Mauritius, located in the Indian Ocean, is a destination of choice for foreigners looking for a property. With its white sandy beaches, tropical climate and peaceful lifestyle, it’s no wonder that more and more people want to invest in this little paradise. However, buying a property in Mauritius as a foreigner can be complicated if you are not aware of the administrative and fiscal obligations. That is why we have written this article to help you understand the different steps to follow to become a homeowner in Mauritius. So, ready to live your dream of owning a property in the tropics? Let’s get started!
Real estate programs accessible to foreigners
To invest in real estate in Mauritius, a foreign national will have to turn to the specific schemes set up by the government (PDS, RES, IRS).
These schemes allow investors to purchase their property in freehold in real estate complexes, and thus obtain a residence permit in Mauritius and claim tax residency, for a property exceeding 375 000 euros.
The stages of acquisition
A Sale in Future State of Completion (VEFA) in Mauritius takes place in three main stages, two of which are validated by a contract:
- The Preliminary Reservation Contract (PRC):
This first contract, which the future buyer signs with the developer, allows the reservation of a property. Upon signature, a deposit must be paid into a specific escrow account, usually with the notary.
- The letter of approval from the EDB (ex BOI), the Economic Development Board :
Purchasers must provide several documents required by the authorities to the promoters, so that the latter can, on behalf of the client, submit an application for the acquisition of a property type mentioned above by the EDB. The latter studies each request and for those approved will submit a letter of approval thus allowing the finalization of the sale.
- The final contract of sale:
Upon receipt of the approval letter, the client and seller meet at the notary’s office for the final step: the signing of the final deed of sale.
At this stage the buyer officially becomes the owner of his property in Mauritius.
A resident permit granted in connection with the acquisition of a RES, IRS, or PDS property remains valid as long as the purchaser remains the owner of the property.
This residence permit is passed on from owner to owner and to one of the descendants in case of succession.
In addition, in order to be professionally active in the island, a holder of a residence permit obtained under the RES, IRS or PDS, will have to apply for a work permit, which is usually granted without difficulty as long as all the criteria are met.
Becoming a resident and benefiting from a tax residence
If you buy a property in an approved area with a value of more than $375,000 or equivalent in other currencies, you will obtain your permanent resident card in Mauritius, regardless of your age.
By staying more than 183 days per year in your Mauritian residence, you will become a Mauritian tax resident with a minimum of formalities.