The beautiful and historical Maltese islands, with their clement weather, attract around 2,000,000 tourists annually, with these numbers increasing every year. Many of these visitors would rather rent a property than stay in a hotel and this has created a large demand for holiday rentals in Malta and Gozo. Besides tourists, there are over 30,000 foreigners who are registered as working in Malta, also creating a large demand for long lets. Not included in these numbers are the expats who have chosen to retire in Malta and also rent long term.
Potential landlords are faced with the difficult decision of whether to let their property on a short or long-term basis. A list of the pros and cons of each might help make it easier to decide.
- A secure and regular income by signed contract with no ‘dead’ periods.
- All bills are paid by the tenant or included in the rent.
- Cleaning the property is the responsibility of the tenant.
- Not much work involved.
- Even though there is a signed contract, tenants might choose to leave the property before the end of a contract and lose their deposit so a secure rental income is not guaranteed.
- The possibility of bad tenants who don’t pay their rent on time or don’t pay it at all.
- Even though bills are supposed to be paid by the tenant, it is the landlord’s responsibility to collect the money for them.
- In this case landlords have no control over the cleanliness or the maintenance of their property until the contract has ended. Most damages are also discovered at the end of the contract when the tenant has left the premises.
- Higher income. Renting on a daily or weekly basis is far more lucrative than on a monthly basis. This, usually, more than makes up for the ‘dead’ periods in between guests.
- Income up front. Holiday lets are paid in advance or at the beginning of the tenancy.
- Bills are always paid because they are the responsibility of the landlord who can also include them in the rental fee.
- Cleaning and preparing the property for guests is the responsibility of the landlord or his manager. The advantage of this is that the property is maintained, cleaned and kept at its best between bookings.
- Problems within the property are dealt with as soon as they arise because they are either reported by guests or discovered between bookings.
- Damage to the property is less likely to occur due to the short periods of tenancy.
- You can choose to use the property for yourself, family or friends by blocking off dates.
- Additional income for the owner who doesn’t occupy the property all year round.
- *A lot of effort, hard work and time is involved in running holiday lets. It is a small business and the main duties are cleaning, maintenance, bookings, laundry, check-ins and checkouts.
- *Communication with guests and handling of complaints is necessary.
- More upfront costs and more expensive weekly running costs than long lets.
*Many holiday-let landlords who don’t have the time or inclination to manage their property themselves, hire experienced professionals to do it for them. A good property manager will take on a property in its entirety and take care of everything, from beginning to end, leaving the landlord stress-free to enjoy his or her profits.