Should You Buy A Holiday Home in Malta?

Long summers, warm Mediterranean climate, rich culture, delicious food, what more could you want from your holiday home destination? Malta has it all. So where do you begin when looking for a holiday home in Malta? As one of the more affordable destinations in Europe in terms of cost of living, Malta has become a popular spot for retirees, and holiday homers. We outline a few tips below for people interested in purchasing a holiday home in Malta.

This tiny island in the middle of the Mediterranean has a lot to offer.

It’s understandable to want a holiday home where one can feel at home without the impersonal atmosphere or cost of a hotel room. Escaping to the same location every year is convenient without having to pack up your entire home and figure out a way of putting it into a suitcase. If you’re considering buying a holiday home in Malta you should read on to learn more about our tips when it comes to purchasing your holiday home.

1. Research

A prerequisite when making any sort of large investment, especially in relation to property and more so in relation to a holiday home. Without thorough research you might not get the full picture of the real estate market in the area and what it has to offer and you may make a miserable mistake. That being said, it’s important to scout the location before a final decision is made to fully immerse yourself in lifestyle

2. Making a sound investment

Comfort is key for holiday makers seeking a home away from home. Therefore, it’s essential to ensure you have all the amenities you’d want nearby. It’s also important to ensure that the property is located in a good, secure and popular location. Depending on your own personal requirements and interests, it’s good to bear in mind if the property is accessible from a distance perspective, and within easy reach of the leisure activities available.

3. Budget

After narrowing down the list of potential properties, it’s time to calculate your budget. Calculate acquisition costs such as deposits, transfer fees, etc. Also consider the monthly maintenance, security and insurance costs. Make sure you’re purchasing with your head and not just your heart.

4. Planning Ahead

There are some more important factors to consider beyond your budget, mainly your long term goals for the property. If you’re planning to eventually retire to this home it makes sense to go for a location which ticks all of your boxes. However, if it’s one that you’re potentially renting out in between, it might pay you to invest in seeking out areas of high rental potential in order to maximise your rentability.

5. Residency Programmes

The Maltese Government has a few different residency programmes on offer at the moment. One of which is The Malta Permanent Residency Programme is available to third country nationals; Non-EU/EEA/Swiss nationals based on investment in property or government contributions. As well as, the Nomad Residence Permit, which supports third country nationals who would normally require a Visa to work/travel to Malta. Currently, Malta already supports EU nationals who wish to work remotely on the island.

In a nuthsell

A holiday home should be as low maintenance and hassle free as possible. The only way to succeed is to find a good balance; a property in an area that you’d love to spend a lot of time in and one that has good rental/resale value.

Unsure if the property or location you’ve chosen is the perfect fit? Speak to the locals, give us a call or set up an appointment. We’d be happy to help find the perfect home for you. Alternatively, have a look at our current developments.

Questions First Time Buy-To-Let Buyers Need To Ask

Buying a buy-to-let property is a step in the right direction as it’s a lucrative investment providing regular income. It’s important to note that you would be investing both time and money into a buy to let property so it’s imperative to make sure that you’re prepared to take on this challenge.

The growing interest in foreign nationals wanting to settle down in Malta is incentivised by a number of things such as the Mediterranean lifestyle, career opportunities, the weather and last but not least the easy going islanders. This has contributed to a demand in property development and with more properties for sale on the market, one would assume a decrease in apartment rental prices however this has only strengthened this sector of the market.

How is Malta’s Property Market?

Malta’s property market has remained healthy even during the pandemic, this was an encouraging sign to buyers, sellers and landlords alike. As the financial returns they’ve received have fueled the construction industry boom.

The BIG ?

The big question mark on people’s minds is ‘Can I afford it?’ A lot of factors need to be taken into consideration therefore it’s advisable to speak to a financial advisor so they can advise you on the complexities of buying a property to rent out as well as any tax implications.

One must also take into account your liabilities, as a landlord you will be responsible for maintaining your property and making sure its safe for tenants to live in.

Where To Buy

Depending on what sort of tenant you’re looking to attract you need to think about the potential location they’d want to live in for their stay on the island. Therefore, it may help to create different prospective tenant personas in order to better understand your target market as well as your target location. Once you have researched this, it will be easier to decide whether the potential property you are going to purchase is a good rental investment.

Investment Yield

An often overlooked aspect of the investment yield is the cost needed in order to advertise that the property is available for rent or if you decide to use an estate agent to market the property. Whilst, doing so alone you’d need to consider the value of your time.

A pro tip to consider is that like any investment, property prices and rental incomes can differ month to month. Therefore, investing in providing a great service to tenants would increase the chances of them providing a good review as well as potentially keeping up touch and becoming repeat tenants

Pros & Cons

We’ve summarised a pros and cons list to have at hand when making your final decision.

