New customer survey spotlights Malta’s property rental market

Last Updated on Thursday, 13 October, 2022 at 1:10 pm by Andre Camilleri

The independent survey commissioned by RE/MAX Malta offers key insights into current market sentiment and the real estate customer experience

RE/MAX Malta has commissioned another survey to shed new light on Malta’s property market – from the customers’ perspective.

Building upon the success of a similar survey conducted last year in collaboration with SiGMA Group, which asked over two hundred gaming professionals to share their rental experience, the latest independent survey garnered results from 568 respondents from various industries.

Respondents shared their insights through the survey hosted on Survey Monkey, answering a range of questions related to today’s property market.

“The survey helps us to build a better understanding of current market sentiment, from a larger cross-section of customers,” says RE/MAX Malta CEO Jeffrey Buttigieg. “We plan to commission these surveys around every six months, to provide core data upon which Malta’s real estate market can grow and thrive.”

Most participants were once again aged between 25 and 34, as per last year’s survey, although the youngest was 19 and oldest 76 years of age.

Respondents shared their locality – with Sliema and St Julian’s still popular areas – as well as the industry in which they work and whether they live alone, with family or friends. Just over 72 per cent of respondents live in rental properties, while 27.82 per cent own their property. More than 45 per cent currently live with two people, with the most common property size featuring two bedrooms, consistent with last year’s survey findings.

Almost 34 per cent revealed that they are very likely to move within the next 12 months, while a majority of 68.84 per cent highlighted that they live in an apartment or flat – just over the 68.1 per cent who shared the same in the previous survey. Also reflecting last year’s results, most respondents named proximity to their workplace as their primary reason for their choice of locality. However, cost has become a higher priority: it was a third top reason last year for 33.8 per cent of respondents, while it is the second for 45.04 per cent in 2022. Range of amenities and transport options are also top considerations for many.

Value for money was a continuing theme elsewhere in the survey. When it comes to rental price versus the quality of the property, 43.91 per cent stated that the price was reasonable, while 35.41 per cent felt it was overpriced. Meanwhile, 88.64 per cent felt that the general cost of living in Malta had increased – compared to the 77 per cent that highlighted the same last year – while 79.77 per cent also noted an increase in rental property prices and 81.03 per cent said that the cost of entertainment such as bars or restaurants had also risen.

Once again, RE/MAX Malta is the real estate agency at the ‘Top of Mind’ for most survey respondents when considering property rental, with 41.64 per cent pointing towards the real estate giant. However, the survey also highlights that customers then tend to approach two main agencies when looking for a property: one of which is RE/MAX at 31.16 per cent of respondents, with another agency named by 32.01 per cent. The third agency comes in at 18.70 per cent of total respondents. More people now approach RE/MAX Malta than last year, with the percentage of respondents increasing by around 10 per cent over the agency’s 2021 figure of 21.2 per cent.

While most rated their general experience with, and knowledge of, their selected agent as average, the survey highlighted the public’s continuing knowledge gap when it comes to their legal rights and understanding of rental regulation.

“General knowledge on new property regulations is still low, so at RE/MAX Malta we have organised webinars with companies in the iGaming industry – and beyond – to educate on tenants’ legal rights,” adds Mr Buttigieg. “While the results show that RE/MAX Malta still leads the island’s property industry and is the first local agency to come to mind for many, as a company we believe in facts rather than gimmicks to stay at the top of the market. Our customers’ valuable feedback will shape our decision-making and business plan moving forward, so that we can adapt to their needs and continually improve the real estate experience in Malta.”

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