The Maltese property market is booming, with every kind of real estate in demand. Both local residents and those from abroad looking to set up a home in this Mediterranean haven are faced with various types of properties to choose from. There is something for every budget and preference, depending on which part of the island you want to live in. Everyone can find their home in Malta, from modest studios to sprawling palazzos, rustic farmhouses surrounded by nature, and penthouses that sit atop towers in the country’s most cosmopolitan zones. If you are starting your search and want an overview of what is available, please keep reading.
Garages are in demand throughout the country as parking spaces become harder to come by. These units are usually located in the basement of apartments and can comprise one unit or multiple units in one area. Most new buildings have garage facilities, like older apartment blocks and maisonettes.
Studio apartments are becoming increasingly popular, particularly among young professionals, single people, and first-time buyers. They offer appropriate living quarters for many while also being a good option for renting. In central areas, studios are often rented by foreign workers, younger locals, and students who need a smaller property to meet their needs.
Apartments are the most popular form of property in Malta and Gozo. Due to the country’s small size, building up is a solution and caters to the growing population. These apartments come in different shapes, sizes, and finishes and feature balconies and terraces, or in the case of ground floor units- gardens. They typically feature open-plan living spaces, although this also can vary. Look for air-conditioning, condominium agreements, and ease of access through well-serviced lifts.
Maisonettes are found throughout Malta, both in urban areas and more rural developments, and they can include standard and high-end varieties. They are apartments that are accessible via a private entrance. There is no need to share stairs and a corridor with multiple other inhabitants of the overall property.
A duplex is a property that is set on two floors and is connected by a single, interior staircase. It can be an apartment in a block of other properties, or a ground floor property that has a second floor within it. Duplexes provide generous living space that is perfect for growing families or those with work-from-home offices, or hobbies that require space. They can also be great for accommodating other family members who may want to live within the same property. A duplex in Malta provides ample privacy and space for those who want the feeling of a house or villa, but within a more urban or compact setting.
A penthouse typically refers to a property located on the top floor of a block of apartments, a tower, or an apartment building. They are different from regular apartments because they offer interrupted and often panoramic views and come with a much higher price tag. Penthouses in Malta are found throughout the country, but the best are located in central harbour areas such as Sliema and St Julians and prime coastal areas, including those in the south like the Three Cities. Luxury penthouses are particularly in-demand, offering high-end finishes and all the modern features and amenities.
Villas can be found along Malta’s coasts, often situated on the outskirts of towns and villages but at times, in more isolated areas. They are typically newer builds made from limestone or concrete with large swathes of glass and steel. Some are designed in a more traditional style, while others are the pinnacle of modern design and discretion. Swimming pools and gardens, including BBQ areas, are often part of the package, as are expansive open-plan living areas and luxury touches like jacuzzis and underground parking.
Houses-of-Character were typically constructed to house large families and feature 2-4 bedrooms over two or sometimes three floors. They are crafted from limestone and feature stone floors and marble throughout. They often have courtyards that offer shade in the summer and external staircases for the top floors. Other features include wells, ornate balconies, and large entrance halls and landings. Buyers can choose from already renovated houses or those that require work to be modernised. Either way, they are a great investment and highly sought after. This kind of property is almost exclusively found in older neighbourhoods where similarly aged properties are located.
A townhouse is a terraced property, usually spread over 2-4 floors and located in urban areas. Famous for brightly painted wooden shutters and ornate balustrades and balconies, they are popular with families that enjoy living in the middle of towns or villages. These are almost exclusively older properties and are built from limestone with beautiful, tiled floors sweeping internal staircases and even boast high, airy ceilings with wooden/iron beams. Similar to houses-of- character, farmhouses and palazzos, townhouses require a fair amount of internal and external upkeep and higher heating and cooling costs.
Over the last decades, a significant trend in Malta has been to buy farmhouses and renovate them, transforming them into stunning and vast family homes. Located throughout the country but particularly in Gozo, southern rural areas, and those in the northwest, they are suitable for habitation or rental on short or long-term contracts. Farmhouses often include fireplaces, multiple bedrooms, swimming pools and large outdoor spaces. They feature stone walls and floors, large window areas, and plenty of foliage in the garden.
Maltese palazzos are some of the most opulent and splendid properties imaginable. Few and far between, they are sought after and come at a very high price. With intricate and breath-taking stonework, manicured gardens, and vast interiors full of marble, plaster, and decorative tiles, they are the ultimate purchase for those looking for traditional and luxurious properties. Key areas for palazzos are Mdina, Mosta, Attard, Rabat, and Valletta. A palazzo is the perfect option for those who want a slice of Malta’s regal past.
You can buy plots of land throughout the country. Sometimes they come with permissions or designations for building; sometimes, this needs to be applied for. Purchasing a plot, subject to planning permission, allows you to build a block of apartments to rent or sell or create your own home, such as a villa.
There are various different kinds of land such as agricultural land used for farming and cultivating, recreational land, which is used only for recreational purposes, or in some cases, outside development zone (ODZ land). For each, there are specific requirements and obligations. Before buying, consult your real estate agent on topics such as permissions, permits and land use limitations to ensure the land suits your needs.
Under Maltese law, airspace is a separate entity from the land or other property that underpins it. As the demand for space to build increases, more people are looking to buy airspace and build into it. For example, the airspace above a 1-2 storey building could be for sale, allowing the buyer to build another floor on top which would entirely belong to them.
Bernard Real Estate has been providing expert assistance to buyers, sellers, landlords and lessees of commercial and residential property in Malta and Gozo since 1997. During that time, we have been involved in thousands of transactions, including every kind of property on this list. This puts us in the perfect position to guide you through the buying, selling, or letting process, regardless of which kind of property it is. To find out more about our services, to start your search or to list your property, contact us today.