Attorneys in Greece – Lawyers in Athens & Thessaloniki

Greek real estate law – What you need to know about property law and buying property in Greece

Private and commercial property in Greece – an overview of Greek property law.

KPAG Kosmidis & Partners is your local expert for Greek property law. We offer:

  • • a long-term partnership for international businesses in Greece.
  • • comprehensive consulting services on all matters concerning Greek real estate law.
  • • a strong legal basis for purchasing property in Greece.

Find all the information you need for your purchase and place your property on a safe legal foundation – KPAG Kosmidis & Partner will support you throughout the whole process of buying property in Greece as foreigners.

Contact us and learn more about how our law firm in Athens can support you when buying a house in Greece. From Chalkidiki to the greek islands of Kreta, Rhodos or Mykonos: We are your partner in all of Greece. 

Property law in Greece – the legal basis for buying property in Greece as foreigners

If you are planning on buying a house in Greece or purchase any other form of property, you should be familiar with the fundamentals of property law in Greece.

The purchase of Greek property is governed by the Astikos Kodikas (Greek Civil Code), which is comparable to the German Civil Code (BGB). A notarized contract of sale and entry in the Ipothikofilakio (Land Charges Register) or Ktimatologio (Land Register) is required for the purchase.

As in German law, in Greek law the accession of title to a property is only complete upon entry in the Greek Land Register.

Greek real estate law: the legal differences are hidden in the details

In addition to the contract of sales’ special regulations, the sale is entered in the Greek Land Register. The Land Registry (Greek: Ipothikofilakio or Ktimatologio) has jurisdiction over specific municipalities.

Unlike the German Land Register, entries were previously name-based and not property-based. The law introducing the Ktimatologio changed the previous name-based registers to a property-based Land Registry system. However, this conversion has not yet taken place all throughout Greece. This means that in some regions, the Land Registers are to a certain extent still being kept according to person (Ipothikofilakio).

To verify the ownership status of a particular property, an entry is verified in terms of the name of the respective vendor and not in terms of ownership status on the basis of entries under the plot numbers. Because of this peculiarity, Land Register searches performed by a lawyer are indispensable for the process of safely buying a house in Greece.

KPAG Kosmidis & Partners will help you with all problems that might arise in this regard, such as verifying ownership status.

The following section provides an overview comprising the most important aspects of purchasing property according to Greek law.

Buying property in Greece as foreigners – important aspects of Greek real estate law 

  • The contract of sale
    Greek property transactions are put into effect by concluding a notarized, precisely worded contract of sale. The object of purchase is described accurately, the sale price and when it is due is stated, rescission rights and contractual penalties in the event of late payment and/or rescission of the contract of sale are stipulated, as is contract implementation to arrive at transfer of title in the Land Register.
  • Land Register in Greece
    As in German law, according to the Greek Civil Code a change of title is effected upon registration with the Land Registry that has jurisdiction for the real estate. Payment of the sale price or the residual sale price takes place at the same time as the notary’s record is drawn up, and is established in the notarized record.
    Payment of land transfer tax is a prerequisite for transfer of title, which is usually carried out by lawyers.
  • Register of titles in Greece
    The Land Registry (Greek: Ipothikofilakio or Ktimatologio) has jurisdiction for specific municipalities. Greek Land Registers have been – and to a certain extent still are – kept in reference to person (Ipothikofilakio) rather than plot. When searching the Land Register, an entry is verified in terms of the potential owner’s name, whether and when he/she became the owner and by virtue of which legal deed, whether encumbrances, easements or legal disputes, have been registered, etc. It has been decided to modernize Greek Land Register practice to alleviate the difficulties arising from verifying ownership status in this way. This restructuring in Greece has been summed up under the term “Ktimatologio”.
  • Ktimatologio / Land Register in Greece
    The Greek Land Register operated according to plots and not owners, public faith in what is entered under the plot etc., has been under development for some time. At the moment it is already being enacted in numerous Greek regions.
    The Greek Land Register/Ktimatologio has so far been implemented in two stages.

Mandatory representation by lawyers for property sale contracts in Greece – buying a house in Greece with an expert at your side

Representation by lawyers for a property sale contract is not mandatory by law in Greece; nevertheless, buyers of real estate are practically always represented by a lawyer, especially when buying property in Greece as foreigners. KPAG Kosmidis & Partners are specialized in Greek real estate law and have supported private clients and businesses from all over the world since 1992.

As your lawyers in Greece we will:

  • • carry out the Land Register searches
  • • draw up the contract and also sign the contract of sale
  • • ensure the buyer’s rights are adequately secured during the transaction

Get in touch with an experienced Greek real estate lawyer in Athens or Thessaloniki and learn more about our services.