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Selling property in Cyprus

Chris Michael
by Chris Michael
Updated: April 10, 2024

Selling property in Cyprus is not without complexities, but it can be made easier with planning and working with the right people.

This guide has all the information you need to arrange your affairs smoothly.

If you're looking to sell your property or land, contact us. We've been evaluating and selling properties since 1982.

Professionals you need

The professionals you need to sell your property are a real estate agent and a lawyer. You might also wish to find a qualified valuer who will advise on the asking price for the property.

The real estate agent

Real estate agent

The real estate agent in Cyprus must be duly registered in the Republic of Cyprus. It is also better if they have a good record of selling property.

It is recommended that you contact a real estate agent. You do not have to have a real estate agent to find a buyer for your property. Real estate agents, however, know the market and will help with advertising, marketing, and meeting potential buyers. Real estate agents in Cyprus are all English-speaking and know about the island as a whole.

What are the real estate agent's rights and duties under the law?

The real estate agent in Cyprus has rights and duties given to them by the law.

The real estate agent:

  • Must be registered with the Real Estate Agents Council in Nicosia and have an annual license.
  • On their office façade must have the name of the office, the words “licensed real estate agent”, and their registration number. The certificate of registration and the annual license must be shown inside the office somewhere easy to see.
  • Must notify the buyer of the physical condition of the property and any pending charges on it that the real estate agent knows of. The duty is the same even if the real estate agent acts for the seller.
  • The real estate agent can give an opinion about the property's value.
  • Is entitled to payment. The seller must pay the real estate agent’s commission if the property is sold.
  • Must notify the buyer if they have an interest in the land. The notification must be in writing.
  • Can be a company (a “legal person”).
  • Must act honestly and honor the standards of the profession.

Relevant law: The Real Estate Agents Law No. 273(I) of 2004 and its amendment No. 118(I) of 2007.

The lawyer

Real estate lawyer

When selling your property, the lawyer is there to promote your interests and protect your rights. They will also explain the documents you may be asked to sign.

There are many questions the lawyer can answer. They will discuss the relevant law, process and taxes. The lawyer also makes sure that everything is done according to the law. They will help you understand the contract and avoid problematic obligations. If the agreement goes wrong, the lawyer will ensure your rights are protected.

Do I need a lawyer? Is it not better to sell my property “DIY” (by myself)?

It is not, strictly speaking, necessary to have legal counsel when selling property.

Yet, there are complications in any process of selling. Negotiating the terms and writing a good contract can be difficult. Filing the correct documents requires expertise. So, it is highly recommended that you use the services of a lawyer or law firm.

Due diligence?

Because of personal data protection, there is not much your lawyer or yourself can do to check the economic strength of the buyer.

If the buyer is a company, the lawyer can perform a search at the Registrar of Companies to verify that the company is not bankrupt.

Due diligence and AML (Anti-Money Laundering)

The transaction may look suspicious to your lawyer.

For example, the buyer will pay with a large amount in cash but cannot very well explain the source of the wealth.

The lawyer will then have to report to MOKAS (the Unit for Combating Money Laundering in Cyprus). MOKAS will investigate the situation.

Relevant law: the Prevention and Suppression of Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Laws of 2007-2021.

See government guidance at icpac.org.cy: Guidance Notes on Suspicious Transactions/Activities (PDF)

Power of attorney

A power of attorney is a way to avoid getting involved in the selling process. When you are too busy, or living abroad, an option is to give your lawyer power of attorney to carry out the whole transaction.

If you do a power of attorney in Cyprus, you must appear at a certifying officer (with ID documents). Then you will stamp the power of attorney with the certifying officer.

If you sign a power of attorney abroad, you must have it duly signed, notarised and apostilled.

Notarised means first signed by a notary public, then verifying the signature and stamp at the nearest Cyprus embassy or consulate. Some rules may vary depending on the legislation in your country. The Cyprus embassy or consulate will say if this is the case and explain what to do.

The legal documents: the reservation agreement and the contract of sale

The main legal document in selling property is the contract of sale. In negotiations, you may need to make a so-called “reservation agreement”.

The reservation agreement

The reservation agreement when selling property is a separate agreement from the contract of sale. Under the reservation agreement, you promise to keep the offer open for the buyer for a certain period. The buyer pays a reservation deposit in exchange for the promise.

