SPEAKING before the parliamentary Interior Committee, Interior Minister Socrates Hasikos admitted that mistakes had been made in updating 1980 property valuations to 2013 values.
He said that the government is considering extending the deadline for receiving objections from the end of 2014 to April 2015.
According to Hasikos 4,671 objections had been received at the end of September; 1,275 had been corrected and officers were continuing to examine the remainder. Approximately 7,000 further cases had been reported to the Citizens Service Centres. He said that the Land Registry will consider complaints involving large areas in the coming months.
The minister stressed that it was not necessary to include an independent valuation of the property with the objection.
He noted that it was inevitable that mistakes would be made as a revaluation exercise would require 400 staff dedicated to the task for a period of four years.
MPs have received hundreds of complaints.
A Paphos hotel valued at €6.5 million at 1980 values had been revalued at €162 million, while a bank had estimated its value at just €40 million.
A plot of land valued at €227,000 at 1980 values had been revalued at €76 million. Another plot of land in Paphos previously valued at €5,980 had been revalued at €706,000.
In August, the Cyprus Technical Chamber (ETEK) demanded that the Land Registry publish the criteria it employed to assess immovable property values for taxation purposes. Perhaps we now know why it did not!
Disputing 2013 valuations
Owners wishing to dispute their property’s 2013 value can file an appeal. The charge depends on the 2013 valuation of their property:
For properties valued up to €100,000, the charge is €37.50.
For properties valued between €100,001 and €500,000 the charge is €75.00.
For properties valued between €500,001 and €1 million, the charge is €150.00.
For properties valued in excess of €1 million, the charge is €357.00.
But regrettably, this is the way it is in Cyprus. You end paying up for the mistakes/incompetence of other people and government departments!