So you went to Verbier, Switzerland on your last skiing trip and fell in love with the place. So much so that you are keen to buy your very own Swiss style chalet and ski home. If that is you, then welcome to the wonderful dreamland that is called Verbier. You are certainly not alone with your intentions as every year thousands of skiers and snow enthusiasts come to Verbier to spend some of their holidays. Once it is time to leave, many struggle to say goodbye to this popular spot in the Swiss alps.
If you are keen on acquiring your own Verbier chalet, then you will find our guide helpful.
Verbier is situated in the Valais region of Switzerland and one of the country’s major ski resorts. The “4 valleys” skiing area is attracting international clientele and is known to offer a wide range of attractions to please any visitor.
It isn’t rare to see the odd celebrity in Verbier as the village has always been a trendy spot for people watching. Verbier offers great winter sports with plenty of snow. The highest peak, Mont Fort offers many starting points for the many back-country off-piste routes as well.
For those who savour tasty cuisine, they will not be disappointed with not just one, but three mountain restaurants as well as the countless cafes and restaurants in the village itself.
If you fancy the odd spot of nightlife and dancing, then you will love the Farm Club and Coco Club, a membership club opened back in 2007.
The Chalet and Ski Home Buying process in Verbier
Buying property in Verbier sounds like a dream come true, especially if you hear of people such as the Kernow’s from Cornwall. They invested into a six-bedroom chalet off plan. It was an on the spot decision after returning from a long absence for another skiing trip with the family.
The family fell in love with everything Verbier has to offer, including panoramic views and decided to buy an authentic chalet that would house the whole family.
Many couples and families choose to do exactly the same after a few trips to the area. After all it makes sense to buy your own skiing property instead of spending money on hotels and rental ski chalets. Plus having your own property in Verbier offers great rental opportunities due to a strong winter season and a growing summer season.
New ruling of 2007
Since the canton of Valais ruled new laws in regards to selling property in Verbier to non Swiss buyers, sales have been limited. This ruling doesn’t affect buyers with a Swiss permit B or C though.
Foreign buyers without either of those two previously mentioned permits will need a “permit to purchase” property in Switzerland.
Authorisations must be obtained through a Swiss notary who applies to the relevant cantonal authority. Each of the Swiss Cantons has a yearly quota of authorizations and usually it takes three months to obtain one. In 2007, nor new permits to buy have been granted in the seven areas of Nendaz, Bagnes (Verbier), Grimentz, Veysonnaz, Riddes and Val d’Illiez. All of them are in the canton Valais.
If you are lucky enough to be able to buy a Verbier property, you must instruct a Swiss notary to deal with all legal aspects of the sale. A deposit (depending on property value) will need to be paid to the notary.
By Swiss law you are advised to prepare a will after you acquire Swiss property and lodge it with your notary. In some cantons, property cannot be sold on for a minimum of 5-10 years after purchase.
Annual property tax and capital gains tax vary from canton to canton and depend on the value of the property. If you intend to rent out your chalet, you won’t be able to claim that on Swiss tax. However, you might be able to claim in your own country.
Mortgages might be offered through a Swiss bank and their interest rates are generally very low.
Further to this, property purchase costs will need to be factored in by buyers. These include notary fees, government purchase taxes and land registry fees and are around 2.5% of the property purchase price in the canton of Valais.
If you decide to buy an apartment in a jointly owned building instead, you are also up for end of year running costs.
You are advised to check with a Swiss notary in regards to the exact procedures of buying a chalet or ski home in Verbier as rules might have changed again.
Photo credits: Martin Oâ€™Connell via flickr