Move To Mexico and Take Your Furniture
(7-2011 Update at end of article)
“My wife and I enjoy reading your info about Mexico. We are in the process of house hunting in Ensenada and would like to learn how to take our household goods (furniture, etc.) into Mexico when we move there. If you have any particular info about Ensenada and that area, we would appreciate that too.”
That’s a really good question.
This is a pretty long answer – but here ’tis:
IMPORT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS FOR HOLDERS OF FM3 OR FM2
You must use the importation without tax privilege within the first six months of your move to Mexico…AGAIN: All foreigners to Mexico who apply for and receive an FM3 permanent residence document are carefully instructed by the Mexican officials that the newly documented resident has the one-time right to import his used household furnishings to Mexico without the necessity of paying import duties.
All household goods must be inventoried. (An inventory should include: make, model and serial number for ALL electronic devices and electrical devises. You also want to list the estimated value – individually – for EVERYTHING. You may import a quantity of used items which would be appropriate for a normal household. WITHIN THE FIRST SIX MONTHS OF YOUR MOVE TO MEXICO. New appliances are prohibited.)
The list must be in Spanish, typed in single space on white paper, leaving a space of two inches from the top.
Each household item must be numbered progressively and on a separate line, beginning with the electrical appliances, specifying make, model and serial number (including kitchen appliances).
Small household articles packed in boxes or crates must be described and numbered in the list as one box (crate) containing clothing, kitchen utensils, etc.
Each page of your original list must be signed in blue ink on the bottom, right-hand corner.
The original list, and five copies, must be presented to the Consulate General to obtain your visa.
Take your original FM3 or FM2, and five copies of the page(s) where your personal date is located.
Make sure you take five copies of your complete, valid passport, the page with your personal data, picture and signature – everything.
You will then, pay the consular fee of $127.00 US dollars, either with cash or money order, payable to the Consulate General of Mexico. Personal checks and credit cards are not accepted.
Once the Mexican gov’t official receives all the requirements, it can take five business days to process your application.
You may either mail the above documents, or bring them in person. (Any thing you can do in person, we’d suggest you do – papers can get lost in the States, let alone in Mexico!) Make sure you take proof of U.S. residency, for the past two years when you go to the Consulate.
If you decide to mail your documents and want them mailed back, include a self-addressed prepaid envelope, completed FEDERAL EXPRESS or UPS. The Consulate does not assume any responsibility concerning mailed documents.
Consulate locations and info are listed on pages 67, 68, and 69 of Retire In Luxury.
If possible, get a minimum of three written relocation proposals from reputable household goods forwarders. Do this at least 30 days in advance of your planned move-out date. International moving estimates are NOT binding.
Within six months of obtaining your FM Visa, you are able to import used household goods and personal effects in quantities which would be considered normal for the number of family members in your household.
Prohibited. Furniture and especially electronics and appliances MUST have been in use for more than 6 months. Items deemed to be new may be subject to confiscation by Mexican customs officials and the owner may not get his furniture back until a substantial fine is paid. (Import taxes)
In my book, just to review: After you have decided to move to Mexico as a perpetual tourist, you will probably want to bring your household goods down…or just get rid of your stuff.
However, if you decide to keep your things:
Hire a shipping/moving company (there are several you can locate via internet who offer moving service to Mexico) or have a truck of your own.
Get your items inventoried.
Procure your FM-3.
Give your shipper the stamped inventories and a notarized (by Mexican Consulate) copy of your FM-3.
Then when your household goods show up at your new home, have cold drinks and snacks available to the workers.
It is wise to use someone you have received a personal reference from. Check on the chat sites where you’ve decided to move. Have every detail in black and white – with many copies available. Include price, exact performance such as packing, loading, unloading at your new home, dates, etc.
Dick and I felt it easier to
sell most of our household stuff
in the U.S., and just replace…we
planned to downsize a lot anyway
– who wants to clean and dust
“stuff” during retirement?!
Update, 7-2011: Taking Household into Mexico
If you are a FM3 holder, (as a retiree or profit activities) you are allowed to take your household into Mexico. You must provide a list of your belongings and have it stamped by the Mexican Consulate in order to be submitted through Mexican costumes. You have six months from the date your FM3 visa was issued in order to take your household into Mexico.
- Apply at the Consular Section in person from 8:30 am to 11:30 am, Monday through Friday.
- Valid passport in original and five photocopies of the pages containing personal information, photograph of bearer and expiration date/extensions.
- Original FM3 and five photocopies.
- Letter Requesting the household address to the Embassy Of México Consular Section
- Typed list of your household in Spanish, with original and four photocopies. Such list must specify:
- Address in USA indicating length of time you have lived there.
- New Address in Mexico.
- All the articles, including those contained in boxes. All electrical appliances must indicate brand, model and serial numbers.
- You must leave space for the Consular seal in the right bottom of each page.
- Each page must be signed by the applicant at the left bottom in front of the consular official.
- The fee is $127.00 dollars by cash.
- You are permitted to take your household only once in lifetime per family.
Best to you,
Household article by Barbie