Are you considering moving to Malta? Malta has a huge British expat community and there are many who want to buy cheap properties in Malta. And why not, although the infrastructure and amenities in Malta are first-rate, the tiny island nation has one of the lowest costs of living in Europe.
Malta is one of the smallest countries in Europe, which is not far off from the Middle East and North Africa. It has an exceptional Mediterranean climate and is well connected by flights to the UK. It has always been a very popular overseas property destination.
Malta is a perfect retirement spot for Britons. It has a very English culture as it was once a part of the British Empire. The Queen of England spent the early years of her married life here back in the 1950s. Malta is today a popular holiday destination and receives hundreds of thousands of tourists every year.
But it’s more than just a tourist hub. Malta has become popular as a business centre because of its zero taxation policies and business friendly regulations.
There are a number of financial services companies, software developers, plastic surgeons and e-gaming setups that use Malta as the base for their operations.
A number of freelancers, writers, internet marketers, online business owners and other self-employed individuals from the UK, USA, Scandinavia and Germany have moved to Malta to benefit from the low cost of living here. They are attracted by the wonderful tax breaks that Malta offers to high income individuals.
The Malta Retirement Plan and the Malta Residence Programme make it attractive for Europeans to take up residence here and enjoy one of the lowest tax rates in Europe – a flat rate of 15 percent.
Britons don’t require any work permits to move to Malta and seek employment here. The tiny island has the lowest unemployment level in Europe because of its fast growing economy. Financial services, online gaming and tourism are big business here.
Most Maltese nationals are very affluent and own more than just one property. So, for those looking to sell luxury property in Malta online, there’s not just the demand from foreign buyers to reckon with, the domestic demand for properties is equally strong. This keeps the property market in Malta buoyant and the prices on the rise.
That doesn’t mean Malta is impervious to economic crashes or recessions. In fact, the 2008 global housing crash did have a huge impact on Malta.
A lot of people lost a great deal of money in those days. But the country has largely recovered since then and the economy is on the up. The property market in Malta has never looked healthier.
There are a few restrictions on foreign buyers who wish to buy properties here - they cannot buy more than one property in the islands of Malta or Gozo.
They cannot rent out the property, unless it is a luxury villa with a swimming pool. They can purchase a second property only after residing in the country for a continuous period of 5 years.
Non-EU buyers are required to apply for the Acquisition of Immovable Property (AIP) Permit from the Ministry of Finance – which usually takes three months.
Capital gains tax is fixed at a flat rate of 12% on the selling price for those who wish to sell their property. For properties purchased before January 1, 2004, the CGT is levied at 10%. This is pretty low by European standards.