Friday, February 14, 2014
housing my dreams
It was inevitable. You could almost hear the syllogism clicking into place.
First, I write about being on the road for most of 2012. Then, I write about the vagaries of the Mexican taxation system. And, last night, I discover that the interface between Mexican home ownership, the IRS, and Mexican hacienda has become more complex.
So, what is my natural reaction? I start house shopping again.
It all started quite innocently. I saw a condominium advertised on our local message board. Now, I am not a condo kind of guy. But I thought I would take a look. After all, there was an open house on Thursday.
It turns out that there were several open houses. Before I arrived at the condo complex, I saw an open house sign on a house that has long intrigued me. It sits off by itself. On a rather large lot.
The facade is nothing special. It is pleasant. But it does not give a hint of what lies beyond the door.
It is one of the best-built homes I have seen in the area. All of the wood (and there is lots of it) is first rate. The architect did a great job of building in a sense of class without that rather disturbing echo of nouveau riche.
Three bedrooms. All built around a center courtyard that looks vaguely Moorish -- with an eccentrically-placed pool at the foot of the garden. All for just under $600,000.
That reference to three bedrooms should signal that I have not yet abandoned the idea of enticing my brother and sister-in-law (easy targets) and my mother (not so easy) to retire down here. However, after my almost 86 year old mother spent part of this week shoveling snow, her resistance to moving down here may be duly eroded.
My visit to the condo was not in the family enticement category. It was entirely a search for Steve's nest. Well, the condo was not it. I am gregarious, but I appreciate having living space away from non-family members.
On the way back from the condo, I saw another open house. This one was being held by one of my favorite realtors. And it is a very tempting house.
Three bedrooms. With the master suite on the ground level. Great for Mom. With a pool. And air conditioning. How could my family resist that type of compound? (Take a look at Casa de Olas.)
At the beginning of the year, I had considered having my brother and mother fly back to Melaque with me after my February visit to Oregon. That probably is not going to happen. The moment I get back I will be on the road to Panama. That would not leave much time for house hunting.
But time is on my side. My sister-in-law will probably not be ready for retirement until 2016. And by that time, I may be ready to put down roots somewhere in Mexico.
And why not around here?