• Using an overseas business to sell and purchase UK house.

    Assistance

    Cyprus: buying property

    Information on laws and taxes for British nationals who want to buy property in Cyprus.

    Introduction

    Buying property in Cyprus has a variety of potential mistakes. The British High Commission recommends prospective buyers to exercise severe care when buying a property if the title deeds are not easily offered, as it means your property could be at risk.

    Home loan liability

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

    You need to ask your lawyer to check for mortgages put on the land through a Land Search Certificate which is gotten from the Land Registry. It should be noted that in order to get a Land Search Certificate one requires a pertinent authorisation from the Property’s owner. , if you are made conscious of a home loan prior to signing an agreement it is unlikely that you will get the deeds in your name until the home mortgage is paid off.

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    Lawyers are not needed to check for home loans immediately, although great attorneys should do this as a matter of course. In 2011 the Republic of Cyprus Government presented a Specific Performance Law to provide a contract of sale precedence over any pre-existing home mortgage however we still strongly advise that you inspect no home loans have actually 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:

    • legal representatives acting for both contractors or vendors therefore not independent
    • developing works taking place without the right planning consent or structure authorization (eg electricity or water).
    • changes in currency and interest rates affecting home loans.
    • payment plans or costs not being included in the initial agreement.
    • trouble in obtaining certificates of final conclusion (deeds can not be provided without this).
    • problem in acquiring title deeds.
    • trouble in acquiring redress after issues are determined.
      With all property purchases, we highly recommend that you seek your own independent legal recommendations.

    If you have bought a property or land and are encountering difficulties, you ought to look for competent independent legal recommendations on your rights and approaches of redress.

    The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Workplace (FCDO) and the British High Commission are not able to offer legal advice or end up being included with disputes between personal parties. However, we direct British nationals to organisations who may have the ability to help and we can raise systemic issues, problems which affect a number of clients, with regional authorities.

    You can examine the Association of International Property Professionals website to see if a business or legal consultant are members.

    Buying property in the north of Cyprus.

    The ownership of numerous properties is challenged in the north of Cyprus, with countless claims to ownership from individuals displaced in 1974. Purchase of these properties might have major monetary and legal ramifications. The European Court of Human Rights has ruled in a variety of cases that owners of property in northern Cyprus before 1974 continue to be considered the legal owners of that property.

    Buyers could deal with legal procedures in the courts of the Republic of Cyprus, along with attempts to implement judgments from these courts elsewhere in the EU, including the UK. There has been at least one successful case to enforce rulings in the UK, endangering property owned in the UK.

    The leaders of both communities are currently in settlements to try to resolve the Cyprus issue. One crucial problem is property and the handling of pre-1974 Greek Cypriot title-owned property. Homeowner and potential purchasers need to also consider that a future settlement of the Cyprus issue could have severe consequences for property they acquire, consisting of the possible restitution of the property to its original owner, in addition to settlement payments. In particular, prospective purchasers should think about the ramifications of any future settlement on land/property:.

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

    Buyers should ensure they are totally knowledgeable about the rules in the north of Cyprus in regard of immigrants buying property, consisting of the requirement to get grant the transfer of property. Even when acquiring pre-1974 Turkish title land, you might still be refused authorization to acquire the land/property and no factor for the refusal may be given.

    On 20 October 2006, a change to the Republic of Cyprus criminal code connecting to property came into impact. Under the modification, buying, selling, renting, mortgaging a property or promoting without the authorization of the owner (the individual whose ownership is signed up with the Republic of Cyprus Land Windows registry, including Greek Cypriots displaced from northern Cyprus in 1974) is a criminal offence. The optimum jail sentence is 7 years.

    The change to the law also specifies that any effort to carry out such a transaction is a criminal offence and could result in a jail sentence of up to 5 years. This law is not retrospective, so will not criminalise deals that occurred prior to 20 October 2006.

    Likewise documents associating with the purchase of property in the north of Cyprus will be presumed by the Cypriot authorities to relate to the prohibited transfer of Greek Cypriot property and may undergo confiscation when crossing the Green Line. Anybody discovered in ownership of these files might be asked to make a declaration to the Cypriot authorities and could deal with criminal proceedings under the 20 October amendment.

    Any queries regarding the scope of this law ought to 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.

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

    Email: info@mfa.gov.cy.

    Property owned prior to 1974.

    If you are a British national and owned a property in the north of Cyprus before 1974 (or the heir of somebody conference those requirements), please get in touch with the British High Commission by email, marking your message to the attention of the Property Officer. They will have the ability to inspect your file and recommend on what steps to take if you want to try to recover your property.

