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Looking to buy property in Poland - understanding the different types of ownership!

babsetta 6 | 6  
20 Jan 2014 /  #1
Hi everyone,

I am planning to purchase a flat in Warsaw in this year or the next, so I have been looking at websites such as to get an idea of the property market in Poland, specifically in Warsaw. I have been coming across the term cooperative ownership...from some Google translated websites I have understood that this means you don't actually own the apartment, you just own the right to live there. Can someone be so kind as too confirm if this is the case and maybe explain a bit more about any other options of ownership that one can have in Poland?

Thanks for all your help! Much appreciated!
gask7 - | 50  
20 Jan 2014 /  #2
First of all I need to say the translation and the way someone use it can easly misleads you. In Poland according to flat the most popular is normal ownership ( odrębne prawo własności). Such flat must to have its own register estate ( księga wieczysta ). But similar to it and very popular too is owner's right to flat in the housing association ( spółdzielcze własnościowe prawo do lokalu). This second only sometimes has its own register estate, but seller need to have certificate from the housing association. So you don't need to know the meaning of the term cooperative ownership in advertisement but in real case.

Anyway you need to be careful what you bay and from whom. My suggestion is you need the lawyer service or your risk would be bigger especially in Warsaw.
OP babsetta 6 | 6  
21 Jan 2014 /  #3
So both ways of ownership means I have full ownership of the apartment? Does being a part of the housing association mean that I need to pay something more per month? I know that when you own a flat you need to pay every month some administration you need to pay the administration fee in both types of ownership or only in the second one?

By the way, thanks for your advice. I intend to find a lawyer once we commit to buy as both me and my fiancé are not familiar with the legal procedures involved.
LindaWoskalos - | 11  
21 Jan 2014 /  #4
Yes, both ways mean that they can sell the apartment and you can buy it.

But you don't need to be an expert in polish law, better look for options and get a lawyer, they are not so expensive and they can save your butt ;)

I opened a polish private company and I can recommend my accountant, she is in Lodz and save me all the time I need a basic advice. She is helping with the accountancy of foreign companies. She has some kind of master in Accountancy that allows her to check another national accountants, I can not remember exactly what it is but means that she is one of the few accountants in Poland with a higher knowledge in law.

You can give her a call. 0048 42 634 87 84, this is her email:
Kowalski 7 | 621  
22 Jan 2014 /  #5
So both ways of ownership means I have full ownership of the apartment?

It's technical but having full ownership means you would also own the land (part of it) on which your apartment stands. Housing association would itself own the land. When selling you'd be selling your rights to apartment vs apartment itself. Full owner could also change usage o an apartment into commercial usage without asking any association for permit. Full ownership also gets better ranking with banks. As for the fees they are similar if not lower for association housing. I don't think you'd need layer as long as you'd buy from real estate agency not individual - they'd take care of you with legal matters if you take one with experience selling to foreigners.
nietoperek25 - | 6  
12 Mar 2014 /  #6
Yes, I agree to the opinion above, no need to take a lawyer. Both types of ownership are in fact types of ownerships, so you can easily sell them with no restrictions, they are not time-limited, or so. Just two different kinds with no practical difference, or a very tiny and unimportant one, such as the ability to get the mortgage. Not all flats that you have the owner's right to flat in the housing association, have the register estate, which is obligatory for mortgages. But if you need it, you just apply for it, nothing tricky there. Prices are the same, costs are the same.

You just get it via real estate, and you are safe. They will deal with it all. If you want, I can deal with it for you, i represent Metrohouse, the biggest net on the polish market.
perkujki 4 | 26  
22 Jan 2018 /  #7
Non-EU foreigners prohibited from buying flats

"(odrębne prawo własności)(It's technical but having full ownership means you would also own the land (part of it) on which your apartment stands)"

due to proximity to border. We just got back from the notary and this is what we were told. Everything else being equal we would be allowed if further inland. Anybody else run in to this?
delphiandomine 86 | 17823  
22 Jan 2018 /  #8
Anybody else run in to this?

That's an interesting new development. Theoretically, the sale can be blocked on any grounds whatsoever, but so far, permission has been automatic where apartments are concerned.

Which border?
jon357 73 | 22638  
23 Jan 2018 /  #9
That's an interesting new development.

That was always a rule in the old days, but obviously hasn't applied to EU nationals since 2004 accession. Back in the day, you also needed to get the purchase signed off by the military in case there were any sensitive issues (presumably any installations visible from the propertt) that affected it.
perkujki 4 | 26  
23 Jan 2018 /  #10
The border is with Russia. I am not EU. Spoldzenia would be exempt since it doesn't include real property. We have a spoldzenia in my wife's name alone. We found a bigger flat in an old building. I doubt the sellers would wait for us the get permission from the ministry. Bummer. I guess we're back to searching.

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