In order to buy real estate in Belgium (, you obviously need a Belgian notarized deed. The documents necessary for buying real estate are the following:

  1. Real estate property description. This is called ‘fiche d’inventaire’. It can be obtained at the real estate agent’s office or directly from the notary’s office. It is free of charge;
  2. A building permit if necessary;
  3. A signed agreement of sale, on which you must choose between entre-sol and demeuble (see below);
  4.  An official land registry extract containing the full history of property transactions on that property; this document will also state what kind of ownership rights you have on that property. It usually takes about 4 to 6 weeks to obtain it after having bought a property. Before you sign a purchase agreement, the notary verifies that this land registry extract is complete and up to date;
  5. Notarial deed of assignment, i.e., an original document signed by you as buyer and the seller(s) transferring ownership rights from the latter to you for all property you have bought or inherited under a will during your life time. This deed can be prepared in advance by your notary – it is free – and then given to your real estate agent who needs it for contracting with sellers/buyers. It can also be done on the spot at a fixed price of about € 80 per property at notary’s office;
  6. A declaration from your national revenue agency (FOD Financiën) stating that you don’t have any property in Belgium and therefore no Belgian tax will be due as a consequence of this new purchase.

It is estimated that it will take another 4 to 8 weeks until the notary produces his deed which becomes effective after 10 working days for payment of all necessary taxes, registration fees etc. at land registry office. The same closing date applies to the signing of the assignment deed by both parties involved.

Once you are registered at land registers office, congratulations! You are now legally the owner of your real estate property. Now you can choose between entre-sol or demeuble . If you chosere-sol , then chances are that no other flat will be built above your living room (except for stairs and the like, of course), because you are not allowed to build upwards. If you chose demeuble , then it means that there might be another apartment(s) above yours.

When buying real estate properties in Flanders region, the Transfer Tax on Real Estate Sales is usually 2% on the purchase price. In Brussels, it’s 3%. The Transfer Tax is calculated from the purchase price of your property minus any costs related to buying real estate (such as notary fees, registration fees etc.).

House Property Tax (Onroerende Voorheffing) is a yearly tax that you must pay if you are registered at land registry office for more than 10 years. The basis of taxation is the cadastral value of your property taken from land registers office. This depends on how much money was paid for the real estate in year 2000 and what kind of land/building rights you have over all properties under your name. In order to get this information from land records office, you need to fill out a form.

It’s not over yet! After you’ve paid all the taxes, it is time for Communal Charges (Kwartaalnota). This document is sent to you by your municipality where you are registered at folk records office. The amount varies depending on the perimeter of your property and what kind of services the town provides to that area. It used to be paid in 4 installments during the year but since 2009, it has become one lump sum annual payment due every January.