One thing you soon learn about any Mediterranean people is that they love to party! And there’s no better excuse to don your fanciest clothes and get together with family and friends for a night of celebration than the village festa. These local festivities take place mainly in the summer months and uniquely capture the character of the Maltese as a whole, whilst throwing light into the slight differences between one village and the next. Ostensibly, the reason for such festivities are religious and, sure enough, you’ll find reminders of the village’s patron saint wherever you look. However, wandering about the confetti-strewn streets and the stalls selling traditional Maltese nougat and other sweets you quickly pick up a more profane undercurrent which translates in inter-village rivalries about whose festa is the biggest and the best! Don’t get me wrong, the religious aspect, concentrated in the benevolent figure of the patron saint, is very much central to the event. However, the dichotomy between the ‘internal’ Church-led feast consisting of solemn Masses and processions, and the ‘external’ people-led feast, made up of firework displays and band marches, is too stark not to notice. It is perhaps this blend of the holy and the profane that lends Maltese village festivals their charm. With eyes fixed on high towards the vara (statue) of their saint while gulping down cold beer from plastic cups, it is hard to find such close coexistence between the transcendental and the material elsewhere. It isn’t just the locals that dress up to the nines during the festa. Even the village streets are bedecked with colourful hand-sewn pavaljuni and damask, making for a truly fascinating scene that attracts thousands of tourists every year who visit the islands during festa season. One of the biggest draws of the Maltese village festival are the fireworks that light up the summer sky. The Maltese are very proud of their skills in pyrotechnics, even though the craft is riddled with numerous perils. Local firework makers routinely win international awards and prizes for their creations which delight local and foreigners alike. The Maltese festa season runs from the end of May, right through the entire summer season, and concludes in September. Every festa takes place over an extended weekend, culminating in the actual feast day of the patron saint on a Sunday and then spilling over the following Monday for a traditional xalata (think: after-party) at one of the island’s fine beaches. Although every village sees their own festa as the best, one could argue that the peak point of the Maltese festa season occurs in the mid-August with the feast commemorating the Assumption of Our Lady. This feast is celebrated simultaneously in several villages across Malta and Gozo, making it the biggest religious feast of the Maltese summer.

Every month we’ll be taking a close look at a particular locality in Malta and Gozo, bringing you some useful information to help you decide where the next place you’ll call home will be.

Appropriately, we’ve chosen to start our journey through Malta’s towns and villages from the letter ‘A’.

The village of Attard is the focus of this post.


The village of Attard traces its history back to the Classical period; tombs and pieces of pottery dating from 3000 BCE have been discovered in the area, indicating that the human settlements were present from an early date.

No points for guessing where Attard is!

However, the origins of Attard are shrouded in mystery. It isn’t even clear how the village got its name.

One hypothesis suggests that it was named after an early inhabitant whose surname was Attard; another, links the word Attard with the Arabic ‘attar or ‘atr (which both sound very similar to the Maltese word qatra, a drop of liquid) meaning flower essence oil and perfume respectively.

Curiously, or perhaps not, the village motto which appears underneath its coat of arms is the Latin phrase: Florigera rosis halo, or ‘I perfume the air with blossoms of roses’. An area of Attard was even known as Ħal Warda (literally, Rose Village) in the past.

A quick overview

Attard today has a population of nearly 10,500 inhabitants and was until recently one of the fastest growing localities in Malta. It forms part of a conurbation known as the ‘Three Villages’ comprising Attard, Balzan and Lija, and is the biggest locality of those three.

Attard’s coat of arms. In proper heraldic terms: Argent, a cross couped Azure, quarter-pierced Gules.

The development of Attard follows that of a typical Maltese village. At its very centre, there is the parish church, surrounding which is the oldest part of village. Further away lie progressively newer developments, with terraced house gradually making way to modern apartments and penthouses at the outskirts.

The village enjoys a tranquil atmosphere and offers easy access to every amenity. There are four banks, all within walking distance from each other, a primary school, several public gardens, supermarkets and a couple of charming cafés.

Attard is very well connected to the surrounding localities. Its central location makes it very easy to access every part of the island and the village is served by ten bus routes, half of which go to Valletta.

Main attractions

One of the main attractions of the village is its close proximity to the beautiful San Anton gardens.

