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Flats in Malta

Online since: 09. April 2013

Apartment in Malta

There are a great number of real estate agents in Malta. They often have their offices right next to each other or in very close proximity. The real estate market is booming (purchases and sales) in Malta, and prices rise continuously. Many hotels (hostels and smaller hotels) shifted from the hotel business to the real estate business, as this brings them more profit. This situation varies, depending on the profit margin.

Finding a flat in Malta is very easy.

Flats are usually fully furnished and include a kitchen and electrical appliances, such as a TV and washing machine.

Most flats in Malta are vacant when you inspect them.

When inspecting potential flats, you go there with the real estate agent and inspect several vacant flats.

During off-season (winter/spring), the prices for flats are far lower than during high season (summer/autumn).

Commission for the real estate agent: 50 % of the monthly rent, plus tax.

The deposit is one month’s rent.

Malta is a holiday country, which means there are many flats on the island that are constantly let out. Even the Maltese move often, so the same tenant often occupies a flat for only a few months – and in most cases no longer than for one year. True long-term rent doesn’t exist on Malta. One reason is that the flats are offered furnished - once you can afford something better, you move!

Despite the real estate boom, the rents in Malta are not particularly high. Just like everywhere else, the price depends on the location, view, age of the building, furniture, size etc. Most flats are furnished. Water and electricity is charged separately.

Commission

For brokering a flat, the real estate agent usually receives a commission of half a month’s rent of the new flat, without tax.

Real Estate Service

Offer We will gladly assist you in finding a flat. With us, you are on the safe side. more

Looking for a Flat

There are more flats than tenants in Malta. During off-season, many flats are vacant and the prices during this time are very, very low. During high season (June – September) the rent for the same flat is twice as high as in winter.

Looking for a flat in Malta is very simple. You commission a real estate agent to find one for you and tell him what kind you are looking for. Ideally, he will be able to show you some flats immediately, otherwise, an appointment will be arranged. He will also pick you up and drop you off at your current accommodation; this service is included in his fee. He will show you several flats, which normally you can move into right away. Real estate agents are very flexible in searching for and selecting flats.

Depending on which real estate agent you go to and your budget, the search for a flat can vary greatly. The more luxury you want, the less choice you normally have.

Some real estate agents are so flexible with clients that they decide on the flats to show you only on the day of the inspection. These real estate agents carry several sets of keys with them. In that way, you can tell the agent after inspecting a flat what you liked and what you didn’t like, and the agent, bearing your indications in mind, can then decided on the next flat to show you right on the spot.

When looking for a flat, take your time and rather ask if you can see more flats, just to get a good idea of the options. Inspect at least three flats before deciding on one.

Try to bargain over the price. Normally, prices are set 5 – 10 % higher than standard, as it is now common to ask for a better deal.

The first month’s rent and the deposit (one month’s rent) have to be paid in advance. Don’t forget to read the water and electricity meter and enter the details in the contract. Furthermore, you should check whether the lights and water system are working.

There is usually a TV in the flat, but if that is not the case, you can ask for one. If you have to pay extra for a TV, it might work out cheaper to buy a used or new TV (which is the better option, especially when staying for a longer period). You can sell it again when leaving Malta.

Overview of Maltese Real Estate

Problems with the Flat

The landlord has to carry the cost for potential damages in the flat. If, for example, the washing machine breaks down, the landlord has to have it fixed at his own expense, unless you caused the damage yourself.

Pets in Flats

The law in Malta says that pets are not permitted in flats. This law only applies to flats, not houses. Usually, a landlord doesn’t mind if a small pet, such as a rabbit, is kept in the flat. Larger animals such as dogs, however, are a problem. But there are landlords who allow pets in the flats.

Maltese Flats in Summer

In Malta, the climate in summer is very hot. Many flats have air conditioning, but not all of them. When a flat lacks air conditioning, at least one fan (the price for a standard fan can cost anywhere from 35 to 120 Euros) has to be in place.

Kitchen

Normally, gas is used for cooking. Electricity prices in Malta are very high compared to those of gas. A gas bottle costs approximately 8 Euros and lasts two to three months when on average.

Most kitchens also have an electrical oven. Flats in the higher price range also have a microwave. Dishwashers are very rarely found in flats.

Bathroom

There is a heating element in the bathroom. Normally it runs on electricity, but gas is also common. The baths are smaller than in most other EU countries. During the hot summer months, the Maltese switch the heating element off (for the water boiler in the bathroom). There is an On/Off switch on every heating element of the apartment.

Water tankWater tank

The water tank is located on the roof, and is a simple container (like a bucket, only much larger). Some flats located close to the water tank have an electronic pump to increase the water pressure, and this pump can be switched on or off at any time.

Maltese Construction Design

In Malta, there are many old flats, but many new ones as well. Most houses have been constructed in a very intricate way. They are usually not square in design, but very elongated. The roofs are flat and used as sun decks, or for storage. The top floor, or penthouse, usually has a very large terrace and an open glass front. Many rooms don’t get much light.

Mould

The main nuisance in Maltese flats is the mould, which you will find in almost every flat. Especially in winter, once the weather is no longer hot and the humidity increases, the walls in the flats slowly turn black.

Names of HousesNames of Houses

Traditionally, houses in Malta are given names. It is fairly common for the owner to give the house only a name but no number, but most houses have both. there are houses with a number but no name, which is also the case with most office blocks and shops.

* All information is subject to change.

S. Wagner

Further reading on this subject (from our online bookshop):
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- The MAZE - Street Atlas from Malta and Gozo
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The mAZe - Street Atlas Malta and Gozo
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Merhba Bik - Welcome to a course in Maltese for foreigners
Antoinette Camilleri is Head of the Department of Arts and Languages in Education at the University of Malta.

Free CD included!
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