Purchasing Property in Slovakia

Please note: The Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the entities or individuals whose names appear on the following lists. Inclusion on this list is in no way an endorsement by the Department or the U.S. government. Names are listed alphabetically, and the order in which they appear has no other significance. The information on the list is provided directly by the local service providers; the Department is not in a position to vouch for such information.

Under Sect. 19-A of Slovak Law 312/2004, foreigners can purchase property in the Slovak Republic. There are, however, some exceptions: foreigners may not own agricultural land, forests and other property of special interest to the Slovak state, as specified by law.

In general, American citizens who wish to move or retire to Slovakia and buy a home are able to do so.

There are a large number of real estate agencies that can be contacted for information or service. A list of agencies in Slovakia can be found at http://www.reality.sk. Please note that the U.S. Embassy does not vouch for the ability or integrity of the listed agencies.

Inheritance of Property

If a house/property is jointly owned by spouses and there is no will, full ownership will pass to the survivor in the event one dies. If both spouses pass away without leaving a will, ownership would automatically transfer to their children in equal shares. Property is inherited by the relatives in the following order:

  1. Wife or husband
  2. Children or parents (inheritance divided equally)
  3. Brothers and sisters
  4. Grandparents

Property Taxes

As of January 1, 2004, there is no longer any inheritance tax. As of January 1, 2005, there is no longer any tax on transfer of ownership title. Please consult an attorney about other possible duties and fees.

Under Slovak law, a will can be prepared in three ways:

  1. Handwritten and signed by the owner
  2. Typed and signed by the owner and two witnesses
  3. Prepared with the assistance of an attorney

Renting an apartment/home

The Slovak Civil Code regulates the relationship between landlord and tenant. This code covers many things that Americans may expect to see in the lease contract

The landlords, meaning all the owners of the property you are renting, must sign the agreement. A valid property title (výpis z katastra nehnuteľností or list vlastníctva) which describes the particulars of the property and identifies the owner(s), should be attached to the contract

You do not have to obtain a Slovak Residency Permit before signing a lease contract. In fact, the opposite is true. The contract is one of the requirements for registration as a Slovak resident

The following are examples of the most common clauses found in a lease:

  • Notification of termination: In Slovakia this is usually three months, as stated in the Civil Code
  • Notification of extension: Usually one month before the expiry of the lease
  • Insurance: The owners must have property insurance, but that does not include a tenant’s possessions. A tenant should obtain separate insurance for his or her own belongings
  • Duration of lease: This may be for a specific period, or may be for an unlimited period
  • Rent: Some contracts include a fine for late payment of rent
  • Utilities: The rental price may include none, some, or all utility costs. If the contract does include utilities, a settlement is seldom required at the end of the contract. If payment for utilities is not included in the contract, then a separate agreement should deal with these issues

To be used in an application for a Slovak Residency Permit, the lease contract must be witnessed by a notary. Otherwise, this is not necessary.

Sources of information

Information on obtaining residency permit in Slovakia should be requested from the Slovak Embassy, 3523 International Court, Washington, D.C. 20008. Please make sure that you apply early enough, as the processing time may be up to 90 days.

Useful information for those wishing to relocate to Slovakia may be found at http://www.slovakspectator.sk – the English language newspaper in Slovakia. There are private companies that also provide information and assistance for relocating to Slovakia, such as http://www.eri.sk. The U.S. Embassy does not vouch for the ability or integrity of the listed agencies.