Cyprus: Buying Property In Cyprus

Last Updated: 28 June 2011
Article by Yiannos Georgiades

To read an updated version of this article please click here


Cyprus, which is the third largest island in the Mediterranean, is not over commercialised, has spectacular scenery, easy access and its enviable climate makes it a popular place to visit and live.

Acquisition of immovable property

The process of purchasing property in Cyprus by non-Cypriots is relatively simple compared to many other countries. This is because the Land Registry system (which was established in 1875 based originally on British standards) with its updates throughout the years is one of the most sophisticated in the world.

Permission to acquire immovable property

European citizens:

When Cyprus joined the European Union in May 2004, most of the procedural restrictions upon buying property were lifted for EU citizens and in May 2009, all of the remaining restrictions were lifted in relation to non-EU citizens.

Non-European citizens:

Under the current legislation, for immovable property to be registered in the name of a non-Cypriot purchaser, authorisation is required from the Council of Ministers, which is granted as a matter of course to all bona fide purchasers if there is proof that the purchase was made using foreign funds which were imported to Cyprus. The application must be submitted after the contract of sale is signed and it normally takes about 6-8 months to be issued. In the meantime, purchasers can take possession of their property without any restrictions and live in it or rent it out since they are the legal owners of the property according to the law.

Legal safeguards

When non–Cypriot purchasers decide to buy immovable property in Cyprus, they have the same rights as Cypriot citizens. The contract of sale signed between the Vendor and the purchaser binds both parties to perform according to their respective obligations. Upon the signing of the contract, the purchaser is liable to pay stamp duty (see below) and then, it is advisable for the contract of sale to be registered within 2 months of the contract date, at the District Land and Surveys Department in the region where the property is situated. This is because it provides additional safeguards for the purchasers and creates the so called "right to specific performance" in favour of the purchasers. By registering the contract of sale with the District Land and Surveys Department, the property is registered in the name of the purchasers until the transfer of title deeds can occur.

When the title deeds are issued, they are registered in the name of the purchaser and filed in the Registry archives, which are confidential and are not published or made public under any circumstances.

Contrary to the risks inherent in the purchase of the property in some countries, Cyprus has never been involved in the nationalisation of any sector of the economy or in the expropriation of property owned by non–Cypriots in line with the Cyprus government's efforts to create a favourable climate for such investments.

Stamp duty

Upon the signing of the contract of sale, the purchaser is liable to make a one-off stamp duty payment, depending on the contractual purchase price. Payment is due within 30 days of the contract being signed, otherwise a fine will be imposed.

Property value (EURO)

stamp duty (%)

Up to €170,860.14


Over €170,860.14


Transfer fees

Upon the transfer of the title deed to a FREEHOLD property and registration in the purchaser's name, the District Land and Surveys Department will charge transfer fees, which are based on the market value of the immovable property at the time of purchase and which must be paid once only by the purchaser. The rates are on a graduated scale and are calculated as follows:

Property value (EURO)

Transfer fee rate (%)

0 – €85,430.07




€170,861.85 and over


NB: For properties owned in joint names, eg. by a couple or two individuals, the transfer fees are charged on 50% of the property value for each (as the purchase value is divided into two parts), providing an advantage for any property value exceeding a value of €85,430.07.

Please see the following example:

For a property purchased for €153,774.12 in the name of one purchaser, the transfer fees payable are €5,980.10:

Property value €153,774.12

sole purchase transfer fees

Up to €85,430.07 @ 3%


Remaining €68,344.05 @ 5%


Total transfer fees


For a property purchased for €153,774.12 in the names of two purchasers, the transfer fees payable are €4,613.22:

Property value €153,774.12

joint purchase transfer fees

First €76,887.06 @ 3%


Second €76,887.06 @ 3%


Total transfer fees


Inheritance tax

Inheritance tax has been abolished and is no longer imposed in Cyprus.

VAT payable on property

Since Cyprus' accession to the European Union (on 1 May 2004), VAT on properties has been introduced. Properties, the town planning application for which was filed before 1 May 2004 are VAT-exempt.

Capital gains tax

Should the purchaser decide to sell the property, capital gains tax will be payable at the rate of 20% on the gain. However, the first €17,000.08 of the gain is tax-exempt. If the property is jointly owned by a couple, then €34,017.00 of the gain is tax-exempt.

