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Austria: purchase of real estate

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Here you can apply for a residence permit and buy Austrian real estate that will not drop in value in the next 10 years. Today we are talking about the nuances of buying and housing.

Buying real estate and residence permit in Austria

It is impossible to obtain a residence permit when buying real estate here- this is not provided for by law. Such offers are valid in Spain, Portugal, Greece. In Austria, the procedure is just the opposite: if you are not a citizen of the European Union, then you first apply for a residence permit here and then buy Austrian real estate.

Moreover, you can buy only one single home for your own residence, you cannot buy commercial real estate or a second apartment/house.

The Austrian authorities have resolved both of these issues with one program that allows financially independent persons to apply for a residence permit, who undertake to reside for more than 183 days a year. They automatically become tax residents here and therefore get the right to buy real estate in Austria.

Non-residents in order to buy an apartment in this country must obtain special permission from the authorities. To do this, it is necessary to comply with a number of conditions that are regulated by local laws, for example, to permanently reside on this land before buying real estate for at least 3 years.

There is an important nuance – before applying for a residence permit, you can buy real estate in Austria, but only with the permission of the authorities. Without it, you can buy a house or apartment only after obtaining a status. However, for its registration at the initial stage, you must have Austrian registration. To do this, you need to rent a property here and register at a new address.

Property values in Austria: Vienna

According to experts, real estate in the Austrian capital has increased in value by 80% over the past 10 years! The growth continues annually: in 2020, for example, the cost of housing in some areas increased by 23%. A slowdown is not expected, therefore Vienna is in maximum demand among those who want to invest in buying an apartment or house – you can not only live in the most comfortable city on Earth but also profitably sell local real estate in the future.

The highest price is in the historical center – Inner City. The average cost per square meter here is 13 thousand Euros, and the cost of full-fledged housing reaches tens of millions of Euros. Most often, transactions are concluded with real estate for 1-2 million Euros.

This price is about 25-40% higher than in other areas of Vienna. Neubau, Josefstadt, and Alsergrund were the closest to the record holder in value – the average price per square meter here is more than 7 thousand euros. The closest to the center area Viden is located in the price segment from 6 to 7 thousand euros per square meter.

It is accompanied by the third district – Landstrasse. Above 5 thousand euros is a square meter in the districts of Margareten, Leopoldstadt, Mariahilf, Hitzing. In the remaining areas, the price varies between 3-5 thousand Euros. 

white concrete houses near mountain

Real estate in Austria: regions

Not everyone succeeds in settling in the capital since official status in Austria is issued according to quotas. They are distributed by region and you can buy housing only where they were received. In addition, we recommend that you do not move in the first year after obtaining a residence permit and renew it in the region where the status was issued. In the event of a move, an extension may be refused.

Vorarlberg is the most remote area from Vienna. At the same time, the average price per square meter in it is the closest to the capital price – 3980 Euros. It is influenced by the popular ski resort Bludenz and the high purchasing power of local residents.

Salzburg and Tyrol have gone not far in terms of the average cost per square meter – 3900 Euros and 3890 Euros, respectively. The range of prices is quite large here. In Tyrol, it is from 2.5 to 13 thousand Euros per square meter, and in Salzburg from 2.8 to 7.5 thousand Euros. This can be explained by the fact that Salzburg, like Vorarlberg, is considered an economically favorable area. In Tyrol, there are several ski resorts with highly demanded luxury real estate.

Lower Austria, Upper Austria, Styria, and Carinthia are much cheaper – the average cost per square meter here varies from 1.5 to 4 thousand Euros. Most of the offers are at a price of 2-3 thousand Euros. And this is despite the fact that, for example, in Lower Austria, there is the famous resort of Baden, and each of the regions is distinguished by no less beautiful landscapes and excellent ecology. The most accessible region of Austria is Burgenland.

The purchase of old mansions and castles is closely monitored by local authorities. Prices for them start at 2 million Euros. The upper threshold is around 15-30 million Euros. If we talk about the “average” options, that in Salzburg you can buy a 12th-century mansion for 3.2 million Euros. The price includes one thousand sq. meters of the area of the house itself and 20 thousand square meters of land.

Purchase procedure

  • Step 1.

Inspection of real estate objects is accompanied by the signing of separate agreements, which indicate the address of the object, its full characteristics, and price, date of viewing, your contact information. 

  • Step 2.

Reservation of the object for you and the bargaining is carried out only in writing. You can send the owner an official offer of your price. You must also answer in writing with consent or refusal. All correspondence is kept. 

  • Step 3.

After reaching an agreement with the seller, you transfer the entire amount of the cost of the object to the escrow account of the attorney or notary who draws up the transaction. They will be transferred to the seller only after the approval of the transaction by the local authorities and changes in the land registry records. 

  • Step 4. 

You then pay the transfer tax, after which you will be issued a certificate authorizing the registration of the transaction at the local Land Court. 

  • Step 5.

 In the presence of a notary, you sign the purchase and sale agreement. It is then registered with the IRS and the court issues a certified copy of the page that lists your registration in the Cadastre as the new owner. Usually the whole process takes 3-6 months (as in any European country).

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