Everything you need to know before buying property in Malta

When purchasing property as a foreigner, you will need the services of trusted professionals to get the process done correctly. Choosing the right professionals will save you time and money, while also ensuring you don’t find problems down the line.

Will inspect the property and make sure there are no irregularities, structural issues, and that everything is up to standard. Your architect will also be able to provide you with a valuation of the property.

Your notary will draw up the contract and make sure that the seller is legally allowed to transfer the property, and that there is no obligation upon it. The notary will also register the sale with the Public Registry.

Estate Agent
Will help you to find the right property and negotiate the price with the seller. Your agent will also advise you on how to go about the legal obligations involved and can suggest other professionals.

Energy Performance Certificate
When buying property in Malta, the law requires that the seller presents an energy performance certificate to the buyer. This document informs the buyer about the energy performance of a building. Certificates are prepared by a qualified assessor who is registered with the Building Regulation Office. The certificate is valid for 10 years, unless there are significant changes made to the building.

Tax Exemptions for Expats
Residents of Malta are exempt from tax on foreign-sourced income not remitted to Malta. They are also exempt from tax on any foreign- sourced capital gains whether remitted to Malta or not. Permanent residents are taxed at a rate of 15% on remitted income.

Acquisition of Immovable Property (AIP) Permit
Any non-Maltese national purchasing property in Malta which will not be their primary residence will require an AIP permit. EU citizens purchasing property in Malta as their primary residence do not need an AIP permit.

If an EU citizen has resided in Malta for more than 5 years, then they will not require an AIP permit, whether this will be their primary residence or not. If an EU citizen is purchasing property in Malta as a second home (and therefore not as a primary residence), then they will require an AIP permit.

The minimum property values are:

Flat/Maisonette €110,469 Any other property €184,469

These values are subject to change according to the Property Price Index.

A fee of €233 is charged per permit, and the permit is usually issued within 35 days.

Special Designated Areas (SDAs)
When buying property in an SDA, the AIP permit is not necessary. Anyone may buy property in Malta within special designated areas, without restrictions or permits.

The current special designated areas are: Portomaso Development, St. Julians, Malta Tigné Point, Tigné, Malta

Tas-Sellum Residence, Mellieha, Malta Madliena Village Complex, Malta SmartCity, Malta

Fort Cambridge Zone, Tignè, Malta

Ta’ Monita Residence, Marsascala, Malta Pendergardens, St. Julians, Malta

St Angelo Mansions, Vittoriosa

Vista Point, Marsalforn, Gozo

Fort Chambray, Ghajnsielem, Gozo Kempinski Residences, San Lawrenz, Gozo

Expenses involved

Stamp duty 5%*

Notarial fee around 1%

Searches around €300

(the cost of searches varies on a case-by-case basis) AIP (where applicable) €233 plus professional fees for accountant, auditor, lawyer etc.

Recognition fee equivalent to one year’s ground rent (only applicable to properties subject to ground rent)

*Stamp duty is reduced to 3.5% on the first €150,000 of the price, and 5% on the remainder, when purchasing a place of residence, as a first time buyer.

Real estate agency fees are the responsibility of the vendor.

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