In a case whereby the property has been used by the Vendor as a residence for at least 5 years prior to the sale, then up to €85,430.00 is tax-exempt.

Immovable property tax & local authority taxes and rates

Owners of immovable properties are subject to an annual Immovable Property Tax, which is based on the market value of their property as assessed on 1 January 1980. The rate of taxation is as follows:

value of property (EURO)

annual property tax (%)

Up to €170,860.15


From €170,860.15 to €427,150.36


From €427,150.36 to €854,300.72


Over €854,300.72


The above-stated rates are applicable only after separate title deeds have been transferred into the names of the purchasers through the District Land and Surveys Department.

NB: As immovable property tax is based on the value of the property in 1980, which is much lower than the current market value, the immovable tax for the majority of properties in Cyprus is approximately €85.43 - €170.86 per annum.

Purchasers are also liable for minor taxes such as municipal or village taxes, refuse collection, street lighting, sewerage etc. and they vary from €85.43 to €256.29 per annum depending on the size of the property, its area, etc.

Double taxation treaties

Cyprus has Double Taxation Treaties with many European and other countries1. The main purpose of these treaties is to avoid the double taxation of income earned in any of these countries.

Selling of property

In case the purchasers want to sell the property before the title deeds are issued they have the absolute right to do so as they are deemed to be the beneficial owners of the Property. The contract between them and the Vendor will be cancelled and a new one between the Vendor and the new purchaser will be issued.

Property Finance

According to the guidelines of the Central Bank of Cyprus, the lending ceiling for the purchase of property by a non-permanent resident of Cyprus is set at up to 60% of the forced sale value of the property. The purchaser is required to contribute 40% of the market value of the property but depending on the specific request of the purchaser with the required security, this percentage may be lower. The loan period is usually for up to 25 years but this can be extended to 30 years in certain cases.

Requirements for a loan application with regard to individuals

  • Photocopy of the applicant's passport (the page with the photograph and personal information)
  • A reference letter from the applicant's bank abroad.
  • Evidence of the applicant's income (copies of the last 3 months' salary advices/copy of the last year's tax clearance certificate/certificate from their employer or accountant confirming their annual income/the last 3 years' audited accounts, etc.)
  • Copies of bank statements for the last 3 months.
  • Copy of the contract of sale (duly stamped with the required stamp duty and deposited with the Land Registry).
  • Copies of payments already made by the applicant against the purchase price.
  • Copy of a utility bill (eg. telephone bill, electricity bill, etc.)
  • Source of contribution
  • Copy of the title deed of the property to be purchased.
  • Copy of the application/approval from the District Officer for the acquisition of immovable property in Cyprus by a non–resident.

Services provided

Our law firm can handle all legal formalities on behalf of the prospective purchaser and guide them through all the stages of property acquisition.

Specifically, our services include, inter alia:

  1. Preparing the contract of sale (drafting and printing)
  2. Visiting the Department of Inland Revenue to stamp the contract of sale.
  3. Visiting the District Land and Surveys Department to deposit the contract of sale.
  4. Preparing the application to the Council of Ministers with supporting documents and follow up.
  5. Visiting the District Land and Surveys Department to effect the transfer of the property.
  6. Obtaining authority from the Central Bank.
  7. Amending the contract of sale.
  8. Cancelling the contract of sale, where necessary.


1. Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Malta, Mauritius, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Sweden, Syria, Tajikistan, United Kingdom, United States, Serbia.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:
  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.
  • Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.
    If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here
    If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here

    Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

    Use of

    You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


    Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

    The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


    Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

    • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
    • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
    • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

    Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

    Information Collection and Use

    We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

    We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

    Mondaq News Alerts

    In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


    A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

    Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

    Log Files

    We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


    This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

    Surveys & Contests

    From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


    If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


    From time to time Mondaq may send you emails promoting Mondaq services including new services. You may opt out of receiving such emails by clicking below.

    *** If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here .


    This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

    Correcting/Updating Personal Information

    If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

    Notification of Changes

    If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

    How to contact Mondaq

    You can contact us with comments or queries at

    If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.

    By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions