Buying property

Louise1980

New Member
#1
Can anyone recommend good estate agents websites to look for property for sale. I am looking into buying an apartment but many websites seem to be out of date? I would be greatful of any help
 

Essem

Moderator
Staff member
#2
Be very careful if you're thinking of buying there at the moment Louise.

I have dealt with a few agencies out there and TBH most of them, apart from one, wasted my time and at the moment, are struggling. Not many foreigners are investing there.

Of course the agents will tell you when you're buying that you can sell again................BUT what they won't tell you is that the Tunisian administration system is terrible. It can now take years.

After the revolution, they stated that the selling/buying system would be approximately 3 months. I have now been waiting 16 months, since signing the first contract, for authorisation to sell, 6 months of which was taken up by their tax system.

My buyer is now threatening to cancel out of the contract because it's taking too long to complete.

My advice would be to rent long term for the moment until things settle or become stable, unless you can afford to lose what you invest.
 

Louise1980

New Member
#3
Thanks very much for your honesty. It's made me think twice and I will certainly try to do more research. I am not looking for a buy to let, but somewhere to live in the future. I think it would be a wise move to rent as it's not expensive and then invest my money in UK property. Hope you get your situation sorted as it sounds like an expensive nightmare
 

Essem

Moderator
Staff member
#4
Hi Louise,

I rented for 3 years before I bought. It gave me time to find the right property and also to understand the mentality and lifestyle of the people there. But that was 15 years ago and Tunisia was a very different place then. I'd suggest for anyone thinking of buying to rent first as living there is very different from holidays.

Buying can be a bit of a minefield and once your money is in, it can be difficult to get it out especially now.

Renting there and investing your money in the UK sounds to me like a much wiser and safer option for you.

Expensive in many way, yes. For example, when I bought the exchange rate was around 2.2 dt to the £1, it's now around 3.029 dt to the £1 so a loss there. And the ROE has changed, not in my favour, since I signed the first contract....
 

Kris

Administrator
Staff member
#5
Not to mention the market in Tunisia is very murky.

Naturally the economy is mostly moribund and many people need money.... but the prices in many places are still very high as its become the only game in town.

I get the call offering me "bargains" at 400-600k dinars in the Bizerte corniche one house even 1.8 million dinars.

thats £133,00 - £200,000 and the big one £600,000 not cheap by any means and Tunis another couple of levels higher.

Its taken longer than I thought and the market number of sales have collapsed but I still feel property in Tunisia is overpriced for what you get and the economic and safety situation considered.
 

Emad

Member
#6
Can anyone recommend good estate agents websites to look for property for sale. I am looking into buying an apartment but many websites seem to be out of date? I would be greatful of any help
Hi Louise
Tunisia is beautiful, loved it since 2003, I bought the land, I built it in 4 months and I am now living in Djerba
I advise you please to have a complete change of mentality and plenty of patience, don't fall with the sweet talk from anyone, to help you and so on, but still there are lots of good people around.
Prepare yourself for the dream as it is really worth if you do it right.
Don't go to a solicitor but use a local well known (Katib Ish-haad) like a solicitor but with different powers and ways
If you are looking into Djerba then I can list a good resources for you to help you,
I all cases keep looking if you don't have an answer, why not try Morocco

Emad
 

Essem

Moderator
Staff member
#7
Hi Louise
Tunisia is beautiful, loved it since 2003, I bought the land, I built it in 4 months and I am now living in Djerba
I advise you please to have a complete change of mentality and plenty of patience, don't fall with the sweet talk from anyone, to help you and so on, but still there are lots of good people around.
Prepare yourself for the dream as it is really worth if you do it right.
Don't go to a solicitor but use a local well known (Katib Ish-haad) like a solicitor but with different powers and ways
If you are looking into Djerba then I can list a good resources for you to help you,
I all cases keep looking if you don't have an answer, why not try Morocco

Emad
What exactly is a Katib Ish-haad and are they recognised by the law in Tunisia?

What different powers and ways do they have?

Is Katib the same as Khatib who is like an Imam and leads Friday prayers?
 

Kris

Administrator
Staff member
#8
My money is on a well known lawyer always preferably.

Go by recommendations or via the embassy list.

I don't see the point in economising in Tunisia with an investment which may been hundreds of thousands of pounds.
 

