Purchasing a home
A foreigner can buy a house or a flat in the Czech Republic if he/she is a citizen of the EU or of the USA, has a permanent residence permit or was granted asylum.
It is possible to arrange a mortgage (if needed) directly with a bank, and the house purchase directly with the seller. Alternatively, a real estate agency or construction company (property developer) can do these jobs for you, which may be easier, but they do usually charge a commission of between 3 and 4 % of the real property price.
Before deciding on a suitable property, you should find out:
- Is the real estate agency or the property developer credible?
- Who are the neighbours?
- How is the neighbourhood?
- What are the plans for construction in the neighbourhood?
- What is the condition of the roof? Have the technical systems (pipes and electrical system) been replaced?
- How high are the monthly/yearly charges (heating, renewal fund, etc.)?
It is a good idea when purchasing a property:
- to obtain a statement from the Land Registry before signing any contract (this will show who is the legal owner of the property you wish to buy, whether there are any loans/debts owing on the property, its size and exact location).
- to check whether the property lies in a flood-prone area.
- to get a report on the state of the property.
- to transfer all money via a Notary ("Notář") or Lawyer ("Advokát") who is insured for making transfers of large sums, on the basis of a written agreement.
- to agree whether the seller or the purchaser (you) will pay the property transfer tax (N.B. since 2014 it is automatically the purchaser's responsibility unless specified otherwise in the sale contract).
- to check whether VAT is applicable (this applies especially to new builds and newly renovated properties and is usually 15%), and if so, whether it is included in the quoted price.
- to compare the price asked for the property with the average price in the area.
- to consult a lawyer on all contracts.