The Property Experts Best Ski Properties
Ski property has always been hugely popular and demand has been growing faster over the last few years. One reason for the enhanced demand is that it can be difficult to book in the best and most stylish ski resorts during peak weeks and it is likely to cost you an arm and a leg when you do!
A ski apartment or chalet is a property investment that offers good and relatively safeguarded returns. You can get very good rental rates during the ski season and prices in prime locations such as the Alps have generally risen faster than comparable rural or seaside properties for the simple reason that supply is limited and further development is limited, usually by the topography or logistics of construction. By buying your own place on the pistes you can pick the weeks you want at the resort you like and make a decent return by letting it out when you're not there.
OUR TOP PICKS FOR 2017 SKI PROPERTY
The French Alps are overwhelmingly the most popular location for buyers – perhaps more from habit than anything else. Switzerland is also popular, and can be better value than France, though foreigners can only buy in certain Cantons and in certain projects owing to Swiss Lex Koller laws. Montenegro on the Adriatic is also a little considered alternative as a ski destination – but it’s up and coming. At MEPM Property we favour Andermatt in Switzerland and Montengro’s ski resort Kolasin 1450 as 2017’s Ski Property Destinations .
Andermatt in the Swiss Alps; located in the canton of Uri, is developing the charming, traditional mountain village into an attractive year-round destination. In Uri, a friendly tax system is a key prerequisite in ensuring growth and financial prosperity.
Kolasin 1450, Montenegro
Kolasin in Montenegro is also an attractive option offering beautiful landscapes, a competitive tax regulation system and as well as the skiing providing easy access to Montenegro’s popular coastline for the summer holidays.
At the end of September 2016, Kolasin, the still not-so-known ski resort in the north of Montenegro, officially began its journey of becoming one of the top ski destinations in the world. Under the patronage and brokerage of Arton Capital, the region has managed to attract a leading foreign investor as well as two of the most recognisable hotel brands in the world – Four Points by Sheraton and Westin. On September 26th 2016, Kolasin gathered government officials, administrative figures, business leaders and celebrities in order to announce and celebrate the groundbreaking of the Westin Hotel. With a total investment of over €60 million, Arton’s team is aiming for the two hotel developments to significantly reinvigorate the economic indicators in the north and to address some of the key issues like high unemployment and low wages. The groundbreaking will mark the official beginning of a new chapter for the Kolasin Ski Resort, with this investment being one of many more to come.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN THE PERFECT SKI PROPERTY?
The perfect ski property usually benefits from a range of features and assets.
1. International Access
The first issue to consider is access. Some resorts in the French Alps are more than three hours from the main airport, Geneva, which is a big turn off for many visitors. Whilst Andermatt is a mere hour’s drive from Lucerne, 1h30 from Zurich, 2h from Milan and 4h from Munich of Stuttgart. The journey is mainly via express- ways.
Situated on the north-south mainline, it is also easy to reach the station by train from Lucerne, Zurich, Lugano and Milan. The village is also situated between the attractive Furka and Oberalp railway passes – midway between St. Moritz and Zermatt on the world-famous Glacier Express route through the Alps.
Kolasin 1450 in Montenegro is 3 hours via motorway from Tivat International airport and a mere 1hour 20 from Podgorica International airport which offer road, bus or train routes
2. Let it Snow
It may sound obvious, but it is critical to look at the snow record of the resort and pin point the resorts with high altitude and glacier skiing. Resorts with runs starting over 1800m are likely to be snow sure for most of the season. You should also check if your chosen resort has invested in snow making machines, this way you can be enjoying the slopes whilst others are waiting for that next snow fall – because let’s face it, changing climates make snow a little unpredictable these days!
3. Stay for Summer
Some ski resorts offer both winter and summer activities so prospects for all year round rental are surprisingly possible. Find out if there is much to do in summer, and if the area attracts many visitors. A 'four seasons' resort is a much more attractive proposition in every sense than one where the beds are 'cold' for most of the year.
The stunning 18-hole, par 72 championship golf course in Andermatt is seamlessly nestled into the mountain surroundings. The new Ski Arena Andermatt - Sedrun, which will offer over 120 kilometers of pistes when finished, will be the largest ski region in Central Switzerland and offers hiking and bike trails during the summer.
Our other “four seasons” destination, Montenegro also provides the best combination of all seasons. Skiing in the winter, hiking, canyoning and rafting during spring, sailing, yachting, water sport and tanning during summer & autumn.
