Licenciado Luis Miguel Serrano places a sign on his property: This lot is NOT for SALE. Why go to all that effort?
I suspect that sometime in the past, some rascal "sold" this lot to a gullible buyer, leaving Luis Miguel to fight off a bogus claim. Either that, or as an attorney he's seen enough such shenanigans that he prudently protects himself against phony real estate agents by posting his land.
A confluence of unsophisticated buyers and murky titles provides opportunities for fraud. The safeguards I relied on in the USA—title insurance, escrow accounts, licensed realtors—are unavailable here. Resolving problems via the justice system is sluggish and uncertain. Posting warning signs appears to be far more effective in warding off trouble.
What is going on with the yellow house? Apparently two parties claim ownership. Perhaps one of them is attempting to sell it. In response, the other claimant posts signs to scare away prospective buyers, going so far as to cite the case number in which any seller would be named as a litigant.
Problems purchasing real estate are far more common than any buyer newly arrived from the United States would care to know about:
• A high-end housing development on the edge of town remains stalled because of a title dispute.
• A well-known realtor leaves town, taking his clients' deposit money with him.
• A friend is repeatedly sued over the purchase of his home. His house was seized twice and transferred to another buyer once, his possessions were thrown out onto the street, and a warrant for his arrest was issued—all fraudulently. Every setback was reversed on appeal. Even so, after three years of litigation, he still does not have clear title.Most people don't encounter problems like these. But buying property is definitely riskier here than up north.