Ilan Rubinstein – Realtor

Ilan’s Guide to Buying a NEW Apartment in Israel Continued: Government Programs

Last month, we promised to go into more details about the government’s housing subsidy programs.
These are named “Mechir Lemishtaken” and “Mechir Matara.”

Mechir Lemishtaken (“Buyer’s Price”)

This program includes limited grants to eligible buyers in peripheral areas of between 40-60,000 NIS, along with discounted prices – via a reduction in the price of land to developers, and state subsidies for development costs. The developers compete for the lowest price per square meter for an apartment. As of now, many of the tenders have been issued, and the lotteries for eligible buyers will be announced in the coming weeks.

Which individuals are eligible to participate?
The government set up this new program to help those who “lack housing,” which for this program’s purposes is defined as follows:
Anyone who has not in the past six years owned an apartment (or part of one), or rented one under the Tenant Protection Law (key money); who is not defined as an heir to housing units on estates, farming communities or community settlements; and holds no rights to an apartment under construction.

The program is intended for:
* Married couples * Unattached individuals (singles, divorced or widowed) over 35
* Single parents with at least one single child under 21 who is in the parent’s custody
* Disabled people aged 21 and over, certified as such by the Ministry of Health, confined to a wheelchair, with a permanent disability level of 75% or more

Which apartments are eligible to participate?
Minimum compulsory technical specifications for eligible apartments have been laid down by the Ministry of Construction and Housing, available upon request.

Areas covered:
These include Jerusalem, Ramat Bet Shemesh, Haifa, Herzliya, Raanana, Lod, Afula, Rishon Letzion, Atlit, Kiryat Motzkin, Tiberias, Tel Aviv and more.
There are benefits for local residents – those who have lived in the area for the past few years are given priority in purchasing an apartment.

Prohibition on Reselling
Apartments purchased through the Mechir Lamishtaken framework are prohibited from reselling to a third party for five years from the date of “Tofes 4” (Certificate of Occupation).

Mechir Matara (“Target Price”)
Mechir Matara applies to residential apartments constructed within the framework of new building projects throughout the country, with apartment prices being determined through tenders and approximately 20% below the market value. These apartments range in size from 60-150 m². A Mechir Matara apartment includes at least one parking space.

Which individuals are eligible to participate?
Like the previous program, this one is similarly intended for those “lacking housing,” but also for those “looking to improve their present housing circumstances.”
For the purposes of this program, “lacking housing” refers to individuals at least 35 years old, and/or family units, where no member has had rights of ownership to an apartment unit (or part of one) for the ten years prior to purchasing a Mechir Matara apartment.
“Looking to improve their housing” applies to an individual at least 35 years old, or a family unit, who own an apartment unit which will be sold within 12 months of receipt of government form 4 for the apartment being acquired, or who owned an apartment unit in the ten years prior to purchasing a Mechir Matara apartment.

Which apartments are eligible to participate?
High quality standards and technical specifications are determined by the Ministry of Construction).

Apartments purchased through the Mechir Matara framework are prohibited from reselling to a third party for five years, an action incurring a penalty of 250,000 NIS

Renting Out
Apartments acquired may be rented out for residential purposes so that one need not wait for exactly the right apartment to turn up to get onto the housing ladder.

The Rosh Hayin lottery was announced in March and 196 families were given the opportunity to acquire 4-room apartments for just over 1.14 million NIS and 5-room apartments for around 1.3 million NIS. Lod’s lottery results are due in at the time of writing, with 3-room apartments sold for just 625,000 NIS.

How do I proceed?
If you think that you and/or your relatives are eligible for either program & need help and guidance registering or deciding which project to go for, feel free to contact us at your earliest convenience. The government is marketing up to 60,000 apartments this year, which means that you actually have a decent chance.

If you are not eligible for either program but still wish to buy new, there are still new apartments available for sale from earlier tenders, on private land and on Tama 38 projects. We will Be”H discuss the latter in more details in next month’s issue.

The writer, Ilan Rubinstein, is a licensed Israeli real estate agent with 15 years’ experience in Israel real estate. Ilan advises & assists olim in acquiring new & existing property, investments and businesses throughout Israel.

This article is intended as a general guide only. Accordingly, no warranty is given on any information contained herein.
Tel: (0)77-410-8011
Cell: (0)504-910-604

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