Buying property in any country, including Malta, can be nerve wrecking and overwhelming. Here is your ultimate guide to buying property in Malta – a guide that will answer all your questions before you can even think of them!
Buying property in Malta can be quite daunting and it can get the best of you, just like in any other country around the world. There are quite a few aspects that you need to take into consideration such as agent fees, duties, contracting a notary, the promise of sale or konvenju phase, and more.
However, fear not! That is where we come in. This complete guide to buying property in Malta will answer all your questions and we will also let you know how, here at Bernards Real Estate, we can help make your search quicker and easier.
Foreigners Buying Property in Malta
Malta is one of three lovely islands in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. It boasts of 300 days of sunshine, and it is the ideal location if you want to enjoy the summer weather, almost, all year round. With our fabulous beaches, warm climate and incredible history, foreigners are constantly looking to buy property in Malta – and who can blame them?!
Whether you are thinking of staying in Malta long-term or you are simply looking for a holiday home for when you visit the Maltese Islands, there are a couple of steps that you need to consider.
Non-EU Citizens Requirements
Non-EU citizens will need to obtain an AIP (Acquisition of Immovable Property) permit to qualify for buying a property in Malta. Enquiries will need to be submitted to the Inland Revenue Department and the AIP is usually issued to the applicant in six to eight weeks at a fee of €233 per permit.
The minimum value of a property is subject to change every year as this is affected by the housing index. The application to obtain this permit can be downloaded here.
EU citizens and resident Requirements
For EU citizens, the AIP permit is not required when buying a primary residence. Furthermore, if an EU citizen has been living in Malta for at least five years, they are not required to obtain any permits for buying a property locally, even if this is a secondary residence.
For couples where one is not an EU citizen and the other is, an AIP permit is also not required, as long as, the property that they are buying will be used as their primary residence. EU citizens are also free to buy property for business purposes without any permits.
However, citizens who have not been living on the island for at least five years can only purchase a primary residence without a permit. Should they require to purchase a secondary home, they will need to obtain the AIP permit.
A Step-By-Step Process of Buying Property in Malta
Buying property is always a wise investment to enjoy long-term. If you are looking for a property in Malta, you can choose from a wide variety of options such as luxury apartments, townhouses, house of character, maisonettes, penthouses, farmhouses, and more.
Here is a step-by-step list to get started on this journey of investment:
- You will firstly need to locate a public notary of your choice in Malta. Your notary will take care of all your documentation, property examinations, negotiations with landlords, and payment deadlines.
- If you are a non-EU citizen, you will next need to apply and acquire an AIP permit as this will give you the right to buy your property in Malta.
- Next comes the preliminary agreement (the famous ‘konvenju’) which is a binding contract between the buyer and the seller that determines conditions and the final date of the full transaction process. Your public notary will check for specific defects, ownership title, outstanding debt, servitude and/or subletting. If something is not right with your property, you can legally back out of the agreement and get your money back at this stage. The other option is to try and negotiate with the owner.
- It is time for the first part of the payment here.
- If everything is settled, the final payment is made here, together with the remaining amount of the stamp duty and notary fees.
- Here, the preliminary agreement is replaced with the final deed. This makes the property, officially yours!
Cost and Fees
Property in Malta remains the preferred method of investment which is why the property market and prices are always on the rise. According to CEIC data, as of March 2019, Malta’s property grew 10.8% and the average house price has increased by the rate of 5.8%.
Stamp duty is calculated at 5% on the value of the consideration for the transfer of property. The first part of the payment is divided as follows:
- For EU citizens purchasing a secondary home or a holiday home, a stamp duty of 1% of the total 5% (of the total property price) is given to Inland Revenue while a 10% deposit (of the total property price) is given to the seller.
- For EU citizens purchasing property as a main residence in Malta, a stamp duty of 1% of the total 5% (of the total property price) is given to Inland Revenue while a 10% deposit (of the total property price) is given to the seller.
- For non-EU citizens or for EU citizens buying their first home, a stamp duty of 5% (of the total property price) is given to Inland Revenue while a 10% deposit (of the total property price) is given to the seller.
Here at Bernards Real Estate, we can help!
Our professional team of experts, here at Bernards Real Estate, has a track record of closing countless successful property deals to full satisfaction to both sellers and buyers alike. Our experienced property consultants specialise in various sectors of the market in order to give our clients the best possible service when looking for their dream home in Malta.
We would love to get to know you! Contact us for more information today.