Guide for First Time Buyers in Malta

Many people consider the decision to purchase property - one of the biggest decisions one will make. This is hardly surprising when you consider the responsibilities that come with this decision. One needs to be aware of the process of purchasing a property, the expenses and charges involved, and what methods would simplify their buying process - even more so when it’s the case when a first-time buyer is purchasing a property.

Confirm Your Budget

It is important to have a budget in mind before searching for first properties in Malta or Gozo. Several people have borrowed funds in order to finance their purchase. If this is the case, the bank is able to give you an indication of your borrowing limit based on your salary, factoring in other expenses you may already be committed to. Remember that this is only an indication so be sure to search for properties priced below this figure. Ask your specialised first-time buyer agent to show you properties below and above with space to negotiate to your threshold. It may be prudent to deduct costs of other items, such as furnishings, notary fees and so on so that you have a more accurate figure. It is recommended that you visit your local bank and confirm the amount the bank will be able to borrow you. If you are buying a property with your partner, you will be in a position to combine the joint income. Read this page for more specifics on home loans in Malta.

Property Needs, Wish List and Searching

Once you have a budget in mind, you can start hunting for a property. To simplify things, we would suggest you make a list of needs and a wish list and follow that up by going online and searching for your minimum requirements. You will eventually narrow this down to properties you’d like to view. The next step would be to contact the RE/MAX Malta real estate agent and schedule viewings for the same or next day. Several people opt to work with a real estate agent for the simple reason that this scheduling is undertaken by them. Aside from this, a real estate agent will accompany you on your visit to the properties and will have the market knowledge when the time comes to haggling the price or negotiating any specific terms.

Make sure you mark the properties you like and remove the ones that didn’t meet your expectations. Ensure you thoroughly inspect the property – any defects or lack of maintenance may allow you to negotiate in property price. Along the way, you will start to understand what type of property you may achieve in purchasing and may start adding those items from your wish list to your search. You will start asking your self questions like “What if I were to purchase a property with heated floors? Would it break the bank? This scenario will be a trial and error until you find the compromise between your needs and wants. It is confirmed through a recent Real Estate Insights report in 2015 that buyers take on average of four months to find their property so if you fall within this category you will have found your first property in Malta before you know it.

Signing your First Promise of Sale

Once you have found your ideal property, you can make an offer. Check how much similar properties are selling for in the area before proposing a price. Should the vendor agree, remember that the agreement is - so far - verbal, and despite being given in good-faith, it is non-committal. Once you have agreed on a price, a date is set for signing of the Promise of Sale (“Konvenju”).

Drafted up by a notary, this is a contract between the buyer and seller where several terms and conditions are laid out in writing. The contract may be subject to several conditions; for example, the seller may need to finalise certain details or jobs in relation to the property; as the purchaser, you may wish to have the property evaluated by an architect for any structural defects and may only purchase the property should it be of sound structure. Other conditions could be related to the permit of the property or that you actually manage to secure financing for the property. In only certain cases may a promise of sale be extended provided that both parties agree.

The contract would also include a date for signing of Final Deed, and such date would serve as a deadline for both parties. For the purpose of the Promise of Sale, the notary represents the government and is impartial between both parties. Once the Promise of Sale has been signed, you will be asked to pay a deposit (usually 10%) to the seller, and a further 1% provisional stamp duty to the notary. A copy of the contract is then given to both you and the seller. The notary would then need a further 6 weeks to carry out searches on the property – verifying the legal title, ensuring there are no loans taken against said property, and that the vendor is able to sell the property.

Signing the Contract

Should all the conditions written in the Promise of Sale be satisfied, the parties then meet to sign the Final Deed. This would be read out by the notary and again signed by both parties. At this stage, you will need to pay all pending balances - including the remaining balance on the property, the remaining balance on stamp duty (presently only 5% above EUR 150, 000 up until end of Dec 2016) and 1% fees to the Notary Public. The contract is then registered at the Public registry, and the keys to the property are handed over to you – a proud home-owner. Your next headache is moving all your personal items to your home!

The process of property-hunting may take anything from one week to several months, and is dependent on your urgency to find a property. Should you be in a hurry, or are planning ahead of time it is important to bear in mind that property searches and signing of contracts take an average of three to six months’. Feel free to contact us so we can be part of your planning process.

Why Choose RE/MAX for Your First Property

At RE/MAX Malta, the first time buyer market is just one of the real estate markets that we have specialised real estate agents working with customers on a daily basis. Our know-how of the market, comprehensive database of properties and reach of twenty-two offices and over 250 estate agents located around the Malta and Gozo will surely be an asset to your property search.

