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Overseas sales remain steady in November

The Cyprus overseas property market remained steady last month with sales during the first eleven months of this year maintaining their 8 percent increase on the numbers sold during the first eleven months of 2009.

ACCORDING to the Land Registry figures published earlier today, the number of contracts of sale deposited at Land Registries throughout Cyprus on behalf of overseas buyers during November was 179 compared to 191 in October and 158 in November 2009.

Last month, property sales in the Districts of Paphos and Limassol did well, while sales fell back in Larnaca, Famagusta and Nicosia.

The best performing District was Paphos, where overseas sales during November went up 58% compared to last year, followed by a 26% increase in Limassol.

However, overseas sales in the other Districts fell. In Larnaca they were down 23%, in Famagusta they were down 4%, while sales in Nicosia fell 3% compared to November last year.

Nationally, the number of properties sold to overseas buyers during the first 11 months of 2010 was 1,772; up 8% on the 1,638 sold during the same period last year.

Sales of Cyprus property to overseas buyers - November 2010

Source: Department of Lands and Surveys

Although it is too soon to talk about a recovery in Cyprus’ overseas property market, there are definite signs of an improvement.

Readers' comments

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  • Matt says:

    10 years from today, people on web forums will still be asking the same question…

    “When am I going to legally get my Title Deeds”

    and the answer will be….keep on waiting !

    There are Stats, more Stats…and just Dam Lies.

  • @Costas

    The government announced figures back in 2008. Over the preceding three and a half years, 4,400 properties were transferred to non-Cypriots while the transfers of a further 29,949 were still in the pipeline.

    So the average number of transfers that took place each year on behalf of foreign buyers was 1,257.

    If you divide the number of transfers outstanding, 29,949, by the number of transfers that take place each year the answer you get will tell you how long it will take the Land Registry to process the backlog (assuming they continue to transfer titles at the same rate).

    The answer is nearly 24 years!

    So the average time it takes foreigners to get Title Deeds to their property is half that number – 12 years.

    One thing to bear in mind is that a single Contract of Sale could include several properties (eg. a block of 20 apartments). So that would result in 20 transfers.

    I am sure that the Department of Lands & Surveys could produce an analysis – and they may already be doing this so that the Interior Ministry can track progress. But whether they would make that information public is another matter.

  • Costas Apacket says:

    Hi Nigel,

    Further to my last post, if the Land Registry knows how many sale contracts have been deposited and the number of Title Deeds transferred, they must have an outstanding total of how many properties are without Title Deeds.

    If they were to publish this figure and then updated it on, say, a quarterly basis using the difference between sales contracts deposited and Title Deeds issued within that quarter we could all see if the total of properties without Title Deeds was being reduced or increased.

    E.g. Running Total + New SC’s Deposited – Title Deeds Transferred = New Running Total.

    Surely this would help the Cyprus Government’s credibility if they are telling everyone including the EU that they are taking this issue seriously and putting in extra resources to tackle the backlog?

  • Costas Apacket says:

    Hi Nigel,

    Thanks for the info.

    So if the date is recorded when the original Sales Contract for a particular property is deposited at the Land Registry, and the date is recorded when the Title Deed is transferred for this particular property can the Land Registry calculate the average time this takes for all properties?

    Do we have a monthly / Quarterly percentage figure for Sale Contracts Deposited vs Title Deeds Transferred?

    Could the people in charge at the Land Registry use this information to set performance targets to improve the situation with the Title Deed transfer backlog?

    Is this all too logical for Cyprus?

  • Maxwell Hannah says:

    Dear Nigel
    If the Cypriots won`t even obey a simple Law like waiting for Traffic Lights to change from Red to Green before Blatantly going through the Red Light ,and if a Policeman can also do this ( I have seen one do it ) what chance do we Foreigners have of getting Title Deeds ,which is just common sense and is done everywhere else in the world when you buy a House and automatically get the Deeds.except CYPRUS , I Have been told I will get My deeds at the end of this Year ?????? just have to wait and see , If the Government cant or wont cooperate , what can the EU do , NOTHING .
    Thanks for listening
    Regards Maxwell Hannah

  • @Peter – This statistic measures the number of Contracts of Sale deposited at Land Registries in favour of non-Cypriot buyers.

    The number of transfers of title are recorded separately, but they are not classified into local and non-Cypriot buyers.

  • peter says:

    How can a property be sold or transferred without a title being created in the name of the buyer or transferee?

    Without this the transaction did not complete and therefore has no business appearing in an official statistic.

  • @Costas – unfortunately no.

    The Land Registry publishes the number of property transfers each month, but there is no way you can match the two sets of figures.

  • Costas Apacket says:

    Nigel, is any information available or published anywhere about how many of these properties that are sold to overseas buyers have Title Deeds?

  • The views expressed in readers' comments are not necessarily shared by the Cyprus Property News.


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