Ajijic Boardwalk, Lake Chapala
Ajijic Boardwalk, Lake Chapala
Ajijic Boardwalk, Lake Chapala

Moving to Lake Chapala, Mexico

By Joshua Wood, LPC

Last updated on Sep 24, 2021

Summary: Moving to Lake Chapala, Mexico: Expats, retirees and digital nomads talk about everything you need to know before moving to Lake Chapala.

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What do I need to know before moving to Lake Chapala?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Lake Chapala, they said:

"Since realtors are not regulated here in Mexico one should hire an attorney just to be on the safe side... We did and it was worth every peso... Cheap insurance. Do your due diligence on line and stay for a month or more... If one has not lived abroad and in similar locals there might be a bit of a culture shock... How I explain this in simple terms: " If in the morning you have water for your shower.... It is a good day." and "If the water is hot... It is GREAT DAY!" Living here is an adventure...One needs to be flexible, have a sense of humor, and accept the fact that things here move at a different pace. The Mexican people are warm and friendly, the expats are willing to help get you settled, and the weather is outstanding... What is not to like?," added another expat who made the move to Ajijic .

"Do your research. Figure out what is really important to you. There is so much to do here and lots of people who speak English. The locals are very friendly. There are always exceptions but we have been very happy. It is a noisy country and there is dust. Bill is a musician and does sound for many of the productions and I am a quilter. There is a theater group, a community choir, an art society and a multitude of clubs, restaurants, live music that you will recognize. Medical care is good and you will find alternative as well as traditional medicine. You will see donkey carts and BMWs sharing the road. Working is a problem since jobs are reserved for the citizens so planning on working here may not happen," explained one expat living in Lake Chapala, Mexico.

"Do your homework, then come for a preliminary visit. Talk to local expats, visit the Lake Chapala Society & other venues to meet them. Walk the town for a few days and enjoy the evenings in our great restaurants. Once you decide to make the move, your new friends will be able to give you priceless advice suiting your circumstances. Mine is: Travel light, bring your car but not furniture or major appliances. Bring your computer fall/spring clothing only. Frankly, I don't like the "gated communities". If you are moving to Mexico, live in Mexico, not the "suburbs" you left behind. Oh, learn some Spanish, learn to relax & enjoy this beautiful place and its wonderful people," said another in Ajijic, Lake Chapala.

"Rent your first house for a 2-3 month period while you look over the entire area and decide where you really want to rent, then go for a long term lease at a reduced rate. Use every resource available to you in your new area. Don't think you can learn it on your own. We thought we could and suffered for it. Take the help that others want to give," explained one expat who made the move to Lake Chapala.

How do I find a place to live in Lake Chapala?

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000. Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Some of Joshua's more popular articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 8 Best Places to Live in Croatia and the Living in Mexico Guide. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

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