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Nationalizing Car at Border before TIP expires?


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Would love to hear from anyone who has driven to the border to nationwide a car; our car qualifies and our TIP is almost up. Delegating to a service may be cost prohibitive so I’m taking one last look at doing it myself. (Our car is solid and ideally I’d like to avoid the hassle and uncertainty of buying a used MX car.) Thanks.  

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The Nationalization process can ONLY be done by a licensed and bonded Agent at the border. The process usually takes 2 days at the border as the vehicle must first be officially Exported from the US at Customs & Border Patrol offices. The Agent will take care of this and after that process is concluded 'he' will Import it into Mexico. After that process is completed then one must also 'register/plate' the vehicle in Jalisco.  

There is, of course, a fee from the Agent but the larger portion is the 'tax' paid to Aduana that is based on the value of the vehicle.   

 

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I have imported 2 vehicles and would never attempt to do it on my own.  I would not hire a local facilitator to do it for me.   I would never hire a local attorney to get my plates after the border importation process has been completed.  Puro desmadre.  Drive the car to Carmax in San Antonio, Tx and sell it or sell it on Craigslist San Antonio then fly back.  Buy Mexican from a friend or on this webboard.  Lots of options.  Buena suerte.

 

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I can relate to not wanting to get rid of your solid car. It was really upsetting  to me when I got my permanent residency and had to take my Japanese-made Honda CRV, that probably would have lasted me for the rest of my life, out of the country.

But it really wasn't much of a hassle to find a decent used vehicle in Mexico. I paid my mechanic to come with me to one of the big Sunday car sales. He brought his diagnostic machine, looked under the hood and at the chassis, we took it for a test drive and checked online to make sure it hadn't been reported stolen, and he looked over all the paperwork to make sure everything was there and in order.

I've been driving it for at least 6 years now, and while it has needed the occasional repair, as most used vehicles do, nothing major.

 

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8 hours ago, RickS said:

The Nationalization process can ONLY be done by a licensed and bonded Agent at the border. The process usually takes 2 days at the border as the vehicle must first be officially Exported from the US at Customs & Border Patrol offices. The Agent will take car of this and after that process is concluded 'he' will Import it into Mexico. After that process is completed then one must also 'register/plate' the vehicle in Jalisco.  

There is, of course, a fee from the Agent but the larger portion is the 'tax' paid to Aduana that is based on the value of the vehicle.   

 

We did this ourselves and it does take a couple of days.  You get all paperwork and easy to register here.  This was done in Nuevo Laredo and we stayed in Laredo 

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Ricks post is accurate. It is impossible to do it yourself. Only certain years and those can change.  Expect to spend $2-3k US plus the costs of staying 2 or 3 days in Laredo. If you still wish to go forward I can post the info for importer I have used a few times

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The importation process at the border is the first step of the process, the second step will be the inspection and plates to be obtained in Guadalajara.  If you use a local facilitator, I would suggest you obtain his fee in writing.  Those fees can double or triple if he sends a runner to Guadalajara who is not registered as required at the inspection site.  In my case I had to go to complete this step after the runner made several mistakes could not get it done.  YMMV

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5 minutes ago, Kiko said:

The importation process at the border is the first step of the process, the second step will be the inspection and plates to be obtained in Guadalajara.  If you use a local facilitator, I would suggest you obtain his fee in writing.  Those fees can double or triple if he sends a runner to Guadalajara who is not registered as required at the inspection site.  In my case I had to go to complete this step after the runner made several mistakes could not get it done.  YMMV

Yes  It is easy. Show up very early.. Slip one of the inspectors $500 just like the dealers do and you will get inspected first and be home early.

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11 minutes ago, Don Anomino said:

Totally different situation.. This is not at all relevant the post.

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20 hours ago, Kiko said:

SNIP......... Drive the car to Carmax in San Antonio, Tx and sell it or sell it on Craigslist San Antonio then fly back.  Buy Mexican from a friend or on this webboard. 

 

Since about 2012 when the then 'new' regulations about a Permanente no longer being able to keep foreign plated vehicles in Mexico, a bunch of folks have taken this option. In one form or another. Either drive it up yourself or pay someone to do the driving/selling at the border for them.

