When considering buying property in Albania it is assumed that one is looking for an investment property rather than an actual home. Unlike in many other European countries where new properties are built on newly purchased land this is not an option for foreign investors in Albania who are restricted when it comes to buying actual land. It would also be foolish for investors to purchase old style properties which they may find for sale as there would be too much uncertainty regarding ownership rights which may revert to previous Albanian owners, thus one can never be certain if the seller has the legal right to sell.
When one looks to invest in the Albanian property market the two main areas under consideration will be brand new apartments which are either purchased off plan or still in the construction stage, or newly constructed apartments which are already complete. The two areas which are best suited to invest in are the capital Tirana or the coastal areas.
A very important consideration for anyone looking to purchase an investment property outside the capital is the convenience of getting there, as the Albanian roads are still in a dreadful state which can make travelling even the shortest distance on a motorway akin to travelling on a dirt track in other places. Whilst road conditions are expected to improve as European money is poured into the country it may be wiser to either invest within easy access of the Mother Theresa airport outside of Tirana, or to invest in an area which is easily accessible by ferry, either from Italy or Corfu.
The coastal town of Saranda overlooks the Ionian Sea and is easily reached by ferry from Corfu which has a good airport. Saranda is an attractive town which has already established a reputation as a tourist spot and is a great favourite with Albanian honeymooners. There is plenty of opportunity to invest in new apartments which are springing up in developments there and which should provide good rental incomes in season.
Vlora is another good choice for investment opportunities and is served by ferries from both Bari and Brandisi in Italy. It is a much larger coastal town than Saranda and may well afford a longer letting period due to the higher population. The coastal towns still boast unspoilt beaches which make them an attractive option for those looking for a relatively undeveloped base.
Tirana makes a good investment for those purchasing apartments to let out all year round as many Albanians, plus foreign business people, are settling in the capital. If an apartment is chosen either away from the center or close to the business center of the capital, it is likely to provide both a good rental return as well as a good mid to long term return on the investment.
Investing in Albania is still a gamble as the amount of new developments may well be off putting to the very tourists the country hopes to attract. However if one is prepared to take the risk then it is likely that a good return will be seen as prices could well boom especially if Albania is accepted into the European Union within the next few years.