Essem

Moderator
Staff member
#9
My money is on a well known lawyer always preferably.

Go by recommendations or via the embassy list.

I don't see the point in economising in Tunisia with an investment which may been hundreds of thousands of pounds.
Absolutely, in fact I think it's irresponsible to suggest anyone other than a properly licensed lawyer to deal with purchasing/selling property.
 
Last edited:

Essem

Moderator
Staff member
#10
Be very careful if you're thinking of buying there at the moment Louise.

I have dealt with a few agencies out there and TBH most of them, apart from one, wasted my time and at the moment, are struggling. Not many foreigners are investing there.

Of course the agents will tell you when you're buying that you can sell again................BUT what they won't tell you is that the Tunisian administration system is terrible. It can now take years.

After the revolution, they stated that the selling/buying system would be approximately 3 months. I have now been waiting 16 months, since signing the first contract, for authorisation to sell, 6 months of which was taken up by their tax system.

My buyer is now threatening to cancel out of the contract because it's taking too long to complete.

My advice would be to rent long term for the moment until things settle or become stable, unless you can afford to lose what you invest.

Update

The buyer did opt out, saying that, since the beach shooting in PEK, property prices had fallen (BS) and wanted me to reduce the price which would have resulted in problems for me as the final contract price should always be the same as the initial contract price.

(So if I'd have agreed to pay him less, I'd have had to keep the final contract priceat the higher amount - then, after the sale if he wasn't happy about anything, he could have come after me for the full amount as stated on the contracts, evenalthough he'd paid less.)

My lawyer sent the appropriate notiaries (£££'s) out to advise buyer that as he'd failed to fulfil his obligations, the sale was voided and I would keep the deposit as stated in terms and conditions of initial contract of buying ans selling. but buyer wanted his money back, yet he'd broken the agreement.

My lawyer did not know that he had to have the buyer sign a 'contrat de resilation', which cancels out the first contract, and when he realised this, the buyer would not sign it. I couldn't resell until this was done.

I then had to take the buyer to court (£££'s). I had to attend court in Sousse in February this year. I had lawyer and translator there too (£££'s)

At the end of April this year, I was advised that the court had ruled in my favour and we had to wait for the main judge to write up the written judgement before we could move on.

This took 9 months to do. (I was advised this week that it's done)

Reasons given were - only one judge out of the 3 who decided had the authority to write this up. Then there was the summer recess when the courts are all but closed. Then this judge left this particular court and only came back to finish his work from time to time.

(A few weeks ago, I asked several times for the case number and actual date of the court ruling so that other 'independents' could look into this for me and I suggested that maybe my file had been put to the bottom of the pile (£££'s perhaps !!!) I was never given this information.)

So now we have the written judgement and my lawyer will register it, pay the tax (another 100dt) write to ex buyer to inform him. He has 20 days to respond or APPEAL the decision and if he does, it could go on for another year or so and mors £££'s.

I originally 'sold' apartment in September 2014.

I can't resell until this is sorted out.

When it is sorted out, I will have to start the selling procedure over again (£££'s) with new buyers - as authorisation to sell is granted in an individual basis.

I would never recommend anyone to buy in Tunisia unless you have money to lose. Rent, rent, rent. The system sucks, it's slow and it's money at every turn.
 

Kris

Administrator
Staff member
#11
Update

The buyer did opt out, saying that, since the beach shooting in PEK, property prices had fallen (BS) and wanted me to reduce the price which would have resulted in problems for me as the final contract price should always be the same as the initial contract price.

(So if I'd have agreed to pay him less, I'd have had to keep the final contract priceat the higher amount - then, after the sale if he wasn't happy about anything, he could have come after me for the full amount as stated on the contracts, evenalthough he'd paid less.)

My lawyer sent the appropriate notiaries (£££'s) out to advise buyer that as he'd failed to fulfil his obligations, the sale was voided and I would keep the deposit as stated in terms and conditions of initial contract of buying ans selling. but buyer wanted his money back, yet he'd broken the agreement.

My lawyer did not know that he had to have the buyer sign a 'contrat de resilation', which cancels out the first contract, and when he realised this, the buyer would not sign it. I couldn't resell until this was done.

I then had to take the buyer to court (£££'s). I had to attend court in Sousse in February this year. I had lawyer and translator there too (£££'s)

At the end of April this year, I was advised that the court had ruled in my favour and we had to wait for the main judge to write up the written judgement before we could move on.

