River Villas – average $1.6 million USD

Plateau Villas – average $2.1 million USD

The Integrated Resort Scheme (IRS)
Mauritius has recently opened up its real-estate market to foreigners through the Integrated Resorts Scheme (IRS) to allow overseas buyers to acquire a piece of heaven.

The Integrated Resort Scheme is aimed at the high-end international property market. These luxurious developments on sprawling estates with a minimum price tag of $500,000 USD are meant to attract high-net worth individuals and investors to Mauritius. The villas are completed with leisure facilities and amenities on hand to suit every taste, from golf villas to beach resorts.

The IRS market is booming and offers developers an extensive business opportunity while providing a rewarding occasion to the discerning investor.

For the international buyer there is the additional perk of becoming a Mauritian Resident upon purchase of an IRS property.

Key Features of IRS
• $500,000 USD minimum price per property
• Development must take place on a minimum of 10 hectares of land
• High-end luxury properties
• High class leisure and recreational facilities, including golf and spa
• Mauritian Residency acquired upon IRS purchase

Acquisition of Property by Foreigners
Both schemes allow foreigners to purchase property either in their own names or through an entity. However, whether your real estate is used for shelter or investment, the important consideration is to make use of proper asset protecting ownership structures. Because real property has become increasingly more valuable, the question of how parties take ownership of their property has gained greater importance. The form of ownership taken – the vesting of title – will determine who may sign various documents involving the property and future rights of the parties to the transaction. These rights involve such matters as property taxes, income taxes, inheritance and gift taxes, transferability of title and exposure to creditor’s claims. Also, how title is vested can have significant probate implications in the event of death.

Structuring your ownership through a company, as opposed to sole ownership, has an obvious appeal to foreigners because, amongst others, it allows:

• Isolation from Personal Assets
By putting the ownership of real estate in a separate limited liability entity, and by maintaining that entity’s separate existence, you may be able to shelter all of your personal assets from claims originating from the real estate, especially when the real estate will be used as an investment.

• Tax Planning
Your home country may still levy inheritance taxes on the worldwide assets of their citizens. Inheritance taxes on property and other assets are triggered by the death of a living owner. If assets can be arranged so that they are not owned by an individual, this form of taxation can be legitimately avoided.

• Succession Planning
Companies can hold real estate and other assets indefinitely. Companies don’t die. Many of the world’s wealthy people own luxury property in exclusive locations through companies, traditionally set-up in offshore locations. When they die, the company remains the owner of these buildings.

• Other Practical issues
As it is unlikely that you will be residing in Mauritius throughout the year, the more so when the property has been acquired for investment purposes, it may be problematic for you to personally handle the acquisition process, applications for residency under the relevant schemes deal with the preparation and filing of tax returns in Mauritius and ensure timely compliance with regulatory obligations amongst others. Similarly, receipt of official correspondences such as the service of official or legal notices to you may pose a problem should the property be held in your personal name. Universal Currency Converter ®
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