You need to hold a residential property in Malta of a minimum value of 350,000 euros or lease a residential property for a minimum annual rent of at least 16,000 euros for at least five years following the date of issuance of your Maltese passport. This means that if you decide to sell your property, you would need to acquire or rent another residential property for the minimum amount and hold the same for up to five years from the date of issuance of your Maltese passport.
What if I change residences during my Malta citizenship application period?
I recently obtained a Malta passport after going through the citizenship-by-investment process. I used a home I bought for the application. However, I am considering selling it and perhaps either buying something else at a cheaper price (less than 350,000 euros) or leasing. How can I do this? Is it possible to buy something cheaper or start renting at this stage?
To be eligible for Maltese citizenship under the Individual Investor Program of the republic of Malta, you must lease property in Malta for a minimum value of 16,000/12,000 per annum, or purchase property for a minimum value of 350,000. The property has to be held by you for a minimum period of five years. If you would like to sell property you need to lease a new one for a minimum value of 16,000/12,000 per annum. It is not possible to buy property for a value less than 350,000 or 280,000 (south of Malta or Gozo).
Under the MIIP, one can change the qualifying residence. However, the new residence still needs to meet the minimum amount for either the purchase or the rental option. One can also shift from rental properties to purchase properties or vice versa.
A successful IIP applicant is entitled to change his qualifying property. However, he must keep into consideration that for the first five years from the issuance of the passport, he must still comply with the minimum residential property requirements. Henceforth, this entails the fact that in order to change residence, the potential new qualifying property must either be worth more than 350,000 euros or be leased at a minimum of 16,000. When the five-year annual compliance period has expired, the individual is free to transfer or sell the qualifying property without any restrictions.