• 12 VALUABLE SUGGESTIONS FOR DOING BUY PROPERTY IN CYPRUS LIMASSOL

    Assistance

    Cyprus: buying property

    Info on laws and taxes for British nationals who wish to buy property in Cyprus.

    Intro

    Purchasing property in Cyprus has a number of potential risks. The British High Commission encourages prospective purchasers to exercise extreme care when buying a property if the title deeds are not easily offered, as it implies your property could be at risk.

    Home loan liability

    It is common practice for developers to secure home loans on land or property. If you sign an agreement with a developer and there is currently a home mortgage, loan or claim on the property, then you are most likely to end up being accountable for that home mortgage ought to the builder, designer or landowner declare bankruptcy.

    You must ask your attorney to check for home mortgages placed on the land through a Land Search Certificate which is acquired from the Land Computer system registry. It needs to be noted that in order to acquire a Land Search Certificate one needs a relevant authorisation from the Property’s owner. If you are made aware of a mortgage prior to signing an agreement it is not likely that you will get the deeds in your name till the mortgage is paid off.

    Attorneys are not required to check for home mortgages immediately, although good lawyers should do this as a matter of course. In 2011 the Republic of Cyprus Government introduced a Specific Efficiency Law to give an agreement of sale precedence over any pre-existing home mortgage however we still strongly advise that you examine no home loans have been placed on the land prior to acquire to ensure you do not run into possible difficulties at a later date.

    See Property For Sale in Cyprus Now

    Other concerns most often raised by British nationals include:

    • lawyers acting for both builders or suppliers therefore not independent
    • building works taking place without the correct preparation permission or structure permit (eg electrical power or water).
    • fluctuations in currency and rates of interest affecting mortgages.
    • payment plans or fees not being consisted of in the initial agreement.
    • trouble in getting certificates of last completion (deeds can not be released without this).
    • difficulty in obtaining title deeds.
    • difficulty in getting redress after problems are recognized.
      With all property purchases, we strongly advise that you seek your own independent legal suggestions.

    You ought to look for competent independent legal suggestions on your rights and techniques of redress if you have actually bought a property or land and are encountering troubles.

    The Foreign, Commonwealth & Advancement Office (FCDO) and the British High Commission are unable to use legal recommendations or become involved with disagreements in between private celebrations. We direct British nationals to organisations who might be able to assist and we can raise systemic problems, problems which affect a number of consumers, with local authorities.

    You can look at the Association of International Property Professionals website to see if a company or legal advisor are members.

    Buying property in the north of Cyprus.

    The ownership of numerous properties is disputed in the north of Cyprus, with countless claims to ownership from people displaced in 1974. Purchase of these properties could have severe financial and legal implications. The European Court of Human Rights has ruled in a variety of cases that owners of property in northern Cyprus prior to 1974 continue to be considered as the legal owners of that property.

    Purchasers could face legal procedures in the courts of the Republic of Cyprus, as well as efforts to enforce judgments from these courts elsewhere in the EU, including the UK. There has been at least one effective case to enforce rulings in the UK, jeopardizing property owned in the UK.

    One crucial concern is property and the handling of pre-1974 Greek Cypriot title-owned property. Property owners and possible buyers need to also think about that a future settlement of the Cyprus issue could have major repercussions for property they acquire, consisting of the possible restitution of the property to its initial owner, in addition to compensation payments.

    • in the north of Cyprus that was owned by a Greek Cypriot nationwide prior to 1974 * ^ that was consequently categorized as exchange or ‘gift’ land/property by the Turkish Cypriot “authorities”.

    Purchasers must guarantee they are totally familiar with the rules in the north of Cyprus in regard of foreigners buying property, including the requirement to acquire consent to the transfer of property. Even when buying pre-1974 Turkish title land, you might still be declined consent to purchase the land/property and no reason for the refusal might be offered.

    On 20 October 2006, a modification to the Republic of Cyprus criminal code associating with property came into effect. Under the change, buying, selling, renting, promoting or mortgaging a property without the approval of the owner (the person whose ownership is registered with the Republic of Cyprus Land Registry, consisting of Greek Cypriots displaced from northern Cyprus in 1974) is a criminal offense. The optimum jail sentence is 7 years.

