Introduction

The housing market in Sri Lanka

The real estate market in Sri Lanka has developed greatly in recent years, and is experiencing a rise in prices. As it is expensive to own a property in Sri Lanka as an expat (due to high taxation on foreigners), renting a property is a good option to take advantage of the simple Sri Lankan renting system.

The island of Sri Lanka is well known for its tourism, but is also a very appealing as an expatriate destination. When looking to rent accommodation in Sri Lanka, it is very easy to find short-term lets (holiday rentals). This is especially in tourist hotspots, given that the main inflow of people was tourism related (855 975 people in 2011).  This can create difficulties for an expat looking to move to Sri Lanka, as most visible offers are for short stays.

It is, however, possible to find several websites which specialize in real estate in Sri Lanka. These offer help and advice about a move to Sri Lanka, as well as a wide range of housing and rental possibilities, including long-term stays and listings in English. Be aware that prices are normally shown in Sri Lankan Rupees ( 1 Sri Lankan rupee = $0.0077 USD = 0.006 euros), and are not per square metre (m²) but per “perch.” This is the standard land unit in Sri Lanka, and is equivalent to 25 square metres.

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