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Buying a Property in Greece

Greek Property Market

Greece is a full member of the EU. Over the last 10 years demand for holiday and retirement property has increased dramatically.

Land prices have risen recently due to the lack of availability of building plots with wonderful views. There is also talk that the Greek Government will increase the size of plot required to obtain planning permission from 4,000 sq m to 6,000 sq m. There has never been better time to invest and buy property in Greece.

photo of mountains

Property Sales & Purchase

We offer a complete property service to both vendors and those wishing to buy.

We have a comprehensive portfolio of property for sale varying from building plots and land suitable for development, to ready-to-live-in houses, villas and apartments.

We pride our selves in working to fixed priced contracts with guaranteed completion dates.

Viewing Properties

We can help with car-hire, accommodation and an itinerary to make sure you view all the properties we think you should see.

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The trip needs to be viewed as a business trip, and you need some careful planning up front to make sure you make the best of your time.

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Make sure you see only what is of interest

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Be planned to avoid unnecessary journeys, and covering ground twice

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We work to set to the pace you dictate

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We like to be helpful and not aggressively sales based

We do all these things, and as an independent estate agents we don't push you towards one particular place. It's about us doing exactly what you want us to do, all part of the help we provide every step of the way.

Purchase Procedures

These are very easy, and unlike the UK, you make a firm commitment early into the process of buying so gazumping, long chains of buyers and sellers etc are not such a problem. It is advisable to be ready to put down a deposit when you make your viewing trip as properties are snapped up quickly.

Budget

The costs below are estimated on the purchase of a typical apartment / villa with 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, kitchen / living area with a purchase price of £50,000. (75,000 Euro).

Apartment / villa

£50,000

Greek Purchase

Tax 9-19% of purchase price (depending on the property)

Legal fees & Notary fees

2-3% of purchase price

The custom in Greece is to keep down the declared value of the property to reduce legal fees and property taxes. The one time purchase tax (which is the Greek equivalent of our stamp duty) is calculated at between 9% and 11% of the assessed property value for plots of land. For apartments and houses the charge is between 9 % and 19%. The Inland Revenue will base their assessment on special tables issued by the Greek Ministry of Finance. The tables help determine the value of the property according to its merits, i.e. location, nature, quality of construction etc. The assessed value will usually amount to around two thirds of the true purchase price. The Notary Public fee is between 2% and 3% of the assessed property value. Lawyers charge between 1.5% and 2% of the assessed value as recorded on the contract of sale.

The Deposit

A 10% deposit is usually required to secure your chosen property. A receipt will be supplied confirming that the vendor has been instructed to take the property off the market whilst your appointed lawyer completes the purchase transaction. Upon completion, the balance of the purchase price, property taxes and legal fees will be due.

photos of greek property and sea at sunset

The Lawyer

We recommend that a local Greek lawyer be appointed to act on your behalf. They are much cheaper, quicker and better acquainted with local laws and property planning regulations. They are also on the spot to carry out the necessary searches to reassure you of a clean title. Alternatively if you prefer to deal with a Greek lawyer based in the UK, there are several firms we can recommend.

All property transactions are executed before a Notary Public in the presence of the lawyers representing the contracting parties. Such representation is often effected by means of Power of Attorney, executed either before a Notary Public in Greece or before any Greek consular authority abroad. This means that the physical presence of the contracting parties is not required and can be represented by proxies.

Before any transaction takes place, the lawyer representing the purchaser carries out searches with the land registry. The Notary Public will not proceed with a contract concerning a property, which does not have a clean title. Your lawyer will then pay, on your behalf, the one time purchase tax, the local community tax and lodge the official property deeds with the land registry in your name. You are then the freehold owner of your property in perpetuity.

You might want to consider making a Greek will after the purchase - it is advisable.

Finances

Getting your finances planned before you start looking is essential. You need to know what the one-off and on-going costs are likely to be, and to be able to make an offer and provide a deposit when you make your viewing trip. Greek property really does go quickly, and you could miss your dream home if you have to return to the UK to get the finances organised before you can conclude a deal.

We advise strongly that you use a currency broker, which will save you a lot of money through obtaining good exchange rates, low charges and commission, as well as giving advice on the best way to manage the funds transfer. You can save hundreds of pounds on this aspect of the transaction by arranging in advance at a specified rate through a good broker

Recommended Currency Brokers - First Rate FX

Recommended Currency Brokers, Foreign Exchange & Global Payments www.worldfirst.com

Mortgage

If you require finance to purchase your Greek property it is best to arrange it before you make a viewing trip to Greece. If you are moving funds from the UK, we recommend you use a currency broker - you can save a lot of money if you get the best rates.

We can also offer you mortgage services in Greece. www.alphabank.gr

Conti Financial Services- mortgages abroad. Useful site worth a look to get a quote: www.conti-financial.com

Commercial Bank of Greece

London Branch Tel: - 020-7426 1400 Will arrange finance for Greek property purchase, subject to status

You will also find that a most major High Street Banks / Building Societies are now providing mortgages for property abroad.

Property Management / Maintenance

If a property is a second home, it can be a worry when left empty and the owners are away. We also offer a care-taking service, which is tailored to the property involved. We can regularly inspect, open and air the house, and organise any maintenance work that may need doing.

Letting

Whether it's to friends or on a financial basis, we can organise a welcoming service. This can include transport from the airport, and introducing the visitors to the house and gardens, and how everything works. This would include; of course, making sure everything is ready for the next set of guests. Laundry, cleaning and closing down your home would be done after you or your guests depart.

Insurance

Buildings and home contents-Fire-Burglary-Earthquake etc, Medical Plan, Life Insurance, Pension Plan, Personal Accident, etc. We have arrangements with well-established insurance businesses that offer excellent cover and good value for money. Contact us for details.

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For Further Information Telephone: 00 30 6936 982095 (English) 00 30 6945 312058 (Greek)
Email: info@halkidikihomes.co.uk

(c) copyright 2007-2008 Halkidki Homes Real Estate Ltd