Updated: September 02, 2023
Cyprus title deeds are a series of legal documents which record land and property ownership. The Department of Lands and Surveys has a copy of the title deeds for every property. The title deeds prove ownership and show the history of ownership. They will also include information such as mortgages, long-term leases (over 15 years), charges, court decisions, etc.
The certificate of immovable property registration (title deeds) is issued by application to the relevant District Office of the Department of Lands and Surveys, Ministry of the Interior, Cyprus.
The rules on title deeds are contained in the following legislation:
The system of land registration in Cyprus was established by the British, and it is generally considered to be a success. All land is registered, so title deeds are an efficient way to show who owns the land and all the previous dealings and details concerning the land. The short answer, therefore, is yes.
However, the Department of Lands and Surveys recommends buyers do the following before buying a property:
The Department of Lands and Surveys also highly recommends doing a search concerning the property. This is called due diligence and can be carried out by the buyer themselves or their real estate property lawyer. A search certificate can be obtained at the Department of Lands and Surveys district office for a EUR 10 fee for every plot of land. The search will show who owns the property, if it is mortgaged, and all other issues, problems and information relating to it.
When buying a property in Cyprus, title deeds can be obtained straightforwardly.
The Department of Lands and Surveys has created an electronic platform for certain transactions. However, obtaining title deeds needs physical presence.
Under normal circumstances, the process takes one hour (there may be a queue, however). Title deeds will need a few working days to be issued.
The cost of title deeds depends on the value of the property.
The rates are as follows:
No transfer fees apply if VAT has been paid.
VAT is paid for immovable property at the rate of 19%.
A reduced VAT of 5% applies for a property as follows:
The House of Representatives passed new legislation on 8 June 2023 to diminish the area that qualifies for VAT reduction. The new criteria are that the 5% VAT will apply to 130 sq m of land for a residence worth up to EUR 350,000. To qualify, the whole transaction must not exceed EUR 475,000, and the area of the property must not exceed 190 sq m.
For people with disability, the reduced VAT of 5% will apply to 190 sq m of land.
This law has been published in the Cyprus Republic Official Gazette and takes effect on 16 June 2023. It amends the existing VAT law and has been given the number 42(I) of 2023. However, there is a grace period. The law does not cover permissions obtained on applications for reduced VAT submitted until 31 October 2023.
Cyprus title deeds are transferred with the simple procedure described in the previous section. The seller must pay all pending taxes concerning the property, completing form N. 313. Also, the seller and buyer must complete form N. 270 and pay the transfer fee. The buyer pays the transfer fee.
Title deeds are central documents and an important part of buying land. They prove the registration of the legal title and who owns the property.
Moreover, title deeds show the current state of the property and contain a description, registration number, encumbrances, mortgages, rights, and charges.
Buying without title deeds is possible, though it may contain dangers.
To protect yourself, you should register the contract of sale at the Land Registry within 6 months of buying. If the seller refuses to transfer the title, you will repay the mortgage and get a court order against the seller for specific performance. This court order makes the seller transfer the property to you.
After a new property has been constructed, the developer (or owner) will apply for the title deeds. The Cyprus title deeds procedure is as follows:
A certificate of final approval (CFA) needs to be obtained from the relevant authority. The relevant authority is usually the Municipality Town Planning Authority; if there is no municipality, the community council for the area or any other council appointed by the Council of Ministers to this effect, or, ultimately, the District Officer for the area.
Title deeds are necessary to buy or sell a property. Also, they are necessary for succession purposes when the owner passes away. Title deeds are useful for resolving disputes about the property.
If there are no title deeds, the buyer should proceed with caution. There are transactions (dealings) with land that are not very much affected by the absence of title deeds, for example, a short-term lease. Still, due diligence is highly recommended.
There are proposals for new, stricter legislation in Cyprus for title deeds, but this has not yet been passed by the House of Representatives.
Title deeds are legal documents that record ownership, mortgages, charges and other essential information concerning a property. In Cyprus, all land is registered. Title deeds are issued, and the Department of Lands and Surveys holds copies. The Department has an electronic platform; some transactions can be done online, but property transfers cannot. It is possible to buy property without the title deeds; in fact, legislation protects the buyer in such a case. However, if there are no title deeds, it is highly recommended not to proceed before taking a lawyer’s advice.
What are title deeds for property in Cyprus?
Title deeds are a series of legal documents which prove ownership of land and contain several details about it, such as description and registration number. Importantly, they show legal and other issues concerning the land, such as mortgages, charges, court decisions and long-term leases.
Can you sell a house in Cyprus without title deeds?
Yes. However, if the seller does not transfer the title deeds to the buyer, the buyer can apply for a court order to make the seller do so.
Should I buy a Cyprus property without title deeds?
It is not advisable. If you wish to buy a particular property (for emotional or any other reason), seek the advice of a lawyer.
How to get title deeds in Cyprus?
The Cyprus title deeds procedure depends on whether the buyer will get the property with existing title deeds or whether these are issued for the first time. If the buyer buys property from a developer or a previous owner, they or their representatives will go to the district offices of the Land Registry to complete certain forms. All taxes and charges concerning the property must be paid. If the developer or owner applies for title deeds for a new property, first, they need to get a certificate of final approval from the municipality. The next step is to apply to the Land Registry for the title deeds. The survey department will need to visit the property.
How long does it take to get a title deed in Cyprus?
The Department of Lands and Surveys mentions a few working days. However, title deeds may be issued on the same day.
Who pays immovable property transfer fees in Cyprus?
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