The houses have many styles some are Mexican colonial and others Mexican Modern, others can be American ranch or European Villa. The styles are often mixed and clearly a house starts with a basic core and is added on to as needs arise and money becomes available. The use of tile knows no limits it seems. At times it appears that the only wood used is for decoration or for furniture. There is also a use of metal especially in decoration and lighting fixtures.
In rental units sometimes there is very little left by previous occupants. The owners don’t usually include lighting fixtures, appliances or window coverings. In some cases even the water heater is removed. However if the price is right some things can be made available. The big exception to the norm is if the house is being rented furnished then everything down to the coffee pot is included. Sometimes a gardener is also included in the rent. Having a gardener is not considered an extravagance, not only does he take care of the garden but will other chores as needed. The pay they receive is modest about six or eight pesos an hour and having him work for a few hours a week is only about forty or fifty dollars a month to keep everything neat and clean outside in some cases his pay is included in the rent.
For inside the house one can employ a maid, sounds rather posh. However, quite a few Gringos employ them. The reasons are many, not only do they do the house cleaning, the can do the laundry and if you want the food shopping. Most only employ maids for house cleaning. From what I hear maids can be a source of information about how things are done in Mexico and help one to learn Spanish. Still seems strange to me to employ someone to clean up after me, as I feel I should do this myself, the guilt trip thing, as my mother was a maid. In Mexico being a maid for some Gringo/Gringa is not a put down it is a position to take pride in, it brings much needed income into the family. Many who say they won’t employ a maid end up doing it after they have been living in Mexico for a while.