    The change to the law also states that any effort to undertake such a transaction is a criminal offence and could lead to a jail sentence of as much as 5 years. This law is not retrospective, so will not criminalise transactions that occurred before 20 October 2006.

    Also files relating to the purchase of property in the north of Cyprus will be presumed by the Cypriot authorities to relate to the illegal transfer of Greek Cypriot property and may be subject to confiscation when crossing the Green Line. Anybody discovered in possession of these documents might be asked to make a statement to the Cypriot authorities and could deal with criminal procedures under the 20 October amendment.

    Any queries relating to the scope of this law should be made to the Republic of Cyprus High Commission in London or to the Ministry of Foreign affairs for the Republic of Cyprus:.

    RoC High Commission London.
    13, St James’s Square.
    London SW1Y 4LB.

    Telephone: +44 (0) 207 3214 100.

    Email: cyprusinuk@mfa.gov.uk.

    RoC Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
    Presidential Palace Avenue.
    1447 Nicosia.

    Telephone: +357 22651000.

    Fax: +357 22661881.

    Responsibility Officer: +357 99 660129 (for emergency assistance and strictly after office hours: 07:30– 16:00 (Monday – Friday).

    Email: info@mfa.gov.cy.

    Property owned prior to 1974.

    If you are a British nationwide and owned a property in the north of Cyprus before 1974 (or the successor of somebody meeting those requirements), please get in touch with the British High Commission by e-mail, marking your message to the attention of the Property Officer. They will be able to inspect your file and encourage on what steps to take if you want to attempt to reclaim your property.

    The British High Commission is not able to assist dual nationals in the country of their other citizenship. , if you are a dual British/Cypriot national you should approach your regional authorities in regard of claims for pre-1974 title deeds.

    .

    Buying property or land in the Sovereign Base Areas (SBAs).

    Persons thinking about the purchase of unmovable property (such as land) in the SBAs require to be conscious that the permission of the Administrator of the Sovereign Base Areas is needed under section 3 of the Immovable Property Acquisition (Control) Ordinance 1972 for a non-Cypriot or for a non-Cypriot corporation to purchase stationary property in the SBAs.

    The requirement for approval exists whether or not property is presently owned by a Cypriot or a Cypriot corporation or by a non-Cypriot who has previously obtained consent. Failure to obtain the permission of the Administrator means that the acquisition and registration of the immovable property in question is null and void. The Administrator will offer authorization only in the most exceptional scenarios.

    You ought to also be aware that it is an offence for persons other than “recognised residents” to live in the SBAs for more than 28 days in any duration of 12 months, other than in accordance with a permit provided under that Regulation. Once again, you might obtain a certificate of acknowledged home or an authorization, but the Administration only hardly ever consents to granting these.

    Further details.

    Some of the problems that property buyers experience are very similar throughout Cyprus. The British High Commission is not able to get associated with specific property issues or legal conflicts, however supports neighborhood associations that are dedicated to dealing with the problems of property purchasers.

    Associations.

    If the business, or legal consultant, you have actually dealt with belongs to AIPP and you are unhappy with the services offered, you can write to the AIPP who have a disciplinary procedure.

    Legal guidance.

    British people affected by property issues must take independent legal advice from local attorneys.

    Local police.

    You should make a statement to the local cops if you believe that you have been subject to a property criminal offense. Keep in mind to get a copy of the declaration and ask for the occurrence number. Please note, there might be a time constraint between the time of the alleged crime and the time within which you make your grievance.

    Cyprus Ombudsman (likewise known as Commissioner of Administration and Security of Human Rights).

    The Cyprus Ombudsman acts in the service of residents, including foreign nationals, in order to safeguard their rights and flexibility versus actions from any Cypriot administration. The Ombudsman has the power to challenge all bodies (subject to some restrictions) and authorities of the main government and local administrations as well as anyone acting as agents or partners of any of these administrations in the fulfilment or execution of public objectives or services. Contact details are on their website.

    It is essential to keep in mind that the Ombudsman may not intervene under the following situations:.

