In recent years, housing in Belarus has been of interests to foreign citizens. There are several reasons for this concern. Firstly, Belarus has a fairly stable domestic political situation and the real estate market is not liable to sharp variations. Secondly, Belarus is famous for its nature and hospitable people.
Foreigners most often buy housing in Belarus for 3 main reasons. The first reason is a permanent relocation to Belarus (real estate purchase here will give you the right to obtain a permanent residence permit in Belarus). The second one is frequent business trips. The third one is the purchase of real estate for investment objective.
Today there are no restrictions on the purchase of real estate in Belarus. Any foreign citizen can buy any real estate in Belarus; it’s enough to have a valid passport. However, there are some nuances:
– when concluding a transaction, a foreign citizen shall have in his possession translated into Russian or Belarusian and notarized passport.
– if a foreign buyer does not speak any of our state languages, then according to the legislation a professional translator must be present at the transaction.
The peculiarity of concluding a sales contract with foreign citizens nowadays is only in the fact that they cannot acquire ownership of land. If a foreign citizen wants to buy a house, then the land on which this house is located must be privatized, i.e. the owner must waive the right of ownership, and the right to lease must be granted to the foreign citizen.
How to buy an apartment for a foreign citizen in the Republic of Belarus:
stages and steps of purchase and registration of the right of ownership
1. Determination of the budget for the purchase of an apartment and search for a suitable option to find an apartment.
Today in the Republic of Belarus there are several options to find an apartment to buy:
– apartment search on the Internet: now this option is one of the most popular. In the Republic of Belarus there are several large websites where sellers and buyers of real estate place their advertisements. These websites are presented below.
– apartment search through a real estate agency: foreign citizens often resort to this option. Since foreign citizens often not knowing the local market, are not guided neither in prices nor in locations, the involvement of a competent agent is the right decision.
The real estate agency is obliged to conclude a contract with you for the real estate services, as well as in advance to arrange the cost of services with you. As a rule, the cost of services will be determined from the percentage of the transaction.
It should be noted that every real estate agency in Belarus must have a license of the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Belarus to provide the real estate services. We advise you before entering into the contract to make sure that the real estate agency has the appropriate license.
2. When you have found a suitable property and you are sure that it suits you, you can discuss with the owner (his representative or agency) the final cost of the property. In the Republic of Belarus “to bargain” is a normal practice in transactions on purchase and sale of the real estate.
3. Inspection of the real property (encumbrances, liens, arrests).
In case you decide to make a deal to buy an apartment yourself, you need to make sure that the apartment you are buying is not burdened with any obligations and is not under arrest.
This can be done by yourself, through the real estate agent, or you can hire a lawyer to check the specified property.
You can do it yourself in the organization for the registration of real estate, sending a request there.
4. Transaction on purchase of the apartment
To make a transaction for the purchase of the apartment it must be the presence of the seller and buyer (or their representatives under power of attorney). If a buyer is a foreign citizen, it will be necessary to have a notarized translation of the passport, as well as the original passport.
If a foreign citizen does not know Russian or Belarusian, a certified translator must be present at the transaction.
Transactions on purchase and sale of the real estate can take place both at the notary, and in the organization performing registration of real estate.
As a rule, the transaction takes no more than 1 (one) hour.
At the end of the transaction, a new owner will receive a Certificate of Ownership for apartment.
5. The renewal of contracts for electricity, water, Internet, telephone.
6. Within a reasonable time after buying the apartment you will need to renew the contracts for electricity, water, Internet, telephone. All renewal will take no more than a few hours.
If we are talking about buying a house, the order of registration is practically unchanged. The only caveat is that foreign citizens cannot own land in the Republic of Belarus, so when buying a house the house itself becomes the property of the buyer, and the land goes into the lease and transferred to the new owner for rent for 99 years.
Purchase of commercial real estate in the Republic of Belarus
Foreign citizens have the right to buy and invest in commercial real estate in the Republic of Belarus. The order of registration of the transaction for the purchase of the non-residential real estate is absolutely similar to the order of purchase of the residential real estate, described above.
Real estate tax in the Republic of Belarus
If a foreign citizen owns more than 1 object of the real estate, he must pay a real estate tax once a year. To do this, we recommend you to contact the tax office at the place of residence of the foreign citizen: a tax inspector will calculate the amount of the tax you have to pay and explain to you how to pay this tax. In the future, you will receive invoices for the payment of the real estate tax annually by mail. If you own only 1 object of the real estate, there is no need to pay a tax.