A guide on investing in real estate in Verbier

30 June 2021 | Investment

A charming skiing resort in Switzerland overlooking the Mont Blanc range, Verbier sits on a south-facing plateau which gives it plenty of sunshine year-round while also providing gorgeous mountain views.

Located at the entrance of the Four Valleys ski area, this resort is one of the favourite destinations for skiers from all around the world, and its high-end reputation is certainly world-famous as well. 

While some people are satisfied with just renting out property in Verbier, others see the potential in investing in real estate in Verbier. If you’re one of those people, this article will help you make a good investment.

Why Verbier?

If you want to know why Verbier should be your top pick for investing in a ski chalet, there are multiple reasons for it.

This luxury ski resort has such an undeniable charm and most of the properties there were built in an alpine style that combines tradition, luxury, and modernity.

Not only is it a luxury resort, but it’s also a high-performance one. Sitting at an altitude of 5,000 feet with over 250 miles of ski slopes in the surrounding area, it’s easy to see why this place is every skier’s paradise. The infrastructure here is modernized every year so you can be sure that the resort will always keep its dynamic nature.

If you’re someone who enjoys the culture of good living, Verbier is certainly the ideal place for you. Not only does it have opportunities for skiers and snowboarders of all skill levels, but there’s also an array of multiple winter and summer sports for you to choose from and live a healthy and active life.

And finally, the biggest reason to choose Verbier is definitely its amazing wild nature. The snowy peaks, mountain lakes, and overall lack of pollution is the dream of any nature lover.

Verbier’s real estate market 

Due to Switzerland’s local laws, anyone who has ever tried to purchase property there will tell you that it’s no easy task. However, it’s not an impossible one as international buyers from all over the world purchase properties here every year. They simply see it as a great investment opportunity.

Since Verbier is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the world, owning your own property there can pay off in the long run if you decide to rent it out during the winter seasons.

The average prices for property in Verbier are approximately £16,000 per square meter and the property prices have only grown 2.9% in 2020. But don’t let the high market prices scare you off, because the tax system in Switzerland is very favourable.

The market itself is very stable, the mortgage rates are low, and there is no inheritance tax. A local bank will provide you with great mortgage rates even if you’re a foreigner, so buying property in Switzerland doesn’t have to be a big strain on your finances.

The expansion of the real estate market has been limited, however, due to the relatively recent law on second homes, which regulates the construction and ownership of second homes.

Where are the best areas to invest?

Since Verbier is the largest resort in Four Valleys, there are multiple areas where you can find a great property to invest in:

  • Sonalon: The biggest residential area in Verbier, Sonalon is located northwest of the town centre and has great snow conditions. However, it’s hard to reach the area on foot, so all residents usually drive cars. Here, you can find the best views in the entire resort.

  • Les Esserts: Located in Verbier’s “golden triangle”, this area is more accessible and offers amazing views as well. It’s between two ski lifts and a short walk from the town. Les Esserts is one of the older residential areas and has more traditional chalets than apartment complexes.

  • Moulins: This area is popular with young families as it’s home to the Ecole Suisse de Ski’s kid’s club and is generally very peaceful. It has a flatter gradient, which means the outside space is more usable than in other areas.

  • Place Centrale: This is the town’s main hub, connecting all of Verbier’s major roads. The area is filled with a lot of high-end retail stores and is generally favoured by wealthy visitors and homeowners.

Things you must know before investing in real estate in Verbier

Finally, let’s go over a few more things you need to be aware of before you can invest in your ideal property.

Who can buy property? 

A foreigner can purchase property from a Swizz citizen or another foreigner if the property being sold has been in the current owner’s possession for at least 5 years. You will need to sign a declaration of intent which will be forwarded to the Land Registry for approval.

What are the fees? 

The fees related to buying property include purchasing fees that are approximately 2.3% of the price which includes the notary’s fees and registration duties. There are also some common expenses you should be aware of such as insurance premiums, snow sweeping, electricity and heating bills, as well as sewage fees, to name a few.

What are the taxes? 

For new property, the taxes range from £5.5 to 7 per sq ft, and for an old property, you can expect anywhere from  £4 to 5 per sq ft. Other taxes you need to be aware of include Insurance, which can be £150 to 300 annually, management, electricity, and insurance, which are all calculated depending on your consumption.

Can you get a mortgage?

Banks offer mortgage loans to foreigners which usually cover up to 66% of the purchase price.

No matter if you’re looking to purchase property so you can live in one of the best ski resorts in the world or rent it out to tourists, real estate in Verbier is a great investment. Even though it may seem complicated at first, refer to this guide, do more research on the topic, and you’ll be a homeowner in no time.

*Agence ABC is a real estate agency based in Verbier, Switzerland

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