During the agreed period, the seller, buyer and their lawyers negotiate about the sale. They discuss the price, method of payment, transfer, etc.

If the two sides fail to agree at the end of the specified time, the property is again available for sale to a new buyer. The first buyer loses the deposit because the deposit is the price paid for the offer to stay open.

If the parties reach an agreement, they will finalize the terms.

The contract of sale

The finalized document is the contract of sale.

The following are some guidelines to help with the complexities of a contract of sale:

  • Write the terms in clear language.
  • The terms are binding. When you sign, you and the buyer must do what the contract says.
  • Agree on the method and structure of payment. Agree on the amount to be given as a down payment.

If you are a business or company selling off-plan, discuss and agree on the technical details, the materials to be used and the costs. Discuss and agree on a doable timeline for the construction.

If you are a business or company, you can use a ready-made contract with your standard terms or adapt a ready-made contract to the situation. Your lawyer will ensure that the terms are fair and that there will be no trouble with the unfair terms in consumer contracts law of Cyprus. It covers the case where a business sells property to a non-business buyer.

Taxes that need to be paid

The taxes that are paid when selling property in Cyprus are listed below.

Immovable property transfer levy

The immovable property transfer levy in Cyprus is a tax introduced on 22 February 2021 and is payable in property transfers. The relevant law is N 12(I) 2021. Under this law, the seller must pay 0,4% of the amount they received for the property to the Central Agency for Equal Distribution of Burdens (CAEDB). The money collected by the CAEDB is used to aid the Cyprus refugees.

Completion of the form N. 313

The seller will have to file this form at the district office of the Land Registry, with receipts that they have paid:

  • Capital gains tax to the Inland Revenue.
  • The immovable transfer levy for the Central Agency for Equal Distribution of Burdens (CAEDB).
  • Sewerage board tax to the sewerage board.
  • Town rate to the municipality.
  • Communal rate to the local community.
  • As of April 2024, the form (Greek, PDF, available on the Tax Department website) still mentions the Immovable Property Tax, which was abolished in 2017.

Source: portal.dls.moi.gov.cy

Communal fees

Communal fees in Cyprus are payable if you sell an apartment or other residential property with communal fees. You will pay the management committee of the block or the property management company responsible and get a declaration that you have no outstanding charges. You will give this declaration to the buyer.

A parenthesis for the buyer

Transfer fees and VAT are payable by the buyer. A reduced VAT of 5% is payable for first-time buyers of property for the first 200 sq m; all other buyers pay the average rate of 19%. No transfer fees are charged if VAT has been paid.

Capital Gains Tax

According to Home Owners Alliance (hoa.org.uk), “capital gains tax is payable when you sell an asset [such as a house] that has increased in value since you bought it”. That is, when the property is worth more than its “initial acquisition cost”.

Capital Gains Tax in Cyprus

Capital gains tax in Cyprus works as follows:

  • A gain (profit) of EUR 17,469 (10,000 Cyprus pounds in the original text) after selling the property is not taxed. For agricultural land, the amount not taxed is EUR 26,203 (15,000 Cyprus pounds in the original text).
  • A gain above this is taxed at 20%.
  • There is no capital gains tax for selling the house in which you live unless the gain is more than EUR 87,345 (50,000 Cyprus pounds in the original text). Then you pay capital gains tax for the amount after the EUR 87,345 is taken out. The property must not be more than 1,5 hectares in size.

Relevant law: Capital Gains Tax Law 1980 (52/1980); latest amendment N. 197(I)/2022.

Tax for selling as a business

When selling property as a business, you will not pay capital gains tax but income tax. The standard income tax for companies in Cyprus is 12.5%.

After signing and payment: transfer at the Land Registry

When the contract is signed, the buyer pays the price.

Then, the buyer and seller (or their lawyers) go to the district office of the Land Registry for the transfer. They have to go in person with ID documents (ID cards or other documents proving ID).

There, the buyer and seller will deposit the contract of sale together with the following forms:

  1. N. 270, a declaration of transfer of immovable property, and,
  2. N. 313, certifying that all taxes have been paid (see above).

Then the land registry transfers the property and issues the title deeds in the buyer's name.

