Information about immovable property in Belgium can be found in the documentation held by offices of three kinds: the land register properly so called (kadaster/cadastre), the registration offices (registratiekantoren/bureaux de l’enregistrement) and the mortgage depositories (hypotheekbewaringen/conservations d’hypothèques). These three sources of information have been grouped together in the Federal Ministry of Finance’s national property documentation centre (Algemene Administratie van de Patrimoniumdocumentatie/Administration Générale de la Documentation Patrimoniale).
The tasks of the land register proper and of the registration offices are mainly, but not exclusively, tax-related. The mortgage depositories are responsible for registering property rights in rem: the creation and transfer inter vivos of rights in rem in immovable property must be recorded in the mortgage depository in order to be enforceable against third parties acting in good faith.
No, there is a fee for obtaining information from the documentation in the land register, the registration offices and the mortgage depositories. The amount varies according to the type of documentation consulted and the information requested.
In general, information about immovable property and/or the holders of the rights in rem in immovable property can be found either by identifying the property (address and/or land register identification number) or by identifying the holder of the rights in rem (name and/or identity number).
The national property documentation centre has concluded agreements with certain professional groups (such as notaries, surveyors and estate agents) on the online consultation of certain data in the documentation of the land register.
The documentation held by the land register, the registration offices and the mortgage depositories has been kept since before the foundation of the Belgian state.
History does not stand still: a plan to integrate the three data sources into a single one is currently nearing completion and should be implemented in the near future.
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