Who can buy property in Cyprus?
Cyprus is well-known for its attractive real estate options. There are no restrictions for EU citizens when buying property. People from 3rd countries are generally also allowed to buy immovable property, but need to get permission from the Council of Ministers. This process usually involves filling in an application and submitting it together with sales documents and should not take longer than a month.
Cyprus also offers a permanent residency program with a minimum investment of €300,000 to real estate. After 5 years of living in Cyprus, a permanent resident can also apply for citizenship.
Do the research
Even though Cyprus is not a very large country, it’s necessary to familiarize yourself with the real estate market and different regions in Cyprus. The regions offer very different experiences, thus everyone should be able to find a property they like.
- Nicosia - The capital and largest city of Cyprus. Being divided into Greek and Turkish sectors, it’s a city of contrasts. The medieval city center is surrounded by a modern metropolis and Ledra street offers a vibrant atmosphere with its abundance of cafes and shops.
- Paphos - A city full of mythology and history is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Famous for the Tombs of the Kings and being the birthplace of Aphrodite. It has a thriving arts scene and a wonderful harbor.
- Limassol - The second largest city on the island and a popular tourist destination, known for its lively nightlife, beaches and cosmopolitan atmosphere. Boasts a stunning promenade along the Mediterranean and is a melting pot of different cultures easily visible from its diverse culinary culture.
To find properties online, visit these portals:
Getting a mortgage in Cyprus as a foreigner is possible. Ofcourse, there are not as many options as for citizens and residents, but there are some options to choose from. The interest rates are reasonable (starting from 2% and up), but in most cases the banks are willing to finance around 50% of the total value of the property.
Visit properties and make an offer
Once you have determined the region/city where you would like to purchase a property, it’s time to get busy online or to find a real estate agent. If you have found a suitable property, it’s highly recommended to visit it to assess it in person.
When you have found a suitable property, make an offer through the representing real estate agent. If the offer is accepted, usually a small reservation fee (around €5,000) is paid. The property is then taken off the market for a before-agreed amount of time and the sale price is fixed. If the sale is finalized, the reservation fee will be deducted from the purchase price.
Due Diligence and Sales Contract
After the offer has been made and any reservation fees paid (if applicable), it’s necessary to hire a local lawyer to do due diligence on the property. It’s not uncommon for properties to be under dispute of ownership or have other problems, thus it’s important to be very thorough in this stage. You can expect the legal fees to be around 1% of the final purchase price.
If everything is good from a legal perspective, the seller’s agent usually draws up a sales contract and will send it to your lawyer for review. Once contracts are signed and stamped the deal will be registered at the Land Registry Office and the remainder of the purchase price will be paid according to the agreement.
After this, if necessary, the buyer applies for the purchase permit (for non-EU nationals). Once the permit is secured, the title deed can be registered in the buyer’s name in the Land Registry Office.
Property Buying Costs and Taxes in Cyprus
TRANSACTION COSTS AND FEES
|3.00% - 8.00%
|0.15% - 0.20%
|Real Estate Agent Fee
|3.00% - 5.00%
|Costs paid by buyer
|3.15% - 8.20%
|Costs paid by seller
|3.00% - 5.00%
|ROUNDTRIP TRANSACTION COSTS
|6.15% - 13.20%
|Source: Global Property Guide