This took 9 months to do. (I was advised this week that it's done)

Reasons given were - only one judge out of the 3 who decided had the authority to write this up. Then there was the summer recess when the courts are all but closed. Then this judge left this particular court and only came back to finish his work from time to time.

(A few weeks ago, I asked several times for the case number and actual date of the court ruling so that other 'independents' could look into this for me and I suggested that maybe my file had been put to the bottom of the pile (£££'s perhaps !!!) I was never given this information.)

So now we have the written judgement and my lawyer will register it, pay the tax (another 100dt) write to ex buyer to inform him. He has 20 days to respond or APPEAL the decision and if he does, it could go on for another year or so and mors £££'s.

I originally 'sold' apartment in September 2014.

I can't resell until this is sorted out.

When it is sorted out, I will have to start the selling procedure over again (£££'s) with new buyers - as authorisation to sell is granted in an individual basis.

I would never recommend anyone to buy in Tunisia unless you have money to lose. Rent, rent, rent. The system sucks, it's slow and it's money at every turn.
You know if a property in Tunisia was say 10%+ return and you rented for 1000 dinars a month and then could buy the place for say 120,000 dinars it would be interesting.

The returns are much less than that in the nicer areas I remember renting a lovely 3 bed 150m2 bungalow in the corniche Bizerte for 450 dinars per month. The same place is for rent these days for 600 approx and the buying price 500,000 1/2% return maybe 3 with some haggling.

With the extra risks of the legal system and the economy being volatile I do not see the benefits currently. After Essems story which I can verify I would advise someone to buy a small flat back home rent that and the retire in Tunisia, you can then always pull out and change things as and when you like.

I you find the place you have to buy and keep for the rest of your days do as yo like.....but the funny thing in life is that you often change you plans.
 

Suhel78612

New Member
#12
Can anyone recommend good estate agents websites to look for property for sale. I am looking into buying an apartment but many websites seem to be out of date? I would be greatful of any help
This seems to be the best website : http://www.tunisie-annonce.com/

I am also looking for a houseor an apartment
 

Suhel78612

New Member
#13
Can anyone recommend the good areas to buy a property in Tunis or nearby. After looking at earlier posts I do not want to buy an expensive property but reasonable price in an average area. I am looking for a holiday home as my extended family living in Tunis.
Thanks
 

Kris

Administrator
Staff member
#14
Can anyone recommend the good areas to buy a property in Tunis or nearby. After looking at earlier posts I do not want to buy an expensive property but reasonable price in an average area. I am looking for a holiday home as my extended family living in Tunis.
Thanks
Good luck with that one.

Buying in Tunisia is a minefield personally I don't like many areas of Tunisia to live as I live in Norwich UK which has many tree-lined streets of half-decent detached houses.

UK price 450k or so the equivalent niceness (which there is not really as the roads are better maintained and unemployment is 5% average salary 25k £ min wage £7.5 etc and there is a huge hospital NHS etc etc)....and prices are starting to fall a little.

So I would be talking a nice area of Tunis which is not near the sea so mutuelleville, menzah etc and they are nearly the same price but with rents much lower in a non-convertible currency.

That is the problem in Tunis... it's not that cheap for the hassle at the moment

Then basically you have said you want a holiday home so I guess near the sea? Then it goes from expensive to silly.

You will have to say what expensive is to you I only like (in Tunis) Marsa Cubes, Carthage, Gamarth for a home/holiday but then you have to be a millionaire (who does not like good investments) to have a house at home and there. Why not Dubal or Spain and 5 stars it when you visit? or rent your family a really nice house for 1000 dinars a month from the rental differential.

The other big issue I left Tunisia in 2012 it's now 2018 nearly and no joke many of the houses for sale then are still for sale now! My friends tell me tha market has crashed but the prices stay the same as nobody can afford it so why bother.

Just go to a posh part of Tunis and look at many of the adverts they all look like abandoned houses, not staged houses with mercs outside as one would expect for 1/2/3 million dinars. Your talking more than a million £ and the houses look like something from a nuclear fallout, empty with rusty swings in the garden and green swimming pools.

