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Chuck Bolotin of Best Mexico Movers – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Library in a nice home in ArizonaHow much of your personal household items you move to Mexico is a very personal and at times, almost a philosophical decision.
At one extreme, there are people will tell you to sell pretty much everything, arrive with just two suitcases and live a life without the need for material items or that you can get everything you "need" in Mexico.  These people can at times, be quite strident.
I would advise you not to allow yourself to be bullied.
Without regard to whether it is better to live with "things" or without them, factually, you cannot get everything you want or need at a reasonable price in Mexico.  Just off the top of my head, I can report that people have told me that they can't find at a reasonable price items such as comfortable beds, ovens with thermostats (who even knew to ask?), middle of the road clothing, or comfortable furniture.
There is also the comfort of having around you things you may have had for decades and worked long and hard to obtain and just make you feel good, in addition to sentimental items.  Do you really want to just get rid of these things?
Best Mexico Movers
And this is not just a "Gringo Thing".  I know several Mexican families that went to live in the US and upon return to Mexico, gave up many household items, and 10 years later, still deeply regret not having these items any longer.
Of course, you just have to find your own comfort level.  One thing I can strongly advise, however, is not to let other's people's views intimidate you, especially those who tell you to sell everything.  I have talked to lots of people who regretted just that, only when, sadly, it was too late.
Moving your household goods to Mexico?  Contact Best Mexico Movers.
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Andre Bellon of Bellon Insurance Agents – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Magy Cardona (right) shows Jet Metier of Best Places in the World to Retire, some furniture options at her resale store Make It Cash, Ajijic, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingThere’s not a big difference in the quality of the things in Mexico and those that are in the United States. How much of your stuff you should move with you to Mexico is going to depend on your preferences. Here in Mexico, they sell really good refrigerators, stoves, ovens, and all the pieces of equipment that you need at home, so there’s no need for you to be carrying them all the way from the United States. 
Bring your clothing because clothing made in the United States is of much better quality than clothing made in Mexico. The rest of the things you need for your home are readily available here in Mexico and can be bought at cheaper prices. There’s really good quality furniture here in Mexico, at much cheaper prices.  
(Magy Cardona (your right) shows Jet Metier of Best Places in the World to Retire some furniture options at her resale store Make It Cash, Ajijic, Mexico, pictured.)
Mark Gall – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Personally, I would not take very much. Most things necessary can be purchased there, and I’ve found that too much stuff interferes with life. You may be different, but how much stuff back home do you actually need and use regularly? Having spent 8 years traveling in Central/South America and Asia, and living for some time in various places, I now keep possessions to a minimum, and life is much simpler. 
Bruce Fraser – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Mexican furniture – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingThere are different strokes for different folks when moving to Mexico. From my perspective, I would say to bring as little stuff as possible when moving to Mexico because you're just going to store it, throw it away, or sell it when you get here. 
The rooms will probably be a different size or configuration than the rooms you have in your house or apartment up North. There may be some of your stuff that won't stand up to the weather, depending on where you are. In Chapala and Ajijic, we're in a particularly good, dry area. But there are a lot of areas, particularly when you're in the tourist areas on the coast, that are highly humid for six or seven months of the year. Some furniture will just curl up and rot on you if you're not careful or will get termites, depending on what kind it is. 
The cost to move in stuff to Mexico is overwhelmed by the cost of maintaining it once you're here. I would just sell, give away, or donate. When I moved to Mexico, I brought a small trailer full of stuff down. When my ex-wife moved back up North, she took the trailer full of stuff back with her. 
If I had to do it all over again, I'd bring much less. I know there are some possessions that you really don't want to part with, such as a favorite rocking chair or a painting that your great uncle left you when he passed away. But you have to think in terms of, "will that painting end up full of bugs if I bring it down here? Will that rocking chair end up being eaten up by termites if I bring it down here?"
(Mexican furniture, pictured.)
Andy James – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Home tour, Merida, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingYou should move none of your stuff to Mexico. Part of moving to a different country is to experience a completely new culture. The stuff you buy here in Mexico is going to be completely different than the stuff you have at home, so if you want to make a move, make a move. Don’t bring your life with you. It doesn’t make any sense. 
Secondly, a lot of the things that you have in the States or in Canada won’t necessarily do well in the environment here in Mexico. For example, if your stuff is pine, it’s going to get eaten by bugs. If it spends all its life in a dry climate in Phoenix and you bring it to a place with high humidity, it could crack. 
Importing things in Mexico is hit and miss as to a.) whether it will arrive intact; and, b.) whether you can actually get it out of the impound, and how much that’s going to cost you. And I don’t mean the cost that you expect. I mean the “extra” cost. 
My advice would be to bring your clothes. If you can’t put it in a suitcase, don’t bring it. There’s plenty of stuff here in Mexico that you can get- a lot of houses here in Mexico are sold furnished. I ended up putting my stuff in storage for 8 years, and then I sold it for about 10% of what it was worth in Canada. At the end of the day, just sell it, get rid of it, and take anything that can’t be replaced, put it in a suitcase and bring it here to Mexico.  
(Home tour, Merida, Mexico, pictured.)
Sheryl Novak of SOLutions Mexico Furniture Store – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Palliser Acapulco Sofa – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingAnother thing to consider when deciding how much of your stuff to move to Mexico is the hassle.  You will need to do a detailed list of all items you are bringing in to the country.  Where are you going to stop along the way, if you are bringing the items in your car, van or truck - possibility of theft when you are sleeping at hotels.  Weather, rain?  
