A Quick Update

In 2010, we moved back to the small town in Colorado that I never stopped missing while we lived in Mexico. Now I sometimes miss Mexico, but I wouldn't travel as freely as we did when we were there, camping out in remote areas and so forth.

Mexico today is in a period of change, and in many ways it is more dangerous now. That said, I have plenty of American friends who still live there very happily, just taking a few more precautions than they did in the past.

Just to say!

Rosana

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February 5, 2006 —  We’ve been casually looking at real estate around Lake Chapala , but things took a dramatic turn when we fell in love with an amazing place. There was another offer coming in on it, so we decided on the spot to make an offer too. We made an offer a little above the asking price, and we got it… we didn’t tell many people till we found out that the seller had really signed the papers! We were able to make such a quick decision because if for any reason it doesn’t work out for us as a home, it would be a good investment in this market. It was well under $100,000 US, which is a great price in this region. Yes, that’s a swimming pool. Unheated, but Kelly has some solar heating ideas.

I’m not going to say a lot of specific details yet, not till it’s ours. It’s on the edge of a small town on Lake Chapala, about an hour by bus from Guadalajara, which is Mexico’s second largest city. It’s not far from Ajijic, an upscale town and the center of the large US and Canadian population around the lake — thousands of expats live “lakeside” in a variety of towns. So there’s an interesting blend of cultures here, and lots of amenities like good doctors and veterinarians who speak English, excellent restaurants, thrift stores, health food stores, etc.

The property is about 1/4 of an acre, gently sloping uphill from the entrance. It’s about 50 feet wide, so as you go uphill you pass through several areas, each with its own feeling. Gated parking is right at the entrance. And here’s the peekaboo view of the lake:

The inside part of the house is very tiny, only about 535 square feet, probably the main reason the price was so low. The place has been owned by one Guadalajara family for over 30 years, used as a weekend getaway mostly. The listing sounded like it had about 1100 square feet but they measure here from roof to roof so that includes the huge veranda where we’ll live a lot…

…and the gated “patio de servicio” where we’ll put a washing machine and yard tools.

We are very excited. The property should close pretty soon. Then we’ll change the locks, unload as much as we can from the motorhome, drive over to Bernal to visit friends there and to bring back the stuff in the house we had rented there, plus the cat. Then we will settle into living in our new little house and see what unfolds.

Of course, doing something like this raises lots of Big Questions about our future. The answer to all of them is that we don’t know yet!

7 Comments from the old blog:

  • At February 05, 2006 11:01 AM, Blogger BillieS said…

    Congratulations on home ownership. It is nice to have a place of your own that you can decorate and settle into. And to have room for a garden. Sounds like a very special find.

  • At February 05, 2006 11:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi Harts –
    Great about the new casa – as you write you really can’t lose on Mexican real estate. A new house is always exciting coming with ideas, anxieties, discovery and joy –
    Best of Luck
    John & Anita

  • At February 05, 2006 3:14 PM, Blogger Anrahyah said…

    Wow! This feels so right for you two. Funny how Kelly’s broken rib has been a precursor to this–almost as if he needed to be there.
    I love the feeling of this area for you. Am glad you have found a base.
    Can’t wait to come visit some day!
    hugs and lots of love,
    Anrahyah

  • At February 05, 2006 3:25 PM, Blogger Rosana Hart said…

    Thanks! Lots of room for gardening, easy to expand the house later if we want to… and best of all, there’s really nothing that urgently needs to be done to make it livable. Of course, I didn’t show the 70s kitchen…

    Rosana

  • At February 06, 2006 12:27 AM, Anonymous Curtis English said…

    You have a kitchen! The view is spectacular! I like the fact you are as close as you are to a metro. Your blog on health services, very helpful, thanks! I hope to be going back to Merida later this year. From the web pages looks like prices keep going up. Two of the properties I looked at are sold now. We shall see…I believe the right place will come my way too!
    Love;
    Curtis & Lisa

  • At March 25, 2006 8:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    My husband & I live in Bucerias, just north of Puerto Vallarta & are contemplating moving to the Lake Chapala area in the near future. Very interesting to read your blog – we intend to buy a house as well & plan to come to Ajijic over the Easter holidays to scout around. Keep up with the wonderful info. Linda

  • At March 26, 2006 3:18 PM, Blogger Rosana Hart said…

    Thanks, Linda! Nice to know that it helps others. I enjoy doing it.

    Rosana

2 Responses to “Buying a House with a View of Lake Chapala”

  • Anonymous says:

    Homes and around Lake Chapala is a beautiful, very affordable and the housing market is certainly one of the best in Mexico. There are hundreds of sites and cabins.

  • Rosana says:

    Due to the increasing violence around Mexico, including the Lake Chapala area, it is a buyers’ market at this time. I’m glad we sold our house a year ago.

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