For sporting fans, the Ta’ Qali football stadium is also just minutes away from the village centre and families can also enjoy the recently opened Ta’ Qali Adventure Park and the National Park which is a popular family destination for picnics and quality time together on weekends.

In mid-August every year, the Attard parish joins parishes in seven other villages across Malta and Gozo to celebrate the feast of the Assumption of Our Lady.


While being a victim of crime is an incredible violation, Burglars are opportunists and can continue their spree –  only – when homeowners make it easy for them to do so.  While not suggesting you turn your home in Fort Knox, it may be time to change some habits and invest in some preventative measures to keep your property safe and protect your home and valuables. 


1.   MAIN DOORS;   In Malta doors tend to be great quality, solid wood and would think.  You then look at the locks.  Every door I have had in my last 3 rental properties are the same, flimsy single H keys.  Engage the services of a professional licensed locksmith and get DEADBOLT  locks fitted.  If you are in an apartment block, you are still vulnerable, a secure entry system is an advantage but that should not mean you get complacent with your own entry door. Keep your property safe.

2.  WINDOWS;  We all do it, leave the window open with just the fly screen closed.  It’s hot outside   and its good to get the air flowing.  Time to change habits.  The issue I see with windows in Malta is that they are mostly a sliding construction, and single glazed.  The worst security combination, as sliding window are the easiest to pop out of their frames. While replacing windows to double glazed and push/pull openings may not be financially practical for everyone, you can consider fitting a dowel or rod to the back slider of the existing window, this prevents it from being opened fully.   If you do not have any locks fitted to your windows this can be done retrospectively.  Check online or speak to your locksmith.  Remember to NOT leave the keys in the locks. Get into the habit of locking up when you leave your property.  

3.   ALARMS;  It is not something you see too often in homes in Malta, but this is probably the best deterrent to consider.  There are numerous variations; from the DIY fit yourself (designed to make a noise)  to a full monitoring service (usually incurs a monthly fee).  If cost is a factor at this time, consider a fake box on your outside wall.  An opportunistic burglar is not going to hang around to determine if it’s real or not.  You can even buy stickers for your window to say an alarm is fitted.  

4.   CCTV;    Sounds extreme, but modern models are small and far better designed than earlier versions.  The monitoring box can easily be fitted into a cupboard or garage.  Again costs have reduced for these systems dramatically over the years and lets face it a burglar does not want to be ‘captured’ (pun intended) on screen.  Again if cost is an issue, you can always buy fake, it’s better that nothing at all and will help to keep your property safe.

5.   LIGHTING;   If you have a porch light, make sure it is on all night or is fitted with sensors, replace bulbs with long life versions.  Buy some timer switches for lamps inside your home, make sure lights are seen to be switched on and off and various times, especially if you are not going to be home for a few days.

6.   FOLIAGE;   If you have planting around your property, take a look from the street at your home, can someone hide behind foliage?  While not suggesting cutting everything down, trim to provide good sight lines, and consider planting thorny species under windows.

7. GET A DOG!   Perhaps a bit extreme so again a sign or sticker saying ‘beware of the dog’ is useful for deterrent measures.  (Note to self! I should be setting up a business selling stickers!)

8.   EMPTY PROPERTIES;   If you are going away for a few days/weeks, get a neighbour to remove all the mail shots from your letter box, nothing screams “Empty Property’  louder than mail gathering uncollected. 

9.  YOUR VALUABLES;   Get the camera out, every mobile phone has one these days, and start to photograph all your valuables, write down serial numbers etc.  While you are at it, all your computer, iPad Play stations etc, mark with a UV pen your name and contact details,  This information can only be seen with a UV light and you guessed it, a sticker on the underneath to let everyone know its marked.  This makes it less attractive for re-sale. Think about your passwords too, your item is useless if the password cannot be accessed.  On larger garage / tool items, use  permanent markers to write your name on.  

10.  INSTALL A SAFE;   Develop good habits and store all important paperwork and valuables.

These guidelines can all aid with deterring and preventing an act of crime and can keep your property safe.  Remember that statistically Malta has a very low crime rate, which makes it all the more alarming when a crime spree is reported.  By spending a few hundred euros right now, you can feel safer in your own home.  Practice the routine of locking up and being aware of your own neighbourhood, and everyone can sleep a little easier.


