Overseas Vietnamese get answers on house ownership

At the online exchange held by Sai Gon Giai Phong newspaper Thursday between Mr. Do Phi Hung, deputy director of the city’s Construction Department, and the newspaper's readers, many queries about house ownership were answered, including the granting of certificate of house ownership to overseas Vietnamese. Excerpts:

Lodging applications for a certificate of house ownership at the People's Committee of District 1 

Question: I am a Vietnamese living in Canada, but I would like to buy a house in Viet Nam. I was told that few overseas Vietnamese were granted a certificate of house ownership. Can I buy a house in my name?

Mr. Do Phi Hung: Only 107 overseas Vietnamese have obtained a certificate of house ownership. The reason is that the legal regulations governing this field have not yet been enforced effectively due to a lack of instructions for implementing them. We have referred some problems to the Ministry of Construction for resolution, but have received no feedback so far.

Q: In 1953, my mother was granted a license to build a house on land that I bought via an auction sale by the Saigon Court of First Instance. I paid a house registration fee and had a certificate of ownership over this house issued in 1958 in my name. The house is now located on Phan Dang Luu St., Phu Nhuan District, Ho Chi Minh City. My parents passed away. One of my siblings is now living in the U.S. We have not yet carried out procedures to inherit the house, and therefore, the house has not been recognized as an inheritance. Now I want to apply for a certificate of land use right for my own. How can I do it?

A: The city has allowed the granting of certificates of house ownership to subjects that are governed by Resolution No. 1037 of the Standing Committee of the Vietnamese National Assembly. So you can contact the authorities in Phu Nhuan District and apply for a certificate of land use right and a certificate of house ownership.

Q: I have applied for a certificate of house ownership for the house at 18-20 Tan Da St., District 5, HCMC. The authorities in District 5 issued a decision on recognition of my ownership of the house. But the Department of Construction rejected my application because there is a civil relation between me and an overseas Vietnamese (my mother is living in France) and issues related to the house. I was asked to wait for instructions for implementation of Resolution No. 1037. So when will I be granted a certificate of house ownership?

A: After getting an approval from the People’s Committee, the Department of Construction will recommend that the authorities in District 5 grant you a certificate of house ownership.

Q: Before leaving the country, I made a document to lend my house to the state. The house is now used as an office. Now can I get back the house? What procedure should I follow?      

A: In principle, if who you left the country before July 1, 1991, your case would be governed by Resolution No. 1037 and if you have a house lending agreement signed by both sides, you have the right to get back the house. You can contact the Department of Construction, 60 Truong Dinh Street, District 3, for detailed instructions.

Q: My house was lent before I left the country, but I have no documents to prove the lending. Could I get my house back?

A: In principle, you must have a house lending agreement signed by both sides or you must have other evidence to prove that the house was lent. If negotiations on getting back the house failed, you could take legal action to recover your house.

Q: I have the U.S. nationality and I have been working for a representative office in Viet Nam since 2000. Can I be allowed to buy a house in Viet Nam and be granted a certificate of house ownership?

A: You will be granted such a certificate if you meet conditions stipulated in Article No. 126 of the Law on Houses promulgated in 1995 and in Article 65 of Decree No. 90/2006 /ND-CP issued in 2006 by the Vietnamese government.

Documents required for application for a certificate of house ownership under Resolution No. 1037:

- One of the documents proving house ownership as stated in Decision No. 54 by the city’s People’s Committee
-  Blueprints of related houses or lands
-  A document proving civil deals, such as a leasing contract or letter of authorization.
-  Personal papers or judicial personal papers of the applicant
-  Identity card or passport (for locals) and passport (for foreigners)
- Overseas Vietnamese who hold foreign nationality must have a certificate of Vietnamese nationality, a certificate of lose of Vietnamese nationality or a certificate of registration of Vietnamese citizenship.
- Local organizations must have a decision on their establishment or a certificate of business registration. 

Applications for a certificate of house ownership can be lodged at a district People’s Committee (if the applicant is an individual) or at the city’s Construction Department (if the applicant is a local organization).

By Hanh Nhung - Translated by Truc Thinh

Other news