Investments FAQ’s

All you need to know about investments and other questions that you may have.

 

Do I need a lawyer / attorney to buy property in Greece?

Yes. Both parties involved in a deal, Purchaser and Seller require legal assistance. It’s part of the principles of the sale in Greece for the past 25 years.

The lawyers take a full legal control of the acquired real estate, full search, confirm the existence of the right of ownership from the seller, identify the legal purity of the object real estate (encumbrances, lawsuits, arrests, and so on to buy property, in addition, that the lawyer acts as a guarantor that all taxes the property owner had paid the transfer of property.

Do I need a notary to buy property in Greece?

Yes. The notary is essentially an official state attorney-lawyer who handles and records all real estate transactions, including its preparation and review of all official documents for ownership to ensure the legality of the transfer of sale and property.

Do I need a surveyor to buy property in Greece?
Yes, especially when you are going to purchase a land plot, on which you intend to build. Surveyors ensure that all acts associated with the construction of the property are legal and authorised in terms of planning consent.
Do I need an accountant to buy property in Greece?
Yes. It is important to hire an accountant in the early stages of purchasing, as he/she will advise you on the changing tax laws, and will assist you in preparation of tax declaration.
Do I need a Greek bank account?

Yes. Opening a bank account is necessary. Firstly for all the payments of real estate you purchase, in addition this account will prove that funds used for property purchase have come into Greece from another country and therefore are not taxable in Greece.

Additionally, the utilities in Greece can be paid through a Greek bank account. Opening a bank account in Greece takes a few minutes, but you will need to provide proof of residence and your income. You also need your identity card or passport and AFM (tax number). No minimum balance is required to for the account to open.

Do I need a tax number in Greece (AFM)?
Yes. This tax number (AFM) is mandatory for all property buyers in Greece, including foreigners and Greek citizens alike. It is issued by the local tax authorities in Greece, free of charge.

All applicants must present their passport and sometimes their birth certificate. If you provide your authorized lawyer/attorney a full power of attorney, he/she can apply for an AFM on your behalf.

Do I need a residence permit for the purchase of property in Greece?
No, for the acquisition of real estate you don’t need a residence permit in Greece. However, if you want to buy a car, you will have to issue a residence permit.
Should I be present at the signing of the contract?
It’s usual to be present at the time of signing of the final purchase contract in a sale. If however you cannot attend, you will need to prepare a power of attorney for your lawyer/attorney, or any other person chosen by you, giving them the right to sign the contract on your behalf in your absence.

Notary contract of sale is usually prepared by a lawyer and appointed for specific dates and times, all payments and fees are paid in advance to a lawyer on your behalf, so that the deal itself does not take more than 2 hours.

The presence of an official interpreter staff is obligatory, since a very few buyers are fluent in the Greek language in which the contract is made.

Do I have to apply tax declaration in Greece when I became the owner of a property in Greece?
Yes. Following the acquisition of property in Greece and receiving the ownership deed you must declare this to the local tax authority, by filling out a form called E9.

This condition is mandatory for each owner in Greece, even for those who live abroad and have no income in Greece.
We recommend contacting a professional accountant, who will fill in and submit this form for you.

Do I have to pay annual property taxes?
Yes. Now its obligatory for all owners. Property tax is based on your tax declaration and that must be paid when paid either at once or in equal portions for the 5 months. Your accountant will give you further advice.
Do I have to pay capital gains tax if I decide to sell your property?
You may discuss your personal circumstances with your accountant.
Do I need to obtain a license if I want to rent their property (houses, villas, apartments)?
Yes. There are two legal ways for those who would like to rent Greek property. The first is a long-term lease (over three months) when the parties enter into a contract and the owner registers it with the tax office.

The second is a short-term (vacation) lease: when the property is registered in the Hellenic Tourism Organization (EOT) and rent through an agency on behalf of the owner.

Can I buy property in someone else's name?
Yes. You can purchase the property jointly with your spouse, a relative, and/or other co-buyers. You may buy property in the name of children or heirs, or a named company.
Can I get a mortgage in Greece? If so, what are the requirements?
Yes, you can get a mortgage in Greece. To apply for a mortgage you will need your passport and documents confirming your official declaration of taxable income for the last 2 years, pay stubs, bank statements and so on.
Can I work in Greece or to open a business?
All EU citizens are allowed to live and work in Greece. EU citizens do not have to obtain a residence permit, which also serves as a work permit. Now it is a relatively simple procedure for a very reasonable fee. Your accountant will help you establishing your company.
Can I take my car to Greece?
Yes, but for no longer than 180 days per year. After 6 months of life you have to take the car out of Greece.
What is the cadastral value of the property?
The concept of the cadastral value of the property is to estimate the monetary value of the property in accordance with the government rates for real estate in this area made by the Greek tax authorities.
As a rule, the cadastral value of the property is significantly lower than its purchase price. You must pay the agreed contract price.
What will happen to the reservation deposit for the property, if the lawyer discovers any legal problems with the property?
If the legal control of the property will not be held and the lawyer discovers any serious violations that cannot be resolved, you will receive your deposit back in full.
What happens if I change my mind to buy the selected property?
If you have entered into a private contract and paid a deposit for the property, it is considered to be an official intent to purchase. If you decide to withdraw from the purchase, you will lose your deposit. In case of cancellation of the purchase at a later stage, possibly other penalties prescribed in the private contract for both parties will apply.
What happens if the seller decides not to sell the property?
If you have entered into a private contract and paid a deposit for the property, it is considered to be an official intent to purchase. In this case, your deposit will be refunded in double. If you have already paid part of the money under the contract, then it will be returned plus the amount of penalty agreed in the private contract for both parties.
What type of property insurance is recommended?
Property insurance is not mandatory, but most Greeks insure their homes. We recommend you to do the same. The most common insurance claims include damage to home or property due to fire, earthquake, water damage, broken glass, as well as theft.

Some insurances include options for flood damage, liability insurance and damage caused to third parties (eg, neighbors), etc.

Where to buy in Greece?
Greece is a small but very diverse country, with more than 2,500 islands and the difficulty is deciding where to buy.

Property near the sea in a famous resort area will cost more, but will be much easier to sell on. On the mainland, the objects may be more expensive especially around the capital of Athens but offer higher returns on investment.

How do I transfer funds to purchase real estate?
You can open an account at a local bank, or make a direct transfer to the properly owner account due to private contract.
How long will it take to buy a property that I have chosen?
If all of the documents for the selected property are ready it is possible to complete the process within 3 to 4 weeks. Experience shows that it’s more likely to be 6 weeks for a simple case and up to 3-4 months for a more complex case.
How much I have to pay extra to cover the costs associated with buying property in Greece?
All expenses, including legal fees and taxes usually cost no more than 10-12% of the purchase price. This figure includes all costs associated with the purchase. These include fees charged by a lawyer, notary, courts, and registry of land, all taxes and and commissions.

Still Have Questions?

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