Purchase of Property
The geographical position of Greece provides the advantage to be a political, diplomatic and commercial center of South-Eastern Europe, as a member of the European Union and of the Schengen zone, while the unmatched natural beauty of the country every year attracts millions of tourists, making it one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations.
The dynamic combination of the geopolitical position and the natural beauty of the country placed the country at the center of investors’ attention. One of the key areas of investment, that is inextricably linked to the Greek culture, it is the real estate market, which is, indeed, in recent years tends to growth in attracting new investors from foreign countries.
The process of purchasing property in Greece, is closely intertwined with the traditions of the Greek family, that is significantly focused on living in its own home, is governed by the strict legislative framework, providing thus the formality of the process and, consequently, its absolute safety. While the process of purchasing real estate by foreigners - that is, citizens of countries outside the European Union - basically, the same procedures are applied.
Concretizing the above-mentioned legislative framework, one of the main strongholds is a tax system. It should be emphasized that among the Greek citizens and foreigners there is no difference in the taxation of real estate.
As for the safety of legislation, it is exactly through the observance of all the formalities of this process its indefectibility is ensured. First of all, the legal review is
carried out on each property to be sold: a thorough inspection of the property rights in the geographically competent real estate register, and, in particular, the property is examined both in terms of property rights and for any kind of encumbrances (mortgage, arrest, contestation).
There is also technical inspection conducted by the private engineer in the competent
urban planning department, and in some cases, there is considered a question of the possible existing encumbrance of the forest inspection and archaeological service. It is noteworthy that for the signing of sale and purchase contract must be provided a certificate of an engineer that attests the legalization of all the possible illegal building on the property. Finally, the seller is verified in the tax service about any debts: the presentation of the tax clearance certificate is one of the key documents for the sale and purchase transaction.
In addition, another parameter related to property rights, refers to the independence of the spouses. This means that each spouse acquires and transmits independently any property which is in his/her possession, without the consent of the other spouse.
The legislative framework in Greece has one peculiarity in the sale of real estate: the owner of the property is also the owner of the plot of land on which the building is constructed. It is provided by legislation that in case when the owners of the building decided to implement its demolition, they have the right, according to the proportion of co-ownership of each of them, to build a new building, potentially favorable to them in terms of the floor area of constructed property, which can be increased on the basis of the current rate of construction at the time of building.