How to Obtain Residency in Mexico

Complete guide to obtaining residency in Mexico.

What are the benefits of residency in Mexico? 

  • An absolutely gorgeous country with mountains, beaches, and historical towns.
  • A low cost of living; Mexico is competitively ranked in the Numbeo Cost of Living Index.
  • Affordable, quality real estate.
  • Geographic location – same time zone as the US and Canada, which makes it a great base for work.
  • Possible to obtain residency in Mexico without triggering tax residency if you don’t spend more than half the year in Mexico and don’t have the center of your life interests there.
  • Possible to obtain paper residency (maintaining residency with minimal physical presence, to use as a Plan B).
  • International and bilingual schools.
  • Affordable, quality healthcare.

What are the Residency options in Mexico?

You typically obtain a 1 year temporary residency. You must then come back to Mexico to renew it, at which point you are given a 3 year temporary residency card. After these 4 years, you can apply for permanent residency, which does not expire. As things stand, there aren’t any minimum physical presence requirements apart from being present in Mexico when applying for residency.

Real Estate and Property Ownership

Residency through the ownership of local real estate (about $600,000 if you buy in your own name, or about $300,000 if you buy using a local corporation).

Economic Solvency

To qualify for residency through economic solvency you must demonstrate a minimum amount of income or savings/investments to qualify for residency in Mexico.  

  1. Demonstrate about $4,400 of income per month for the past 6 months.
  2. Demonstrate a bank balance of about $74,000 for the past 12 months.

These numbers vary from embassy to embassy, as well as the documents required to apply.

Professional help to navigate the process of getting residency in Mexico will make your life a lot easier and will save you countless hours of dealing with government bureaucracy. 

There are also options for Residency through solvency specifically aimed at retired people, with higher minimums, but that offer permanent residency straight away.

Having a Child in Mexico

Permanent residency immediately for the parents, siblings and grandparents with minimal paperwork. You can get all the details from my article on giving birth in Mexico.

Special 4 Year Residency Program

A special 4 year residency for past tourists in Mexico is given to anyone who entered Mexico between 2015 and 2022 as a tourist. Applying for this residency will cost you a few thousand dollars in total and is still available in 2024.



It’s also possible, in some cases, to immediately obtain permanent residency in Mexico if you are a retiree. Typically, having a minimum monthly income of $5,500 for the past 6 months or savings of $220,000 for the past year is required.

Work Permit

What documents do you need to obtain residency in Mexico?

It’s one of the core advantages of obtaining residency in Mexico – few documents are required. Depending on the visa type and where you are applying from, you need a variation of the below documents to apply for residency in Mexico:

  • Passport.
  • Proof of investment, economic solvency, work contract, or family ties.
  • A bunch of Mexican Government forms to fill out and government fees to pay online.
  • Marriage certificate.
  • Birth certificate in some instances.

Take Note:

– All documents must be translated into Spanish. The immigration agent will take care of this.
– Documents from back home must be apostilled.
– Police background checks are not required for residency applications.


Can residency in Mexico lead to citizenship?

A resounding yes! If you obtain permanent residency in Mexico it can lead to citizenship.

  • You must first spend 5 years in Mexico and already be on permanent residency.
  • You must then simply demonstrate that you spent 18 months of the prior 24 months in Mexico itself.
  • A Spanish exam and Mexican culture test must be passed, but you can easily study for them.
  • Unlike countries such as Panama and Paraguay that are often touted as easy citizenship options but that are not, Mexico has a fair and transparent naturalization system. If you meet the criteria, you will be granted citizenship.

Get Residency in Mexico With Help From A Professional

obtain residency in Mexico

How my immigration agent Sergei can help you obtain residency in Mexico

Sergei moved to Mexico 7 years ago with his family, obtained residency, and they are now all Mexican citizens. Needless to say, he has personal experience with the process 🙂

He helped my own family obtain residency in Mexico. If you hire him, he’ll ensure everything goes smoothly and that you don’t have to stress out over making mistakes and navigating the Mexican bureaucracy. He’ll tell you what he needs from you, and will then tell you where and when to go with which documents. His team will be with you on the ground in Mexico.

If you want to move ahead and obtain residency in Mexico, get in touch with Sergei through the contact form below.

Sergei also offers a consultation session for only $180 to answer all your questions in detail in a 30 minute call, creditable towards his fees if you go ahead with his services.

