Buying Real Estate Property in Uruguay

Property may be bought by one or more individuals or legal entities, companies, partnerships, or any combination thereof. The nationality or residence of said individuals or legal entities, companies or partnerships is not relevant for the purpose of purchasing property. The transfer mechanism for real estate property from seller to buyer and related requirements are described below. The only restriction currently in force refers to rural property: Law No. 18.092 of January 7th 2007 (amended by Law No. 18.172) imposes certain restrictions regarding the possession and exploitation of rural or agricultural real estate properties in Uruguay. In general terms, this law states that rural real estate property can only be owned or exploited by individuals or by certain types of legal entities, companies and partnerships.

Registration of In Rem Rights

Uruguay has an excellent system of in rem rights. According to this system, in order for property ownership titles and in rem rights to be enforceable against third parties, they need to be registered with the Real Estate section of the Property Registry. Titles and rights over the same property have preference based on the chronological order of their registration. The system is so safe that the concept of owner’s title insurance does not exist in the country. In addition, all real estate property-related operations, as well as most agreements that create rights over real estate properties (including encumbrances) must be authorized by a Notary Public through a public deed and registered with the Real Estate section of the Property Registry.

The buyer is the one who appoints the Notary Public that will act in the operation and authorize the public deed of sale. Said Notary will conduct an audit of said property’s ownership titles, obtain information from the corresponding public registries and will verify whether all fiscal, tax and legal obligations in general have been complied with.

Process for Real Estate Operations

A. Reservation Fee or Pre-Contract Deposit

B. Preliminary Sale agreement

C. Sale Agreement

BADO & ASOCIADOS | Sotheby's International Realty

Dr. Andrés Puyol 1605 - MONTEVIDEO - URUGUAY

T +598 2604 6463
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