Cyprus is a beautiful island which attracts visitors and people looking to buy property. It has a unique blend of old and new and of course is blessed with year round sunshine making it the ideal location for those that love a relaxed outdoor lifestyle.
Over the years the island has seen a great deal of development and has a fantastic array of properties on offer, from modern luxury beach front villas and city centre apartments, to traditional stone houses in quiet mountain villages.
There are many reputable developers and property agents, but as always there are some untrustworthy sellers, so the key to buying property in Cyprus safely is to seek the proper legal advice and be prepared.
Unlicensed Estate Agents
As the real estate market in Cyprus has boomed, many agents are unlicensed and lack qualifications. Consumers need to be aware of who to deal with and always ask for proof of accreditation.
All real estate agents in Cyprus should be qualified, licensed, registered and bound by the strict codes of practice as laid down by the Cyprus professional association of real estate agents. This offers buyers protection as you can claim against the governing body if you are dissatisfied in any way. If you work with an unlicensed estate agent then there is no protection if things go wrong.
Useful Advice For Buying A Property In Cyprus
Take Your Time – start planning what type of property you would like and where in Cyprus you wish to look. The more specific you can be, the better the service you will receive from your agents.
Plan Your Trip – if you are travelling to Cyprus to view properties, research agents on the internet first and look for accreditation and referrals from satisfied buyers. Then book an appointment in advance rather than just turning up.
Go for Cyprus Companies - companies not based in Cyprus will not be licensed to buy and sell property in Cyprus. There are many websites that offer property listings which are great for researching prices and availability, but when it comes time to buy, look for an established Cyprus real estate agent that speaks your language.
Commission – any commission that must be paid on completion to the agent is payable by the vendor, not the buyer, and should be built into the price of the property.
Experience Counts – choose an experienced agent as they will often be better connected and have more favourable terms with developers. They should also act on your behalf when negotiating for the best price on a property and will have the expertise to know when a fair deal has been achieved.
Property Title - One of the main things you must check is that you have good title to the property and the land it stands on. As in most other countries, every property in Cyprus must have title deeds. With off-plan properties these will not be available until the property is finished and then there may be a delay. Ensure you have an insurance clause against this in the contract otherwise you will not be able to move into your new home until the developer has produced the deeds.
Mortgage – many developers in Cyprus mortgage the land they build on. It is essential you know whether there is a mortgage on the land of your property. If there is you must obtain a waiver from the mortgagee to agree to release the property once the deeds are issued.
The bottom line is that Cyprus is a fantastic place to buy property, but as in all countries when making such a significant investment, do your homework and if in doubt - walk away!