Whether you’re buying property in Malta as a foreigner or a local, this should never be made in the dark. Malta has a lot to offer to potential homeowners. Due to its warm climate and impressive culture and heritage, the islands have been a favourite for becoming a possible country of residence for many tourists.
With tourists looking for short or long let holiday rentals and locals investing in a first and/or second home, the high demand has led to a wide range of different properties to suit whatever style, budget or requirement.
With this extensive choice, buying a property in Malta might seem overwhelming but it does not have to be the case. Here at Century 21, our experienced real estate agents will be able to guide you through every step of the process according to your specific needs. Our mission is to make your journey as simple and as straightforward as possible.
Choosing a property type
When choosing Century 21 as your real estate agent, you can benefit from a vast property database, making it easier for you to find your dream home. Here are some of Malta’s most popular property types.
Apartments in Malta are the highest property type in demand for both locals and foreigners. You will find apartments for rent or sale almost in all locations across Malta and Gozo including in city centres and seaview. Apartments come in different sizes and finishes depending on your budget and style.
Townhouses in Malta are more traditional and they typically have wooden balconies, a small garden and/or courtyard. This property type offers a look at Malta’s history and heritage.
Maisonettes are widely available across various locations on the Maltese Islands. What sets maisonettes off from apartments is their independent front door and a possible extra outdoor space.
House of character
Houses of character can be up to 500 years old and they are defined by their detailed stone architecture. Some houses of character require renovations. However, most have been restored to suit contemporary living.
A luxury villa that is set on its own grounds with years of heritage and possible authentic Maltese architecture. Villas can be fully or semi-detached, occupying gardens, patio space, private parking, and other luxurious features and amenities.
Farmhouses are fairly popular with locals and tourists who are looking into buying a property in Malta. Farmhouses tend to be spacious and are normally situated in the countryside. Some farmhouses also offer an on-site private pool and a roomy outdoor space area.
What type of buyer are you?
For many, buying their first property will be the biggest investment of a lifetime. Your Century 21 agent will guide you through the whole process, taking the stress out of your first-time buying investment. Government incentive schemes for first-time buyers will make joining the real estate market more affordable.
There are various reasons why one decides to buy a second home. You may want to upgrade or downsize your current home or you might consider this alternative home as a rental investment or a summer house. Whatever the reason, Century 21 will help you find your second home.
Malta’s solid economy and in-demand real estate have made it an attractive proposition for both foreign and local investors. Century 21 agents have the experience and technologies to help you find the right rental investment property for you.
Most EU citizens can buy their first home in Malta with little to no restrictions. In some cases, permits are required but there are easily issued to legitimate purchasers. Foreign buyers who are interested in owning multiple properties in Malta should consider buying within the island’s Special Designated Areas since these locations are exempt from local restrictions such as AIP permits.
How to buy a property in Malta
The first step is to have a clear idea of your property requirements, budget, and style. However, if you are a first-time buyer you will have little experience with what’s on the property market. That is where our professional team of experts come in. Our agents at Century 21 will be able to address all of your concerns and show you the available properties that are on the market that will suit your requirements.
Once the initial meeting has been set and the list of properties has been chosen, one of our agents will organise your viewing appointments. This will be the most time-consuming part of the process. However, our agents are well-experienced and will be able to turn a somewhat stressful experience into enjoyable hassle-free encounters.
The promise of sale, a.k.a ‘Konvenju’
Once your desired property has been selected and the price has been negotiated, an appointment will be set to sign the Preliminary Agreement, or what is commonly known as, the promise of sale (konvenju). This is an agreement that binds both the purchaser and the vendor to conclude the transaction within a set date subject to these conditions:
- The selling price that was agreed to;
- Ground rent (when applicable);
- Any works that need to be completed by the seller;
- Any moveable items are included in the selling price;
- Any particular terms such as bank loans, permits, etc;
- Conditions of payment as requested by the vendor;
- Term of the promise of sale is normally around three months unless agreed otherwise.
This promise of sale is written by the Notary chosen by the client. At the time of signing the ‘konvenju’, a sum that is equivalent to 10% of the final selling price, is paid to the vendor as a deposit on the account. This deposit is binding and if the purchaser does not appear for the final deed of sale without a valid reason, this sum will be in favour of the vendor and cannot be refunded.
Once the ‘konvenju’ is signed by all parties, the Notary Public has a period of 21 days to register this document and a 1% stamp duty is required to be paid to the Commissioner of Inland Revenue. This sum is to be paid at the time of signing the ‘konvenju’ as part of the total sum due.
During the ‘konvenju’ period, the Notary Public is responsible for carrying out the necessary searches to verify the legal title and ensure that there are no debts on the property. The purchaser will have time to complete all the requirements such as organising the bank loan and checking on the building permits. The vendor will complete all requirements from his end such as completing the building or finishing works, etc.
Your Century 21 agent can be contacted at any point during this time to assist with a variety of requirements such as setting up bank meetings. Our many years in business have also put us into contact with various notary publics and architects and we can easily assist you in choosing the right personnel for you.
The final deed
Once the above has been completed, a date is set for signing the final deed. The Notary Public will prepare the final document and ensure that the terms of the ‘konvenju’ have been kept and did not lapse. On this day, the Notary Public, the purchaser, the vendor, and your Century 21 agent will be present to sign the final deed.
In the case of a bank loan, the parties will meet at the bank’s legal office. The contract is read out loud and, if all the parties are satisfied, the final deed is signed. The balance due is also paid on this day and the purchaser will also settle the amount due to the Commissioner of Inland Revenue as well as any notary fees.
Unless you fall under an exception, the final withholding tax is calculated on the selling price of the property as declared on the final deed of sale less agency fees with the resulting balance becoming subject to an FWT of 8% as governed by the final tax regime under article 5A of the Income Tax Act.
Assistance provided by Century21
- Identify a property according to your requirements, budget, and style from our varied database;
- Organise property viewings;
- Follow up with the client until the property has been selected;
- Carry out negotiations to obtain the best market price;
- Assist in organising the promise of sale.
If you’re interested in selling a property with Century 21, you may contact us on:
Office: (+356) 2339 2121
Email: [email protected]