How to Purchase a Property in Cyprus (a Step-by-Step Guide)
The slow paced Mediterranean lifestyle, ideal climate and convenient location make the Republic of Cyprus a popular island for purchasing property; from young families to retirees. Whether you are looking to permanently relocate, or purchase an additional holiday home, Eltoma Property can assist you with the entire procedure.
Read on for a step by step guide on purchasing a property in Cyprus:
1. Finding Your Ideal Property
Eltoma Property can help you with this process, providing you with a list of properties according to your individual requirements regarding price range, ideal location and property type. Once you have narrowed down your selection, our expert property agents will arrange personal viewings and be on hand throughout the entire process to assist with all vital information about the property history and local area.
2. Documentation to Secure the Property
Once you have found the property you would like to purchase, a preliminary agreement needs to be signed and a deposit should be paid in order to reserve it. You may also see the preliminary agreement being referred to as a Reservation Agreement. Upon signing the required documentation, the property can then be officially taken off the market for conducting the necessary legal checks and clarification on the terms of the deal.
For this stage we would recommend appointing a Legal Representative or Service Provider who can take care of all legal requirements and recommend a suitable sales contract protecting the maximum interests of the buyer in full. Reservation deposits can vary depending on the property price and are typically 1-2% of the total cost. See more about our legal services.
3. Opening a Bank Account
At the same time the property is reserved, the buyer should look to open an account in a Cypriot bank for making the payments to the seller. Again, a Legal Representative or Service Provider can help you with this process. Click here for more details about opening a bank account in Cyprus.
4. Sales Agreement Entered Into
Once all the above steps have been successfully completed, the seller & buyer enter into a contract of sale which requires signing a legally binding contract. After the written contract has been agreed and signed, a Lawyer can then apply to the Cyprus Council of Ministers in order to obtain a permit used for purchasing the property; this is a document required for non-Cypriots and is normally a fairly easy form that won’t take much time to complete.
5. Ownership Rights Secured with the Land Registry
The next step involves the Legal Advisor submitting the contract to the Cyprus District Lands Office to formally register the purchase with the jurisdiction. The Lands Office will stamp the contract and record it in the official Land Registry. After this has been completed, this will effectively secure all ownership rights over your property until a separate Certificate of Ownership is issued.
6. Settlement of Payment Finalised
The payment for the property can be sent directly to the Seller’s bank account, however for increased security we would recommend using what is called an ESCROW bank account which offers a more protected method of payment, especially for cases where the property is under renovation or still being built. That way you can make payments in installments, as the construction develops. Most Service Providers offer these types of bank account services. Contact us for more information on setting up ESCROW accounts.
7. Transferal of Ownership Certificate
Finally, if the property owner has a Title Deed (otherwise known as an Ownership Certificate) for your property, the transferal of the Title Deed with the buyer can be completed straightaway. However, this is usually not the case. If the property is still under construction, or has recently been built, typically the developer (or seller) won’t have a separate ownership for the property and you may end up having to wait some time before you receive it. Until the time of issuance, your legal ownership rights over the property are held by the sales contract with the District Lands Office (see step 5). The application to the Lands Office to obtain the Title Deed can also be taken care of by a Legal Advisor or Service Provider.
Eltoma Property are here to make the entire process of purchasing a property as smooth as possible for you! Contact us for any further questions.