Things to Consider before Buying Real Estate in Israel

So you are interested in those 7 % of land in Israel which is in private possession. Long term lease from the state is not a bad idea either, however, there is a major difference between a lease and private property. In addition, privately owned land is often the only option for foreign, non-Jewish citizens who would like to live in Israel although it is sometimes also possible to receive a long term lease from the state regardless of nationality and religion. On the other hand, even Jewish Israeli citizens prefer private property because the feeling of owning a piece of land is priceless.


If you would like to buy real estate in Israel, you need to choose the location. You most likely already know where you would like to create a home or spend your vacation but if you are not sure yet, take yourself some of time to consider your choice very well. On the other hand, you do not have too many options considering that most of the land that can be bought by anyone is located in urban centres and larger cities such as Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Haifa. So if you would like to live in the countryside, you better decide promptly if you come along a really nice property.

In addition to careful selection of the location, you should decide what kind of property suits you most. Think about how many bedrooms it should have, would you prefer furnished or non-furnished homes, are you prepared to renovate older buildings, etc. If you have kids, you should consider properties with schools nearby and pay attention to the distance of hospitals and healthcare facilities if you have a chronic medical condition for instance.

Then you should consider if you need a professional help in the search and purchase of real estate in Israel. You are legally not obliged to hire a real estate agent and you can deal directly with the real estate agent who is representing the seller on your own. You may feel tempted by this option because it enables you to avoid the real estate agent commission which is about 2% of the price of property plus Value Added Tax (VAT). On the other hand, buying real estate without an agent can be very stressful because an agent will not only help you find the best real estate but will also negotiate with the seller’s agent, help you in the process of the transfer of title, etc. Like elsewhere in the world, buying real estate in Israel without a real estate agent is often more expensive.

No matter if you decide to hire a real estate agent or not, you are highly recommended to take yourself the time and see the property you consider buying on your own. It may be true that a picture is worth a thousand words but you are highly recommended not to buy real estate before seeing it in person. If you do not live in Israel, ask someone to check it out for you or order a property inspection report, especially if you are buying a second-hand home.