Long Distance Rental Property Investing

Hello again, after being away for a bit, I’m back in full swing and excited to share some news with my readers. We’ve started to create the first comprehensive guide to rental property investing in Riviera Maya, Mexico.

Once the guide is complete, it will be rolled out as a three-part series ebook. This ebook will target the Tulum, Playa del Carmen and Riviera Maya real estate markets. The contents contained in the ebook will include; rental market metrics, historical rental growth, financial and marketing analytics, property and market appreciation data, KPIs (key performance indicators), and more. Stay tuned.

Sa'atal Group

Now, let’s get into the topic at hand today: Long-Distance Rental Property Investing. Many of the real estate investment clients we work with at Sa'atal Group are foreigners and therefore considered to be long-distance investors. Our in-house statistics show that nearly 99% of our clientele are either foreigners or live in other regions of Mexico. This percentage isn't too surprising due to the infancy of the Riviera Maya combined with the predominant tourism industry here.

“Real estate investing even on a very small scale, remains a tried and true means of building an individual's cash flow and wealth.”

- Robert Kiyosaki

To some, the idea of investing in real estate abroad can seem daunting. However, with the many advancements in technology and efforts to achieve globalization, real estate investing is rapidly growing in popularity. Our firm has found that the majority of our clients want to diversify their investment portfolio, establish asset protection, or set up a foreign tax shelter. These financial goals bring them to the Riviera Maya.

Even with the desire to improve one’s financial status or freedom, investing abroad is a big step. However, it’s a step in the direction of realizing significant monetary gains.

When it comes to investing in real estate abroad, it's just as important to know the local market, as it is to know yourself.


The beauty of technology means we have access to find anything we want online. And what better tool than Google to help us in that search. Utilize the newest applications, read various blogs and forums, use the Google Earth tool to zoom in on your area of interest. Dig and dig while you’re home searching online. Try to consume as much information as possible before you arrive on the scene.

Here are some guidelines to assist in your rental property research:

· Establish your ideal location.
· Educate yourself on the area and the region’s surroundings.
· Perform thorough research, using several different resources.
· Narrow down your results with due diligence.
· Learn more about the buying process in Mexico using these guides: Buyer Guides


Once you’ve narrowed down your search and identified the target area you want to invest in, it’s time to find the property that aligns with your investment strategy. Things to consider include; budget, beds/baths, floor location, property amenities, rental programs, etc.

Here are a few tips to help find the right property for YOU:

· Perform research online, research brokerage companies and real estate agents, look for any negative online reviews.
· Look up different properties in the area to see if your property requirements make sense with your desired budget.
· Take a trip to your ideal location and get a feel for the environment.
· Spend several days there, possibly a week if you have time.
· Speak with the locals because they provide advice and insights that only locals can.


One type of property that is popular amongst foreign buyers, especially in Tulum, Cancun and throughout the Riviera Maya, are “turn-key” properties. These kind of properties are fully functional and operational. They come furnished with appliances, washer/dryer, cutlery, plates, towels, bedding, etc., and are ready to be lived in right away, hence the name turn-key. Spending the money for a property management company or vacation rental company is a practical and wise strategy when you have a turn-key property.

These are the reasons why:

· Legitimate companies will have a professional team of in-house staff that will cover everything from maintenance issues, booking services, concierge, management, accounting department, etc.

· Many established property management companies have networks of residual clients, super hosts, and access to finding future clients. Secondly, they tend to have established relationships with reliable concierge services that can help provide valuable information about transportation service, local tours, restaurants, and spas.

· With years of management experience and a Rolodex of contractors on call, you need not worry about finding a property handyman last minute.


A long-distance partner who currently lives or is a frequent visitor to your desired location is the final step in solidifying your decision to buy real estate in Riviera Maya. This person doesn't necessarily have to be a “business partner” but more of a friend or acquaintance. Making friends with someone who has been in your position before can be extremely helpful.


When investing abroad, it’s critical to work with a team of real estate professionals who have roots in your desired location. This team will be your eyes and ears from day one. Most importantly they should be a team you can trust. Ask for recommendations and referrals, then compile a list of potential associates. From here you can conduct a strict vetting process.

These are just a few of the benefits of working with a local team of professionals:

· Establishing a local connection can make the buying process more seamless.

· A local realtor has knowledge and expertise and can provide you with invaluable information about your ideal location.

· Local professionals understand the lay of the land in Mexico.

· Your local realtor can help you find a credible and reliable property manager or vacation rental company with extensive market knowledge and considerable experience.

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Ryan Gravel
Ryan Gravel

Ryan Gravel is an American real estate broker and developer. He began his career at a young age working for his family owned construction company.
After graduating college at the University of Central Florida with a degree in business, Ryan set out to find untapped prolific markets around the world. His search landed him in Playa del Carmen, Mexico where he founded Virgin Realty Mexico and co-founded the Saatal Development Group one of the fastest growing development companies in the Riviera Maya.
With extensive market knowledge, professionalism, etiquette, innovation and integrity Ryan is known as one of the most highly respected real estate advisors in the region.

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