Showing posts from August, 2009

The gentle art of rent reform

Following the publicity accompanying the launch of the White Paper on Rent Reform, the actual legislation mainly amending the provisions of the Civil Code on the institute of lease has been introduced very quietly in June this year by Act X of 2009.

The now published legislation has departed significantly from what the White Paper promised, or threatened - to those on the other side, but, on the whole, the thrust has been to bring about what the government has called a fair balance between the financial expectations of the landlord and what in effect is the social service provided by these landlords in being forced to accept the renewal ad infinitum of leases way beyond the original contractual period at more or less pre-war levels of rent. An attempt, in other words, to give a bit to each side in the vain hope of being everything to everyone.

This it has sadly done with at times incomprehensible drafting. I first read the English version, assuming this was the original, and then in des…

Property slowdown persists

A finished apartment advertised to sell at €80,000 in March 2008 would have had almost €9,000 cut from the asking price a year later, according to the Central Bank of Malta's property index.

The asking price for finished flats, the most common type on the market, was down by 10.8 per cent in the first three months of the year when compared to the same period a year before.
The figures published in the bank's quarterly review yesterday showed that the year-long slowdown in the property market accelerated in these three months of this year. Property prices in the first quarter dropped by 9.9 per cent when compared to the same period a year before.
The sharp decline was more than double the drop registered in the previous quarter when prices fell by 4.4 per cent.

The bank said lower asking prices were observed in seven of the eight property categories surveyed. Apartments in shell form and houses of character saw prices plummet by 20.4 per cent and 16.2 per cent respectively.
The pric…

New building site regulations aim to avoid damages to neighbours

The Resources Minister this afternoon formally launched new building site regulations aimed at reducing risks to third parties.They also introduce faster measures of redress when damages are caused.

Minister George Pullicino said the need for these regulations was borne out by the fact that 60 percent of development applications before Mepa now involved redevelopment, on sites which were inevitably surrounded by other buildings.

Regulations issued two years ago had addressed the environmental impact of building sites, he said, while the accent now was on safety and reducing inconvenience to third parties.
Mr Pullicino said contractors would have to be classified according to the nature of the work they could perform.

Building works would have to be preceded by a method statement which would show how the work would be carried out,the machinery to be used, and the time schedule. The method statement would be publically available and people would be able to file objections.
Contractors w…