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general information

Building houses in Greece, like everywhere else, is often much cheaper than buying a finished property. In addition, this is a great opportunity to realize your ideas, and not adapt to someone else's taste. In the matter of obtaining a residence permit for real estate owners , construction provides the owner with the same rights as buying a house. And the time spent and the attendant troubles are more than repaid with the result - of course, provided that the construction was carried out without violations and in compliance with building codes.

Building codes in Greece are governed by the General Building Regulations (Γενικός Οικοδομικός Κανονισμός, or GOC), as amended by local laws. It is rather difficult to understand the Regulations - the document contains many references and terms specific to Greek legislation. Amendments usually only complicate matters by imposing additional restrictions, often quite unusual.

At the same time, a profitable investment in real estate construction implies the maximum use of the construction potential of the site. Therefore, having decided to build a house in Greece, it is better to familiarize yourself with the building codes in advance and understand the intricacies of Greek legislation, so that you do not later regret the missed opportunities.

Construction factors

When determining the building capacity of a site, four main factors are applied: building area, building factor, coverage factor and number of storeys of the building.

  • The permitted building area means the total area of all floors of the construction object. It is measured along the outer perimeter of the building and does not depend on its number of storeys.

  • The building factor is established by law to determine the total area of buildings. It helps determine the permitted building area.

  • The coverage ratio is expressed as a percentage and refers to the maximum area of a plot that can be used for construction in Greece.

  • Building height - the number of floors allowed for construction in a given region and on a given land plot. When determining it, all floors are taken into account, including the ipogio (basement) and the attic.

Permitted building areas and the possibility of their use

An important criterion in determining the building possibilities of plots in Greece is the type of land plot intended for building. There are two such types: Icopedo and Agrotemachio.

Ikopedo is a land plot located within the construction plan of settlements. Agrotemachio, translated into the terminology we understand, is a plot from the category of agricultural land. In Greece, construction is also allowed on them, although the building density differs significantly from the lands of the first category. At the same time, the construction of commercial objects is allowed on the agrotemachio - for example, hotels, production facilities, as well as the installation of solar panels in order to generate electricity for subsequent sale. Moreover, the building factor in this case rises to 0.2. However, in order to obtain a permit for the construction of a hotel, the minimum size of an agrotemachio must be from 1 - 1.5 hectares, depending on the region.

Area restrictions when building a house in Greece

Depending on the region, the hikopedo build-up ratio ranges from 0.4 to 2.4. For agrotemachio, the permitted building area depends on the area and is calculated as follows:

  • On plots up to 4,000 sq. m - 200 sq. m
  • On plots up to 8,000 sq.m. - 200 sq.m. plus an area exceeding 4,000 sq. m multiplied by 0.02
  • On plots over 8,000 sq.m. - 280 sq.m. plus an area exceeding 8,000 sq. m multiplied by 0.01

An important point: when calculating the permitted building area, the area of hypogio is not taken into account - the lower level, the elevation of which does not exceed one and a half meters from the earth's surface. Usually, no restrictions apply at all to it, provided that the height of the structure from floor to ceiling is at least 2.2 m and does not exceed 3 m.

On plots less than 4,000 sq. m, which are adjacent to the roads connecting the lands of settlements, the building rules are different. The construction possibilities of such lands are specified in each individual case.

For large areas of agrotemachio, adjacent to roads between settlements, segmentation is allowed, which allows you to increase the building area.

For plots located on the first line from the sea, there are restrictions on the number of storeys: on lands such as ikopedo, the height of buildings cannot exceed three levels, excluding ipogio. For plots of the agrotemachio type, the limit is two levels and ipogio.

In the case of agrotemachio, it must be borne in mind that the buildings erected here must be at least 15 m away from the boundaries of the site.This rule makes some of the sites unsuitable for construction

When building several houses on one site, it is necessary to observe the distance between buildings established by the GOK. For Icopedo, it cannot exceed 8 m, for Agrotemachio - 3.75 m. In addition, buildings on Agrotemachio must be connected by a covered structure from 1 to 6 m wide, made of the same materials as the main buildings. On the Icopedo, buildings can be completely separated from each other.

Greece Invest construction specialists carry out a full analysis of the land plot to calculate the building factor and other construction characteristics, while checking the legal purity of the site.

Accounting for staircase areas

The construction of multi-storey buildings requires stairs. For a more rational use of building areas, the rules for accounting for the area of stairs are regulated separately.

So, when constructing low-rise buildings, the area of external stairs is not taken into account. And in the case of the internal stairs connecting the ipogio with the first floor (in Greece it is called isogio), they are referred to as isogio square.

In cases where the last (upper) flight of stairs of a multi-storey building is a continuation of the stairs connecting ipogio with isogio, its area is not included in the total footage of the living space.

The area of internal spiral metal staircases is not taken into account during construction.

Technical buildings

Technical structures are necessary for the purposes of domestic maintenance of houses. Often they are erected between the main buildings in order to circumvent the rule about the maximum distance between buildings. In the latter case, all buildings must also be connected by a covered structure, and the technical structure must consist of at least one level (excluding hypogio), the area of which is counted as residential.

The sequence of works during construction

  1. Setting tasks for an engineer-architect. At this stage, it is important to trust experienced professionals ( to develop an architectural and planning solution that would satisfy the customer and allow obtaining permission to build a house in Greece
  2. Development of a project for obtaining a building permit. At the same time, certificates of the forestry department are received that the lands are not included in the forest fund of Greece, and the archeology department that the site is not of archaeological value
  3. Applying for a building permit. Here again the experience and professionalism of an engineer-architect will be required to present and defend a project in an urban planning organization.
  4. Construction work and technical supervision. At this stage, when performing earthwork, the presence of a representative of the archaeological service is required
  5. Completion of construction work. This stage includes the completion of construction, as well as the collection and signing of the necessary documents for registration of the completed construction of the object in the urban planning organization
  6. Commissioning of the object. After completion of construction, at the discretion of the owner, it is possible to carry out additional repair or finishing work

Building permit in Greece

Time and cost of obtaining a building permit

Building houses in Greece is impossible without obtaining a building permit. Depending on a number of factors, the cost of such a permit may differ for different projects. First of all, these factors include:

  • type and size of land
  • the number of buildings erected on the site
  • total and living area of premises
  • area of technical buildings and ipogio

For example: in case of maximum use of the building possibilities of a plot of 200 sq. m, not including the construction of the pool, the cost of all costs for obtaining a building permit will be from 25,000 euros. This amount includes the costs associated with the development of the project, government fees and the cost of technical supervision during construction work.

The term for obtaining a building permit is from several months to six months. To speed up the process as much as possible, it is better to entrust the process of obtaining it to professionals .

Swimming pool construction permit

A separate permit is required to build a pool on the site. In Greece, a swimming pool is regarded as a luxury item, and therefore the costs of obtaining a permit may seem disproportionately high. The size of the future pool plays a key role in this. It is possible to somewhat reduce costs if you obtain a permit simultaneously with the main permit for building a plot.

Making changes to the project

After obtaining a building permit, changes to the approved project can only be made by agreement with the town planning organization. Any changes are paid additionally - the cost depends on the number and nature of the changes made.

Which premises are considered residential space in Greece?

The term “living space” in Greece has a completely different meaning than the usual sum of all areas of living rooms. In accordance with the General Building Regulations, living space includes all premises within the building, with a few exceptions. A fairly lengthy list of these exceptions is given in the said Regulations. These include, in particular, garages, ipogio, areas of loggias and balconies, etc.