Contact Sergei - Obtain Residency in Mexico

Or send an email to

Full transcript of “How to get Residency in Mexico”

LADISLAS MAURICE: Hello, everyone. Ladislas Maurice from Today, I’m in Playa Del Carmen with Sergei, who is my immigration agent here in Mexico. Sergei, how are you?

SERGEI: Fine, thanks. Perfect.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Cool. Today, we’ll be discussing how to obtain residency in Mexico in 2024. It became a little bit more expensive, a little bit more complicated, but it’s still one of the easiest countries to immigrate to. We’ll break this down into how to get temporary residency, how to get permanent residency, also how to get citizenship.

How to get temporary residency in Mexico

LADISLAS MAURICE: Sergei, what are the ways to obtain temporary residency here in Mexico apart from the usual getting married, and blah, blah, all these things? How do you get temporary residency in Mexico nowadays?

SERGEI: Yeah. The fastest way that you have option for visa for financial secure people, it’s the name of this visa, solvencia económica, solvency economy. When you have income or savings, income should be not less, for the next year, 2024, $4,400, and savings should be not less than about $74,000 in total for the last 12 months.

LADISLAS MAURICE: For the savings. And what about for the income, also, do you need to show these $4,000 per–?

SERGEI: Yes, per month for the last six months, monthly.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Six months, monthly? Okay.

Path to citizenship in Mexico through temporary residency

SERGEI: Yeah, yeah. It’s the way for the temporary residency card.

LADISLAS MAURICE: What do you get? You get, what, a two-year, three-year, five-year?

SERGEI: No. You will get, first of all, the resident visa on your passport. Then you have 180 days for the entrance to Mexico. In half a year, you need to come, and we change this resident visa to temporary residency card for one year.


SERGEI: Then, for the next year, we can renew it. And sometimes, it’s possible to renew for three years. After four years in total, for the fifth year, we renew it again for the permanent residency. And permanent residency it will be for the whole life, it has no expiration date. And next step it’s the citizenship. That means from the tourist till the citizenship it takes, in total, like five years.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Okay. Let’s say you help me get residency, I come here, you give me the one-year residency. Can I then just leave for as long as I want?


LADISLAS MAURICE: I don’t need to be in Mexico that whole time when I come back after a year, we just renew it?

SERGEI: Yeah, yeah. We have not any law, any rules that you should stay here, you should live here. You can come, again, like one month before the expiration date of the temporary residency card, and we can start the process to renew it for the next one.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Okay. Essentially, you get temporary residency, you need to have it for four years. After four years, you upgrade to permanent. And then after five years of total residency, both temporary and permanent, you can apply for citizenship.

SERGEI: Yes, that’s correct.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Okay. Clear. This is why Mexico is really interesting, because it’s one of the few countries where you can really get a paper residency, which means that you have residency but you don’t actually have any or much physical presence requirements. You can have it as a back pocket residency, as a Plan B residency, which is a great call option. In the future, you can work towards the citizenship. And again, to be able to apply for citizenship, I think you need to spend a certain amount of time in Mexico.


LADISLAS MAURICE: It’s not like it’s completely paper and you get citizenship.

SERGEI: Yeah, you need to stay here the last year with a temporary residency, it’s like fourth year, and first year with a permanent residency.


SERGEI: Last two years before you obtain for the Mexican citizenship, you need to stay in Mexico. And during these two years, you have just, like, 180 days for traveling, you can go outside Mexico.


SERGEI: In total, 180 days, half a year. And if you will follow these requirements, you will pass an exam, and then you will wait till they will give you this naturalization letter.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Perfect. This is really interesting. Essentially, you start by doing the paper residency, and once you’ve done essentially five years of residency in Mexico, then you have that call option, where you just need to say, “I’m moving to Mexico, I’m going to spend 18 out of 24 months, and that will get me citizenship.” It’s really a call option on citizenship.


How to get permanent residency immediately in Mexico

LADISLAS MAURICE: What about people who want to try to get permanent residency immediately? Because one way, and we’ve done quite a lot of content on this, is to give birth in Mexico, but that’s not the topic of this video. If you’re interested in this, there’s another video on this. But what are the other ways to obtain permanent residency immediately?

