Real Estate updates

Austria

Contributed by Graf & Pitkowitz Rechtsanwälte GmbH
Supreme Court: no change of control despite departure of majority shareholder
  • Austria
  • March 09 2018

The Supreme Court recently considered whether a landlord can increase the rent if the majority shareholder of a partnership dies and his or her shares are distributed equally among the remaining partners, none of whom holds a majority in the partnership. In the decision, the Supreme Court offered an insight into how to assess the change of control in a company that is not a corporation.

Parliament stomps on stamp duty for residential leases
  • Austria
  • November 24 2017

In the run up to the recent snap elections, Parliament passed a bill exempting rent agreements for residential leases from stamp duty. The stamp duty on non-residential leases – in particular, commercial and retail leases – remains unchanged. However, these leases are being re-evaluated due to recent case law from the tax authorities.

Another brick in the wall: Constitutional Court reviews statutory rent regulations
  • Austria
  • August 18 2017

In 2015 Austria introduced an act which allows individuals, under certain conditions, to challenge laws before the Constitutional Court as unconstitutional. This gave hope to many landlords, which saw this as a tool to challenge the existing rent control regulations. The Constitutional Court recently handed down two new decisions on the same matter with surprising results.

Act on Equal Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities creates stumbling blocks for landlords
  • Austria
  • February 03 2017

The Act on Equal Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities recently entered into full force. The act prohibits, among other things, constructional barriers which prevent or impede disabled individuals from entering a building without help. While the act primarily addresses persons offering goods or services in such buildings, it also has implications for persons publicly offering real estate. In addition, the act has a significant impact on existing and new lease agreements.

Two or more units? Supreme Court clarifies exception to Rent Act
  • Austria
  • August 19 2016

While the Rent Act applies to both residential and commercial leases, there are some exceptions that give landlords greater flexibility with regard to their lease agreements. In particular, the act does not apply to buildings which house no more than two units. The Supreme Court recently considered whether a storage room and a separate building contained on the same property should be taken into account when applying this two-unit rule.


Chile

Recognition of new in rem right affecting land use
  • Chile
  • July 29 2016

The recently passed Law 20,930 recognises a new in rem right of conservation that could affect land use. Once established, a conservation right will be transferable and transmissible and cannot be separated from the land for which it has been created. The right will be indefinite, unless the parties agree otherwise when it is established.


Cyprus

Pitfalls to avoid when buying property in Cyprus
  • Cyprus
  • February 16 2018

Purchasing property in Cyprus can involve a number of pitfalls. Potential purchasers are advised to exercise extreme caution when buying property, especially if the title deed is not readily available, which is a common scenario when purchasing new property in Cyprus. Above all, it is paramount to obtain independent legal advice from a competent lawyer. A good lawyer should ensure that purchasers are protected from these potential problems.

Immovable property tax rates for 2016
  • Cyprus
  • August 19 2016

Immovable property tax is payable annually and calculated by reference to the market value as at January 1 1980 of immovable property owned by the taxpayer at the beginning of the calendar year. For 2016 liability will continue to be calculated by reference to 1980 values, but immovable property tax will be abolished with effect from the beginning of 2017.


Denmark

New legislative package on planning agreed
  • Denmark
  • June 24 2016

The government recently concluded a new legislative package on planning. The agreement includes development opportunities in coastal areas and development opportunities in rural areas. The rules on planning in coastal areas address natural protection concerns and aim to keep the Danish coastline free from building development. However, the agreement has been criticised for its failure to relax Denmark's rigid planning rules for retail outlets.


Georgia

Constitutional Court sets out new standard for purchase of real estate in Georgia
  • Georgia
  • February 09 2018

The Constitutional Court recently considered issues raised in the decision of a lower court in which the legal presumption of accuracy and completeness of entries in the Public Register in relation to real estate was declared in part unconstitutional. The decision may have a significant, adverse impact on the real estate market in Georgia and will be relevant to any real estate transaction, including taking mortgage security.