Real Estate – buying property in Greece
Regardless of whether you are looking to acquire a private or a commercial property in Greece, it is our firm’s priority is to provide you with the best possible service and to see you through every step of the process.
Together with the partners in our network (www.euconnex.com), we offer solutions, from choosing the right property and assessing it, to the notarization of the purchase contract. Above all, we ensure that you are well cared for by us and our partners, whatever may come up.
Additionally, when buying land in Greece you want to ensure that the purchase proceeds without any unexpected surprises by knowing a few basic facts:
During the notarization of any property purchase agreement in Greece, both the buyer and seller must be represented by legal counsel.
In Greece, the national land registry (cadastre) is currently in the development phase. Only certain areas are fully covered. In all other (uncovered) areas property is registered at the local land registry bureau.
Properties listed on the books of Greek land registry bureaus do not always generate public trust (i.e. the purchase of a non-entitled property), unlike, for example, in Germany, nor do they have the accuracy and completeness of a National Land Registry.
In border areas and for security reasons, a special permit may be required for the purchase of property.
Prior to completing a property purchase agreement it is essential to check the legal status of the property as it arises from the cadastre. According to Greek law, this inspection can be carried out only by a lawyer.
Our team will advise you and comprehensively explain – in Greek, German or English – all of the issues pertaining to your impending property purchase in Greece:
We will carefully examine the legal status of the property in local land registry bureaus to ensure its smooth acquisition.
We will assist you during the purchase negotiations and represent you in the drafting of the purchase agreement, which is signed in the presence of a certified notary.
We will check whether the property (in case of land) can be built upon.
We will undertake the collection of all required documents or permits, and make sure that everything is in order for the contract signing.
We will take care of the registration of the deed of sale at the land registry, which, according to Greek law, completes the transfer of ownership.
For projects that require a collaborative approach, we have formed a strong team of experts in cooperation with our German branch.
In the area of expansion of retail chains, we work with expansion consultant Konstantin Vollbach from Immoconsult (www.immoconsult.gr), as well as German architectural firm Alias (Dipl. Arch Edit Buchholz and graduate architect Aris Liakopoulos).
We can help you through the steps of:
Planning and managing your investment project in the field of commercial real estate (retail, agriculture and tourism infrastructure).
Producing an object-oriented market and location analysis, as well as feasibility studies.
Completing the liquidation of the real estate acquisition and registering it with the land register.
Receiving advice on the purchase and sale of shares in real estate companies.
Obtaining construction and operating permits.
Receiving advice on the drafting and implementation of construction contracts.
Preparing leases for anchor tenants and other commercial tenants of the projects.
The acquisition of a private or commercial property in Greece typically runs a different course than in other European countries. For example, the opening of an escrow bank account from which to pay for the purchase is entirely uncommon in Greece.
Therefore, the buyer of a property in Greece must produce proof that he/she can cover the entire cost of purchase, either in cash or by bank check before the contract can be notarized.
In our experience, this practice is seen as being highly irregular by foreign buyers, while it is also simply impractical in many ways. Most foreign buyers, for example, do not have an account with a Greek bank prior to the purchase of a property, which they can instruct from abroad to pay for the purchase. Meanwhile, the issuing of a cashier’s check by a foreign bank is usually not an alternative, because such checks are cashed by Greek banks with a significant delay, meaning that the seller has already ceded the property in the notarization process.
Escrow bank account for real estate acquisition
Our firm offers an alternative that accelerates the process and also provides greater legal certainty. After signing a deposit statement and a trust agreement, you can deposit the money for the purchase in a special escrow account. The money will be paid to the seller of the property only after the signing of the purchase agreement and the appropriate registration of the property with the land registry.
Power of attorney from AP & Generalis Law Firm
The further processing of the notarization can be completed via power of attorney, which is also provided by our firm.
In order to provide maximum transparency, we can draft the power of attorney in Greek, German or English, and you can sign in the presence of a notary in Greece or at the nearest Greek Consulate in your country of residence. This power of attorney allows us to minimize the numerous administrative procedures that lead up to the signing of the sales contract and the final registration of the property with the Greek cadastre.
Assessments by German- and English-speaking architects
Prior to certification, we advise our clients to commission an engineer to evaluate the structural and general construction quality of the property that is being considered for purchase. For our German- and English-speaking clients, we can recommend the German architectural firm Alias (Dipl. Arch Edit Buchholz and graduate architect Aris Liakopoulos) from our network. The relevant report can also be drafted in German upon demand.
For German-speaking clients, in addition to contractual arrangements in the German language, we offer the possibility of certification of the purchase contract with a German notary from our network. Our notary, Evi Rammou (www.notar.gr) can draft, at no additional cost, a copy of the purchase agreement in German.
Support following the purchase of real estate
For the first year after the purchase of your property, AP & Generalis will be by your side, supporting you. Without any additional fees, we will handle all of your business with local authorities in the first year after the acquisition of your property. Furthermore, our accountants will take care of your first tax declaration in Greece for the newly-acquired property. In addition, in this first year, we will be at your disposal, even for general questions regarding the management of your property, at no additional cost.