ACCORDING to the latest figures from the Department of Lands and Surveys, property sales were up in March by 37% compared to last year and by 31% over the whole of the first quarter.
During the first quarter of 2010 the number of contracts of sale amounted to 2,086 compared to 1,596 during the same period last year; an increase of 31%.
Although overall sales are up, foreign buyers are still holding back. With the exception of Famagusta, where sales were up 39% during the first quarter of this year, foreign buyers have yet to return in any great numbers to the key tourist areas of Paphos, Larnaca and Limassol.
However, foreigners are buying in the capital, Nicosia, where sales during the first quarter are up 169% compared to last year. But it is likely that these will be business acquisitions as Nicosia is not a destination favoured by tourists and holidaymakers.
But there are some encouraging signs in Paphos and Limassol where sales during March exceeded those of last year.
Pundits believe that during 2010 the Cyprus real estate market will stabilise after a period of uncertainty and doubt. The property industry is also hoping that the long-awaited changes to Planning and Title Deed legislation will help restore investor confidence in the market.
As previously reported, some property developers are developing new marketing strategies in the hope of attracting a more up-market overseas clientele.