Others have chosen to 'sell' their vehicle for a specific/known $ amount to someone Lakeside who then post haste drives the car out of Mexico, satisfying the Mexican government. I have done this for many owners/vehicles over the last 10+ years.

In either case the owner will by necessity part with their perfectly good vehicle at a wholesale/trade-in price and also pay someone a fee and expenses to help them do this! Most often a hard pill to swallow but it is what it is.

The part about an owner trying to sell it on craigslist at the border is, IMO, easier said than done and would take the "patience of Job". Most owners would characteristically not be willing to do this for the few extra $s it might give them. 

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This is only my opinion. There is no set of wheels that is worth the hassle of nationalizing. Depending on what model of vehicle (and the year) you have, look it up at Pre-Owned Used Cars And New Vehicles |soloautos.mx®

Keep in mind that prices shown include taxes. Do business with a dealership rather than individuals if you aren't comfortable. It's easy. But, keep in mind that there are very few used vehicles anywhere for sale right now and that includes Mexico, U.S. and Canada. There is still a chip shortage. I wanted a new 2021 or 2022 Fiat Mobi Trekking and waited over six months. I bought a 2020 Fiat Mobi Way which was a demo model. I am thrilled. It's got 18,000 km on it and looks brand spankin' new... cheaper too. Also keep in mind that Mexican cars last for flippin' ever here if maintained. I just sold my 2007 Nissan Tiida Hatchback for 50,000 pesos... it had 52,000 km. on it. 

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I hope that it works out for you. Have you had any difficulty finding parts? I specifically chose a vehicle that was also manufactured in Mexico when we moved down in '96 from Canada. My reasoning was that both Mexico and Canada are metric countries and the parts would be inter changeable. Nope. Ever so slightly different. Luckily we had a lot of guests for the first year and we were able to get parts brought down. Realizing this was not very practical, my hubby drove it back up to Canada and sold it. We then bought a '94 VW bug and sold it in 2006. It's still on the road in Bucerias.

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2 hours ago, daisy2013 said:

My Honda has 321,000 miles on it.  Well worth nationalization   We paid 14,000 pesos to have it nationalized    So it all depends on what car you have and make the decision.  Our was worth keeping it.

That is dirt cheap.  I doubt it could be done now at that price.  The cheapest I ever got by was 20,000 pesos on a 2013 model yr motorcycle in 2021.  And that was only the cost at the border not including, travel there and back, hotels, food, and registration/plates acquired in Jalisco.  Due diligence is your friend.

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9 hours ago, daisy2013 said:

My Honda has 321,000 miles on it.  Well worth nationalization   We paid 14,000 pesos to have it nationalized    So it all depends on what car you have and make the decision.  Our was worth keeping it.

Different strokes for different folks I guess. And I too have never seen/heard of a Nationalization costing $700US... but I guess I have now!

I am a BIG fan of Japanese cars.... pretty much won't buy anything else. Now= 1 Lexus, 1 Subaru and 1 Toyota truck!

However ANY vehicle that has 321,000 miles on it is just waiting for a major breakdown.... and probably when and where we would most like for it to not. Hopefully yours won't and hopefully you 'just' drive it around Lakeside with an occasional trip farther out.

god bless the USA; god bless Canada; god bless Mexico. AND god bless the folks driving a vehicle with 300,000+ miles.😎

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10 hours ago, daisy2013 said:

So it all depends on what car you have and make the decision.  Our was worth keeping it.

Yes, I would have paid to nationalize my Honda CRV if I could have. Although it was about 15 years old, it only had about 130,000 km on it, and those vehicles go for a long, long time without major problems. Broke my heart to have to sell it.

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15 minutes ago, daisy2013 said:

My Honda was not made in Japan 

I wish mine hadn't been. The real bummer was that I had bought it from another Canadian 2 years previously, driven it back up to Canada that year to have the registration and plates transferred over to me, driven it back to Mexico, only to have them change the immigration regs a year later, forcing me to move to permanente status, and have to drive it back out of the country and sell it.

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