPS to: Flora Investments SA de CV, P.O. Box J253 511 E. San Ysidro Blvd., San Ysidro, CA 92173. Please allow several for the Culinary Cottages to physically receive your documents here in San Jose del Cabo, B.C.S. Mexico.
Once we have your documents in hand, we will confirm with you that we have received the documents and forward you an estimated total of your Closing Costs. You will be required to pay 75% of the estimated Closing Costs in order for us to begin the Closing Process.
The Closing Process will take between 90 and 180 days after you pay the Closing Costs deposit and Flora has received all properly completed necessary documents.
On the day that the title is signed by all parties; You (via your Closing Officer , Seller, Notary and Trustee Officer), your deed becomes officially and irrevocably transferred to you.
Immediately following the signing of the title, the Notary must record the newly transferred deed for public record. This process takes approximately 90 days after the Closing.
Once fully recorded in the local tax office and public registry, the Notary will prepare the final statements and submit a copy of the fully registered deed to your Closing Officer, who in turn will forward it to you.
Purchaser is financially responsible for any and all fees and expenses related to the above mentioned items, including but not limited to the sending, processing, re-sending and/or re-processing of new and/or additional documents required by the bank or government in regards to the Closing Process.
What are the closing costs?
Your closing costs are described within your Purchase Agreement.
When do I receive the deed to my purchase?
Following the Closing, the Notary must record the newly transferred deed for public record. This process takes approximately 90 days after the Closing. Once fully recorded in the local tax office and public registry, the Notary will prepare the final statements and submit a copy of the fully registered deed to your Closing Officer, who in turn will forward it to you.
Do I need to be physically present at the closing?
No. You will sign a Limited Power of Attorney, which will allow our Closing Officer to process your deed on your behalf.
What is an Apostille (as mentioned in the Closing Process)?
Since October 15, 1981, the United States has been part of the 1961 Hague Convention abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents. The Convention provides for the simplified certification of public (including notarized) documents to be used in countries that have joined the convention (see list of countries here: http://www.hcch.net/index_en.php?act=states.listing). Under the Hague Convention, signatory countries have agreed to recognize public documents issued by other signatory countries if those public documents are authenticated by the attachment of an internationally recognized form of authentication known as an "apostille." The apostille ensures that public documents issued in one signatory country will be recognized as valid in another signatory country. When a document is to be used in a foreign country, it may be necessary to authenticate the notarization or certification. Foreign countries often require documents to be authenticated before the documents will be accepted in the foreign jurisdiction. An "authentication" certifies the signature and the position of the official who has executed, issued or certified a copy of a document. The sole function of the apostille is to certify the authenticity of the signature on the document; the capacity in which the person signing the document acted; and the identity of any stamp or seal affixed to the document. The Apostille can be obtained by the Secretary of State of your state, which must be the same state as where you notarize the documents to be apostilled. Click here for a list of US State's Apostille Offices. If you live in another country, please contact your state, province or region for information on acquiring an Apostille.
What is the KYC Fideicomiso document (as mentioned in the Closing Process)?
KYC stands for "Know Your Client" and it is a legally required document which serves as your formal disclosure and promise to the bank holding the Fidecomiso, that the funds you are paying have been generated from legally documented sources.
Am I required to pay any annual taxes?
The only taxes due annually in Los Cabos are property taxes, or "Impuestos Prediales". These municipal taxes are included in your annual Maintenance Fee. See your Purchase Agreement for details.
How can I title my property?
You may title the property in any way property could be titled in the United States - in their individual name(s) (either via joint tenancy or tenants-in-common), an individual or family trust, an LLC or other US corporation or partnership, etc. This is a matter better determined by the Purchaser's United States legal or accounting advisors, as tax and legal consequences in Mexico are the same for a foreigner in Mexico regardless of how the property is titled.