Cyprus Property Warning

I would like people to know how buying property in Cyprus can turn out to be a complete nightmare.

We have lived in Cyprus for over a year and want to sell up and move back to Scotland for personal reasons.

We bought a house off plan in 2003 and had a buyer who wanted to buy it, but discovered that on Nov 7 2003 the builder had taken a T500,000 mortgage on the land through a local bank and our contract was signed on the 21st November stating that there was no mortgages or any charges standing.

Our contract was registered on the 5th December and we were not advised of any outstanding mortgage. We would have been fools to have gone through with this sale if we had known. Since then in August 2004 a further T250,000 mortgage was registered, (we have a copy of this in black and white from Land Registry).

This is fraud in our eyes but in the eyes of some lawyers it is deemed to be a breach of contract.

Our lawyer sent the builder a letter but as usual he ignores this. All lawyers ever want to do is go to court and not much else, (this would take 3 years and the builder would probably suffer very little).

Lawyers do not seem to follow through after issuing a letter. We just want to sell the house but it is like we are sitting tenants who have paid a large sum of money over for the property but have no rights to it.

The builder wanted all his money last April for a house that wasn’t completed.

At this moment of time we can’t sell the house because the bank along with the builder has placed us in a position that selling is almost impossible.

Also the builder who is at the end of the day a lying cheating crook who acts like a mafia don, has been paid around T900,000 for the 6 bungalows (to our knowledge he has built 27 bungalows, although the mortgage is only on the 6).

The builder is still building houses in the area.

M.R., Paphos

Copyright © Cyprus Weekly July 7 2006