Mexico is home to more than 6,000 miles of coastline, which means plenty of beautiful beaches and countless luxurious beach resorts. But those of us on a budget might be surprised to learn that Mexico real estate is also home to a number of inexpensive beach home destinations.
Whether you are looking for a new place to live full time, or just a great vacation home with amazing rental income potential, here are four of Mexico’s most affordable beach destinations:
1. Tulum and the Riviera Maya
Tulum has attracted the attention of major players such as Condé Nast Traveler, which recognized the growing city for having “The Most Beautiful Beaches in the World,” and Travel and Leisure, which recently called real estate here “A Gold Rush.” In addition, the Wall Street Journal named Tulum the “Hottest Section in Mexico,” and named it number three on its 2012 list of the “World’s Top 10 Retirement Havens.”
The reason for all of these accolades is simple: Tulum is one of those magical places that allows retirees to live the good life at a fraction of the cost of living in the U.S.,and also provides a quality of life that is well above average. You can still find a really nice home in Tulum for as little as $167,000, and English is commonly used throughout the region. Also, Tulum is located just two hours south of Cancun, and plans are currently in the works to break ground on a new international airport here as early as later this year.
2. The Yucatan Gulf Coast
With more than 50 miles of coastline that stretches both north and east of Merida on Mexico’s stunning Yucatan Peninsula, this region offers some of the best beachfront prices in Mexico. It is popular with both locals and expats, thanks to its wide variety of excellent properties and bargain prices. For example, you can find two and three bedroom homes here for as little as $80,000, located just a street or two from the beach. Condos are even more affordable, while larger homes run in the low $100,000s, and beachfront lots are often snapped up for as little as $50,000.
Rentals along the Yucatan’s Gulf coast start at around $500 and go up from there, depending on the property’s proximity to the beach and other amenities. Many of the towns along this coast still retain the look and feel of small fishing villages, where you can still purchase the day’s catch straight from the dock. However,Merida’s trendy shops, international airport and fabulous restaurants are close enough to provide easy access to all the modern conveniences you have been used to enjoying back home.
Located on Mexico’s Pacific coast, Mazatlan is the country’s oldest international beach resort and is also one of the most affordable. Home to a historic opera house and charming main square, this city is benefiting from a number of urban renewal projects and is home to a variety of chic new restaurants. With miles of beaches and its own international airport, Mazatlan has plenty to offer, including its own international airport and a historical town center that is a World Heritage site.
Expat numbers can reach as high as 9,000 during the winter months, but many expats also live here all year long in gorgeous gated communities or private residences. Small condos here run as low as $50,000, while villas and town houses in gated communities with pools and gardens can be found for around $150,000. There are also larger homes in upscale neighborhoods available here for between $200,000 and $300,000. Rentals in Mazatlan also do very well, bringing in anywhere from $400 to $1,000 a month.
Also located on Mexico’s Pacific coast, Manzanillo is one of the country’s busiest port cities and is home to miles of stunning beachfront property. The city is known for having an upbeat, laid-back attitude, with plenty of excellent seaside restaurants, a thriving downtown and its own international airport with plenty of easy flights to the U.S. English is commonly spoken here, and the number of full-time expats who choose to live in Manzanillo year round is growing.
Beachfront condos are easy to find here, and available for around $250,000 and up. If your budget would be more accommodating to a lower price range, there are also plenty of condos and town homes located one or two streets from the beach that are available for as little as $60,000. Single family homes a few blocks from the beach run upwards of $100,000, and rentals pull in around $650 per month, proving that a tight budget doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy all that Mexico’s beach towns have to offer.