In this guide, you will discover the benefits of renting, how to find a rental property, what to look for on viewings and signing a letting agreement.
The Advantages of Renting
Nowadays renting has become very popular and is reaching a point where demand is higher than supply during peak season. Renting is ideal for people who want flexibility and may wish to move without the commitment of owning a property. Also when renting, it usually works out cheaper for the tenant and their bills are quite predictable as maintaining the property is usually still up to the landlord.
How to find a place to rent
First of all, you will need to decide what type of property will be most suitable for you and fits in with your lifestyle. For some people, they wouldn’t want people living above them so they would need a top floor apartment, a penthouse or a house. Some need a garage or an extra bedroom when they have guests on holiday. Make a list of your most important requirements and search our database.
Some other important questions to ask yourself are:
- Do you need the property to be furnished or unfurnished?
- Does the property have air-conditioning?
- Can you afford the property throughout the whole agreement?
- Can you connect your own TV, Internet and telephone services?
- Is the property in area where you can easily commute?
One of the most frustrating things about searching the local market for property to rent is that the majority of estate agency websites are out of date. Our listing system works in a different way so letting agents can only list properties that are currently available.
What to look for on viewings?
When you have decided on which properties you would like to view, contact your agent so he can schedule a viewing for you.
You can make the most out of your viewing by:
- Checking how well the property is being maintained and if there are any obvious repairs.
- See that you will have adequate storage space.
- See what electrical appliances are included. Preferably the energy saver type to help reduce your electricity bills.
- Confirm which furniture, if any shall be staying.
- Check the taps in kitchen and bathrooms to see if the water pressure is strong enough, flush the toilet. Confirm all are working.
- If there are common areas, are they in good condition? Who’s responsible for cleaning and maintaining them? Do you have your own letterbox?
- If the property doesn’t come with a car space or garage, check if parking is an issue in the area.
- See if there are any obvious constructions sites being built as the noise can become unbearable.
- Can you commute to your work or place of study easily enough?
- If you have time to go again, check the area at different times.
- Ask about the landlord, does he like to keep his properties well maintained?
As you may already know, the renting market in Malta is very fast especially for the newer and modern type. Try and do as many of these checks where possible but don’t leave it too long. Some of these properties do not stay on the market for longer than 24 hours.
Signing a letting agreement
Becoming a tenant takes on a certain amount of responsibilities but also give you certain rights. Your letting agreement will typically be 2-3 pages long plus a detailed inventory. It lists your responsibilities towards the property which you are legally obliged to adhere to, so read it carefully. The agreement will include:
- The names of the landlord and tenant(s)
- The address of the property
- How much the rent and deposit will be and when it has to be paid
- When the rent will be reviewed
- Terms for how the utility bills are to be paid
- Contact details for the landlord or agent who will be looking after the property
Each page of the agreement needs to be signed by the landlord and tenant with copies of identity cards or passports attached.
Typically, one month’s rent is paid in advance, a deposit equivalent to one month’s rent is also paid and the letting agent’s fee. It’s important to note that according to the terms of the agreement, the deposit will be refunded in full on completion of the agreement as long as there are no pending bills or damages. The letting agency fee is usually 50% of a month’s rent + VAT.
Example of how much you would have to pay on the day of doing the agreement for renting a property of €600 per month:
€600 month’s rent in advance
€354 letting agent’s fee incl. VAT
According to the agreement you must always; pay your rent on time, pay for TV, Internet and telephony services (unless already included), pay for your water and electricity consumption, respect your neighbours and look after the property.
You will also be responsible; to report and damages to the owner with could lead to further damage (for example a leaking water pipe), for any minor repairs such as replacing light bulbs and keeping the property securely locked.
You will not be allowed to do any structural changes to the property, redecorating or hanging up of pictures without written consent from the landlord, use the property as a business or sublet.