The Cyprus Government has published its 2007 housing grants plan which covers locals, as well as all E.U. members. The plan covers large families (in excess of 3 children) and invalid people with no locational limits. It also refers to grants which are earmarked for certain small village communities all over Cyprus (e.g. for Paphos, it covers around 84 villages, including Ayia Varvara, Amargeti, Armou, Anarita, Goudi, Droushia, Neo Chorio, Tsada, Argaka etc), including villages which are already quite popular by the foreign market.
In order for someone to be eligible for the grants the applicant must:
• Have no other owned residence.
• There are no income criteria regarding people who wish to be located in the village communities earmarked, but in case of large families/invalid people there are, in the event that they buy/build a house outside the stipulated villages.
• The applicant must be less than 70 years old and in any case he must be able to repay the grant before he/she is 70 years old.
• A building permit must be in hand on the application date.
• The applicant must have received no other Governmental assistance for housing purposes.
• The maximum house extent is set at 230 sq.mts.
• The building works must have reached no more than the building’s frame/roof prior to application date.
• Foreign/E.U. members must be permanent residents in the Republic for at least 5 years.
• Single persons can also apply if they are over 35 years old.
The scheme suggests:
(i) A grant of up to £8.000 for the building/buying an apartment/house.
(ii) A loan of up to £48.000 with the 65% of the base interest charge subsidized depending on the family composition.
(iii) A grant of £4.000 and a loan of up to £6.000 for the maintenance/ extension/improvement of a house/flat.
In addition there are special provisions for co-habitation of families, i.e. parents with children. This assistance is offered to those who:
(i) Have no other house or are not in a financial position to cover the cost themselves.
(ii) The total annual income does not exceed £3.500 (one person) or £5.500 (2 persons).
(iii) A building permit is secured.
In these cases the assistance refers to:
(a) £5.000 for the construction of an added bedroom/bathroom.
(b) £7.500 as above plus a kitchen.
(c) £4.000 for improvement/repair.
An alternative to the financial help, the Governmental offers division of building plots and it covers the whole island, other than the Municipal areas.
• Those eligible are Cypriot citizens or E.U. members permanent residents (5 years continuous living in the island).
• The applicant must have a family.
• The applicant/his family must not have other residence or land within development areas or land close to them. He must be a “local” either by birth or by staying in the local community for at least 3 years (these categories will have a second priority).
• Must be permanent residents in the locality.
• Less than 50 years old.
• The income for a two persons family must be less than £9.620 p.a., for a 3 persons family, less than £10.150 and for a 4 persons family £11.770 etc.
The plots are offered for sale at market price less 25% and the applicant must pay 25% on signing, plus 10 yearly installments with interest 65% subsidized by the base rate.
Returning Cypriots from abroad to live here permanently, are also entitled for a rental subsidy for a period of 1 years (no financial criteria).
(More information on Government tel. 22871837).
We feel that the financial assistance provided by the State and in addition to those for energy saving, for preserved buildings etc, is quite a considerable assistance for everybody to consider. Time and patience is required however, since the Governmental red tape being what it is, will test your nerves but the financial help will be forthcoming.
By Antonis Loizou, FRICS
Antonis Loizou & Associates Ltd
Property Valuers – Project Managers