Facturas ... what's a factura and how can they help?
 
When selling a home in the United States a seller usually has write-offs against his capital gains tax. If you have improved, added to, bought items which are attached and will stay with the house you can usually write these off by producing receipts for them.
 
You can do the same thing in Mexico with one HUGE difference.
 
Receipts do not work here. You must have a factura. Many times you will pay for a service or purchase an item and the seller will ask if you want a factura. If you say yes he adds 11% IVA to your bill. If you say no then he does not add that tax and he is most likely not reporting it as income on his end. (my note: Actually, now that I think of it, many times I have gotten receipts, been charged the IVA and have not gotten a factura...my error because you don't automatically get a factura... You must ask for it.
 
Because I think this information is so important I am repeating it: A factura is a legal official receipt for tax purposes in Mexico. It is different from a cash register receipt. It is presently printed by registered printers, has a cedula a tax insignia or symbol in a corner, is numbered sequentially and those numbers are monitored by the Mexican IRS (SAT) or “Hacienda” as it is commonly called; it shows the name of the person or entity issuing the official receipt, all of their data and their tax ID number. It also has a space for a description of the goods and services provided. For the purposes of a tax deduction on your property, also make sure they include the address of your property is on the factura, so it can be clearly identified with the property. Keep originals of all documentation...copies will not be accepted.