How difficult is the property purchase process in the Austria?

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The Republic of Austria is a largely alpine and mountainous country marked by deep valleys, verdant meadows, and lush forests. It is divided into nine Bundesländer (federal provinces): Burgenland, Carinthia, Lower Austria, Upper Austria, Salzburg, Styria,Tyrol, Vorarlberg, and Vienna.

Austria has two distinct climate zones. Most of the country has a typical Central European climate with cold, snowy winters and warm, sunny summers. While the eastern parts of Austria, enjoy more moderate winters and hot, humid summers. It’s an excellent climate for wine-growing, hence the extensive vineyards of Burgenland.

The alpine provinces, particularly Salzburg, Tyrol, and Vorarlberg, best exhibit the majestic scenery that Austria is famous for worldwide. These provinces are also popular winter vacation areas, and draw hordes of tourists to their many high-class ski resorts.

There are no restrictions on foreigners buying properties in Austria.

Austria realestate

When a property has been selected, make a formal offer in writing via a real estate agent. Attached to the offer document is an itemized list (Kostenaufstellung) of related transaction costs such as legal fee, property transfer tax, registration duty, notary fee, and real estate agent’s fee.

When the seller accepts the offer, a purchase agreement or sale contract is drawn by an Austrian solicitor/notary. When the contract is signed, the buyer may be expected to pay 10% of the purchase price as deposit, which is put in a trustee or escrow account until the completion takes place. Upon completion your lawyer will register transfer detail at the local registry office and pay transfer and registration duties.

Property registration costs around 4.5% of the property value. It takes an average of 9 to 32 days to complete all the three procedures needed to register a property in Austria.


Footnotes to Transaction Costs Table


 The round trip transaction costs include all costs of buying and then re-selling a property – lawyers’ fees, notaries’ fees, registration fees, taxes, agents’ fees, etc.

 Legal Fees :
The contract is usually set up by a lawyer or a notary, at 1% to 3% of the purchase price (+ 20% VAT).

 Property Transfer Tax:
Property transfer tax is generally levied at a flat rate of 3.5% of the property value. The transfer tax is reduced to 2% for transfer between close relatives.

Value Added Tax (VAT)
Value Added Tax (VAT) is payable for newly-built properties.

Property owners can claim back the 20% VAT if they lease the property. However, the rental income will be liable to VAT in this case, plus a tourist tax of around €0.10 per person per night.

 Registration Duty:
Registration duty is payable to the Land Register.


 Notary Fee:
The signatures of the seller and buyer have to be authenticated on the contract. That can be done by notary or by court for a max of €120 per person (plus 20% VAT); the fee of the court may differ slightly to the notary´s.

Real Estate Agent´s Fee:

Real estate agent’s fee is set by law at 3% to 4% of the property’s purchase price or market value. The agent’s commission is payable by both the buyer and the seller.


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