Latest Headlines

Property awarded to couple after legal battle

A BRITISH couple came very close to losing their €680,000 property at Ayia Thekla in Cyprus when their developer sold it to someone else behind their backs. According to Yiannos Georgiades, the couple’s present lawyer, the two Britons set up a company and bought the property in Ayia Thekla, which they planned to rent out. […]

A BRITISH couple came very close to losing their €680,000 property at Ayia Thekla in Cyprus when their developer sold it to someone else behind their backs.

According to Yiannos Georgiades, the couple’s present lawyer, the two Britons set up a company and bought the property in Ayia Thekla, which they planned to rent out. The price of the house was CYP 400,000 and they had filed a sale of contract with the Land Registry.

However the couple held back the last payment of CYP 23,000 because they claimed the developer, Lane Homes, had not yet fulfilled its obligations under the contract so they deposited the money with their former lawyers Pittadjis of Paralimni to hold until the contract was completed as a sign of goodwill that they intended to pay once the work was finished.

The couple had not taken possession of the house although they had paid CYP 377,000, almost the full amount.

Georgiades said that in March this year they were informed that someone was interfering with the locks on the house. This was followed by more news that some people from Scotland were going to buy the house.

In the meantime, the developers had filed a suit in court saying the British couple had defaulted on their payments, even though the money was with the lawyers, ready to hand over when the required work was finished.

The couple however never saw the court papers and didn’t know about the proceedings. In their absence, the judge issued an order for repossession and ordered the couple to withdraw their contract of sale within seven days.

There was no provision however for the return of the CYP 377,000 already paid.

Georgiades said he had to act fast to have the judgement set aside or the couple would lose the house they had practically paid for, and their money.

We filed quickly to set aside the judgement,” he said, adding that there was a clear case of abuse of the court in the processing of the case. “It was all really horrible,” Georgiades added.

He said the judge then tried to encourage a settlement, but the lawyer for the developer said he needed to consult with the developer’s other lawyers who turned out to be the same firm that was initially representing the couple, the Pittadjis law firm.

They claimed they represented the developer but not in this particular case,” Georgiades added. Even so, it was a clear conflict of interest he said.

He also said the developers had fiddled with emails to try and prove that the couple had knowledge of the initial court case. However Georgiades said they checked with the internet providers who confirmed the extra emails were not authentic. “This is all on record,” he said.

Finally the judge decided to stay the procedure until the case had been heard in civil court, and set aside the earlier judgement requiring them to withdraw their contract of sale from the Land Registry.”

The couple now has possession of the house.

Georgiades said the new buyers of the house are now exposed legally.

These people were not covered by a genuine sale,” he said. “It has also been reported as a crime that the developer sold the house twice.” Georgiades said the house was sold for the second time for CYP 550,000, which is CYP 150,000 more than the first couple bought it for.

Copyright © Cyprus Mail 2008

Readers' comments

Comments on this article are no longer being accepted.

Back to top