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24th May 2022
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HomeProperty SalesRecord property sales for a second month

Record property sales for a second month

February saw Cyprus achieving a record number of property sales since 2008 for a second consecutive month according to official statistics from the Department of Lands and Surveys.

The total number of property sales (as measured by the number of contracts deposited at Land Registry offices) in February 2022 rose 62% compared to February 2021. This is the highest February figure since 2008.

These contracts will have included houses, apartments, commercial buildings and land.

Limassol led the way in percentage terms with sales up 120% compared to February 2021. Limassol was followed by Paphos, Larnaca, Famagusta and Nicosia.

Total property Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison
Total Property Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison

Sales during the first two months of 2022 reached 422, an increase of 65% compared to the same period last year.

Looking at each market segment:

Domestic property sales

Domestic sales rose by 41% compared to February 2021, with sales rising in all districts with the exception of Famagusta.

Once again, Limassol led the way in percentage terms with sales up 59% compared to February 2021. Limassol was followed by Paphos, Larnaca and Nicosia.

Domestic property Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison
Domestic Property Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison

Sales to the domestic market in the first two months of 2022 reached 1,094, an increase of 37% compared to the same period last year.

Note that the figures include an unreported number of ‘non-sale’ agreements such as loan restructurings, recoveries and debt-to-asset swaps agreed between the banks and defaulting borrowers in efforts by the banks to reduce their non-performing loan portfolios. Unfortunately, the Department of Lands & Surveys doesn’t record these separately.

As it may take 2 or 3 months to process applications, the numbers are likely to include a number of subsidised purchases through the government scheme that concluded at the end of 2021. The scheme provided an interest subsidy of 1.5% for a period of four years for loans not exceeding €400,000 for house purchases.

Foreign property sales

Property sales to foreigners (non-Cypriots) also performed well with sales up 115% compared to February 2021 with sales rising in all districts and the highest number of February sales since 2008.

In percentage terms, Limassol led the way with sales up 216% compared to February 2021. Limassol was followed by Larnaca, Paphos, Famagusta and Nicosia. However, the largest number of properties were sold in Paphos.

The interest shown by foreigners in buying property is Cyprus has improved following the relaxation of many COVID restrictions as more are now able to visit the island. Cyprus recently announced that travel restrictions will be further relaxed for travellers who have been fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 disease. In a statement the authorities said:

“Travellers who can prove that they have received all necessary doses of an authorised vaccine or they have recently recovered from COVID-19 will not be required to undergo any tests to visit Cyprus, irrespective of colour-categorisation of their country of departure.”

Foreign Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison
Foreign Property Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison

Sales to foreigners in the first two months of 2022 reached 813, an increase of 126% compared to the same period last year.

Foreign sales (EU nationals)

Foreign sales to EU nationals performed well with sales up 118% compared to February 2021 with sales rising in all districts. Once again Limassol lead the way with sales up 194% compared to February 2020. Limassol was followed by Famagusta, Paphos, Larnaca and Nicosia. Once again, the largest number of sales were in Paphos.

Foreign (EU) Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison
Foreign (EU) Property Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison

Foreign sales to EU nationals in the first two months of 2022 reached 422, an increase of 165% compared to the same period last year.

Foreign sales (non-EU nationals)

Although sales to non-EU nationals were up 112% in February 2022 compared to the same month last year, it was a mixed picture with sales falling in both Famagusta and Nicosia.

However, sales in the three remaining districts (Limassol, Larnaca and Paphos) more than compensated for the drop in sales in the other two.

Foreign (non-EU) Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison
Foreign (non-EU) Property Sale Transactions – 2021/2022 Comparison

Sales to non-EU nationals in the first two months of 2022 reached 391, an increase of 95% compared to the same period last year. With the exception of Famagusta and Nicosia, all districts saw a rise in sales.

The future of sales to non-EU nationals is likely to waiver in light of the EU shutting down EU airspace for Russian-owned, Russian registered or Russian-controlled aircraft as a consequence of Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Cyprus agreed to follow EU policy and imposed the shutdown. However, as Turkey has refused to follow the EU’s lead, Cyprus may review its decision to follow the EU’s policy according to local media reports.

Cyprus property sale transactions 2000 - 2022

 

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