Liechtenstein Property in the Principality of Liechtenstein, a tiny landlocked country sandwiched between Switzerland and Austria, is very expensive. Rents are high. Yields are not particularly good.

Property in Liechtenstein can cost around €300,000 for a 50 sq. m. apartment, or €1.5 million for a 300 sq. m. apartment or house, depending on the size of the property.


Restrictions on Buying Property: There are restrictions on the purchase of real estate by foreigners.

Buying property requires 3 years residency first. Since joining the European Economic Area, (an organization serving as a bridge between the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and the European Union) in May1995, Liechtenstein has also imposed stringent rules on residency permits from people from the EU.

The EU has given Liechtenstein the freedom to restrict entrance due to its small size. Currently it allows 28 EU nationals every year without working permits, excluding multi national employees who can take up residence as long as they have a work permit.

Liechtenstein and the EU including links to Liechtenstein government and Tourist Information.

Buying Process: Once the buyer decides on a property, he needs to appoint a  lawyer who will conduct the search and hands in details of the buyers to the concerning government agency (Grundbuchregistrar). Once the search has been completed and there was no formal objection to the buyer acquiring the property, the money is then transferred to a private account at a lawyer’s. The money is only transferred to the vendors account when all bureaucratic steps have been completed, registration of the property and checking that it is clear of debts and taxes.

 

Costs/Fees: Total transaction costs amount to 4% of the selling price. The buyer pays 0.9% notary fees. The agent’s fee of 3% is paid by the vendor.

 

 

The Rental Market: Rents can be freely negotiated between landlord and tenant, as can many other points appearing in a rental contract.

The civil code has provisions disallowing disproportionate increases in rental prices. A basic rule is that the rent can only be raised where the contract is for more than 2 years’ duration, and only proportionally to the real inflation rate.

A maximum of three months’ rent can be taken on deposit. When this deposit is held by the landlord for more than a year, he must pay the standard interest rate on those funds.

Landlord and Tenant Laws are enforced through local courts in Liechtenstein, whose procedure follows the Court Rules for Tenancy issues. The law’s tendency to favour the landlord is noticeable, because hardly any legal dispute go beyond the court of first instance.

In fact, there have been very few cases of disputes in this area. Legal costs are very high and tenants usually cannot afford the cost and effort. However, in the case of disproportionate rent increases, or where the tenant is in special circumstances (e.g. many children), a court procedure may be worthwhile because the court may allow the tenant to extend the time before an eviction for up to a year, depending on the situation. 

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Disclaimer: This guide is for information only and should not be relied upon as definitive. Details have been obtained from various sources and although we have done everything possible to ensure that it is correct, we cannot accept responsibility for it or guarantee its accuracy. This is because processes and laws change frequently, and may also vary dependant upon personal circumstances. You are welcome to use the information provided, but should always obtain confirmation of specific details and get independent specialist and legal advice in the country that the information refers to.

25-10-2009