Buying an Apartment in Israel: on Paper vs Second hand

Buying an Apartment in Israel: on Paper vs Second hand

Take a look at our new series of blog posts regarding the purchase of an apartment in Israel whether it be on paper or second hand.

Throughout the series you will find we discuss pros and cons regarding your choice of purchase and helpful tips to keep in mind.

We talk about the importance of doing proper research and gathering as much information you can regarding the land you are choosing to invest in as well as liability of your contractor and developer.

We touch on helpful aspects you need to know regarding your contract and the importance of using a lawyer for the process.

We hope you find this information useful in making the right choices towards your big next step of investment.

This week, Part 1: Buying an apartment on paper vs buying an apartment second hand

When looking for a Jerusalem apartment for sale as well as Netanya or anywhere in Israel, if  buying an apartment on paper, it means you have just purchased a brand-new, never been lived in apartment. An apartment that, in most cases, is not even fully complete. The frame may be home, but the walls may not be finished, the kitchen may not be finalized, and the small accents have not been installed.

You see, once the contractor begins the process of building the apartment, sometimes, he can begin selling the unfinished apartments prior to completion. What does this mean for you, the buyer?

Be prepared to pay well-over what the contractor has quoted you for the apartment. When purchasing an unfinished apartment, the benefit is that because its incomplete you can change things around and make the final decisions of what type of floors to put in, fancy faucets to install, and what color to paint the walls (to name a few). However, it’s important to remember that the contractor quotes you a basic price for a basic apartment. Once you decide you want something more than the standard options they would have suggested, you will be adding to your total in the end.

Jerusalem apartments for sale ( as well as all parts of the country) can often be with a contractor who has just began the building process of the apartment and would like to sell before completion. What does this mean for you, the buyer?

When purchasing an apartment from a contractor some feel that this is their chance to make their apartment the way they want it, without any regrets or changes in the future. Baring this mind, you must be prepared for the long road ahead. Now a days it can take over 2 years to complete the apartment. For some people it is worth the wait, however, other may not be as patient or may not be able to afford such a wait.

Additionally, even once you have moved into your apartment, things may not work the way they were meant to or defects may come up, and you will need to be in contact with the contractor about fixing everything, this can add additional time as well.

However if you are opting for a second hand apartment for sale in Jerusalem or other part of the country it has its benefits too, for example you can move in after closing (unless otherwise stated in your contract),and the price agreed upon is the final price (not include taxes and lawyer/ realtors fees, etc) You are moving-in to a previously lived-in apartment, so it has been “worn-in”, and you will already know about any existing problems. However, it may not be your dream apartment, and you may still decide that there are things you would like to change.

The decision? Its up to you. Like everything in life, there are pros and cons to purchasing an apartment in Israel. There is no right or wrong decision. The most important thing when purchasing an apartment in Israel (other than knowing how much money you must put towards the apartment) is taking the time to think about your decision. Making a decision without thinking it through, can have negative impacts along the way. So, it is important to consult with professionals and trusted colleagues/friends/or family members when making a large financial decision, such as purchasing a property in Israel.

Here at Alon Central we strive to help each and every one of our clients in finding their dream apartment (whether it be on paper, or second-hand) and we are happy to give advice and connect our client with other professionals in the field to consult with when making this decision.