The Expat Files: Living in Latin America A guide to moving to Latin America, finding work, and settling in.

May 31, 2013  
-People just won’t quit sending me emails about wanting to become expats in Mexico. Now I do understand that there are over 1 million US expats who have already moved there, but that in itself should tell you much about what you can expect and why Mexicans like gringos for all the wrong reasons- just because they see dollar signs.
-Expats or gringos that say they’ve found (or heard of) first-world-like, high-end sections of Mexico City.. . they talk of perfect places to live, safe parts of town that have charming colonial looks and all the amenities, etc., etc. Well yes, on the surface they’re right but any first world tenderfoots who gush about Mexico or Mexico City are unaware of the serious infrastructure problems (forget about the crime!) that are starting to affect everyone there… rich and poor. And here are some stories from expats who see the bad effects….
-Along with many many other problems, expats and gringos in Mexico are favorite targets for a number of clever scams going on right now. here are a few examples...
-A few words about those well known US real estate franchises that have landed in Latin America (you know who they are) that have a large presence in nearly every city here now. Buyer beware! You should never assume they are out to help you get the best deal. Here are a few examples of how carelessly they operate and how you can use them to find what you want without paying them a commission.
-How the massive gringo influx has turned most Mexican lawyers into blood sucking vultures. Good luck finding a decent Mexican lawyer who won’t try scamming gringos and expats somewhere along the way. Oh, I’m sure there are some decent shysters in a big country like Mexico…. but I just don’t know any.
-How the Mexican government milks gringo property owners. And yes, property taxes are dirt cheap there, but here’s the bad news about the new gringo real estate sales taxes on Mexican properties. Be prepared to pay about a 30% tax on the total sale, whereas the locals only have to ante up about 4% when they sell. So be prepared to bend over, and take it in the er, ...wallet.
-The upcoming Expat Wisdom “Latin American Insider Seminar” (well off the gringo tourist trail of course) will be Sunday, June 23, thru Friday, June 28… a full six days. Its 3/4 filled now so be be sure to go to and click on the seminar link for full details and the earlybird signup bonus…
-Follow the link on the main page at to schedule a private consultation with me. If you want to discuss the details of living, working, playing, doing business and/or retiring in Latin America, now you and I can talk about your situation one on one
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