Property Buying Guide

For UK buyers and investors purchasing property in Greece

General tips for Greek Property buying

You should allow around 10-15% of the purchase price to cover purchase costs. This will include the transfer tax, any VAT payable, legal fees, notary fees (each 1-2% of the property’s Assessed Tax Value) and land registry fees (up to 0.5% of the Assessed Tax Value). Estate agents’ commission, usually shared by vendor and buyer, is 2-5% of the final sale price.

Annual Wealth Tax is charged on all properties over a specific value and is charged as a singular figure percentage between 1-2% against the properties declared value.

For any property purchased on or after January 1st 2006, capital gains tax will be payable when you resell. The tax reduces the longer you’ve owned a property – 20% for 0-5 years, 15% for 5-15 years and 5% for 15-25 years, based on the assessed tax value of the property.

Consider hiring an accountant as well as a local, English-speaking lawyer and possibly an architect. The accountant will be able to guide you through complicated tax returns and explain the taxation laws to you. Anyone who owns Greek property must file an annual tax return or face penalties.

To check your estate agent’s licence, contact the Greek National Association of Realtors or the Hellenic Federation of Real Estate Agents (OMASE).

Don’t be tempted to try to declare below the Assessed Tax Value of the property in order to lower your purchase costs – besides the impact this might have on the capital gains tax you have to pay on resale, this can lead to heavy fines.

To apply for a mortgage in Greece, you’ll need your passport and proof of income for the last two years. If this is how you decide to finance your purchase, be aware that you’ll need to be able to pay any closing costs before the bank releases any funds.

Go with your lawyer to carry out a final check of the property before completion. You should check for fixtures and fittings that were included in the price, and any structural damage that might have occurred since your last viewing. If there are any problems, you can ask for a reduction in the price or some other form of compensation. This may slightly delay the signing of the deed.

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