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    A house can now be bought by e-mail

    © Belga
    In line with the digital era, Alexander De Croo desires a change in the law, allowing e-mail based transactions when houses and flats change hands.
    © Belga

    An agreement by e-mail is now sufficient legal proof for the purchase of a house. Het Laatste Nieuws is reporting, on Thursday, that the Minister for the Digital Agenda, Alexander De Croo (Open Vld), wants to close a loophole in the current economic legislation.

    In a judgment made last year, the Antwerp Court of Appeal held that an agreement on the price of a given house or flat reached by e-mail had no legal validity.

    The court based its decision upon the e-commerce law dated 2003, which makes an exception for real estate property. However, it is common practice for agents to negotiate a sale by e-mail in reaching the final agreement.

    By adapting the current legislation, Minister De Croo wishes to put an end to any uncertainty. “The legislation must be adapted to the current digital era. It should not be possible for individuals acting in good faith and reaching an e-mail agreement to come away empty handed at the end of the transaction.”

    Christopher Vincent
    The Brussels Times