Then when you get here - will the items that worked in your hometown climate work here?  If you have any IKEA items, they are prone to termites.  If you are in a humid area, that will also cause you problems with some of your items.
What is making it far more simple and cost effective is the opportunity to purchase furniture and household items online.  You don't have the stress, headaches and hassles and you can get nice items shipped directly to your condo or casa in Mexico.  Check for a company that works with Mexican manufacturers - there are some brands such as Palliser who have manufacturing plants in Saltillo Mexico - you cannot beat Palliser for upholstered furniture.  The most comfortable and well made!  And you can get their items right in Mexico.
With more and more options of online furniture stores in Mexico, it just might be the better option to buy rather than ship. 
Tobi Moree  – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Campers and trailers, Rocky Point, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingIn order to formally do an importation of household goods without the 16% tax assessment on value of the items, it is necessary to process documents through the Mexican consulate and may also require the use of a broker licensed in Mexico.  Otherwise, you will find yourself at the discretion of the MX customs official as to whether to assess an importation tax on the amount of the goods being imported.  I am familiar with varying experiences in this regard.
Some folks have gone through the consulate process, and imported themselves while others have used the broker, who largely functions as the moving company.  Some folks have had vastly different outcomes with brokers, just like any other moving service.  We chose to forego the broker in our move from California to Baja and trucked it across ourselves using a combination of trailers and a detailed manifest.  And yes, I did move the entire contents of a 3 bedroom house; didn't want to part with family antiques and other items that recreate my comfort zone.
We paid the importation tax that totaled about $1,500 USD.  Including trailer rentals, we approximate that it cost us $2,000 USD less than using a broker.  When all was unpacked and in place, the only casualty was a piece of glass that needed to be replaced in a cabinet -- which was easily handled locally for $10 USD.  Certainly a factor in your decision will depend upon the distance between where you are now and where you are moving to in Mexico.  For us, it was just a 6 hour trek / 320 miles.  Hope this helps.
(Campers and trailers, Rocky Point, Mexico, pictured.)
Joan Silver – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Entryway into the living room, Ajijic, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingWhen moving your stuff to Mexico, you can just bring things that are near and dear to you. I don't recommend that people bring their furniture, as it's quite expensive to have your household items brought down to Mexico. Basically anything that you have back home you can get here. You also don't need to bring your large appliances as these can be bought in Mexico as well. The appliances you can buy here can handle fluctuations or surges in the electricity. Bring your most treasured items and maybe just one suit.
(Entryway into the living room, Ajijic, Mexico, pictured.)
Liliana Cota of Stewart Title Baja and Stewart Title Puerto Peñasco – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Homes on the beach in Rocky Point, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingI am not a lawyer and the law might have changed but I know some people who bought a house in Mexico, they had their public documents to prove that they bought a property, they moved in from the US to Mexico, and they brought almost all of their things all at once. If you cross the border from the US to Mexico, you have to prove them that you just bought a house in Mexico and you can move all your things in one go without paying any taxes. You don’t have to have a special visa in order to do that.  However, you have to show that the title of the property is indeed under your name.
You have to go to the Mexican customs and show them the documents showing that you just bought a house in Mexico and you are moving in with your things. I do not know if the law has changed but as far as I know, you do not need legal advice in order to move your things to Mexico if you bought a property here. You just cross with your truckload of your things, declare that they are your belongings, and that you are moving them into your new property in Mexico. They will record that you have crossed to Mexico with all your things once, so you cannot do it a second time.
(Homes on the beach in Rocky Point, also known as Puerto Pensaco, near the Arizona and Mexico border, pictured.)
Samantha Arnold of Peters & Romero – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Mexico City apartment – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingHow much of y our stuff you should move with you to Mexico really depends on who is paying for the move!  Some people coming to Mexico are moving for work, and their companies will often provide them with a moving budget.  In that case, it could make better sense to bring your stuff with you.  I say “could” because cost isn’t the only thing to consider…more on that in a moment.  For people who are footing the bill personally, the costs of moving items could be prohibitive.  You need to take account not only of the actual shipping costs, but also the customs duties that will be imposed. A household is allowed certain exemptions but you have to make sure that you completed the paperwork on time and before you move.  We have also heard horror stories from people who have waited 6 months or more for their shipments to arrive, and who had items damaged or stolen en route.  I am sure that is not the norm, but something to be aware of.
We did not have a moving budget when we relocated from Canada to Mexico, and so for us there was no possibility of bringing our stuff with us. We sold our house in Canada with all of our furniture included, and gave away things like dishes and décor. For people coming to Mexico temporarily, storing furniture and other items might be an option to consider if they are prepared to rent a place already furnished. In our case, we left Canada with whatever could fit in our suitcases and started over once we arrived! The total of our moving costs were the extra baggage fees for the airline.  
This was the best solution for us, but you should be aware that the cost of setting up a house in Mexico can also be quite expensive.  Most household items, particularly appliances, furniture, and electronics, will cost quite a bit more than they would in Canada. You may find things in Mexico that are comparable in price to things that you can buy in Canada but often the quality is not what Canadians or Americans might be used to.  
So it really comes down to a careful consideration of the costs of shipping vs the costs of buying new, which will vary by distance, currency, location in Mexico, and intangible things like sentimental attachments.
(Modern furniture in Mexico City apartment, pictured.)

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