Below you’ll find answers to the questions we get asked the most about buying real estate in Greece.
You’ve worked hard for a lifetime (and continue to do so), and now you get to enjoy the fruits of your labors. And what better place to go than the “Land of the Gods,” Greece, with its many islands, lovely landscapes, breathtaking beaches, and mountains? Greece presents a one-of-a-kind investment opportunity, as the country’s real estate prices have dropped by 40% as a result of the economic crisis. It also has a wide range of properties that can fulfill any investor’s desire.
Find out more about the benefits when investing in Vacation Investment properties in Greece here:
No, because the registration system that has been implemented, is making property acquisition a quick and painless process that can be accomplished in a matter of days. You are ready to start after deciding on the property of your preference and verifying, with the help of an attorney, that the property is free of charges.
Following are the actions to take once you’ve decided on the property you want to buy:
1. Choose a lawyer
The lawyer will assist you in completing the transaction without difficulty and will represent you as necessary. He will also conduct Mortgage Registry research on the property.
2. Choose a notary
This option is required since all property transfers must be completed in the presence of a notary. The notary is a public servant who does not represent either the buyer or the seller. Contracts are read, understood, and signed in his presence. After that, the notary writes the draft agreement and is in charge of certifying and registering the transaction in the public records so that the buyer can acquire a deed of the property.
3. Issue Tax Identification Number (TIN)
To complete the process of purchasing the property, the buyer must obtain a tax number if he or she does not already have one.
4. Payment of transfer tax
Before signing the final contract, the buyer must pay the transfer tax to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). A lawyer would be helpful in this procedure.
5. Signing of contract and transfer at the Mortgage Registry
Both parties sign the contract in front of a notary, who will then transcribe it at the Mortgage Registry in the region where the property is located, which will keep a copy of the contract.
Note that only the original Greek contract is signed, which is kept in the notary’s archives. If the buyer so desires, he or she can employ an interpreter to translate the contract word for word. Finally, the interpreter swears that he got the correct translation and signs beneath the buyer. The buyer then has the right to receive a copy of the contract and, at his or her own expense, request a translation from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Translation Services or from a lawyer who is fluent in the language.
Non-European citizens who seek to buy real estate in border areas like the eastern Aegean, the Dodecanese, Thrace, and other parts of Northern Greece are subject to restrictions.
The lifting of these restrictions is accomplished by the Ministry of National Defence issuing a license in response to a request made to the appropriate committee of the Decentralized Administration in that region.
Documentation required to lift the ban:
– The property’s registration data in the Land Registry, as well as a statement of planned use
– A photocopy of a valid passport
– A recent Criminal Records certificate from the buyer’s country’s competent Ministry
– Power of attorney, which allows a lawyer to sign the application in the buyer’s name and on his or her behalf (if the buyer wishes, for his convenience)
All documents should be validated and translated into Greek by an official translator.
All non-European citizens are eligible to apply for a Golden Visa, as long as the main applicant is over 18 years old and the total investment is no less than 250,000 euros.
Children under 21 years of age, parents, spouse or partner with a cohabitation agreement (concluded in Greece) and in-laws of the main investor can benefit from the same investment of 250,000 euros and above and issue a permanent European residence permit too.
Find out more about Greek Golden Visa Residency Programme: Golden Visa Guide
This can happen with a regular bank transfer from your account to a Greek account. Our advice to a buyer is to have any funds deposited for the acquisition of a property formally documented so that they can be repatriated in the event of a resale.
This can be done by providing a copy of your passport, residence and work addresses, phone number, and administrative authorities’ certificate of residence to the bank. Except for the data and documents specified above, the presence of one of the interested parties is required when opening a standard bank account.
Insurance companies protect the property. Theft, fire, earthquake, storm, and other potential losses are covered by insurance plans. Property insurance is not mandatory by law, but it is required by financial institutions to mortgage the property.
In Greece, property ownership is ensured through the Land Registry, which is run by the government. All deeds are stored there, as well as all encumbrances on the property. Properties are archived based on the names of their owners, and lawyers have the right to see each person’s or company’s property. This is where notary deed research is done to see whether there are any claims or encumbrances on the property.
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