Moving your stuff

Moving Household Goods to Mexico

Once you and your car have made the move, and I assume you have been here in person else you would not be shipping your belongings, step two is to secure shipping for your goods. So get estimates for movers to transport from home base to the Mexican border and from there by Mexican conveyance to your new home.

Moving Companies in Lake Chapala

Check out the Mexican movers at Lake Chapala and find out what they do – one might be Lake Chapala Moving (+52-376 – 766 – 5008), based in Ajijic, while another might be Balderas (useful for French and English 01 – 333 – 810 – 4859). Their part of the job would include a “Lista de Inventario” (inventory list) for aduana (Mexican customs) as well as a quote to do it right. Once you know the cost of a double move, you’ll probably pare down what you have and insure what you ship.

Good idea. Outdoor living is a big part of Mexican life. That calls for furniture that can withstand weather, at least on the covered patio. Fortunately, craftsmanship is a key part of the Mexican way of life. Sooner or later, you will most likely decide to make your furnishings more Mexican, so why ship what you’ve had for the past 40 years? You might want to pass on to your heirs whatever treasures you intend them to have eventually. Keep just a few of sentimental value. Big clue: most of our lifestyle is casual, but there are some big dress-up occasions, and you might choose to do some entertaining at home, as well.

Make an Inventory List

Now, paperwork. First, it is necessary to have your FM3 or FM2 visa in order to bring in household goods exempt from customs fees. There are time limits for doing so. Since your shipping agent will include the “Lista de Inventario” (inventory list) of items being shipped (in English and Spanish), you might want to check online for translations of common household goods for your own reference.

A comprehensive list is provided online at This is a reliable site. Since you can figure out from this list how to do it in English, here is a sample in Spanish pulled from that site. Any errors in translation are mine. I know he has the translation, but I used a dictionary.

The “Lista de Inventario” is no longer strictly required, but an inventory is still used for customs. They need box number, name of the item, description, brand/model, serial number if applicable. New items require a receipt with the date. Personal goods are supposed to be used, even if just recently purchased, else they are subject to customs fees. Gifts are limited.

Hang onto paperwork after you receive your goods. Not everyone is comfortable with life in Mexico, and you might choose to return. It is different here, and although the majority of us adapt, not all do. As to the items you want to purchase here at Lake Chapala and in Guadalajara, we have many stores for whatever styles you like. It will take a while to become accustomed to the cultural differences, but the Mexican way is basically the same, just a little slower and more courteous, the way we remember people when we were youngsters.

Welcome to Mexico.

By Kay Davis, Team Writer

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