Buying a Property in Cyprus

Due Diligence of the Property

The conveyance process can be complex, and it is important to work with an advocate to ensure that all the necessary documents are prepared and the proper due diligence for the property is concluded. The purchaser through his legal advisor should request the recent Tittle Deed, recent search Certificate, in case of a property under construction Planning and Building Permit. The Lawyer shall review the documents in order to find out of any potential encumbrances that could affect ownership rights on the use or transfer of property such is a lien, a mortgage, a covenant or a Memo and other submitted sales agreements.

Reservation Agreement

The easiest way to secure the purchase of the Property is the execution of a Reservation Agreement. The Reservation Agreement usually requires a small amount of money, between 3% and 5% of the total purchase price that is payable by the Purchaser to the Seller for the reservation of the Property, simultaneously with execution of the Reservation Agreement. Such an agreement also means that this property will be put on hold for a pre-defied period of time, until the Sale and Purchase Agreement will be signed, and it describes in general the main terms and conditions agreed to be included in the Sale and Purchase Agreement.

Sale and Purchase Agreement or Assignment Agreement

The drafting and execution of a Sale and Purchase Agreement is concluded between the Seller being either a ‘developer’ and the Purchaser OR if the current owner has title deeds for the Immovable Property, then between the current owner and the Purchaser. The Sale and Purchase agreement regulates all the important agreed terms and conditions for the sale of the property such are the purchase price, the method of payment and the transfer of the property in the name of the purchaser. An Assignment Agreement is concluded when there is not issued a separate Tittle Deed of the Property and usually is for the cases of resale by a Seller who originally purchased the Property by a developer, and the separate Tittle Deed is expecting to be issued. Under an Assignment Agreement the Seller assigns his rights, obligations and benefits of the original Sale and Purchase contract with the developer to the New Purchaser.

Submission of the Agreement

Both Sale and Purchase Agreement and Assignment agreement after the payment of the stamp duty for the Agreement to the Tax Department, can be filed to the District Land Registry for Specific Performance purposes.

Necessary Permit for non EU-citizens

Non-EU citizens can purchase immovable property, nevertheless, permission must be sought from the Council of Ministers by written application, which must be submitted by the non-EU citizen purchaser after the contract of sale is executed.

Transfer of the Property

The transfer of the property can be completed only if there is a separate tittle deed of the Property. In case the tittle deed is expected to be issued, the Seller can only transfer shares of the land to the Purchaser, until the separate tittle deeds to be issued.

In order for the Seller to be able to transfer the Property to the Purchaser he has to obtain and present to the Land Department a number of documents such is tax clearances (for capital gains), Title Deed, Sale and Purchase Agreement with stamp duty, confirmations for the competent authorities for the payment of outstanding amount in relation to the Property.

During the appointment for the transfer of the Property at the Land Department, both parties must be present in order to declare that the Seller received the purchase price, and he wishes to transfer the Property and the Purchaser to accept the transfer of the Property on his name. The process of the transfer is completed by the calculation and payment of the transfer fees by the Purchaser to the Land Department. The transfer fees are calculated based on the agreed purchase price or the valuation price.