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Our First Trip to Ajijic

"After long hours on the internet searching for a foreign place to retire, we found a great week long retirement seminar in Ajijic. So we packed our bags and hoped to enlighten ourselves to prepare for the future retirement years."

Our hosts were wonderful, their accommodations, the best and we quickly became friends. They brought real estate agents and moving company personnel to speak to us. They took us to every grocery store in Ajijic, Chapala and some in Guadalajara. We went on house tours, and opened bank accounts and in the evening played games with friends of theirs. We were exhausted!. Never thinking we would actually buy a house, much less one that wasn’t even built, it was quite a surprise when we scrambled to sign papers hours before our flight home to the states. 2 days before our return, we had found a place that we couldn’t pass up,.

What had we done, we thought? Building a house by email! Holy Moly! But, I must say, it worked out perfectly. Our agent sent monthly photos of the progress and 9 months later, it was born and ready to stand on its own.

When it was time to return for the closing, my husband was unable to get away from work, so I asked my brother to go with me. He’s quite a hoot to say the least. He lives on the west coast and me in the Midwest so we met in Guadalajara. He has to record everything, so he always had a movie camera and tape recorder handy. Corny as it sounds, it was a good thing, since we both suffer from CRS disease.

We had only planned to stay 7 days, so that actually only gave us 5 days to have the walk thru and to sign the final papers. We had 2 walk throughs. The second one was to confirm any repairs that needed to be done. Our final papers were not ready to sign, so we had to extend our trip one more day. Not bad, although I was stressed to the max. My brother watched as I started to crumble, wondering what he could do. Thinking of more stress decisions, I thought it would be wise to have a will, so off to the lawyers. They told me that I couldn’t sign the deed myself and my husband needed to also sign. What? When did this happen. We were told otherwise. Knees were buckling by now, My husband could hear the frantic stress in my voice and emails, although I thought I could conceal it. Our agent kept saying the lawyer was incorrect and to not worry. I finally decided to trust my agent as he had never steered us wrong yet. And so what, if my husband needed to be there, then so be it, we’ll fly back later. Don’t worry about things you can do nothing about. It’s a good motto to live by.

The deed signing day came quickly. We all went to the notorio. I had my beneficiaries all chosen. We never had children, so our nieces and nephews were going to inherit our place if anything happened to us. The assistant had me sign the papers, then wisked them away to the notorio to sign. He comes back, No senora your beneficiary cannot be a niece or nephew. So I put my brother on the deed and off he goes again. Here he comes again. No senora, your brother cannot be a beneficiary either. Stress rising again. It had to be a blood relative or my husband. Well, I knew my parents had no interest, so my husband it is. This all transpired in Spanish, so it was all being translated by our agent. Here he comes back again, oh no….but this time it was time to sign the papers. Lord have mercy, our agent was a saint. We couldn’t understand a word of Spanish, so the deed had to be translated, line by line. I trusted him. I reasoned that I could be swindled in the US too. After the closing, the landowner was also there so we had photos taken together and he told us the history of the area and his plans for the future. It was quite an interesting experience and don’t regret a thing. We are happy to have our place in Ajijic and will be there before we know it. Until then, we will have to be content with visitors living in it until we arrive.

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