The many visas relevant to Mexican immigration are described and their significance for Mexican residents is explained in this FAQ. It also details the steps necessary to acquire Mexican real estate ownership.
What is an FMT?
An FMT, or tourist visa, will be issued to you upon entry into Mexico, allowing you to stay for up to 180 days. It refreshes by periodically departing and returning to Mexico.
What is an FM3?
This visa is for those who want to spend some time in Mexico each year but aren’t ready to settle there permanently. You need to show that you can support yourself financially or that you meet other requirements to legally operate or run a business in Mexico in order to be granted FM3 status.
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What is an FM3 Rentista?
In order to qualify as an FM3 Rentista, your monthly take-home pay (including pensions, interest, social security, and other forms of retirement income) must be less than $1,000, and the take-home pay of each dependent must be less than $500. When you own property in Mexico, you can get the minimum annual income down to nearly nothing.
What is an FM2?
It is not necessary to hold an FM3 for a predetermined amount of time before requesting an FM2 for either an FMT or an FM3. If you have been working as an FM2 and have fulfilled all of your responsibilities for five years, you may apply for permanent residency. Your rights as a resident of Mexico will be substantially similar to those of a Mexican citizen, with the main exception being the right to vote. The holders are allowed to remain in Mexico and continue working without having to renew their immigration permits each year. You need not reveal your own nationality to qualify for Inmigrado status.
Do I need an FM3 to buy property in Mexico?
Signing documents in front of a notary public is a requirement when purchasing real estate. An FMT with an authentic passport or birth certificate is sufficient; no FM3 is needed.
Do I need an FM3 to have a Mexican bank account?
While FM3 is required for some types of bank accounts, a regular checking account does not. You must provide a recent utility bill, your FMT, and your passport. While in Mexico, you can easily obtain these records.