The first step to settling down is finding a place to stay. If you’re not ready to take the plunge and buy property in Malta, renting is pretty straight forward in Malta. There are a number of channels that you can use to search for property to let in Malta, mainly real estate agencies, and online portals such as Maltapark and Flatscanner.
The Maltese tend to own their homes and mortgages are generally cheaper than renting in the long term. Don’t rush into buying until you understand the market though – renting when you first arrive will also help you to figure out the best place to live. Here's what you need to know about buying property in Malta.What will I need to pay when I first rent a house or apartment?
It’s standard practice to pay one month’s rent in advance and an additional month as a deposit, although you may be asked for a larger deposit on fancier places.Where shall I live?
Where you choose to live will depend on where your work is based and/or the children’s schools. Many foreigners start off in the Sliema area if they can afford it – nearby Swieqi, Msida, Gzira and Pembroke are a little cheaper and less busy. St Paul’s Bay is popular too, especially with older residents. Xemxija is an up-and-coming village towards the north, which is cheaper and away from the crowds.
Bugibba and Qawra are principally holiday zones, popular especially with the British – unless you like hanging out with your fellow countrymen abroad, you might want to look elsewhere.
Towns such as Balzan, Attard, Birkirkara and Lija are quaint and pleasant places to live and not too far from all the action. Madliena or Gharghur tend to be a little more expensive but are highly sought after. Mellieha is a beautiful town, but far north if you have to commute to work every day. The same could be said for Marsascala and Marsaxlokk, which are situated at the other end and to the south of the island.
Gozo is caught in a dreamy time warp – this is the place to settle in if you genuinely want to get away from it all. Here's a quick guide to the regions of Malta.What bills will I need to pay?
Bills include gas (in the form of propane cylinders), electricity and water. This will set you back approximately €68 a month. You can also get cable or satellite TV and a landline if you want to, as well as WiFi internet. There is no equivalent of a ‘Council Tax’ or waste collection tax in Malta. Here is a list of prices of Utilities.