Last year we took delivery of a new property in Cyprus. It is a holiday flat at Kissonerga in Pathos. A couple of weeks ago, we received a bill from the developer for what he calls ‘Common Expenses’. We sent him an email asking him to tell us what this is for but he hasn’t replied. Can you help?
I suspect that the bill is for your contribution to the maintenance, insurance & repair of the building. This is how it works:
In Cyprus, buildings consisting of at least five self-contained units are considered in law as being ‘commonly owned’. Such buildings may include:
- Apartment blocks
- Terrace/town houses.
- Building complexes
If you own property in such a development, you are required to contribute to the insurance, maintenance and repair of the commonly owned parts of the building; in essence those parts that you share with the other owners.
Commonly owned buildings are required by law to have an Administrative Committee that regulates and manages relevant affairs. The Committee must insure and always keep insured the commonly owned building against fire, lightning, and earthquake for a sum corresponding to its replacement value.
Administrative Committees are often set up by the developer or an associated company to which Cyprus property buyers pay a proportionate annual fee to cover the costs of insurance, maintenance and repairs of the commonly owned parts of the building. These may include entrance halls, stairways, exterior walls, swimming pool, tennis courts, gardens etc. (whether you make use of them or not).The proportionate annual fee is based on the size of the property, which includes covered and uncovered balconies and verandahs, in relation to others in the complex. For example, if you apartment is 150m2 you will pay twice as much as someone whose apartment is only 75m2.