    • whenever the public administration has actually not been included.
    • in the event of conflicts or disagreements between individuals.
    • When the citizen had knowledge of the occasions of his grievance, after one year from the moment.
    • in case of confidential complaints, without specific claims providing bad faith or any claims that may damage genuine rights of third parties.
    • in case of non-conformity with the contents of the judicial judgment.
    • grievances against attorneys.

    Grievances versus attorneys practising in the Republic of Cyprus must be dealt with to:.

    The Cyprus Bar Association.
    Florinis 11, off.101, 1st Flooring,.
    1065, Nicosia P.O.Box. 21446,.
    1508, Nicosia– Cyprus.

    Telephone: +357 22873300 Fax: +35722873013.

    Email: cybar3@cytanet.com.cy.

    Website: www.cyprusbarassociation.org.

    Grievances versus legal representatives practicing in the north of Cyprus may be made in writing to the relevant local ‘Bar Association’. There is a separate ‘Bar Association’ for each district.

    Preliminary investigations into complaints happen within the pertinent district however they are then passed onto the general organisation, the ‘Cyprus Turkish Bar Association’.

    Contact information of regional ‘bar associations’:.

    • Nicosia: contact individual: Arzu İzveren, email: barolarbirligi@hotmail.com phone: 0090392227 73 39.
    • Kyrenia: contact individual: Gürcan Bayramoğlu, e-mail: gurcanbayramoglu@hotmail.com phone: 0090392816 06 22.
    • Famagusta: contact person: Mine Vehit, email: mine-vehit@hotmail.com phone: 0090392366 16 88.
    • Morphou: contact person: Mehtun Muslu, e-mail: mmehtun@yahoo.com phone: 0090392714 69 93.

    Grievances against the legal system in the Republic of Cyprus

    Complaints against the legal system should be made to the Attorney General’s Workplace:.

    Mr George L. Savvides.
    Attorney General.
    Law Office of the Republic of Cyprus.
    1403 Nicosia.
    Cyprus

    European Commissioner.

    There is a European Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality. Their address is:.

    Directorate-General for Justice and Consumers.
    European Commission.
    1049 Brussels.
    Belgium.

    You can discover more about EU consumer rights on their website.

    Help in the UK.

    We have released recommendations(Link) on which UK authorities to get in touch with if you believe you have actually been a victim of property fraud.

    If you were living in the UK when you made your purchase you may want to contact the UK European Consumer Centre. This belongs to the European Consumer Centres Network (ECC-Net) that has been set up by the European Commission in co-operation with member states to help customers with cross-border disagreements. When problems arise if they believe it may help, the UK European Consumer Centre offers info and advice on problems with buying across borders and can arbitrate.

    Address:.

    UK European Consumer Centre.
    Chartered Trading Standards Institute.
    1 Sylvan Court.
    Sylvan Way.
    Southfields Business Park.
    Basildon.
    Essex SS15 6TH.

    Telephone: +44 (0) 1268 886 690.

    Fax: +44( 0 )1268 582 225.

    Email address: eccnet-uk@ec.europa.eu.

    Disclaimer.

    While we hope that this details works, please be aware that it is not meant to be the only guidance for potential purchasers to follow when thinking about buying. In addition, we make no representation regarding the quality or precision of the information which is offered at the web addresses noted in this guide, nor can we accept any duty for the content that is hosted on them. We strongly suggest that potential purchasers of property in Cyprus seek independent legal and financial suggestions at all phases of their purchase.

    The European Court of Human being Rights has actually ruled in a number of cases that owners of property in northern Cyprus before 1974 continue to be regarded as the legal owners of that property.

    One crucial concern is property and the handling of pre-1974 Greek Cypriot title-owned property. Property owners and prospective buyers should also consider that a future settlement of the Cyprus problem could have major repercussions for property they purchase, consisting of the possible restitution of the property to its initial owner, in addition to payment payments. Under the amendment, buying, selling, renting, promoting or mortgaging a property without the consent of the owner (the person whose ownership is registered with the Republic of Cyprus Land Computer registry, consisting of Greek Cypriots displaced from northern Cyprus in 1974) is a criminal offense. We strongly recommend that prospective buyers of property in Cyprus look for independent legal and monetary guidance at all phases of their purchase.

    Related Links:

    Useful Links:

    • Land and Property(link)
    • Housing Schemes(link)