Property checklist

Buying property at home is considered one of life’s most stressful events. Buying a property abroad can be even more so. Unless you do thorough research, your Crete property dream could soon turn into a costly nightmare.

We’ve listed below some points that you should check before agreeing to purchase your Crete property through an estate agent, real estate agency or property developer.

  • Registered Company Ensure the estate agent, real estate agency or property developer is registered and licensed and has an office rather than just a mobile telephone and a PO box address in the UK.
  • Renovation If buying a property that requires renovation ensure you are given a realistic breakdown of the full cost of renovation. Make sure this figure includes taxes and IKA Insurance.
  • EOT If you are planning to rent out your property you will need to acquire an EOT licence issued by the Greek National Tourist Organisation. This is a legal requirement if you intend to let your Crete property on a short-term basis to tourists and can cost in the region of €3,000. You should check if the property meets the requirements to acquire an EOT licence. If the property is part of a complex or an apartment, all other property owners need to agree too.
  • Sewerage Check whether your property is (or in the case of an off-plan property will be) connected to the main sewerage system or if it has a septic tank. If it has a shared septic tank, is it shared with other properties? Who will be responsible for emptying it? Who will pay for this? How often will it need emptying?
  • Maintenance Fees If the property includes a shared swimming pool and/or landscaped gardens check who will be responsible for cleaning and maintenance. Find out the probable costs and how these costs will be shared between all parties.
  • Capital Gains Bear in mind that new property sales bear a VAT rate of 19% and capital gains tax has been structured to make sure short-term investors have to pay a healthy sum to sell on a property quickly - the tax is inversely proportional to the amount of time the property has been owned (20% for less than five years reducing to zero if owned for more than 25 years.)
  • Legal Fees Buyers can expect to pay up to an additional 15% on the purchase price to cover all costs and fees. These costs and fees will include Registration, purchase tax, notary and legal fees, in total all averaging 12% - 15% of the total sale price.

Perhaps even more caution should be take if you are considering purchasing an off plan property.

Off Plan Property

  • Extras Are extra items such as air conditioning, central heating, solar panels, etc, included in the quoted price?
  • Completion Date Is there a guaranteed completion date? Is there a penalty clause if it is not met?
  • Outside Village Limits Establish the actual cost of water and electricity supply when buying land outside village limits. A plot without utilities needs thought as cost of connection varies (and can be high).
  • Building Permit When purchasing land which has no building permit in place, pay a local architect or engineer to check out planning permission problems or restrictions such as archaeological and forestation, legal access etc, and to make the permission a pre-condition of the finalising of a purchase. Building permits are costly; about €10,000 for a 250 sq metre home.
  • View If buying property off-plan check what other property developments are planned for all land around your plot. Your dream of a sea view may be shattered if other developments spring, up obscuring your view.
  • Building Licence Ensure all necessary payments including building licence, taxes and IKA Insurance are included in the quoted price.


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