4. Ski Lifts
Unless you’re lucky enough to have your own helicopter, proximity to the nearest ski lift is very important. Ski-in Ski-out property always comes at a premium but for many it is well worth the investment. Further away from lifts or the resort itself offer more for your money if you don’t mind a walk or even a short drive/bus journey to the lifts – but don’t forget, this does slightly reduce the prices you will be able to command for any rentals of the property when compared to a ski-in ski-out property.
5. Try Some Crystal Ball Investing
You should be on the look out for resorts where there is already infrastructure in place, but where further investment is planned. Lesser known towns and villages can offer access to larger ski areas and can be worth checking out and can emerge into trendy ski areas over time as the facilities develop. If a location meets all of the other criteria, and
6. Make Sure You’re Investing On Piste
Always take a look at the Piste Map of your chosen resort. The number of easy (green) verses medium (red) and difficult (black) runs differs by resort. Also look for mountain restaurants and scenic stop-off points. Many resorts today also offer picnic stops with tables and benches so it is possible to relax at the side of the mountains and enjoy lunch from your back-pack. The Piste Map will also give you all the information you need to know about the lifts and the number of cable cars, bubble lifts, chair lifts and drag lifts plus suggested tours taking you to the far reaches of skiable domain. Snowboarding parks are increasingly popular at top class resorts, providing slopes dedicated to boarders with special trails and kickers, ramps and jumps. Don’t forget to also check out the off-piste ski options which are increasingly popular with adventure seekers.
7. Turnkey Property Features
At the end of a busy day skiing, look for property with heated ski lockers for stowing equipment these are a big plus especially if it has been snowing. You also want to make sure that your property has a boot and equipment room to keep your main accommodation dry and snow free. After-ski extra facilities such as heated pools, jacuzzis and spas are increasingly a feature of upmarket developments and offer well deserved relaxation when you are ‘skied out’ for the day!
8. Not a Downhiller?
Not everyone visiting a ski resort is a downhill skier or a snowboarder so check out other activities available in the snow. Many resorts offer cross country skiing and other popular activities include skidoos, ice driving, parasailing, dog sledging, ice skating. Ski resorts also offer local cuisine and gastronomy so be sure to look up the best local restaurants and make sure you don’t miss out on the fondues, raclettes and other mountain fare.
9. Find that "Hygge" Style
Styles of property will vary in resorts but there is something about the charm of a mountain property whether traditional or modern. Large sloping roofs for holding the snow, steeped entrances for keeping above the latest snow fall plus a balcony for enjoying clean fresh area and if you are lucky a stunning view of the mountain with pine trees dripping with white. At the top end mountain chalets offer luxury private residences whilst 1, 2 and 3 bedroom apartments can offer comfortable accommodation and sleeping for more than the bedrooms suggest! Most ski property know how to make the best use of sofa beds and small corners for bunks meaning that even a tiny studio can miraculously sleep 4.
HOW TO BUY IN ONE OF 2017’S HOT SKI PROJECTS
Get involved now to enjoy the next ski season!
Andermatt, Swiss Alps
Switzerland is a difficult place for foreigners to own property. A complex range of criteria and Lex Kollar laws highly restrict purchase. Even if the Swiss Canton (region) does approve the purchase of a residential property, your property purchase is subjected to numerous restrictions, such as property investment limits and property size which can put a hurdle in your way. But all is not lost!
Foreigners looking to buy a property in Switzerland can take one of two routes to invest.
- Apply for Swiss residence permit first and then buy Swiss real estate. A Swiss residence permit can be obtained through negotiating “lump sum taxation” with a specific Swiss canton or if you establish a business in Switzerland, as a director of the company you qualify for residence permit.
or, the easier option
- Directly purchase a property in “Andermatt Swiss Alps Project“, which has been given a very rare and “special” exemption under Swiss law allowing foreigners and foreign entities to freely buy a Swiss property within without any restrictions or the holding of a residence permit and with the ability to sell at any time. Foreigners can also buy using a company structure which can be a more tax efficient method.
At MEPM Property we consider that this exciting exemption provides a truly unique turnkey opportunity to own a Swiss ski property and it is what makes Andermatt one of our key ski investment recommendations.
Buying a property in Montenegro is easier than buying in Switzerland! Any foreign citizens have the right to buy any property type in Montenegro and automatically get access to a 12 months residency visa. Capital gains and property taxes are also extremely low making this an ideal investment location.
If you are looking for a ski property to suit your needs, get in touch with our team for an initial consultation. In destinations where we already have property, we can also arrange property inspection experiences for you.
Not sure what ski property to choose? Get in touch with our team who can source a number of ski property investment opportunities to meet your criteria.