Okay, let’s talk shop for a moment. Right now, the real estate industry is at the centre of rapid economic and social change; it’s a time of great excitement, but also of anxiety for agencies comfortable with the old ways of selling property.

The pressure won’t let up until realtors figure out a way to connect buyers and sellers by making use of all the advantages that modern information technology and communication platforms give us.

Does this sound like a familiar scenario?

Travel agencies have had to grapple with the exact same challenges a few years back. Today, the number of people who go to a travel agent’s office to book their flights has dwindled; buying tickets online is much easier, more convenient, and cheaper!

Demolishing the high-street agency model

The real estate industry is heading in the same direction. High-street offices will slowly disappear, and most of the dealings between buyers, sellers and agents will take place almost exclusively online.

This radical shift in the organisation of the real estate industry will inevitably require a change in the role of real estate agents as well.

Customers can find everything they want to know online; a quick Google search is all it takes to pull up all information about a particular locality, view street and property images, and quickly compare properties.

Agents have to learn how to shed the role of ‘information guardians’ and become instead guides, consultants and match-makers that facilitate the coming together of sellers with qualified buyers.

Exciting and new possibilities online

When I realised all this it felt like I was having an epiphany!

In the brave new world of real estate, agents could finally worry less about details and focus on providing exceptional service and assistance to their clients. We’ve become human again!

Let the machines do all the information crunching; our job is find people a home they’ll love, and to help buyers market their properties to the widest, qualified audience possible.

The real estate industry is on the verge of transitioning from a data-centric to a people-centric paradigm. And the tools us agents need to play the game by the new rules are all available online, 24/7!

The change is imminent

The above isn’t just some wild fantasy that I believe in. Here’s what PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) have to say about technology and real estate:

Technology is finally coming to real estate. By 2020, it will have both altered the economics of entire sub sectors of the industry, and changed the way that real estate developers and the investment community operate.*

I can’t describe how lucky I feel that Home Sale Malta has taken the lead in introducing the Maltese market to a new way of doing real estate. A full six years ahead of schedule!

Make no mistake. Our team’s contribution in transforming the real estate business into a completely virtual one is grounded on current trends and solid consumer data.

How Home Sale Malta does it

By adopting a virtual model Home Sale Malta makes it possible for sellers to save a fortune on unnecessary commission charges, and reach a wider audience more easily and effectively.

For a flat €299 + vat seller’s fee, you can list your property on our website and benefit from one full year of professional online property marketing across the main local and foreign property websites and social media hangouts.

And don’t worry, we won’t neglect traditional media. We’ll advertise your property on the most popular local newspapers as well.

Don’t be left behind in the real estate revolution. Embrace the future and take your property selling efforts to the next level: list your property on Home Sale Malta today.


* PricewaterhouseCoopers (2014). Real estate 2020: Building the future. [Link]

So, you’re thinking about selling your house. Should be easy, right?

Let’s count the steps. One, get a price estimate for your property. Two, describe it in a couple of lines and buy a classified ad. Optional step: snap some photos to make your ad stand out more.

In a nutshell, that’s the process most people go through when trying to sell their property solo.

Maybe you’re a bit more tech savvy than the rest, so you decide to upload your listing on Facebook or some other website. It’s even cheaper that way, so why not?

Let the waiting game commence

As days turn into weeks, and weeks into months, you start wondering what else you could do to speed up the process.

You could decrease the price or fiddle around with the description, but what you really need right now is an experienced person; someone to gently guide you on how to maximise your property’s marketability and introduce you to a wide base of interested and qualified buyers.

In other words: a real estate agent.

But, but… an agent costs money!

Yes, expertise comes with a price tag, but it needn’t be as expensive as you think.

A real estate agent will lend you his or her knowledge of the industry. They’ll be able to connect you with other professionals, such as architects and lawyers who can help you carry out the paperwork you need more quickly. And crucially, an estate agent will bring people to your door, people who are interested in buying your house, and guide you to make all the right moves so that the property sells, and fast!

By leveraging your agent’s knowledge and expertise, you’ll be able to negotiate a better deal with potential buyers and avoid time-wasters who are only interested in haggling with you to lower the price.