Pros

  • Regular monthly income
  • Maximise capital through leverage
  • Lucrative Rental Market

Cons

  • Managing tenants can be tedious
  • Tenants could potentially damage the property
  • Reduced income from potential vacancies

In summary

As a first time buy-to-let investor there are a lot of things to consider and even more questions to be answered. If you’re looking for help with the process you should set up an appointment with us and we’d be happy to guide you through the process step by step.

If you’re curious to see what properties we have available at the moment have a look at our current developments page on our website. Have a look at our available properties here. 

How To Spruce Up Your Terrace For Summer

A well-designed terrace is like an oasis of calm amid the hustle and bustle of life. Give this outdoor zone a facelift with nature-inspired furnishing, comfy lounges and entertainment areas. We think it’s important to invest in your outdoor living space as much as your indoor space as it’s an extension of your property that sadly most homeowners overlook.

Over the last year especially, as we’ve been cooped up inside under lockdown, we’ve come to value our outdoor space even more. So if you happen to be in possession of a terrace and are looking for ideas to bring out the best of every inch of it, here’s our advice for how to maximise your space.

Minimal Outdoor Space Needs Maximum Creativity 

Having a large terrace gives you more options to explore. However, don’t fret if you’re stuck with a smaller space; it just takes a little more thinking and planning before you can get started with its makeover. Proper planning and a creative mind can convert any small (but mighty) or large space into a lovely atmosphere.

All it takes is a little creativity and some intelligent planning and you can make any space look opulent regardless of its size.

If you’re lucky enough to have a terrace, then you owe it to yourself—and all your friends—to make the most of it. This means doing more than putting out a folding chair and calling it a day. No matter how tiny it is, your terrace has plenty of design potential.

1. Make Proportions Work For You

Any space needs to be measured before you can start working on it. By doing so you’ll avoid making the mistake of buying furniture which would be too large, which would engulf the space or vice versa. Therefore, it is essential to measure your space in order to have the correct idea of how big your terrace is and plan accordingly. There’s a fine line between cosy and crammed.

2. Create a Budget

Overspending is not cool. Feeling guilty about enjoying your new space or running out of money midway and not being able to finish off the project aren’t either. Either scenario is unfavourable therefore it is important to create a budget for this project even though it’s not necessarily the most fun.

3. Decide on a Theme

There are so many styles to choose from in regards to your terrace’s decor. One may either play a wild card and go for something that’s dramatically different to your inside space or play it safe and mirror your inside space on your terrace. The decision is yours. It would be helpful to create a mood board either using pinterest or a folder in your saved archive on instagram to gather inspiration from.

4. Bring in Greenery 

A terrace is at its best when it’s adorned with plants, whether you have a green thumb or not. Think big if you love gardening (shrubs, towering ferns, prickly cacti) and keep it simple if you’re a novice: potted herbs, hanging baskets and hardy shrubs. In this case, more is more and there’s no need to hold back. You cannot go wrong with greenery.

5. Shade 

You won’t be on your balcony for long this summer if you don’t have anywhere to sit in the shade. Even if you’re a sun worshipper, you need somewhere to get out of the heat. Small terraces, unfortunately, might not have the space to accommodate both a daybed and a sun umbrella, so consider a canopy, which will work wonders. Whether you custom make it or even diy-it, it will extend the amount of time you can sit on (and enjoy) your terrace.

In summary

It’s easy to assume that it’s not worth investing any time, money or energy into improving your outdoor space, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. With a little creative thinking, you can transform your terrace into an irresistible summer retreat.

No matter the size of your terrace, it’s part of your home’s precious square meterage – you should try and make the most of them! You won’t regret it.

GAP Homes always include private outdoor spaces. Have a look at our available properties here

Top Attractions in Qawra

Previously known as a sleepy fishing settlement for nearly a thousand years, Qawra is now part of Malta’s busiest coastal resort, popular with both domestic and international travellers. The village of Qawra belongs to a cluster of villages which include Bugibba and St Paul’s Bay, that blend into each other making it hard to decipher where one village ends and the other starts, even for locals. Qawra’s lively waterfront attracts a growing number of visitors as it provides access to some of Malta’s finest hotels, shops, clubs, bars and restaurants. However, its lively atmosphere is not only what attracts visitors, there’s also a lot to do for nature lovers too.

Beaches

Although Qawra doesn’t offer any sandy beaches, its coastline is still worth a visit. It  boasts a spectacular dug out sea water swimming pool on its peninsula; Qawra Point Beach. This particular beach is fantastic for snorkelling as the water is very calm. This beach is close to a popular reggae beach shack called Ta’ Fra Ben which serves food and drinks. Other popular beaches are dotted along the waterfront between Qawra and Bugibba, offering a raised rocky shoreline off of which to bathe.

