Basic Information before the Purchase of Immovable Property in Cyprus

Before purchasing immovable property Cyprus, it is important to have the right information to make a well-informed decision. The following information should be considered:

Three (3) ways to purchase immovable property

    • Purchase of immovable property with immediate transfer of certificate of registration (title deed).
    • Purchase of immovable property through a Sale Contract (SLC).
    • Purchase of immovable property from a current purchaser (not an owner) through assignment of the Sale.

Choosing the Right Property

It is important to be aware of the rights and restrictions related to the property before making a decision.Purchasing an immovable property is a process which requires careful handling by the purchaser, in order to avoid any unpleasant situations. In the process of selecting the right property, we advise the interested purchaser to become aware of all the rights and restrictions related to that property. The more information the prospective purchaser has at his/her disposal, the better decision he/she will be able to make.

Request for Certificate of Registration

Requesting the certificate of registration of the property ensures that it is registered in the Land Register of the Department of Lands and Surveys (DLS). This certificate contains important information about the property.Having a certificate of registration (title deed) for the immovable property ensures its registration in the Land Register of the Department of Lands and Surveys (DLS). For complete information, a recent certificate of registration should be requested from the seller, which contains important information regarding the type and current condition of the property.

In the absence of a certificate of registration, the interested purchaser needs to further investigate and possibly seek the advice of a real estate expert.

Legal Inspection of the Property

It is important to request a Search Certificate of the property from the seller. The DLS Portal can be used to search for information about the property, such as its registered area, encumbrances, and personal prohibitions.Request from the seller to provide you with a Search Certificate of the property. Search for all the characteristics of the property you are interested in on the “Department of Lands and Surveys Web Portal” (DLS Portal). The characteristics of all properties are available to the public free of charge. Moreover, at the DLS Portal you can find a video explaining how to search for them.

Make sure you know,

  • whether the immovable property is registered and whether it really belongs to the seller;
  • the registered area of the property;
  • if there are any encumbrances, g. mortgage, memo (an encumbrance created after the registration of a court decision), court decision to sell the property, other deposited Sale Contract, etc. affecting the property;
  • if there are any personal prohibitions against the registered owner, g. an Order for Bankruptcy or Dissolution of a Company, an Order prohibiting the owner from selling the property, etc.

Moreover, make sure you know,

    • if there is legal access to the property or if it is enclaved;
    • whether any public stream, pathway or river passes through it;
    • if the property is affected by compulsory acquisition;
    • from the relevant Planning Authorities whether the property is affected by any development plans (e.g. a new road);
    • if there are any other notes, or commitments, or restrictions on the property

Value Added Tax (VAT)

It is important to know whether VAT should be paid and at what rate. The seller should have this information after consulting with the Tax Department.

Transfer Fees

The amount of transfer fees that need to be paid to the DLS should also be considered.

Property as a Plot of Land

If the property is a plot of land, it is important to check for any interventions by third parties, the registered area of the property, and the town planning characteristics of the property.

Property with a Building

If there is a building on the property, it is important to verify its legality and check for any outstanding planning or building issues.

  • make sure that the building has a Certificate of Approval, and whether it is with or without Notes, or other restrictions or prohibitions;
  • ask if the property is subject to any town planning conditions, or if there are any unfulfilled obligations that may trap you in lengthy procedures;
  • make sure you know in which planning zone the immovable property belongs to and the detailed planning zone regulations that in case of buying a unit from property which is under construction/development, whether it has the necessary permits (planning permit/ building permit/ town planning permit by way of derogation) and any amending permits;
  • the way the property was divided, how many owners exist, whether there is a Distribution Agreement between them, and whether this has been deposited at the DLS;
  • the common areas of the building (parking spaces, terraces, corridors, ) and whether there are exclusive rights of use for any of these areas;
  • your share of ownership in the common areas of the property;
  • whether there is an additional unused building coverage according to the planning zone, and if so on whose name it will be registered;
  • what is the time frame for work completion, obtaining the permits and the certificate of registration, in case the development has not been completed, and what are the consequences for the seller in case of breach of the specified time

Purchasing a Unit

If purchasing a unit that results from a division of property, it is important to know the number of owners, common areas of the building, time frame for work completion, and any unfulfilled obligations.

A new unit under construction (apartment, maisonette, shop) or a plot under construction, cannot be registered and cannot have a certificate of registration (title deed). For registration (in the DLS Register) to take place a completion of works certificate needs to be issued by the supervising engineer, and a certificate from the competent Building Authority. If the construction/development of the unit or the construction of the plot has been completed, but no certificates of registration have been issued, you should find out why this is the case.


Any decision to purchase an immovable property should be taking into account all aforesaid criteria, so as not to be misguided in making the wrong choice.

It is important, once you have completed research, and once a final decision to purchase the property has been made, and there are no financial or other outstanding issues, that you proceed with the immediate transfer of the certificate of registration (title deed) to your name.

If you decide to purchase the property, but there are financial or other outstanding issues, it is recommended that you proceed with the conclusion and signing of a Sale Contract (SLC) with the seller, which you should deposit at the DLS.

If you decide to purchase a property through an Assignment Agreement from an existing purchaser who has signed a SLC make sure you check, as the assignee of the Assignment Agreement, whether the SLC has been deposited at the DLS, and whether there are any financial or other outstanding debts to the seller, as well as any encumbrances prior or subsequent to the SLC.

You are advised not to pay the full purchase price of the property before the transfer of the certificate of registration  in your name.

In conclusion, it is important to do your research and gather as much information as possible before making a decision to purchase an immovable property.

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