It all looks like a made up fake market and that is what it is as there is actually too much money in Tunisia it's just its all in notes and only held by about 2-5% of the people. That means there are simply loads of empty houses! they are used as bank accounts.

So, in essence, you have to have your head close to the ground for bargains and there are no cheap nice areas of Tunis they are all expensive.

Soukra, Ariana, raoued, la Goulette, sidi daoud are cheaper but still £100K+ for a house

Sometimes I wish my wife was from some nice cap bon town like Korba......yet i look there and they are trying it on there also.

So if the rip off prices and slow sales process was not enough hassle you then have to fork out loads of money on agents fees.

The next revolution will be about houses as the elite of Tunisia had a revolution yet still kept all the property and most people renting.

My advice stay in a hotel and rent a place for the relatives and watch these global interest rate rises hit tunisia eventually. One day they will have to tax homes as that is what the rich have and the young poor do not.
 
Last edited:

Suhel78612

New Member
#15
Good luck with that one.

Buying in Tunisia is a minefield personally I don't like many areas of Tunisia to live as I live in Norwich UK which has many tree-lined streets of half-decent detached houses.

UK price 450k or so the equivalent niceness (which there is not really as the roads are better maintained and unemployment is 5% average salary 25k £ min wage £7.5 etc and there is a huge hospital NHS etc etc)....and prices are starting to fall a little.

So I would be talking a nice area of Tunis which is not near the sea so mutuelleville, menzah etc and they are nearly the same price but with rents much lower in a non-convertible currency.

That is the problem in Tunis... it's not that cheap for the hassle at the moment

Then basically you have said you want a holiday home so I guess near the sea? Then it goes from expensive to silly.

You will have to say what expensive is to you I only like (in Tunis) Marsa Cubes, Carthage, Gamarth for a home/holiday but then you have to be a millionaire (who does not like good investments) to have a house at home and there. Why not Dubal or Spain and 5 stars it when you visit? or rent your family a really nice house for 1000 dinars a month from the rental differential.

The other big issue I left Tunisia in 2012 it's now 2018 nearly and no joke many of the houses for sale then are still for sale now! My friends tell me tha market has crashed but the prices stay the same as nobody can afford it so why bother.

Just go to a posh part of Tunis and look at many of the adverts they all look like abandoned houses, not staged houses with mercs outside as one would expect for 1/2/3 million dinars. Your talking more than a million £ and the houses look like something from a nuclear fallout, empty with rusty swings in the garden and green swimming pools.

It all looks like a made up fake market and that is what it is as there is actually too much money in Tunisia it's just its all in notes and only held by about 2-5% of the people. That means there are simply loads of empty houses! they are used as bank accounts.

So, in essence, you have to have your head close to the ground for bargains and there are no cheap nice areas of Tunis they are all expensive.

Soukra, Ariana, raoued, la Goulette, sidi daoud are cheaper but still £100K+ for a house

Sometimes I wish my wife was from some nice cap bon town like Korba......yet i look there and they are trying it on there also.

So if the rip off prices and slow sales process was not enough hassle you then have to fork out loads of money on agents fees.

The next revolution will be about houses as the elite of Tunisia had a revolution yet still kept all the property and most people renting.

My advice stay in a hotel and rent a place for the relatives and watch these global interest rate rises hit tunisia eventually. One day they will have to tax homes as that is what the rich have and the young poor do not.
Thanks for such an insightful view. It has changed my decision to buy the property in Tunis. I agree in many points you have highlighted in your post. Obstacles are very high and rewards are very low. It doesn’t look like a good investment decision.

I will hold my horses for sometime and wait for the changes if it happens
 

Kris

Administrator
Staff member
#16
Thanks for such an insightful view. It has changed my decision to buy the property in Tunis. I agree in many points you have highlighted in your post. Obstacles are very high and rewards are very low. It doesn’t look like a good investment decision.

I will hold my horses for sometime and wait for the changes if it happens
Sorry to be a moaner.

I own a hotel in the UK a hotel the same in Tunisia (without accounts) would b 3 times the price.

I have been trying to buy a property in Tunisia for years and in all honestly, I have yet to find one I actually like for under 600,000 dinars.

problem is for that 200k I can buy a flat in the UK and rent it for 800£ a month = 2400 dinars

That's the rent on the place on Tunisia and then some to sit about and you can see it in 6 weeks.

no logic to it
 
Top