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FAQ - Purchasing a Property


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Overview incidental purchase costs

download PDF (german)


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When am I required to pay the agent a commission?

After the inspection, receipt of a brochure and the overview of additional costs with a subsequent legally binding purchase offer, except in cases of an exclusive brokerage agreement.


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How much is the commission?

The value of the commission is determined based on Paragraph 8 of the Austrian Maklergesetz (Agent Law), or if nothing has been agreed upon, based on fees typical for the area.
However, the value of commissions currently paid to agents is governed by the Real Estate Agent Ordinance from 1996. It stipulates in Paragraph 15 that agents can charge 4% of the value of a property for all properties with a value up to €36,336.42, or €1,453.46 for properties with a value between €36,336.49 and €48,448.51, and 3% of the value of the property for all properties worth more than €48,448.51.


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Who is responsible for the incidental purchase costs?

The incidental purchase costs are paid by the buyer if they stem from the transfer of the object of purchase agreed upon. The buyer is also responsible for the costs to clear a property of encumbrances and easements when no other agreements exist.


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How much are the additional costs for the buyer in total (in %)?

3.5% real estate purchase tax
1.1% fee for entering the purchase into the land register
1.5–2% cost of preparing the contract
3% agent’s commission
A fee totaling 1.2% is charged if a lien is required.
In addition to the fees for preparing the contract and the agent’s commission, 20% VAT is also charged; with regard to the fee for preparing the contract, all cash expenditures (production fees, archiving fees, fees for official documents, flat fees, etc.) are usually charged separately.


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What are the seller’s costs?

A 3% agent’s fee in addition to any fees resulting from the transfer of the property in the condition stipulated in the contract (for example, costs to free the property of encumbrances, surveying costs, etc).


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Who is responsible for preparing the purchase contract?

An attorney or notary public hired by the buyer.


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Who is responsible for the cost of the purchase contract?

Usually the buyer is responsible for these costs (but this term is negotiable).


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When is the purchase offer legally binding?

Once the seller signs the offer within the specified time frame. The agent is responsible for delivering the purchase offer to the seller within the specified time frame.


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When does the purchase price need to be paid?

This is negotiable.


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When does the commission need to be paid?

Once both parties have signed the purchase offer.


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How is the property to be cleared of all monetary encumbrances?

If the transaction is to be processed using an escrow agreement, both parties commission the attorney or notary public responsible for preparing the contract with the task of accepting the purchase price and clearing the property of encumbrances using money from the purchase price, insofar as the seller did not already do so on their own.


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Principal residence or vacation home?

A person’s principle residence is defined as the center of their vital interests. Vacation homes are only allowed to be owned in regions where doing so has been officially approved.


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What do I have to consider when purchasing a property as an EU resident?

As an EU resident you always have the right to purchase a property in Austria. Possible tax-related measures must be assessed in individual cases.
It should be noted that in Austria different regulations exist governing real estate transactions with foreigners, since each province has passed its own laws governing real estate transactions.


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What do I have to consider when purchasing a property as an EU resident?

As an EU resident you always have the right to purchase a property in Austria;
In individual cases you may need to assess which tax-related measures are applicable.



 
FAQ - Renting a Property

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Overview additional costs

download PDF (german)


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When am I required to pay the agent a commission?

After the first sending of an e-mail with a brochure and an overview of additional costs.
After the inspection, receipt of a brochure and the overview of additional costs with a subsequent legally binding rental offer.


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How much is the commission?

The commission for brokering open-ended lease and sub-lease agreements is governed by Paragraph 19 of the Austrian Real Estate Agent Ordinance.


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Who is responsible for the cost of the lease agreement?

The landlord (this is negotiable, however).


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What additional costs is the tenant responsible for?

The lease agreement is subject to a fee charged by the Austrian tax office, which currently totals 1% of 36 monthly rent payments based on a rental term of three years. The tenant is responsible for paying these fees and registering them with the tax office.


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How much is the rental deposit?

The deposit is normally equal to three gross monthly rental payments, and is to be paid either in cash or in the form of a bank guarantee. The deposit accrues interest at an interest rate for savings accounts with a one-month commitment. The deposit is returned to the tenant after vacating the rental property as long as the landlord has no outstanding claims against the tenant.


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When is the rental offer legally binding?

Upon countersigning by the landlord within the specified time frame.


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Who is responsible for preparing the lease agreement?

An attorney or notary public hired by the landlord. The real estate agent is not permitted to conclude lease agreements.


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Who can offer assistance with lease agreements?

Appropriate legal organizations as well as attorneys, notaries public, or a tenants’ rights association.


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When is an agent’s work finished?

An agent’s work is completed once the lease agreement has been signed by both parties and is legally binding. At this time, both parties are subject to the commission.


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When does the commission need to be paid?

Once both parties have signed the lease agreement.


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What do I need to know about maintenance costs?

Maintenance costs are all items covered by tenancy laws. These costs include property taxes, cable fees, garbage collection, as well as any expenses for maintaining the property incurred by the property management firm. The landlord is responsible for providing tenants with a copy of the invoice of maintenance costs.


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What should I bear in mind during hand over of the rental unit?

You should fill out a hand over certificate in which you document any visible defects. It is imperative that you read the water and electricity meters and record the reading.


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Where can I register for electricity and water?

Electricity and water or heat must be registered with the appropriate local provider. You will receive this information from the landlord.


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Where can I register my new place of residence?

With the magistrate or the appropriate local authorities.


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Does the rental unit need to be insured?

The landlord is required to insure the rental unit, however, it is recommended that the tenant takes out a household insurance policy.


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How are special requests agreed upon?

Keeping pets, using the yard, and other special requests are documented in writing in the lease agreement.


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How are damages to the rental unit recorded?

During hand over of the rental unit, the condition of the decor, wood floors, bathrooms, etc. is recorded in writing.


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Are changes to the rental unit allowed?

The landlord’s written consent is required before making any changes to the rental unit.