The process of buying property in Cyprus is a fairly simple one and is grounded in English law. A non-EU members can purchase an apartment, house, villa, or piece of land for personal use with a maximum area of 4,013 sq.m (43,195 sq.ft).
Upon finding the property you wish to purchase, you’ll need to reserve it by paying a deposit in whatever amount is agreed upon with the owner. We strongly recommend using the services of a qualified agent/lawyer, who will perform the property search on your behalf, verify that the property/land belongs to the selling party and isn’t still being paid out on a loan, ensure that the necessary planning and building permissions exist, and review the purchase agreement you’ll be signing to make certain that it’s fair and legally binding.
After reserving your desired property, your agent will provide you with a purchase agreement compiled with the intent to fully protect your interests. Once you approve the agreement, it can be signed by all parties. Since the agreement will be bound to Cyprus law, it’s advisable that it be signed in Cyprus so that your agent/lawyer can make sure that it’s correctly executed and valid.
It’s a good idea to open a bank account at a Cyprus bank on the same day in order to transfer payment to the seller of the property in a timely manner. Your agent will assist you in this matter as well.
After the agreement is signed and the relevant payment is transferred to the seller, your agent will take the agreement to the local tax office to pay stamp duty and have revenue stamps applied to the original document. The stamp duty must be paid within one month from the date the purchase agreement is signed. Failing to do so results in a fine that grows for every day payment isn’t transferred.
For a non-EU member to purchase property in Cyprus, they must seek permission from the Council of Ministers, though this is more of a formality than anything, so as long as the application is filed in a reasonable amount of time after the agreement is signed, everything should go smoothly.
After stamp duty is paid, your agent will submit the original purchase agreement to the District Land Office in order to officially register the purchase. The land office will stamp the agreement and record it in the Land Registry. This secures the buyer’s ownership of the property until a title deed is issued in his or her name and can be done no later than two months from the date the purchase agreement of signed.
Once the purchase agreement is filed with the Land Registry and the permission is granted, the buyer can apply to transfer ownership from the seller. In Cyprus, transferring freehold property ownership entails paying property transfer fees, so keep that in mind.
Should you have any additional questions, or if you’re looking for qualified specialists to whom you can entrust your real estate dealings in Cyprus, look no further than our experienced team. Feel free to reach out to us at any time, and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible