Buying a Property in Bahrain
Know your facts
If you’re looking to buy a property in Bahrain, you’ll discover the procedures do not differ widely from those elsewhere in the world. The legal property ownership rights in Bahrain are sophisticated and well developed, meaning as purchaser, you are protected once permission to purchase has been granted and deeds of ownership are transferred into your name. The fees for title deeds vary from 2 % from the total purchase price. Special discount for 10 % is offered from the provided fees paid from the registration date. If you are an overseas’ investor, you are advised to seek independent legal assistance throughout the entire purchase process.
- As a foreigner, can I buy property in Bahrain?
You can purchase property of residential units of certain types.
Under the Kingdom of Bahrain, Legislative Degree 2 for the Year 2001 and Edict No. 43 of 2003 (as amended by Edict No. 67 of 2006) by His Majesty King Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa allowing freehold properties for foreigners, resident expatriates and GCC nationals pursuant to Ministerial Edict No. 67 of 2006. This permits the ownership by foreigners of residential units of certain types.
- Where can I buy?
You are allowed to buy freehold property, but it is only available in certain areas.Decree No. 2 of 2001 provides that non-Bahrainis (both individuals and companies) may own built properties and land in the Kingdom of Bahrain in any manner prescribed by earlier legislation and subject to conditions prescribed from time to time. The land that is available for foreign ownership is limited by the Kingdom to certain areas and is dependent on the intended use of the land by the proposed buyer.
- What about self sponsorship?
You are entitled to a self sponsorship residence permit for life as the owner of a freehold property; this is renewable every 5 years.You are entitled to a Residence Permit (see legal reference below). This Residence Permit allows you to sponsor a residence permit for your spouse and children under 18, providing that your spouse does not engage in any kind of paid employment. The Residence Permit allows both you and your spouse the privilege of entering and leaving the country without have to procure a return visa.
Residence Permit – Freehold property
Ministerial Order No (74) for 2007 deals with granting residence permits by a personal sponsorship to expatriates (non-Bahrainis) who purchase freehold property. The Order was published in the Official Gazette on 17/01/2008 and came into effect on 18/01/2008.
Article (2) (a) of the Order provides that an expatriate may be issued with entry and residence permit under personal sponsorship, if he/she owns a residential property in his/her name in the Kingdom of Bahrain of a total value of no less than BHD 50,000.00. There is no objection to mortgaging the residence in favour of one of the banks or financial institutions licensed to undertake business in the Kingdom of Bahrain. For the purposes of this Order, residence shall mean any apartment or house fit for residence.
The issuance of entry and residence permit under personal sponsorship shall be subject to the conditions(s) that the expatriate:
a. Is of good behavior and reputation.
b. Has valid medical insurance in the Kingdom of Bahrain.
c. Maintains a bank deposit of no less than BHD 15,000/- in one of the banks or financial institutions for the duration of his/her residency, and to provide a statement to that effect every six months.
d. Has legitimate financial income for himself/herself and his/her dependent (s) of no less than BHD 500/- per month per family.
e. Is not employed in the government or the private sector in the Kingdom.
Article (5) provided that an expatriate to whom entry and residence permit has been issued in accordance with the provisions of this Order may request issuance of entry and residence permit to his/her spouse and his/her dependent children.