Each office of ours has a number of fully qualified first-time buyer sales associates available to attend to your call. You will find that our associates are very professional and will not waste your time. We are proud to say that we do our utmost to listen to your every request and take the time to guide you through the process. Our associates are also assisted by state of the art technology which alerts them specific properties come available on our database that match your search criteria.

You may find our weekly updated list of properties for First time buyers useful or you may like to receive property update emails of properties that come through our database that match your criteria. If you have a chance, we also have some interesting articles that describe the actual experience of first time buyers in Malta on our blog.

Related Links

Your First Property in Malta Blog

First-Time Buyer Trends in Malta

Finding the Right Agent

RE/MAX Exclusive Listings

€50,000 - €100,000

MARSA - New on the market 7 roomed ground floor MAISONETTE situated very close to a major Shopping Complex. Two different possibilities can change this place into either a one bedroom residential property or an office/clinic due its layout. Unconverted. Freehold! Negotiable! more

€ 71,500

XAGHRA - A selection of 2/3 bedrooms APARTMENTS forming part of a new development which is presently under construction. Units to be sold in shell form inclusive of common parts. Typical layout offers entrance to a good sized kitchen/dining/living area, leading to 2 or 3 bedrooms and main bathroom. more

€ 85,000

SANNAT - Forming part of a newly built block is this first floor APARTMENT, ideal for first time buyers or as a spacious holiday residence. Layout offers entrance into a living area, combined with kitchen/dining room leading to three bedrooms (en-suite) and main bathroom. Sold shell with common part more

€ 85,000

Birzebbuga - Comes this highly finished unique apartment forming part of a small elegant block. Layout consists of a large open plan leading to a front balcony with unobstructed views of Pretty bay. One double bedroom with another balcony facing the street and a guest bathroom. It has also the use more

€ 94,000

Birzebbuga - A well maintained 2nd floor apartment in a block of only two, situated in a quiet residential area, yet close to the beach and to all amenities. The layout of this bright and airy property consists of an open-plan kitchen/living/dining with the facility of a terrace,good sized bathroom, more

€ 95,600

XLENDI - Ideal for a Summer let of holiday home this 2nd floor furnished apartment is ready for immediate occupation. Layout comprises of two bedrooms, kitchen, dining and living combined, bathroom, shower, front balcony and good size back terrace enjoying views of the bay. more

€ 98,000

XAGHRA - A selection of 2/3 bedrooms APARTMENTS forming part of a new development which is presently under construction. Units to be sold in shell form inclusive of common parts. Typical layout offers entrance to a good sized kitchen/dining/living area, leading to 2 or 3 bedrooms and main bathroom. more

€ 99,000

HAMRUN - New on the market - 1st floor Solitary Maisonette. Property consists of two rooms and roof at the second level. One can build another room on top for a good size bedroom with a terrace. Once this is converted it will make a cosy home, and also a rental investment as it is centrally located. more

€ 99,000

SANNAT - Located close to amenities is this larger than normal brand new ground floor apartment enjoying a welcoming and spacious open plan kitchen/living/dining area, central courtyard, three double bedrooms, en-suit shower, family bathroom, laundry and back yard. Offered in shell form with common more

€ 100,000

SAN GWANN - One bedroom apartment. Upon entering one finds a kitchen/living/dining area with balcony and corridor which leads to one double bedroom leading to a terrace. Sold in shell form. more

€ 100,000

€100,001 - €150,000

MARSALFORN - Bright and spacious shell form APARTMENT in this excellently located modern block situated just minutes away from the sea. This corner development is already built and typical layout offers 3 bedrooms, kitchen/dining/living area, bathroom, ensuite shower and front/back balcony. Served w more

€ 108,500

NADUR - This unconverted HOUSE OF CHARACTER is situated in a well sought after area and is currently composed of 3 rooms and a courtyard on ground foor level and 2 rooms on the first floor. The house is set in a corner and plans are available for a 3 bedroom house with combined kitchen/living area a more

€ 112,000

FGURA - Brand new two bedrooms first floor APARTMENT. The Apartment comprises of two spacious double bedrooms, main with en-suite and balcony, main bathroom, box room, kitchen/living/dining combined having a balcony. All apartments windows/balconies are overlooking the street. To be sold highly f more

€ 118,000

FGURA - Brand new three bedrooms first floor APARTMENT. The Apartment comprises of three spacious double bedrooms, main with en-suite and balcony, main bathroom, box room, kitchen/living/dining combined having a balcony. All apartments windows/balconies are overlooking the street. To be sold high more

