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Chuck Bolotin of Best Mexico Movers – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Home in Jocotepec, Lake Chapala, MexicoThe cost to rent a home in the Lake Chapala / Ajijic area has been moving upwards over the last few years, as demand has increased and supply has not kept up.
 
As with prices to buy, your price to rent will be heavily dependent on location.  The most expensive rentals will tend to be in the actual town of Ajijic and in some of the more desirable close in areas, such as around the golf course or in a particularly nice fraccionamiento (housing development).  As you radiate away from these areas, prices tend lower.
 
Also, prices are highly dependent on if you rent long term (a year or more) or just for “the season,” with the high season defined as when most of the Snowbirds are in town, consistent with what you would define as “winter” up north.  Short term rentals are of course, more per month.
 
The vast majority of the homes in the Lake Chapala / Ajijic area come with either partial or full furniture included.
 
As a base, let’s use a short term, a three bedroom, two bathroom home in Ajijic proper or in the more desirable local areas, assuming that you get a good price, which may run you $1,400 to %1,800 per month.  Longer term, you may be able to reduce that by 25% or so.
 
Nicer areas but not as nice as those above may run 25% less.
 
If you choose to live in more far out or areas with very few expats, you can pay about half.
 
Interested in moving to Mexico?  Visit Best Mexico Movers.
Andrew McFarlane of Muebles NOMAD (Nomad Furniture) – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Terrace for viewing Lake Chapala, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingThe cost to rent a home in Chapala or Ajijic really depends on what you are looking for. You can find a 2 bedroom with roof terrace, garden, garage, and 2 big living rooms for US $400 a month. There are also options for less money and smaller.
 
Your choice of town can influence the rental costs and 5-bedroom mansions with pools are also available.
 
There are a huge variety of house styles to choose from and many real estate companies and rental agencies to help you find what you need.  Seasonal expats who stay for 6 months of the year can affect the rental prices for short term leases and so the high season or low seasons may affect choices.
 
Many Mexican families from Guadalajara and outside have weekend homes at the lake which means at the weekend the lakeside can be much more vibrant and busy with visitors.
 
(Terrace for viewing Lake Chapala, Mexico, pictured.)
Jeff Smith of DocTours – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
View from a two story home, San Antonio Tlayacatan, next to Ajijic, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingThe cost to rent a home in the Lake Chapala / Ajijic area really depends on (besides location, location, location) how much house you want and what you're used to paying in the States or Canada.
 
What we're paying for a 2-story, 3 bedroom, 3 bath, 3 balconies, 1 powder room, laundry room, patio, furnished, TV in every room, on-site, locked-gate parking, a couple blocks to the lake, a couple to the highway, a short walk to the village center, etc, would barely get me a studio in my hometown of Portland Oregon.
 
(View from a two story home, San Antonio Tlayacatan, next to Ajijic, Mexico, pictured.)
Francisco Araiza of interlago realestate – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Three bedroom house, Ajijic, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingYou can rent a one-story house with three bedrooms in Chapala for around US $600 to $1,100 per month for a yearly rental. The price varies depending on the size of the house, whether it has a pool or not, or if it has a garden or not, and if it is an old or a new construction.
 
Sometimes the rent includes utilities but each case is different. There is also a market where they rent the houses for only 1 or 2 months.
 
(Three bedroom house, Ajijic, Mexico, pictured.)
 
Marvin Golden of Lake Chapala Real Estate – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Condo at Birds of Paradise, Lake Chapala, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingWe don’t do rentals but we do have a list of rental companies that we give to people and a couple that we recommend.
 
You can start with a little casita, which might be two rooms of a big house or a little two-room casita behind a house for US $200 to $400 a month, depending on the size and the location. Then you get into some of the smaller houses in Chapala and outlying areas. Rentals cost $400 to $600 per month for a house that might be quite “rustico” inside. You should get a nice house with a budget of $800 to $900. It would have two bedrooms, a den, a two-car parking area, and a nice yard. That is good for long term rentals.
 
A lot of people here are now renting through VRBO and want to come for 1 to 6 months.  They get hit with higher rental prices because they lock in from afar. They haven’t been here to see the house and what is there. They typically spend 1/3 or even ½ more than how much it costs if you look for the rentals once you get here. You could find a house that you could rent locally for $800 a month but you might find that the one next door to it has been rented via VRBO for $1,200 to $1,400 a month.
 
One of my favorite stories is in Birds of Paradise, which is a development of upper and lower condos and a group of one-story condos below. Some of them have wonderful views and some of them are ground level. They have an excellent exercise area with all kinds of exercise equipment, a beautiful pool, Jacuzzi, a clubhouse, a little store, a “Honey Do Room” where there is a bunch of tools. This is so if your picture frame falls off the wall you can say, “Honey, do you mind going and getting a hammer and a nail and hang the picture again?” 
 
