Consider this advise while buying a property or a timeshare in Cyprus.
If you’re thinking of buying a property in Cyprus, keep in mind that the legal system and procedures may differ significantly from what you’re used to in the UK. This information is meant to be used as guidance when acquiring a property or timeshare in Cyprus.
The best advice for buying a property in Cyprus
- When it comes to buying and renting out property, do your homework and obey the rules in your area.
- Always acquire written confirmation of what was agreed upon during any negotiations, and always demand a paper (rather than an electronic) receipt for any money paid.
- Verify that the seller or property developer has the property or land’s title deeds and may transfer them to you. Check sure the title deeds for the property in question exist before buying new or partially built from a developer.
- Verify that the property or land’s deeds have not been used as security for any loans.
- Check to see whether the owner has any overdue utility bills, local tax requests, or other obligations that you may be responsible for if you buy the property.
- Verify that all utilities, such as water, sewage, and electricity, are connected and ready to use.
- Before buying, speak with other property owners in the area or on the development to see if there are any difficulties you should be aware of (such as floods in winter, lack of water or electricity supplies in summer)
- Request that the developer show you some of the projects that he or she has done, and speak with property owners in these developments to see if they have experienced any issues.
- Determine if the developer has any outstanding commitments to utility providers for the provision of water, sewage, electricity, and other services to the development.
Consider making a will in the country where you hold your Cyprus property to ensure that individuals you want to inherit your property and assets do so, as inheritance laws in Cyprus may differ from those in the UK. After you’ve completed your due diligence, ask yourself if you’re confident that you can proceed with the acquisition of the property in question without facing any issues. If not, double-check everything.
Seek legal guidance from a third party
Many property owners have troubles because they did not seek independent legal advice and instead relied on lawyers and translators/interpreters who were recommended by the estate agency or developer and, in some circumstances, acted for both sides. Appoint an independent English-speaking lawyer with experience in property sales who is also licensed to practice.
Check to see if your lawyer is covered by professional indemnity insurance.
Make use of a freelance translator/interpreter
If you don’t speak the language of the country where you want to buy, make sure that all contracts and essential papers are translated by an impartial translation, and that you have an interpreter with you at all meetings. Use a translation or interpreter who has been recommended by the agent or lawyer with caution.
Do your homework: examine and compare a variety of products and services offered by various lending institutions. Do not automatically accept the seller’s or their agent’s mortgage recommendation. Inquire with the lender if you have any questions about the terms and conditions.
Look for the mortgage that is best suited to your talents and requirements. There are a variety of mortgages available, and you should pay close attention to the interest rate and payback length, as well as the expenses for setting up the mortgage, early repayment, and cancellation fees.
Make certain you completely comprehend the mortgage agreement before you sign it.
Consider the impact of local currency fluctuations versus the euro, as well as how any changes may affect your interest rate increases on your repayments.
There will be a variety of extra charges besides the purchase price when acquiring a property in Cyprus, just as there will be if you were buying a property in another country.
- Fees for a financial adviser to handle your tax affairs in both Cyprus and the United States. If the property is sold, you may be liable for tax.
- a chartered surveyor or a quantity surveyor’s fees
- Fees for a mortgage broker, an arrangement or opening charge, and an administrative cost for the bank to appoint a representative to manage payment of taxes and inscription of the title in the property register are all examples of mortgage fees.
- Fees for foreign bank transfers should be discussed with your bank ahead of time.
- Fee for bankers’ drafts and bank-guaranteed checks, which you should discuss with your bank ahead of time.
- costs for obtaining a power of attorney if one is needed
- Costs of furniture, shipping, and insurance
- Fees for making a will, which may be required in some countries.
- Fees for translation
- Fees for water, sewage, power, and other utilities
Following the purchase of the property, there will be a variety of continuing fees, which may include:
- Property tax on an annual basis
- Fees for garbage collection and mains drainage
- Non-resident income tax or income tax
- If your home is part of a bigger estate development, you may have to pay community fees.
Buying a property before it is built
Buying an off-the-plan property entails a larger level of risk than buying a property home.
There are a few things to keep in mind if you’re thinking about buying an off-plan property or one that’s still being built:
- Make no payments to the developer or anybody else unless you have a bank guarantee.
- If the construction is not started or completed within the deadline mentioned in the contract, or if the habitation certificate is not obtained, make sure the sales contract you sign with the developer indicates the developer’s commitment to reimburse all advanced money plus interest to the purchaser.
- Before making any payments on the property, double-check the terms of the bank guarantee.
- Before making any payments, make sure the financial institution is authorized to give financial assurances in the jurisdiction. Please confirm this information with an independent local lawyer/financial adviser.
- Keep copies of any receipts stating the precise amount you have paid when making stage payments.
- Keep copies of all documents related to the property purchase and the developer’s responsibilities in case the property isn’t finished and you need to execute the bank guarantee.
If the developer has broken the contract and you wish to cancel it, get independent legal advice.
What to do if something goes wrong
Those who have been duped
If you suspect you have been a victim of fraud and do not have an insurance policy or bank guarantee, you should get independent legal counsel before filing a lawsuit in court.