Think of the money you spend on an agent versus a classified ad in terms of the opportunity cost of choice. By letting someone else handle property marketing and filtering buyers for you, you save time (and money!) which can be better spent settling into your new home.

Did you say an agent doesn’t have to be expensive?

Correct! In a world where the internet has revolutionised businesses in every industry, real estate agencies have regrettably been slow to embrace its full potential.

At Home Sale Malta, we believe that high-street agencies and expensive commission fees are so last century. For this reason, we launched the first completely virtual real estate agency in Malta that passes on the benefits of lower overheads directly to you: the seller.

If you’re a seller we will professionally photograph your property as well as advise you on staging ready for viewers.  We’ll measure and transform 2D prints of your house into interactive 3D floor plans, and bring it to the attention of thousands of potential buyers on websites and social media channels.

How much will that set you back? €299, + VAT. That works out at just €24.92 per month, or 83 cents a day.

For comparison’s sake, a one-time, 25-word classified ad in Malta’s most widely-read Sunday paper costs €13.87 and almost double that should you want your ad text to be printed in boldface. You do the math.

The Home Sale Malta promise

Our promise is to deliver the highest quality home selling service at the most affordable price on the island. We pledge our full support to ensure that your home selling experience is as smooth and hassle-free as possible.

Still wondering how we do that? Check out our FAQ page, and if you have any questions left just drop us a line and we’ll be happy to answer them.

For achieving a positive property viewing.


“It can take a viewer only 15

seconds, to decide if

your property is the ONE”     

1.   Think about the best features of your property and highlight these to your viewer.

2.    If you have ANY pets, keep them away from the viewer, preferably out of the house completely.

3.    If you’re viewing at night, ensure that ALL lights are switched on; even those under kitchen cabinets; before your prospective buyer arrives.

4.     Open ALL internal doors fully; this maximises space and allows light to bounce around the property, again, before your buyer arrives.

 5.   Greet your viewer, and explain you are happy to answer any questions that they may have at     the end.  Do not start a monologue of what the bricks are made of or how much money you have spent on the property.

6.    Allow your viewers to enter all rooms first, this gives the illusion of space, better that you do not take up too much of it.

7.     It is a great idea to show the best room in the house last.  Be that the kitchen or the roof with views.  END ON A HIGH!

8.     Let the viewer know why YOU bought the property in the first place.

9.     When you have shown the viewers around, invite them to look around on their own.

10.    If you hear any negative comments from your viewer, remember this is not personal.  Not every viewer will see your home as suitable.  

11.    Do not bombard your viewer with questions regarding making an offer .  If they are interested they will request a 2nd appointment.  We at Home Sale Malta will gather all feedback and pass this on to you.

12.    Remember ALL FEEDBACK is good, even when it is not what you want to hear.  If there are any negative responses from a viewing it allows you the opportunity to put right for next time.

Selling your home is probably the most stressful transaction you will ever make.  The time involved, the preparation of your home, just getting listed, and then waiting on a viewer is time consuming and hard work.  It is easy to get downhearted when after a couple of viewings there is still no offer.  The crucial thing, is to keep focused on the end goal.  It is easy to get lazy and not follow the guide above, it is also easy to start sounding desperate when you have your next viewing.  Selling a home is a lesson in stretching your patience!  Home Sale Malta will always pass on feedback from viewers, it is very important that you heed what is being said.  And if you can change any negatives then do it.  Follow these tips every viewing without fail and you’ll soon be moving into your next home.

Check out our ‘how to stage’ your property guide.  

founder of Home Sale Malta
founder of Home Sale Malta

commando photo

Having lived in Malta for exactly two years now (19th July…also Sandy’s birthday, but that is another story), I have eaten out on a number of occasions, some great, some good, some embarrassingly awful.  

My adopted country does food on a grand and scrumptious scale…most of the time.  You can be sure to find Pork Belly, melt in the mouth and slow cooked over a day it seems! Rabbit, an acquired taste, almost sweet if cooked sympathetically; but thoroughly recommended, and of course the pastries and deserts that I know make my arteries scream out! But how can you resist…I’ll just have one! I believe it would take my lifetime to sample every food establishment on the island, so maybe I should start in earnest?  