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

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    Buying property or land in the Sovereign Base Locations (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 required under section 3 of the Immovable Property Acquisition (Control) Ordinance 1972 for a non-Cypriot or for a non-Cypriot corporation to purchase unmovable 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 actually formerly gotten permission. Failure to acquire the consent of the Administrator suggests that the acquisition and registration of the immovable property in question is null and void. The Administrator will provide permission only in the most exceptional scenarios.

    You ought to also know that it is an offense for individuals aside from “identified locals” to reside in the SBAs for more than 28 days in any period of 12 months, except in accordance with a permit provided under that Ordinance. Once again, you may get a certificate of acknowledged house or a license, but the Administration only hardly ever grant giving these.

    More details.

    A few of the problems that property buyers experience are extremely comparable throughout Cyprus. The British High Commission is unable to get associated with private property issues or legal conflicts, however supports community associations that are devoted to dealing with the issues of property buyers.

    Associations.

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

    Legal recommendations.

    British residents impacted by property problems should take independent legal recommendations from local lawyers.

    Local cops.

    If you believe that you have undergone a property criminal activity, you need to make a statement to the local police. Remember to obtain a copy of the declaration and request the event number. Please note, there may be a time restriction in between the time of the supposed criminal offense and the time within which you make your problem.

    Cyprus Ombudsman (likewise referred to as Commissioner of Administration and Protection of Human Rights).

    The Cyprus Ombudsman acts in the service of citizens, consisting of foreign nationals, in order to safeguard their rights and freedom versus actions from any Cypriot administration. The Ombudsman has the power to challenge all bodies (subject to some restrictions) and authorities of the central government and regional administrations as well as anybody acting as representatives or partners of any of these administrations in the fulfilment or execution of public goals or services. Contact information are on their site.

    It is important to note that the Ombudsman may not step in under the following scenarios:.

    • whenever the general public administration has not been involved.
    • in case of conflicts or disputes in between individuals.
    • after one year from the minute when the citizen knew the events of his complaint.
    • in case of anonymous problems, without particular claims presenting bad faith or any claims that may harm legitimate rights of third parties.
    • in the event of non-conformity with the contents of the judicial ruling.
    • grievances versus attorneys.

    Grievances versus attorneys practising in the Republic of Cyprus ought to be resolved to:.

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

    Telephone: +357 22873300 Fax: +35722873013.

    Email: cybar3@cytanet.com.cy.

    Website: www.cyprusbarassociation.org.

    Complaints versus attorneys practicing in the north of Cyprus might be made in writing to the relevant regional ‘Bar Association’. There is a separate ‘Bar Association’ for each district.

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

    Contact information of regional ‘bar associations’:.

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

    Problems versus the legal system in the Republic of Cyprus

    Grievances against the legal system should be made to the Attorney General’s Office:.

    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 published suggestions(Link) on which UK authorities to contact if you believe you have actually been a victim of property scams.

    When you made your purchase you might wish to get in touch with the UK European Consumer Centre, if you were living in the UK. This is part of the European Customer Centres Network (ECC-Net) that has actually been established by the European Commission in co-operation with member states to help customers with cross-border disagreements. The UK European Consumer Centre gives info and guidance on problems with buying across borders and can arbitrate when problems arise if they think it might assist.

    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 is useful, please be aware that it is not meant to be the only assistance for potential buyers to follow when thinking about purchasing. In addition, we make no representation as to the quality or precision of the details which is readily available at the web addresses noted in this guide, nor can we accept any responsibility for the material that is hosted on them. We strongly advise that potential purchasers of property in Cyprus seek independent legal and monetary advice at all stages of their purchase.

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

    One key problem is property and the handling of pre-1974 Greek Cypriot title-owned property. Property owners and possible purchasers need to likewise consider that a future settlement of the Cyprus problem could have serious repercussions for property they acquire, consisting of the possible restitution of the property to its initial owner, in addition to compensation payments. Under the change, buying, selling, renting, promoting or mortgaging a property without the authorization of the owner (the individual whose ownership is registered with the Republic of Cyprus Land Pc registry, consisting of Greek Cypriots displaced from northern Cyprus in 1974) is a criminal offense. We strongly advise that prospective purchasers of property in Cyprus seek independent legal and financial recommendations at all stages of their purchase.

    Related Links:

    Useful Links:

    • Caution regarding property purchases in the occupied area of Cyprus(link)
    • Living in Cyprus(link)