WHILE property sales in February continued to decline, it appears that the rate of decline may be slowing and improvements were seen in Paphos where sales to both domestic and overseas buyers increased compared to February last year.
Overall, property sales in Cyprus fell in February with a total of 352 contracts deposited at Land Registries across the island compared with the 486 deposited in February 2012; a fall of 28 per cent.
Of those 352 contracts, 69.6% per cent (245) were in favour of Cypriot buyers and 30.4 per cent (107) were in favour of overseas buyers.
With the exception of Paphos, where overall sales jumped from the 69 recorded in February 2011 to 128 (an increase of 85.5 per cent), sales fell in all other areas of the island compared to 2011.
Last month Cyprus elected a new President, Nicos Anastasiades, and with him comes the hope of a swift conclusion of a bailout deal with the troika and end to the island’s economic uncertainty.
Overall 125 fewer properties were sold in February than in February last year; a fall of 34%.
Nicosia was hardest hit with 74 fewer properties being sold (-62%). Sales in Famagusta fell by 15 (-54%), in Limassol they were 64 fewer sales (-50%), while in Larnaca sales fell by 3 (-5%).
Sales in Paphos jumped from 38 in February 2011 to 69 last month; an increase of 82%.
In the first two months of 2013 sales to the domestic market stood at 548 compared with the 1,067 sold during the first two months of 2012; a drop of 519 (-34%).
Cyprus-wide sales to the overseas property market fell by 9 (-8%) in February compared with February last year, but were buoyed up by sales in Paphos, where much effort has been put into enticing overseas investors from China.
Famagusta recorded the lowest fall in sales with just 2 properties being sold to overseas buyers in February down from the 10 sold in February last year (-80%).
Nicosia saw sales drop by 54%, with the number of properties sold falling from 28 in February 2012 to 13 last month.
Larnaca recorded a fall in sales from 22 in February 2012 to 13 (-41%), while in Limassol sales fell from 25 to 20 (-20%).
Sales in Paphos made significant headway with sales up 90%, increasing from 31 in February 2012 to 59. Although the Department of Lands and Surveys does not publish the nationalities of foreign buyers we suspect that the majority of these sales would have been made to buyers from China following exhibitions in the country promoting Cyprus as a destination for overseas investment.
During the first two months of 2013, sales of property to the overseas market stood at 179 compared with 222 sales during the first two months of last year; a fall of 43 (-19%).