SERGEI: In some Mexican consulates, they have this program. They named this program pension program or retirement program. But I had some clients, 34, 36, 38 years old, they just demonstrate enough savings on the banks accounts, on the brokerage account, and it–

LADISLAS MAURICE: So brokerage account as well?


LADISLAS MAURICE: Stocks or cash?

SERGEI: It doesn’t matter. I think that they accept both. You just need to print the proof of your account.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Is this valid as well for the temporary residency, so if you show that you have $100,000 on your Interactive Brokers account?

SERGEI: As I know, yes, the same way.


SERGEI: But for the next year, for the permanent residency, if we will show income, it should be not less than $7,400 approximately, depends by the currency rate. And if we will show savings, it should be not less than $300,000.

LADISLAS MAURICE: And it’s the same thing, savings is past 12 months and income is past six months?

SERGEI: Yes. But for income, it’s more strict because it should be like pension passive income.


SERGEI: But for the savings, it’s not a problem because it’s like your savings in your account–

LADISLAS MAURICE: What about a salary?

SERGEI: Depends by the consulate, but I think with the salary, it’s not possible because it’s like a pension program. That means that you don’t need to work, you just have passive income monthly.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Okay, cool. Essentially, that would just get you temporary residency if you have a salary, but it wouldn’t be good enough to get permanent residency immediately?

SERGEI: Yeah, that’s correct.

LADISLAS MAURICE: And I think this is really important to discuss, is that Mexico has very different implementation of laws depending on the consulates and embassies. It’s not like Germany, where the rules are going to be the same for every single embassy across the world. In Mexico, with Mexican embassies and consulates, it really depends. If you apply in Canberra, or you apply in New York, or in Houston, the rules are going to be different. And that’s also why you need experts like Sergei who can help you not waste time and go and apply at the right spots. Because it changes all the time, it’s very dynamic. You just need an ambassador, a consul that changes, and then, boom, the interpretation changes as well. What about for real estate investors?

How to get residency in Mexico through real estate investment

SERGEI: For real estate investors, we have option like investment visa. It’s the same resident visa. If you will buy a property by your own name, I think, for the next year, it should be not less than $600,000.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Cool. That’s a nice property. [laughs]

SERGEI: Yeah. And if you will open a company by your own name and then you will buy property by company’s name, it can be twice less, $300,000.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Okay. Again, I find that this investment visa is a bit useless because if you can afford to buy a villa for $600,000, you probably had that cash in your bank account anyways, so you might as well go straight to permanent residency if you’re older, etc. It sounds good on paper, in reality, very few people actually go for it, I think.

SERGEI: Yeah, yeah, that’s correct.

Which dependents can be added to a Mexican residency application

LADISLAS MAURICE: Cool. Great. Let’s say you help me get residency. What about my spouse, my children, how does that work? Do they get it automatically? Is it a different process?

SERGEI: Yeah, we have two options. The first option, we will start the process outside Mexico in Mexican Consulate the same way. In this case, you can start the process the same time like for you. That means that all the family members can get the same visa at the same time. And you come with all your family to Mexico. And here, we start the process for all the family. The second option that, firstly, you will get your residency, then you can start the process inside Mexico or outside Mexico. If we will start the process outside Mexico, we just need to show the relationship between you and your kids, between you and your wife. It can be marriage certificate, it can be birth certificate of your kids, where we put your name and where we can show this relationship. Or, if you come with your family, you will come like a resident, your family come like a tourist, and we can make the same process inside Mexico.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Okay, so it really depends on people’s preferences.

SERGEI: Yeah. Yeah.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Okay, fantastic. Thank you very much, Sergei. If you’re interested in obtaining residency in beautiful Mexico, there is a link below with more information on the process, and also on Sergei’s fees, and how he can help you from A to Z to get that Plan B or even Plan A, because Mexico really is beautiful. You went through the whole process yourself and you are now a Mexican citizen, right?

SERGEI: Yeah, that’s correct.

LADISLAS MAURICE: Cool. He knows what he’s talking about, he went through the process himself.


LADISLAS MAURICE: All right. Sergei, always a pleasure. Thank you.

SERGEI: Thank you.

Explore a World of Opportunities

Join The Wandering Investor's Private List and ensure you never miss out on the latest FREE posts and in-depth investment analysis.

Add to your contact list to make sure the articles don't land in Spam! Thank you for subscribing.