With Sandy in Malta for a long weekend, the opportunity to let him try ‘Commando’ in Mellieħa was perfect.  (just to be clear Commando is a restaurant and I wasn’t suggesting letting him run around with no underwear on!) The name is a bit strange for an eatery until you hear about the back story; an establishment with its roots back in the pre-war days and a regular hangout for the Royal Marine Commandos when they were stationed in Għadira Bay. Hence ‘Commando’, and it’s very touching that Chef Damian Ciappara carries on the legacy from his parents.

The restaurant itself is situated in a 300-year-old building with all the character you would expect, situated just at the town square. Eating outside is, for me, always a pleasure. Coming from Scotland that treat was a rarity indeed, and the tables are laid out beautifully with quality glass and silver ware. I would say that this establishment is geared toward an adult clientele, you will not find a children’s menu, and to be fair there is plenty of choice for them elsewhere, let the adults have some ‘me time’

We arrived early, truly very early for Malta, at 6.30pm. Our waiter was very attentive, I think he was new as he was still at the fawning stage, which could have gotten a bit intrusive had other diners not begun to arrive. Now when I decided to do a restaurant guide, (a guide in my own humble opinion that is) I hoped that whomever I was dining with would have different choices to me, so I could offer opinions on various courses. Alas, this was not to be last Saturday as we both wanted the same starter and same main!  Scallops with chorizo to start and rib eye steak as a main. We were served local bread toasted over a griddle and still hot…yum,  with a trio of dips while we waited for our starter. As in every establishment I have been into so far, you will always find a dip made of broad beans, and is, in fact, an island staple by name of bigilla, and like any dip it depends on the chef whether it is totally bland and pointless or has a bit of kick; this one was in the middle so passable. 

The starters arrived, each portion served with 3 large juicy scallops, mine was borderline cooked to perfection, and served with the smallest pieces of chorizo I have ever seen? Delicious though. The steak was cooked to order, this time, mine slightly over done to my ‘medium rare’ request. The vegetables that were served with it were chunky chips, nothing delicate about those, and some courgettes? I couldn’t really tell as there wasn’t a lot of them. Sandy thoroughly loved his and wanted to return the next night.  

I have dined here previously and every time the service has been very good, the food is always good and living in the village of Mellieħa at this time, would always consider eating there. I was there a few weeks ago with my sister who had the Scallop & Prawn Ravioli served with Soy cream and Asparagus as a starter and she declared it was the best she had ever had.

If you wish to avoid the ‘holiday burger and pizza joints’ of which there are enough off located at the top of the Main Street in Mellieħa, and experience a very pleasant evening with good food and people watching I can recommend ‘Commando’

Diner for two, with starters and 4 glasses of Prosecco & 2 soft drinks, no coffees or deserts; came to €98 (Sandy doesn’t drink but as it was his birthday he indulged in one glass, the other 3 were all me…it was delicious incidentally, really must get the name when I go back)


+356 2152 3459

+356 9949 8843

Misraħ Iz-Żjara tal-Papa,

Mellieħa MLH 1080

If you wish to recommend a restaurant for me to try, just email me at  


So what is the difference between a High Street and Online Real Estate Agent? 


homesalemalta.comWhen comparing a High Street Agency or Online Agency it seems obvious to point out that an Online Agency is just that, 100% online.  No expensive High Street Offices to maintain and pay for and no sales staff salaries and commissions to pay for.  This is the main difference. 

Traditional Agents;

Will of course visit your home, take photographs and have good knowledge about the area and the market.  They will generally only market your property on their own website and occasionally in a local newspaper.  They may even produce a brochure a few times a year.   They will have good connections with Notaries. The high street agency will bring their clients to view your property and offer feedback.  They will then, if they sell your  property, charge you, in the main, 5% commission.   It is the way selling property in Malta ‘has always been done’

Photo camera

An Online Agency;

Will visit your home, take photographs, they may even produce 360 Virtual Tour or even Video Shoot your property.  They will also produce floor plans for every property.  They will highlight your property address on Google Maps to entice potential buyers to visit the area.  They have good knowledge about the area and the market.  They will market your home on their website, and on international property portals.  They will market the website in local newspapers and produce mail shots.  They will not however, produce a paper brochure as this can be out of date the minute it leaves the printers.  They have good connections with Notaries, Lawyers and Architects.  An online agency will arrange for buyers to visit your property, with the homeowner conducting the viewing. An online agency will support your sale progress from listing to sold. However the most important difference is that there is no commission at the time of your sale.  A one off fee is paid at the start of the advertising instruction, and that is that; no hidden extras, no hidden fees and totally transparent.  That fee with HOME SALE MALTA is €299+Vat.  It is literally a ‘no brainer’ to work out the difference, but just in case, on the Home Sale Malta website, there is a calculator for you to see for yourself.

