Step One:
The buyer verifies the title certificate with the Land Office and checks for potential liens (debt) and/or other encumbrances. S/he must obtain a copy of the initial title certificate from the seller and verify that the seller is the rightful owner of the title certificate. This is also verified with the land office to ensure that there are no liens, mortgages, disputes or other encumbrances for that property.
Estimated time: 10 days (simultaneous to steps 2 and 3)
Official cost: (according to Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction Prakas 995 dated 28/12/2012) = KHR 50,000 / US$12.50
Step 2:
The Buyer must contact the relevant village chief or commune council official to obtain information on the land and undertake an official search of the title at the municipal land office.
Estimated time: 10 days (simultaneous to steps 1 and 3)
Official cost: Nil
Step 3:
Buyer obtain the certificate of incorporation of the seller’s company and other official documents from the seller (e.g. ID of the shareholder, or person acting on behalf of the company, a certified/notarized copy of the certificate as issued by the Ministry of Commerce). These are needed to verify the accuracy and identity of the company name appearing on the title certificate. A Power of Attorney is also needed, and a resolution signed by the company’s Board of Directors, authorizing the named individual to represent the company at the land office with a Power of Attorney implementing that Resolution.
Estimated time: 10 days (simultaneous to steps 1 and 2)
Official cost: KHR 80,000/US$20.00
Step 4:
Apply for registration at the District Land Office of the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning & Construction (MLMUPC). When 2 persons/companies wish to buy/sell real property, they must first go together to the district office of the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning & Construction (MLMUPC) and arrange to prepare and sign documents. The documentation needed includes the company’s statute, its Certificate of Incorporation, and Power of Attorney (obtained in Step 3). At the same time, the original Title Certificate held by the seller must be presented to the Khan at the time of signing the deed, in order to have the name of the new owner officially inserted on the document.
Relevant Government Agency: District Land Office, MLMUPC (District Land Office of the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning & Construction)
Estimated time: 20 – 30 days
Official cost: A transfer fee of KHR 600,000 is paid to MLMUPC.
Step 5:
Pay 4% of the total value of the property to the Ministry of Economy and Finance at the Tax Collection Office, relevant to the location of the property. A receipt is issued to prove payment. In Phnom Penh, this tax is assessed on a schedule of property value determined by the Municipality. This is usually based on size, location, use, potential use, etc. of the property. If the land is more than 1200sqm, the surplus of the land will also be subject to “unused land tax”.
Estimated time: 1 day (depending on location and size of property)
Official cost: 4% of property value (transfer fee)
Step 6:
After all taxes are paid, the parties may return to the cadastral office at the MLMUPC and sign/thumbprint a MLMUPC form for buying/selling real property, as filled in by MLMUPC official. The signing/thumb printing must be witnessed by a local authority such as commune chief, who will also thumbprint. The documentation provided should include payment receipts of transfer tax (obtained in Step 5).
Estimated time: 5 days
Official cost: Cadastral service fee paid in Step 4
Step 7:
The Khan/District land office forwards all the transfer documents to the Municipal Land Office where it issues the final Certificate of Title in the new owner’s name. It is now registered.
Estimated time: 1 to 2 weeks (depending on the diligence of officials and interested parties)