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Property sales surge (Update)

Cyprus property sales surgePROPERTY sales in Cyprus surged by 54% in February compared to the same month last year according to official figures issued by the Department of Lands & Surveys.

This 54% rise in February follows a 2% rise in January and a 13% rise in December 2015.

February saw a total of 501 contracts for the sale of commercial and residential properties and land (building plots and fields) being deposited at Land Registry offices across the island; the highest monthly figure recorded since May 2014 when 551 contracts were deposited.

From Land Registry figures available today (March 23) of those 501 contracts, 86% (442) were deposited by domestic (Cypriot) purchasers, while 14% (59) were deposited by overseas (non-Cypriot) purchasers. It is clear that the surge in property sales is due solely to increased demand from the domestic market.

Sales increased in all districts, with Limassol leading the way with an 85% increase in sales compared with February last year. Sales in Nicosia rose 76%, while those in Larnaca, Famagusta and Paphos rose by 52%, 30% and 18% respectively.

During the first two months of 2016 sales have risen 28% to reach 828. This exceeds the number of sales during January and February of 2013 that preceded the island’s bailout.

Total Property Sale Transactions – 2015/2016 Comparison

DistrictYearJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Nicosia2015464583888661603765646054
201654
79

Famagusta2015162717172133451430293342
201622
35          
Larnaca2015907198676811195758587111114
201678
108          
Limassol2015959716011513513515687114166137169
201692
179          
Paphos201574859494951241408891117105134
201681
100          
Totals
2015321325452381405464496301385463446513
2016327
501          

This significant surge in demand for property may be attributed to lower lending rates being offered by the banks and simpler procedures for granting loans, together with an improving economic climate and consumer confidence.

In the coming year we expect to see structural changes implemented to accelerate the issuance of Title Deeds. Whether this will enable Title Deeds to be issued by the time a purchaser takes delivery of a property remains to be seen; but things are moving in the right direction.

Domestic sales

Property sales to the domestic (Cypriot) market in February rose a startling 119% compared to February 2015, with sales reaching 442 compared with 202 in February last year.

Sales rose in all districts with Famagusta leading the way with sales up by a massive 1550%. Sales in Limassol rose 109% and those in Paphos rose 108%, while property sales in Larnaca and Nicosia rose by 102% and 94% respectively.

Cyprus Domestic Property Sale Transactions – 2015/2016 Comparison

DistrictYearJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Nicosia2015393671747458563655605044
201645
70

Famagusta2015921616930281425242441
20162033          
Larnaca2015774991404582606253598181
20166799          
Limassol201571771479086100123658112782123
201673161          
Paphos2015393886643463836447927189
20166879          
Totals
2015235202411284248333350241261352308378
2016273442          

Domestic sales during the first two months of 2016 are up 64% compared with the first two months of last year with sales reaching 715 compared to last year’s figure of 437.

Overseas sales

In contrast with domestic sales, property sales to the overseas (non-Cypriot) market fell 52% in February compared with February 2014 with a mere 59 properties being sold compared with the 123 sold in the same period last year.

The fall in value of Sterling against the Euro and its further predicted decline in value should the UK decide to leave the European Union in the forthcoming referendum will have dissuaded many Britons from buying. Also property prices in Cyprus are still well above their main Europen competitors – Spain and France.

With the exception of sales in the capital Nicosia, where sales held steady compared to last year, the fell in all other districts.

Sales during February in Famagusta fell 92% compared to the same month last year and by 59% in Larnaca. Meanwhile, sales Paphos fell by 55% and dales in Limassol fell by 55%.

Cyprus Overseas Property Sale Transactions – 2015/2016 Comparison

DistrictYearJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Nicosia2015791214123411041010
20169
9

Famagusta2015725111231705591
20162 2          
Larnaca201513227272329351332283033
201611 9          
Limassol2015242013254935332233395546
201619 18          
Paphos201535478306161572444353445
201613 21          
Totals
2015321325452381405464498301385463446513
201654 59          

Overseas sales during the first two months of 2016 have fallen 46% compared with the first two months of last year with sales falling to 113 compared to last year’s figure of 209.

Cyprus Property Sale Transactions 2000 – 2016

YearOverseas SalesDomestic SalesPercentage
Overseas Sales
Total
Sales
200045012,2143.6%12,664
20011,20712,8498.6%14,056
20022,54814,11115.3%16,659
20033,98115,29420.7%19,275
20045,38411,94731.1%17,331
20056,48510,10639.1%16,591
20068,3558,59849.3%16,953
200711,2819,96453.1%21,245
20086,6368,03145.2%14,667
20091,7616,40921.6%8,170
20102,0306,56823.6%8,598
20111,6525,36623.5%7,018
20121,4764,79323.5%6,269
20131,0172,75027.0%3,767
20141,1933,33426.4%4,527
20151,3493,60327.2%4,952
2016 (Feb)
11371513.6%828
Totals
56,918136,65229.4%193,570