Buy Affordable Property in Israel

Everyone I speak with is on a budget today. Understandable. Most buyers suffer sticker shock when they see the prices of properties in Israel. But, this is because they are focusing on the Center, places such as Yerushalayim, Ramat Beit Shemesh, Tel Aviv, Netanya, etc. But there is so much more to Eretz Yisrael! The north offers you opportunity to grow, to stretch your wings, to plant in the soil, to create your own business and fulfill your dreams. Plus, the prices are affordable. The real estate market is very strong in the north and housing prices are on the rise here too, but you can still buy a great home in Israel without busting the bank. Here is a great example.

This apartment is located in Tveria (Tiberias), the Holy city located on the shores of the Kineret (Sea of Galilee). The apartment is located in the upper neighborhood of the city, where you can benefit from cooler air, a real plus in the summer! The neighborhood is much desired, especially by young couples moving out from the Center. It is filled with synagogues, yeshivot, schools, health clinics, and shopping. The apartment building is only a few minutes walk from a major grocery store. Bus transportation is nearby, ready to whisk you to any destination in the city, or outside of Tveria. The building is set away from the main street, in a park-like setting, giving you a bit of space and quiet. There are awesome views of Har Tavor from the enclosed balcony and bedrooms. The apartment is modestly renovated, clean and in good condition. All you need to do is sign the contract, pay the seller and move in! Or, if you are not ready yet to live in Israel, then we can help you find a good tenant.

All of this for only 370,000 shekels! It doesn’t get much better than this.

Contact right away for more information.

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Israel’s First Rent to Buy?

346316If Finance Minister Kahlon has his way, Israel will have its first “lease to buy” project. Working with foreign, primarily US, developers, the plan calls for an eventual construction of 10,000 apartment units that would be rented, by lottery, to couples who would pay upfront 10% of the purchase cost, and after 18 years would be owners of the property. These are new apartments, 4 bedrooms, 120 sq meters, to be built more quickly than is normal here in Israel. Financing would come from foreign banks. Here are the details of the proposed plan. Stay turned for its progress.


Buy This Affordable Home in Tiberias, in the Galilee, Israel

Prices are on the rise all across Israel, and Tiberias is no exception. This beautiful city, one of the four Holy Cities of Israel, sitting on the shores of the gorgeous Kineret (Sea of Galilee) is expanding and modernizing and becoming a hub of residential, commercial and innovator activity. Olim, investors and Israelis from the Center are drawn to the easy lifestyle, stunning views and ease of transportation that the city has to offer. Everywhere one looks there are cranes dotting the skyline, signaling yet another new residential project. All of this increase in attention, population and desire means higher prices. So, when an apartment like this comes on the market, one would be very wise to grab it!

This four-room, 110 sq meter apartment is in excellent condition, ready to move in or rent out. Located in mid-Tveria, the apartment is surrounded by synagogues, schools, small grocery stores, and public transportation. A short walk away is the mid-Tveria commercial sector, where you will find restaurants, specialty shops, public library and the community theater. Health clinics are also nearby. The apartment has a master bedroom, a second full bath and half bath, large salon and kitchen and awesome views of the Kineret and mountains of the Golan. At 475,000 NIS, it is a steal! Hot on the market, it will not last long. Contact us today to arrange a viewing.

Homes for Sale in Sea of Galilee

Sea_of_galilee_dusk_from_tiberias_israelAre you looking to buy a home in the Sea of Galilee, known to us here as the Kineret? You can find no better place to buy real estate in Israel than in the beautiful northern communities, and chief among them is Tiberias, or Tveria.

Tiberias, the “city of water” was built in 17 BCE by King Herod and named in honor of the Roman Emperor. It was beautifully laid out and constructed along the shores of the Kineret, but for centuries Jews refused to live there due to the many graves upon which the city had been built. Around 135 CE Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai purified the city of the tumah associated with the graves. It became home to the Sanhendrin and a growing and thriving Jewish community of Tzaddikim, scholars, mystics, and farmers. In 1099, the Crusaders destroyed the city of Tiberias and erected a new city a little bit to the north, where you find it today.

Several centuries later Tiberias is a thriving and growing city, slowly becoming more cosmopolitan yet steadfastly retaining its distinct, primarily Moroccan charm. The waterfront is lined with kosher, gourmet restaurants, serving everything from all dairy to the tastiest meat. Boats and ferries leave the shores of the Sea of Galilee nightly, and throughout the night during the busy summer months. The new shopping mall is finally open, filled with shops and restaurants and all those looking for a climate-controlled place to exercise or relax. All around the skyline is filled with the cranes of new home construction and there is an excitement in the air as Tverians feel that their home is finally becoming a destination of choice not just for tourists but also for new residents and smart investors.

So, if you are looking to purchase your new home in the Sea of the Galilee, in northern Israel, and the Holy City of Tiberias, then you have come to the right place.

