20% more promise of sale agreements than before COVID

In October there were 1,091 new promise-of-sale agreements in Malta. This meant that in the first ten months of 2021, 12,128 “konvenji” were made. This compared to just over 9,070 in the same months of 2020, and to just over 10,100 before the pandemic. For every four promise-of-sale agreements that were signed before the pandemic, five have been signed this year.

This rise of 20% shows that the outlook for the residential property market remains very bright. In fact, 1,134 contracts were signed for the sale of residential property in October, with a combined value worth €239 million. This is the eleventh consecutive month in which there was an increase in the value of property bought. In fact, the amount transacted in October was nearly 20% higher than the same month a year ago.

Before the stamp reduction measure was announced in June 2020, the number of contracts of sale of property had fallen to only 552, with a value of just over €100 million. This means that during October activity was two-and-a-half times better than just before the measure was announced.

For every four promise-of-sale agreements that were signed before the pandemic, five have been signed this year.

In the first ten months of 2021, 11,604 sale contracts have been signed, against just over 8,900 a year ago. The number of properties transacted has reached the record amount that had been observed in 2019 before the pandemic started. Since growth in promise-of-sale agreements has been so strong, the number of sale agreements in future months will continue to over-perform pre-pandemic levels.

With the number of sales observed in October, in the first ten months of the year, the value of property bought has already totalled €2.5 billion. This is €0.3 billion more than the amount purchased in the same number of months in 2019.

Even before the measures taken during the pandemic, Government had provided unprecedented support to ensure that more persons could own their property. Since the first-time buyer scheme was introduced, Government has saved €84 million in stamp duty to first time buyers. The scheme has helped 27,000 persons get on the property ladder for the first time, with an average saving of €2,500.

Budget 2022 continued to improve the incentives for first-time buyers as long as they purchase properties that have either been vacant, are located in a UCA or have traditional Maltese features. As a result, demand for properties should gradually move more towards these kind of properties.

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