Are you looking to sell property in Cyprus? Cyprus has always been a popular overseas property destination, and continues to remain so today. However, the global economic recession of 2008 had a huge impact on the tiny island nation. It was a bad time for all concerned, as property prices had dropped by 50% to 65% across Cyprus.
Indeed, 2011 and 2012 saw the real estate market collapse, which led to many foreign investors leaving the country. Things have improved by a lot since then, but there is still a long way to go before property prices get back to the highs of 2007.
In fact, home sales in Cyprus have jumped by 20% in 2015, largely due to increase in interest from British buyers. The regions in Cyprus that did well are Larnaca, where home sales rose by 45%, Paphos at 14%, Nicosia at 23%, Limassol at 6% and Farnagusta at 12%.
So, foreign investors are returning to Cyprus. But why did they leave? It’s not just the global recession that led to many foreign investors leaving Cyprus in the first. They were put off by the complicated laws in Cyprus and the bureaucratic inefficiency which made registering title deeds in the country an extremely frustrating process for foreign buyers.
Nobody likes dealing with the Land Registry Office in Cyprus, where files get stuck for 5 or 6 years. The government has indeed taken note of this and made several changes to the laws in Cyprus. The new rules came into effect in 2015 and the process of property registration was changed completely. Today, homeowners can sell their properties much faster than ever before and new buyers get their title deeds in a matter of weeks, not years, as it was earlier.
There have been other positive changes as well. The transfer tax on property transactions have been reduced by half, to 3 to 8 percent, depending on the size of the property. The government has since gotten rid of the immovable property tax and inheritance tax, which nobody really wanted in the first place.
The best news to have come out of Cyprus is that there will be no capital gains tax charged on properties that were bought before 2016. This is a big change, because earlier, capital gains tax in Cyprus was fixed at 20 percent – which was really bad for sellers. Now you get to keep all of your profits from the sale of your property in Cyprus. This is very reassuring indeed for sellers.
Cyprus also has a Golden Visa scheme. The fact that Cyprus is a part of the European Union makes it very attractive to wealthy individuals from China, Russia and other emerging nations. Cyprus offers European citizenship to anyone who invests 2.5 million EUR or more in the country.
The Russians used to be the most prominent investors in Cyprus. They like the picture perfect climate, the vast coastline, the sandy beaches, the clean air, the friendly people and the laid back lifestyle. But the recent decline in the Russian economy and the fall of the Rouble has decreased the Russian interest somewhat.
Today, the British dominate the property market in Cyprus. Most UK nationals who buy homes in Cyprus tend to be in their 50s and 60s and looking for a quiet place with a relaxed lifestyle to spend their retirement.
Cyprus serves as an ideal overseas property destination for many. So the demand for properties in Cyprus is picking up, and with capital gains tax being abolished, there’s never been a better time to sell a property in Cyprus.