Home Prices in Tiberias on the Rise

tveria_03_A4Northern Israel is still the best place to buy property in Israel, and Tiberias (Tveria) is no exception. Like all of Israel, though, prices are on the rise. Private home or cottage properties can rarely be found for less than 1M shekels. New apartments begin around 860,000 nis and go to over 1M shekels. You can still find bargains. Here is the latest report on sales from the Tveria tax office. These are “sale” prices, not listing prices. Consider these levels when you are looking to buy property in Tveria, Israel.

  • avg price 3 rooms second hand: 434,000
  • avg price 3 rooms new: 683,000
  • avg price 4 rooms second hand: 666,000
  • avg price 4 rooms new: 927,000
  • avg price 5 rooms second hand: 823,000
  • avg price 5 rooms new: 1.12M

Buy Affordable Properties in Tiberias, Israel

The housing market in northern Israel is strong, evidenced by sales and rising prices. For new residents, and savvy investors, northern Israel is THE best place to plant your family or savings. However, as with all things, there is the time to catch the wave and the time to miss it. From just a few years ago, prices for some properties in Tiberias for instance, have doubled. So, if you are looking to make a purchase with a small budget, there is no better time than the present, and this present time will never come again. There is no evidence of any downturn or slowing of the market in this sector of the country, especially as Israel continues to face a housing shortage.

Here is a new listing in Tiberia, as an example of a good buy with limited resources. The apartment consists of 2 bedrooms, salon, dining area, balcony and full bathroom. It is completely upgraded with new, porcelain ceramic tile floor in kitchen, dining and salon, and wood flooring in the bedrooms. The stovetop is built into the counter, and when you buy the apartment you also receive all the furniture, appliances and furnishings!  The building is located directly across from beaches, and within an easy, enjoyable 5 minute stroll from the heart of the city and all the other amenities. The apartment is currently rented, until spring, so it is perfect for an investor or someone looking to secure a home now for aliyah later. The building has 24-hr security, parking, Shabbat elevators, minyan in the lobby, exercise room, and more. Only 390,000 shekels, or, at today’s exchange rate, just a little more than $100,000 USD.

Stay in touch with our blog and contact us for more information on other great saving opportunities.

How to Buy Property in Israel

Here is a great article from First Israel Mortgage to help you with all your questions regarding your home purchase. Be sure to check out our “Hot Properties” pages for the latest listings in northern Israel.

How much will I qualify for when applying for a mortgage?

Israeli banks qualify borrowers according to their earnings. The debt to income ratio cannot exceed 40%. This means that a household that is earning 20,000 NIS per month net cannot have monthly mortgage payments in excess of 8,000 NIS per month. In certain instances total assets and liabilities can play a deciding role as well. For these reasons it is advisable to apply for a pre-approval prior to signing a purchase contract for a property in Israel.

Are there fixed rates in Israel?

Yes. Fixed rates are available in both linked to inflation and not linked to inflation products. Prepayment penalties can be a factor when taking a fixed mortgage. It is best to discuss this option with a qualified mortgage professional to understand the benefits and risks involved.

How much financing will the bank provide me?

Israeli citizens are eligible to borrow up to 75% of the value of the property, if it is their first home. Investment properties for Israeli citizens are limited to 50%. Non-Israeli citizens are generally limited to 50% however 65% is possible.

Is my mortgage tax deductible?

For Israeli citizens filing taxes in Israel, mortgage interest is not yet tax deductible. However, United States citizens may deduct mortgage interest paid on their home in Israel from their U.S tax returns, provided they itemize the deductions on Schedule A.

 How long does it take to obtain an “ishur ikroni” (pre-approval)?

From the time ones documentation is received, pre-approvals can be obtained in a matter of days, often times even within 24 hours.

 How long does the mortgage process take?

From the time your documentation is received, the process can take between 2 to 6 weeks to close your mortgage, depending on the complexity of the situation.

 Will taking a mortgage in Israel affect my credit in the United States?

No. Mortgages and other credit extended in Israel are not reported to the bureaus.

 Can I go into an Israeli bank branch in the U.S. to submit paperwork for my mortgage in Israel?

Typically, no. Israeli bank branches in the U.S. are often separate corporations from the ones in Israel and generally do not correspond with each other very smoothly.

Can I refinance a mortgage taken in Israel?

Yes. Refinancing in Israel entails low fees and no additional taxes. It is important to note however that there are pre-payment penalties on certain types of loans that must be considered.

Can I pay an additional amount every month to shorten the term of my loan?

Banks in Israel sometimes charge a pre-payment penalty and many do not accept payments of less than 10%  of the amount of money owed. Additionally, the payment reduces monthly payments, but leaves the term the same. For this reason, it is advisable to initially structure the loan to meet your needs.

English – Hebrew Useful Terminology


Mortgage Mashkanta משכנתא
Apartment Dira דירה
Property Neches נכס
Area Ezor איזור
Neighborhood Sh’chuna שכונה
House Bayit בית
Loan Halva’a הלוואה
Bank Bank בנק
Approval Ishur Ikroni אישור עיקרוני
Appraisal Shama’ut שמאות
Payment track Maslool מסלול
Purchase tax Mas rechisha מס רכישה
Interest Ribit ריבית
Cash out loan Halva’a LeKol Matara הלוואה לכל מטרה