The title deeds

Home in Cyprus

The title deed for land in Cyprus is proof of ownership. It protects the holder concerning the land. After the transfer, the buyer will get a new title deed in their name.

It is possible to sell property without title deeds. The property may be mortgaged or still under construction (Note that if there is a mortgage on the property, the buyer will ask for proof that you can repay).

However, if you sell without title deeds, the buyer may ask for an assignment agreement. With this, the rights to the property go to the buyer. You will need to pay all pending taxes and community charges related to the property. The assignment agreement must be stamped and deposited at the district office of the Land Registry.

How the assignment agreement works

If you sign, stamp and deposit an assignment agreement, the title deeds will be issued directly to the buyer. When there is both a contract of sale and an assignment agreement, the title deeds will be issued in your name, and then you will have to transfer the title to the buyer. It is, therefore, more practical to use an assignment agreement.

Delay in transferring the title deeds

If you delay transferring the title deeds for any reason, the buyer can apply for a court order of specific performance. Under this order, you must transfer the property to the buyer.

Note that to do this, the buyer must deposit the contract of sale to the Land Registry within six months of signing the contract.

If the delay is because the property is mortgaged, the buyer can pay the mortgage themselves.

Under the amended legislation (N. 132(I)/2023), the buyer must deposit a declaration together with the contract of sale. This declaration must be signed by the mortgage owner (bank) and yourself and say that if the buyer pays 95% of the mortgage, the mortgage owner will lift the mortgage from the property and confirm this to the Land Registry. Then, the Land Registry will transfer the property to the buyer.

Relevant law:

Sale of Land (Specific Performance) Law No. 81 (I) /2011 as amended by N. 132(I)/2023.

Step-by-step process

Valuation of the property (decide the price)
Find a good real estate agent
Find a good property lawyer
The agent will advertize the property
You will receive offers
Reservation agreement (if applicable)
Contract of sale
Transfer of the property

Is it a good time to sell?

According to Land Registry and Mapping Department data, the real estate market performed significantly in 2023, with transactions surpassing 6 billion euros. The data for the fourth quarter of 2023, presented by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), record an increase in market value in all asset classes, with the most considerable rise evident in apartments; there is a 9,53% increase in apartments on a y-o-y comparison.

In sum, this might be a good time to sell. Remember that a lot depends on the marketability of the property (location, condition, particulars, and so on).

Check the prices of recently sold Cyprus properties.

For advice tailored to your personal situation and needs, seek the opinion of a realtor, surveyor, or financial advisor. This guide is for information only and does not give personal financial advice.

A note on preparing your home for viewing

Keep a few basic things in mind to prepare the house for viewing.

  • First impressions are essential – they can “make or break” a sale.
  • If you have left the house already, or are selling as a business, paint the whole in a neutral colour to make it look inviting.
  • The property must be well-maintained, clean and in good condition.
  • The utilities must be functioning.
  • The kitchen is essential, so declutter and do all necessary repairs.
  • The bathroom must look polished and bright.
  • The bedroom must look comfortable and fresh; it is a space to relax.
  • Light dark areas.
  • The garage must be uncluttered. If you are using it as storage space, it must be tidy.
  • Eliminate noise.
  • Get rid of odors and smells.
  • If at home during the viewing, stay with the children and pets somewhere else so that the viewer can look at the place by themselves.

To make the rooms look large and the space show off, declutter, and remove bulky furniture. Some experts say that all personal items must be removed, too, so the viewer does not feel like an intruder. Others recommend leaving some personal touch so that the viewer gets into the “lifestyle” atmosphere of the place. A bit of balanced advice must be “don’t overdo it”. Make the space look airy and light, and do not leave all your personal belongings hanging around.

Finally: the real estate agent will advise on how to show off the property, what to say, and so on. By law, you do not have to reveal or talk about everything. However, answer all questions truthfully. Also, don’t try to hide problems by placing, for example, furniture in front of a damaged wall or in front of mold. Hiding problems might mean trouble (it is called “misrepresentation”, false statement, or hiding the truth).


Table of contents
  • Professionals you need
  • The legal documents: the reservation agreement and the contract of sale
  • Taxes that need to be paid
  • After signing and payment: transfer at the Land Registry
  • Step-by-step process
  • Is it a good time to sell?
  • A note on preparing your home for viewing