€ 129,000

SENGLEA - RENTAL INVESTMENT - In the three cities new on the market with Marina views, is this two bedroom APARTMENT in Senglea. Layout comprises of an entrance into a living/dining, separate kitchen, two bedrooms, one bathroom, one balcony and use of roof. Needs renovation. more

€ 137,000

€150,001 - €250,000

GHAJNSIELEM - Selection of two bedroom APARTMENTS enjoying either country or partial country/sea views with or without terrace, comprises of a combined kitchen/dining/living and guest bathroom. Properties are served with lift and have a fantastic communal pool/deck area and are finished to very go more

€ 157,000

HAMRUN - Two maisonettes connected consisting of a Class 4 shop on the lower floor and a two bedroom Maisonette on the first floor, including the airspace. more

€ 160,000

QORMI - Townhouse situated in the centre of this village very close to San Bastjan Church with plot measuring 13ftx77ft. Accommodation in the form of a formal sitting room moving onto a dining area overlooking a central yard with well, kitchen and bathroom. On first floor one may find 2 double be more

€ 165,000

MELLIEHA - This new development will incorporate an array of 1/2/3 bedroom Apartments being sold finished to high standards including bathrooms and internal doors. The whole development will also consist of a Hotel with the services of an indoor pool, gym, a complete spa & sauna, restaurant and cafe more

€ 186,000

QAWRA - Highly finished newly built first floor apartment set in a good area of Qawra and forms part of a prestigious block enjoying open views. Layout consists of a good size open-plan kitchen/living/dining room. Three double bedrooms. En-suite in the main bedroom. Main bathroom and a box room. Bac more

€ 200,000

€250,001 - €350,000

Top floor apartment served with lift and located in a quiet area of St. Paul's Bay. Layout consists of an entrance hall leading to a very large open plan kitchen/living/dining room. Two double bedrooms. En-suite in the main bedroom. A large main bathroom. Back terrace and a front balcony. Property b more

€ 255,500

XGHAJRA: This beautiful 3 bedroom apartment is in the 2nd floor.It welcomes you with a massive living room.On the right side one finds a double bedroom with an open balcony with seaviews. Another double bedroom with an ensuite and a single bedroom.On the other side one finds a big bathroom and a bo more

€ 270,000

BAHAR IC-CAGHAQ - Newly built stunning duplex apartment by a renowned Maltese architect, on entrance one finds a welcoming hall that leads to a kitchen and a large living room with a terrace that can be used for both entertaining or as drying area and a guest bathroom. On the upper floor one finds t more

€ 278,000

ST JULIAN's. A fantastic Rental Investment opportunity in the heart of St Julian's, situated 2 mins away from St George's bay and the commercial hub. A block comprising of 38 Residential Suites spread on 8 floors and overlying a commercial block of serviced offices, retail and Café. These apartment more

€ 289,000

ZABBAR - Unconverted double fronted corner three stories high town house, centrally located in a very commercial and busy street of this town. Layout comprises of a sitting room, dining room, kitchen, bathroom and a 31smq back yard with a well. At intermediate level one finds a double bedroom and st more

€ 350,000

€350,001 - Upwards

ZEJTUN - TERRACED HOUSE located close to all amenities and every day needs. Property is measured 6.1 by 26 meters. Ideal as a Site to be redeveloped. more

€ 372,000

SWIEQI- New on the market large 3 bedroom duplex penthouse luxuriously finished with an amazing 70sqm kitchen/living/dining overlooking a 30sqm large terrace ideal for entertaining more

€ 465,000

MOSTA - 5th floor penthouse measuring 136 sqm internally, with additional 114 sqm outdoor space. Forming part of a brand new development, centrally located, quiet surroundings and with unobstructed views. Optional garages also available. Plans in hand. Please contact us for additional information an more

€ 560,000

PAOLA - Top floor apartment build on an exclusive block in the south of Malta enjoying magnificent views. On entrance one finds a large Kitchen/Living/Dining open plan having a good size balcony. A hall way leads to the three double bedrooms all with large balconies and the main bathroom. Property i more

€ 650,000

Gharghur - Truly unique apartment with stunning sea and valley views. The apartment is bright & spacious and measures 220sqm in total. Comprises of open plan living/Kitchen/dining. 3 large bedrooms, 1 en-suite, 1 guest bathrooms. Utility/box room. Gharghur is a quaint village offering its unique eco more

€ 690,000