Sold sign



A little known fact is that in the UK over 90% of house purchases start their search with online property portals, the main two being; and  ( and yes we advertise on there too…why? because Rightmove listed over 300,000 searches for Malta alone last year)* While not saying that that 90% search figure is the total for Malta it is certainly a growing figure; the more computers and internet become part of island life the more online business will be conducted.  Everyone is so busy with day to day life, viewing properties with an agent is time consuming, especially when the information is sparse to begin with.  The irony is that you turn up with different agents to see the same property.   The main advantage of using an Online Agent is of course there is  no competing for a huge commission fee at the end, so, all the lovely property photos can be displayed, floor plans can be analysed, location and streets can be highlighted.  A potential buyer  can see every detail about a property before deciding to view.



Some may see an Online Agency as a bit new, a bit out of the comfort zone of ‘how you always do things’, but remember  an online agency will visit the property at the start and undertake all services that you expect from an Estate Agent, just not in an office premises. It is not to say that selling your property online is for everyone.  However, if you are looking to market your property to its full extent..and not just partially,  all the while potentially saving €€€€’s of Euros in agency fee’s, then it just may be an option for you.  

Julie x

*  Source 2013




Who we are

Let me start by thanking you for visiting our we website.  As you can see we are still in the development stage, however, we have had a busy weekend, moving things forward slightly quicker than planned.

Our business model, 100% Commission Free, is a completely new prospect here in Malta, and one that I’m sure you will agree, shall be embraced by sellers of all properties on the island.  Due to the fact that we do not ‘compete’for business and a share of the (very expensive) commission revenues generated by other agencies, does not mean a lack of service.  On the contrary, we plan to exploit every avenue available to us to advertise a sellers property.

Quality photos inside and out!, Properties marked on Google Maps. Computer generated floor plans.  3D images and 360 Virtual Tours. We can employ all off these to advertise our listings.  We again use every online tool, property portals, social media, and not forgetting the traditional media, Times of Malta, Independent etc.  Our full business agenda is based on charging a ‘set up fee’for our service.

That will be announced later, but I can assure you it will be affordable to all.  Essentially we are enabling citizens of Malta & Gozo to save thousands of euros on fee’s.

Of course we are not forgetting about the ‘buyer’either. The buyer, for their part, will have a modern sophisticated web-site to browse and gain valuable information.  The web-site is extremely user friendly and provides clear information on our listings. Developers also benefit.  Usually a floor plan is the only advertising that they can offer.

We have the latest technology to bring floor plans ‘to life’converting 2D drawings into 3D virtual walk throughs.  As you can imagine we are very excited.

To give you a little insight into ‘who we are’ I have bought and sold my own properties for 30 years!  (how can that be when I claim to be 35???)  Indeed I have just purchased my 20th property ! (my first in Malta) recently.

We have a director who is an expert in the IT industry, our affiliates are Astra Consulting Malta Ltd, who are specialists in all things Financial; at individual and corporate level.  Our legal expert is Josette Sultana, Advocate and  Independent Law Practice Professional,  in Mellieha.

Our eCommerce direction is overseen by and Bank of Valletta are there for all the lending advice. You’ll agree, a solid team of professionals, who are on board to assist clients of Home Sale Malta.

I hope that gives you a slightly better insight to this new comer!   We have opened our Facebook page, (still really in development and constant improvement of course) it allows you to stay informed with future announcements.

I shall be blatantly cheeky and ask you to ‘like’and to ‘share’. our site.  Again, I am not shy in asking!!!  You may know someone who would benefit from advertising on our site. Anyone who registers with us now, before launch, will get discounted fee’s…and remember there are no commissions on sale.  Stay in touch, we would love to hear from you, suggestions, opinions?

Julie  x

Founder HSM.