Traditionally, utilities are extra if the rent is for 3 months or longer. You have to pay for your electric, your propane, telephone, and satellite TV. Typically, these utilities cost $150 to $200 a month depending on your usage. For the television package, you can get a $30 or $50 package. For a 1 to 3-month rent, it is just not worth measuring all things and doing all the stuff so instead of $800 a month, they will charge $1,000 and that includes utilities.
 
There were two men in the pool at Birds of Paradise, and one said, “I’ve been renting here locally for $800.” The other guys says, “I’ve been paying $1,400!” And their houses are basically the same.
 
(Condo at Birds of Paradise, Lake Chapala, Mexico, pictured.)
Richard Tingen of Coldwell Banker Chapala Realty – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Rental home in Ajijic, pictured – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingIn the Chapala – Ajijic area, you can rent a place as low as $600 a month to $1,200 a month, depending upon the property. 
 
For $600 a month, you could rent a small home with 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms; nothing really big or luxurious, but they do exist for $600 a month. When you get into the $1,000 and $1,200 a month range, then you get a pretty decent house. 
 
In Ajijic, on the lower side of the carretera, a fully furnished and well kept home may rent for $650 to $700. Many of the renters here are older, and who would find it unattractive if they have to cross the main highway to get to the main part of the village.  As a result, they tend to be in the lower part of the village, and closer to the central part of the village, which would include the village of Ajijic all the way to the suburbs which maybe would include La Floresta as far as Cinco de Febrero. No more than that. Farther out than Cinco de Febrero, they don’t rent that easily because it’s far from the center of Ajijic. 
 
It really depends upon the pocketbook. In Chapala you can even get rentals for $500 a month because Chapala is not as popular as the hotspot. The hotspot is Ajijic.  The $500 a month rental in Chapala would be equal to a $700 or $750 rental in Ajijic.
 
Here in Ajijic, one of our clients just built four fully furnished, one bedroom, one-bathroom apartments with an air conditioner, parking for one car, a living room, dining kitchenette with a table, and in less than a week, the four were rented for $$690 each.  
 
And you get further way form the village, the prices decrease. If somebody is on a really restricted budget, they could go to a village called San Nicolas and probably get a fairly decent house for $300 to $400.  You would have to be living on a shoestring because the house is not as nice and is located more than 45 minute drive from the hub.
 
(Rental home in Ajijic, Mexico, pictured.)
Mirna Segura of Ajijic Rentals – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Home and pool rental, Ajijic, Lake Chapala, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingA nice house in Chapala would cost between $700 to $750 a month. If you want a nicer house, you would spend around $1,000 a month to rent. For $750 a month, you could rent a two-bedroom, two-bathroom home with a medium-sized garden in front and a parking space. Some houses have automatic gate and would have a covered parking area. The house would be furnished, including a washer, dryer, and kitchen appliances. They may include water and a gardener but would not include electricity as the billing for electricity depends on your consumption. It is up to you if you want to get a maid. You could apply for cable and Internet connection but it is up to you to pay for the service.
 
For a $1,000 a month, you could rent a house with two bedrooms plus an office, and three bathrooms. It would be totally furnished and could have a garden and even a pool. You would pay for the utilities like electricity, cable, and Internet. They might include water and pool maintenance if there is a pool or a gardener if there is a garden to tend to.  
 
(Home and pool rental, Ajijic, Lake Chapala, Mexico, picture.)
Spencer McMullen of Chapala Law – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Modern home in Chapala, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingYou can rent a basic two-bedroom apartment or two or three bedroom home in the Chapala and Ajijic area for between 2,500 pesos (less than US $140) to maybe 4,000 to 6,000 pesos (about US $220 to about $330). There are nicer homes with nicer properties in gated communities or larger homes that can run you 10,000 to 15,000 pesos (around $550 to about $825), or sometimes the landlords collect rent in dollars or equivalent and they may charge US $800 to $1,200.
 
US $1,000 a month will probably rent a nice home in a gated community with a community area and a pool because that’s 18,000 pesos. A lot of foreigners want to rent in dollars but if you found some who rent in pesos or from a Mexican person, then the rent money is a good amount of money in pesos and you could get a very, very nice house, probably 2,000 to 3,000 square feet, 3 bedrooms with a 4th bedroom usually reserved for the maid’s quarters.  This is in one of the nicer areas. You’ll have a guard gate and controlled access so not just any person will be able to arrive at your front door, for example. 
 
A lot of the developments here have common areas for the clubhouse and pool. They typically don’t have a lot of yard space so that will be only downside. You might have room for some patio furniture. It really depends.  Some of the older developments have more room.
 
There’s a property on an executive site with very large yards with a pool and a little pool area and place for table and chairs and great views of the lake. If you have time to check different places $1,000 can really get you a nice place with the yard and the space. If you want to buy in a newer development, the yards are smaller because they want to put in more houses.
 
Whether the house rental would be furnished also depends. A good part of the market are furnished homes. They would not include utilities. Generally the utilities that are included would be homeowner’s dues, property tax, and water. The tenant would be responsible for paying the electricity, gas, telephone, Internet, and cable.  
 
(Modern home in Chapala, Mexico, pictured.)

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