Philippe de Beer, founder and director of Park Lane Properties explains what is the process of buying a property in Mauritius for a non-citizen, whether it is a property off plan or a property you would be buying on the resale market!
The most important thing is first to be well advised by a real estate expert who will be able to understand clearly what you are looking for and find you the property that faithfully ticks all your boxes (or nearly) ! and meets your expectations, and also who will be able to accompany you through the purchase process to make it a seamless experience, until the keys of the magnificent property you have chosen are handed over to you !
So, let’s jump in the subject !
As soon as you have made your choice on a property,
The first step will be to sign a reservation contract or a promise of sale with the owner or developer of the project. This promise of sale or this reservation contract is signed either before a notary or directly with the developer. You will be asked to make a reservation deposit of usually 10%. This deposit is kept in escrow by the notary or in some cases in an escrow account at a bank, under your name and the name of the real estate project. You cannot dispose of the deposit as you wish and it is governed by the conditions set out in the promise of sale that you sign. It will be subject to various conditions being fulfilled by you and the developer or the seller. The normal duration of a promise is usually 3 to 4 months when buying a built property and can be up to 12 months when you are reserving a unit in a off plan development. If the development is not going ahead for any reason, your deposit will be refunded in full by the notary.
Second step. The application for an authorization to buy the property.
Once this promise has been signed, you will need to apply an online to the EDB – the national investment promotion agency of Mauritius - to obtain the right to acquire the property that you have reserved. You will need to choose whether you will be buying the property under your own name or under a SPV (a company, a real estate partnership also called a civil society, or a trust). This process of application can take between 4 to 6 weeks.
Third step. The signing of the sale.
Once this authorization to acquire has been granted by the EDB, you can proceed to the signing of your title deed. You will either be buying a property off plan or a ready built property.
If you are buying off plan, you will be called to sign your deed of sale when the developer decides so, generally when the marketing exercise of the project has been a success and that a sufficient number of reservation contracts have been signed. Generally, a maximum period of 12 months is granted to a developer in the reservation document to successfully market his project and then launch its construction.
You will sign the deed of sale called the “VEFA” which IN FRENCH stands for “Sale under future state of completion”. You will be asked to make an additional payment of 25% or more if construction has already started.
You will also be asked to pay the acquisition duties and taxes.
To know all about the costs of acquiring a property, do not miss our next video on the subject.
Once you have signed the VEFA, you then become the owner of your property
The 30% paid (or more) then goes to the developer as a part payment on the purchase price.
The remaining balance of 70% are paid as per construction progress, confirmed by an independent Quantity Surveyor.
Your off plan purchase will be guaranteed by a GFA - a financial guarantee of completion- provided by a banking institution which will guarantee the completion of the project if ever the developer failed to do so.
The construction will also be guaranteed by a 2-year warranty against “apparent defects” as well as a ten-year warranty.
if you buy a property already built, a resale for example, or a property fully completed by a developer, you will then sign the authentic deed with the payment of the balance due on the property (the 90%) along with the acquisition duties and taxes.
Within 15 days you will receive from the notary your authentic deed duly registered and certified which will then allow you to submit to the EDB, your request for a permanent residence permit if of course the price of your property is above USD 375,000. This also applies when buying off plan. Once you have signed your Deed of Sale under Future State of completion, you are the owner of your “future” property and can apply for Permanent Residence. The process to get Permamnet Residence can take up to 6 months.
If you wish to finance part of your acquisition with a loan, local banks finance up to around 70% and up to the age of 65.
There you go… you know everything (or almost) about the acquisition process of a property for non-citizens in Mauritius.
All you have to do now is come and visit us so we can help you find your future home… See you soon…
Watch the video here: https://bit.ly/38ZS9ju