About Villa Ownership

Frequently Asked Questions

Handover of the villas/construction times
This can take from 6 to 18 months depending upon customisation.

Local mortgage availability
Currently there are no mortgage facilities offered locally for international buyers.

What are the ownership regulations?
Ownership of a villa is transferred pursuant to Tourist Resorts (Transfer of Rights) Rules No: 2010/R-14 published in the Maldivian Government Gazette on 9 December 2010. On handover of the villa, an application will be lodged with Ministry of Tourism to obtain a ‘strata title’ which will be a conclusive evidence of ownership of the villa.

What taxes do I pay?
Villa owners are primarily liable to two taxes i.e. (i) Tourism Goods and Service Tax @ 12% payable on the gross invoice value at time of purchase; and (ii) Annual Business Profit Tax @ 15% on the net profit from rental revenues. These rates are in accordance with the laws applicable as per July 2016.

How does Maldives villa ownership insurance work?
Ownership insurance provides the resort and villa owners with insurance coverage against damage to the contents of villas and liability for accidents. This insurance includes buildings cover, personal accident, plant and machinery, electronics, natural perils and fire. More information can be provided on request.

Is villa ownership in the Maldives leasehold or freehold?
Ownership is leasehold. The villa ownership will be on a sublease basis for the duration of the lease of the island by Soneva and the Maldivian government. Any future lease extensions will be passed on to the buyer at a formal equal to [(1/total number of villas) x lease extension price for the island].

For Soneva Jani, the lease to date (2018) stands at 46 years with the option for the resort to extend the lease for an additional 49 years on payment of USD 5 million.

For Soneva Fushi, the lease to date (2018) stands at 26 years. 

How is ownership structured?
Ownership will be structured via a series of onshore and offshore legal agreements. These agreements comprise, but are not limited to, a Reservation Agreement, a Lease Agreement evidencing the buyers’ lease rights on the land, a Villa Management Agreement, showing Soneva’s exclusive right to manage the property on behalf of the buyer, and a Villa Rental Agreement, which shows the terms of rental of the villa (optional for villas yet to be built).

Construction
Soneva uses top contractors and construction companies in the Maldives. For any new build villas, we commit to a one-year construction period, with construction commencing on the following low season (from May 15th of every year). Usually the villas are built well within the one year period.

What happens if I want to do a resale?
Prior approval of the developer (which shall not be unreasonably withheld) is necessary for re-sales, and you may choose to resell your villa once full payment for your villa has been received and only after construction has completed and the unencumbered title is received. Note that the resale market for luxury branded resort real estate is highly cyclical and any resale, even in the best of economic markets, may take years. Most of our villa owners contemplate at least a 10 year holding period for this investment. A right of first offer on resale exists for the developer, Soneva Fushi Holdings BVI, and if your villa is sold to a purchaser who is introduced to you by the developer or any Host or agent of Soneva, we will charge an assignment fee of 3% of the resale price, in addition to any agent’s fees. Soneva Private Residences has built a global network of agents and intermediaries who are the top luxury real estate specialists in their countries and who are trained in selling Soneva Private Residences. They would be happy to help resell your Soneva home.

This investment is not capital-guaranteed. Please seek your own legal and financial advice prior to any investment.

Modification to villas
The developer’s written approval is necessary if you wish to modify the floor plan/layout of the villa, the exterior of the villa or the materials used in the villa’s construction. Villa owners who elect not to join the Rental Pool may alter their villas to the extent that the alterations do not affect the exterior of the villa itself or the appearance from the exterior.

Warranties
The developer offers a five year construction warranty on the villa. It should be noted that all villas at Soneva Fushi are constructed using the highest quality materials, which have been selected specifically for their durability in order to withstand the demands of a tropical climate. All internal fixtures and fittings come with a manufacturer’s warranty.

Payment
The payment schedule for a new plot on a villa yet to be built:

  • A 10% deposit is required to secure your villa (refundable, on cancellation within 30 days)
  • An additional 30% is due upon contract execution
  • A further 30% due upon ‘roof on’ stage
  • The remaining 30% is due upon completion/handover of your villa

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