News

Owners of 70 estate agency offices join MDA

Saturday, February 17th, 2018

Parliamentary Secretary for Planning and the Property Market Chris Agius today announced that he intends to finalise the White Paper on the regulation of estate agents with the Malta Developers association by the end of the first quarter of this year so that a draft Bill can be presented to Parliament.

Mr Agius was speaking during the launch of the Estate Agents Section (EAS) within the MDA, which represents the owners of 70 estate agent offices around Malta and Gozo. Since being appointed parliamentary secretary, he added that he had built a strong relationship with the MDA and was meeting the MDA board regularly to discuss how the sector can grow but also how to safeguard the environment.

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MDA offering assistance to members when applying for any type of work permit with Jobsplus

Wednesday, January 31st, 2018

Attention all MDA members.

We are pleased to announce that the MDA is offering assistance to its members when applying for any work permits with Jobsplus. This exclusive service will be offered at the offices of Malta Developers Association every Tuesday from 12.30pm to 3.00pm.

Kindly call on 2122 8184 to make an appointment.

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older news

Utility bills and evictions

MDA’s suggestions

The Federation of Real Estate Agents has come up with a number of ways to stimulate the rental market, but the Malta Developers’ Association has its own.
It identified two other factors which deter landlords from renting out their properties, hoping to get more on the market which has “exploded” in the past few years.
MDA president Sandro Chetcuti said that landlords were still waiting for the legal notice which would explain how the 15 per cent flat tax rate would work in practice, as they will need to declare their 2014 earnings in next years declaration. At the moment, the indication is that the tax rate will apply to the gross rental income – to prevent the temptation to abuse when it comes to deductible expenses.
But in the meantime, he said there were two deterrents: utility bills and evictions.
“It is simply too bureaucratic when it comes to changing water and electricity bills from the name of the landlord to that of the tenant.
So they are often left in the name of the landlord. This means that if the bills are not paid, the landlord ends up in trouble,” Mr Chetcuti said.
“The other deterrent is that the only way to evict a tenant who defaults on his rent is to go to court.
The system should protect the landlord and put the onus on the tenant to challenge the eviction:’Mr Chetcuti believes that the rental market could soon become more important than that for sales.
“The demand from foreigners for properties in central Malta and in the north is phenomenal. We are seeing contracts of one to three years, mostly for upmarket properties like villas or large flats with seaviews or panoramic views.
“There are other places like Vittoriosa and village cores like Balzan and Lija which could also attract foreigners as they are being turned into much more upmarket locations. The problem is that the properties themselves are not enough; we need to upgrade the environment, landscape it intelligently, and safeguard the character,” he said.
“You can’t expect a multimillionaire to buy a luxurious property and then find a broken pavement outside his door, or an electricity pole with old wires!”
The rental market is tapping into existing vacant properties, but will the demand eventually result in more properties being built? Applications to Mepa have dropped to nearly one fourth of previous levels, but Mr Chetcuti thinks this reflects a shift from the oversupply of units aimed at first-time buyers.
“This is not the end of the construction sector. Developers are now looking at large projects, particularly infrastructural ones like petrol stations, homes for the elderly and boutique hotels – and they are actually getting together to tackle them as joint ventures:’
“And the banks, which were reluctant to lend for construction of housing units, are much more open to the idea oflending for these sorts of projects:”

(Article published in The Business Observer, a supplement in the Times of Malta, on Thursday, 19 June, 2014)

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