Home Expat Blogs Introducing Orilla del Lago

Introducing Orilla del Lago

Old boats in the Lake of Chapala.
Credit: Jose de Jesus Churion Del | Shutterstock

Hola and welcome to my new real estate blog, Orilla del Lago, which means shore of the lake. Lake Chapala, that is.

Sitting at an elevation of 5,000 ft., Lake Chapala is Mexico’s largest natural freshwater lake, extending 50 miles from east to west and about 11 miles north to south. A shallow lake, its average depth is about 15 feet and it borders the states of Jalisco and Michoacán.

Our area has the largest number of retired expats in Mexico and it is growing rapidly. My blog will keep you up-to-date on real estate along the lake.

The real estate market on the north shore of Lake Chapala has been very strong. Both prices and sales are up. I would guess that overall prices are up a minimum of 20 percent. Properties in or close to the village of Ajijic are in the greatest demand, but because of the pressure on village properties, sales of homes in close proximity are also up substantially. A good home at a fair price will sell within 45 days in the current market. This is a big difference from the years between 2009 and 2016 when the average time between listing and sale was 167 days.

I expect 2019 to continue this trend. More and more Americans and Canadians are retiring and they are looking for a home in an environment that is more affordable, yet in close proximity to their original home. The Guadalajara International Airport, with connections to many cities in the U.S. and Canada, is only 25 minutes away.

I have also noticed that unhappiness with the current political situation in the U.S. has many Americans “fleeing” to Mexico. Many of these Americans purchasing home here are more than willing to say that is why they are buying and moving.

Americans purchasing homes here most often come from California, Washington, New York, Florida, Oregon, Wyoming, Texas and Missouri, although other states are represented, also. I am sure this trend will continue through 2019 because of the ongoing political turmoil north of the border.

I’m happy to say that our environment and quality of life lakeside has been blessed this year with the highest lake level in years. Although our local rainy season was not that strong, abundant rains north of us filled the lake through river flow to almost 90 percent. It is the highest it has been in the 11 years I have lived here. Water levels should remain high from our normal rainy season, which usually drops about 30 inches between mId-June and mid-October.

I invite you to visit lakeside to see for yourself the many benefits and pleasures of lakeside living, like our beautiful year-round climate, for instance.

Moving to lakeside was the best decision I ever made, other than marrying my wife!


  1. Hi Michael,
    Thanks for the update on lake Chapala area. I joined a couple of FB groups in Chapala and was pretty turned off on the area from posts I read-From air and water pollution to various criminal activity. I also researched online and was very disappointed to discover how polluted the lake is by agriculture and mining activities. Has the water quality of the lake gotten any better? Are there folks dedicated to working on solutions for it? The thought of going and walking along a grossly polluted lake does not appeal to me. Every time I would look at it, I would think of the pollution.


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