Buying a Property in Malta as a Foreigner

Malta is centrally located in the heart of the Mediterranean, consisting of three islands. It has numerous historic sites spread all over the islands including megalithic templates and giant fortresses. Historic landmarks, world-class marina, a great climate and a unique culture make it an attractive destination for anyone looking to invest in property.

Malta is a perfect place to buy property, especially if you are an EU citizen. With new developments in housing, it’s unsurprising that Malta continues to fascinate property investors from all over the world.

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The perfect place to buy a property

Property is a valuable asset in Malta. A one-bedroom apartment in a waterfront areas can cost up to €200,000. Investors looking for rental returns will also be excited with the rental opportunities in cosmopolitan and historic areas of the country thanks to a booming tourism industry.

Malta isn’t just a dream vacation destination, but it’s also favored by retirees. The government offers attractive retirement and residence programs. Using these programs, thousands of EU nationals take up residence in Malta each year, helping real estate industry enjoy stable growth.

Buying a Property as Non-Resident in Malta

Non-residents can purchase property in Malta quite easily once they have obtained a purchasing permit where necessary. The only permit that some non-residents may have to acquire is an AIP permit. An EU citizen doesn’t need this permit if he/she has resided in Malta for at least five years. Similarly, EU citizens can buy property without a permit when they want to use it as their primary residence.

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You may need an AIP permit

Exemptions for EU citizens can be enjoyed by couples where one spouse is an EU citizen while the other is a non-EU citizen as long as they are buying property as their primary residence.

EU citizens can also purchase immovable property for the purpose of business without obtaining an AIP permit.

For those non-residents who need to obtain an AIP permit, the requirements are based on the value of the property. The minimum value of property for which someone can get an AIP permit is subject to change annually depending on the housing index.

There are certain developments in Malta where EU and non-EU citizens can buy property without any restrictions. They can purchase as many units as they like, without meeting conditions for an AIP permit.

What do you Need to Know Before you Buy a Property in Malta?

Buying property in Malta is a wise investment. With demand from both domestic and international buyers, property in Malta continues to enjoy long-term growth. Those looking to buy property can choose from a wide variety of historic houses and new luxury apartments.

Buying property in Malta is usually quite a straight forward process. Here is how a transaction goes through:

  • You find and choose a property to buy
  • An architect will inspect the structure of the property for you
  • You agree on the price and conditions with the seller. Once agreed, both parties will sign an agreement to purchase/sell immovable property
  • The agreement will be binding on both parties once signed
  • A Notary will check the title and prepare a final deed of sale
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Make sure you get an architect to inspect the property

Buying and selling property in Malta is subject to local laws. Here are some highlights that you should know before you proceed with your first investment here:

  • All agreements should be written in English
  • Buyer will deposit a sum equivalent to 10% of the price of the property with the Notary after signing the agreement
  • The deposited amount will go to the seller should the buyer fail to complete the deed, unless there is a valid legal reason for failure to complete
  • The term of such an agreement is three months by default, but parties can agree to different validity period
  • Buyer has to pay stamp duty and other legal expenses when they take possession of the property