Qawra also provides quick and easy access to other beaches located along Malta’s rocky northwestern coastline.

Points of Interest

1. Salina Nature Reserve

The Salina Nature Reserve is a protected area which forms part of the Natura 200 network. This sixteenth century salt pan network built by the Knights of St John is what gives the village its name, referred to as is-Salini.

The area is composed mainly of salt pans, together with a small saltmarsh, a garrigue area and a small woodland. It is mostly renowned as the best area on the island to view many different species of migrating birds.

The production of salt has been a human activity since time immemorial. Long before the development of an array of food preservatives and the invention of refrigeration, salt was the only natural and widely available way of preserving food beyond immediate consumption. 

As Malta is surrounded by the sea – the raw material for salt production – islanders have always turned to it for its production. These are mostly hewn out of the living rock where the gradient allows for the retention of sea water and its eventual drying up – leaving the precious crystals behind.

The Salina Salt Pans Malta are located on the Coast Road some half a kilometre away from Qawra. Birdlife Malta has been entrusted with managing the Salina Salt Pans, which are now open every day, entrance is free of charge.

2. The Malta National Aquarium 

The iconic starfish-shaped shell at the edge of Qawra’s coastline, a beautifully built attraction with a contemporary showcase of local as well as foreign sea life. It hosts 50 tanks and 250 species including reptiles, insects and amphibians. 

Whilst the aquarium is first and foremost a site where guests can go view different types of species from different parts of the animal kingdom, it also has other important aims to its running. It has teamed up with the iLearn Biology Team to prepare and promote high level educational programmes. The educational team provides supplementary materials for student visits and holds regular public talks to promote awareness about littering, loss of species and conservation. 

It’s possible to book back of the house tours and get an insight behind the scenes tour of the labs and food preparation zone.

3. The Malta Classic Car Collection

Up for a drive back in time? Fasten your seatbelts, and prepare for a journey back to the golden age of motoring! Hidden away in the picturesque seaside town of Qawra, is the Malta Classic Car Collection with over 100 vintage cars and classic memorabilia.

Mr Carol Galea a self professed car enthusiast was the brains behind the Malta Classic Car Collection. The museum has a huge variety of cars, ranging from Jaguar E Type to a 1972 Fiat 500F. They have all been carefully restored and lovingly preserved. The Malta Classic Car Museum is a veritable paradise for car enthusiasts, both local and foreign.

4. Kennedy Grove Park

Kennedy Grove is a popular spot on the southwest outskirts of St. Paul’s Bay where Maltese families and visitors can enjoy outdoor relaxation. It offers a comfortable setting for either small or large group picnics as well as a kids playground and an open air gym. It was built around a monument dedicated to the former US president; John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

The playground equipment includes multiple play areas for a variety of age ranges. Surrounded by large artificially turfed areas with an abundance of picnic tables. The park is also pet friendly provided they are kept on a leash at all times. Parking is also available.

The greenest periods of the year in Malta are winter and spring. It’s during this time where we get most rainfall resulting in beautiful greenery. The temperature is temperate making it enjoyable to spend time outdoors without the risk of overheating.

It’s almost impossible to see a river or even a small stream in Malta unless visiting Chadwick Lakes, however this park includes a body of freshwater. This adds to the feeling of things being ‘alive’ amidst the barren rocky environment of the rest of the island.

Amenities

One can find a whole range of amenities within walking distance throughout Qawra such as; supermarkets, petrol stations, pet stores, discount stores, pharmacies, drink stores.

Nightlife

Perched on the peninsula of the town is one of Malta’s nicests beach clubs which also turns into a nightclub; Cafe Del Mar. This renowned restaurant/club is part of a global chain. However, if this isn’t your speed, Qawra has more to offer, if you happen to be feeling lucky you could check out The Oracle Casino which is part of the Dolmen Hotel that offers a selection of poker, table games and live sports gaming.

GAP Homes – Homes For Today, and For Years to Come

Fancy moving to Qawra? Let us help you find the perfect property Mulberry Park is an up and coming property on the market located in Qawra. Consisting of 93 modern homes, all finished to perfection. A collection of one, two and three bedroom maisonettes, apartments and penthouses with private external space, as well as a communal courtyard. It’s estimated to be finished by November 2022. Mulberry Park is the perfect investment for first-time buyers looking for their dream home and families looking for space to grow. If you’d like to learn more about Mulberry Park, do not hesitate to contact us or have a look at our properties page.