Dear customers, property owners and agents, Veles Property specialists have tried to answer all most frequently asked questions in this buying guide. If you have a question for which you could not find the answer in our manual, then write and send your message to our manager and he will answer you.
Choice and purchase features of property in Northern Cyprus
Northern Cyprus – it is almost ideal place for holidays and permanent residence: high level of life, perfect climate, amazing ecology, absence of criminal, low prices.
Best way to chose Your house in Cyprus – this is of course a personal visit to the island. Entrance to Northern Cyprus is visa-free, so you can come at any time convenient for you.
Buying property always connected with huge spendings and risks and to make such purchases “blindly” – at least, unreasonable and risky. Whatever developers and sellers promise, the client must personally evaluate the quality of the object and its finish, the materials used in the construction, design, the adjacent territory, the location of the apartment or house, the terrain infrastructure and other nuances. Therefore, a trip to Northern Cyprus is the only way to get rid of doubts and avoid costly mistakes.
For those who are seriously interested in the property of Northern Cyprus, we organize inspecton trips created to help with choice and make sure decision is correct. An inspection trip is organized so that you can get acquainted with proposed facilities, selected based on your wishes, or examine villa or apartment that you yourself have chosen on company’s website.
Such events are most important for property buyers who consider a residential property as a form of investment. In order for real estate to continue to make a profit, its mere presence is not enough. There are no trifles, the location of the object and its “neighbors”, and the proximity / remoteness from the sea and beaches, interior design and much more matter. And the reliability of all these parameters can only be guaranteed to yourself.
Inspecton trip for 2 people is created for three days and includes: booking airline tickets, meeting at the airport, transfer from / to airport, accommodation (at the hotel or in apartments, at the request of the client), assistance in solving all domestic issues, visiting shops and markets, study tours in the areas of Northern Cyprus with a complete overview of all nearby infrastructure and real estate, consultations on obtaining residence permits and citizenship, consultations with leading developers and lawyers. Moreover, during this time, our clients manage to not only make the final choice, but also get acquainted with the beauties of the resort coast, feel the delights of a beach holiday and feel like full residents of a rapidly developing country.
Airport shuttle. We not only help you organize your trip, but also arrange a meeting at the airport. At the airport you will be met by our company’s manager, who will comfortably deliver you to the hotel or apartments, where you can relax and gain strength before a busy program.
Three days tour. As practice shows, in order to have time to see everything, choose the property that is suitable for all parameters and issue a contract for the purchase, three days are enough. You can fly on weekends, for example – Friday, Saturday, Sunday, enough for an orientation program and signing a purchase contract. We work for you 7 days a week. On the first day, we show you the best offers according to your request and along the way familiar with the area, the second day we finally decide on the choice, and on the third day we sign a contract. We assure you that in our database there will be as many offers as you need in order to make your best choice.
How to choose the right property? What to pay attention to?
As you already understand, the process of buying property abroad, including in Northern Cyprus, has many “pitfalls”. And without the help of knowledgeable people it is almost impossible to do here. Let’s talk about those aspects of real estate selection that are especially important.
Construction quality. The most important parameter when choosing a property is the quality of construction. The fact is that the construction standards in Northern Cyprus are fundamentally different from the construction standards in the CIS countries. And if in Russia we are already accustomed to the fact that in the new apartment there may be minor defects that can be corrected during the repair, then real estate in Northern Cyprus may have such defects that will then be very difficult to fix. For example, structural defects in the water supply or sewage system, because of which later you may be denied the connection to the central water supply. Another example: builders work in extreme heat, concrete quickly hardens with cracks, and then a layer of plaster is applied over the cracks to temporarily close the defect. Other minor defects are common: a leaking roof, poor design of bathtubs, sinks, showers, an ill-conceived heating system, doors and windows that do not close tightly, and so on. As you know, many of these defects will be invisible with a single visit. What to do to avoid such problems? Firstly, choose developers with a good reputation, and secondly, when selecting an object, contact established experts.
Location. An important factor when choosing an object. Often there are situations when buyers are dissatisfied with the location of their property. Remoteness from infrastructure, remoteness from beaches, location in poor and backward areas, location far in the mountains – all this can later become a big problem. The point is not only that there is a bad location or a good one, but also that the location of the object should correspond to your goals. Therefore, before buying it is important to decide on them. For recreation, proximity to beaches and entertainment centers is a priority, and if your goal is to move to a permanent place of residence, then you should check in advance the availability of the necessary infrastructure: shops, kindergartens, schools, bus stops. It is also worth considering your wishes for language communication: do you want, for example, to live among Russian-speaking immigrants or not.
Price. Price depends on many factors: location, size, land on which the object is located. You can choose an inexpensive apartment for £ 39,000, or a luxury villa for £ 1,500,000. However, most properties are in the price range of £ 50,000 – £ 200,000. You must also understand that a low price is usually the result of poor location or poor-quality construction. Sometimes developers give good discounts if, for example, they urgently need money, but they won’t tell you about it if you just go to their office. You can find out about such discounts from us. In addition, there is a difference: buy an already built housing or make a deal at the construction stage. By the end of construction, 90% of the apartments have already been sold, and the remaining apartments are sold by developers at inflated prices. Therefore, if you are interested in a bargain, you need to consider the purchase at the construction stage.
Ownership registration. Perhaps one of the most exciting issues for buyers is the question of the legality of the property being acquired. It should be noted right away that a registered real estate contract is already a document guaranteeing the right of ownership, and gives the right to reside in it, sell or lease it. However, there is a title system in Northern Cyprus. The title determines the full ownership of real estate in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, certifying that the real estate and land in its possession has an unconditional right of ownership to this buyer.
What are the taxes when buying a property?
Fees for re-registration of ownership – accounts for 6% of the total cost of the object. But every buyer of real estate in Northern Cyprus has the right once a lifetime to reduce this fee to 3%. If this is your first purchase of a home in Northern Cyprus, you can pay a transfer fee of 3%, with all subsequent purchases the tax will be 6% of the value of the property. Also, when buying a property, a municipal tax is paid, which is 1% of the total fee for the transfer of ownership.
VAT for property buying – 5% of the total cost of the object. As a rule, many sellers require payment of VAT tax on the actual price of real estate prescribed in the contract of sale of housing on the day of signing the transfer of ownership to the new owner. Therefore, carefully check the deadline for fulfilling the main contract.
Stamp duty – 0.5% of the value of the property specified in the contract. Stamp duty must be paid within 21 days from the date of signing the contract.
In general, the following order of tax payment figures is obtained when buying property in Northern Cyprus: Fee for re-registration of ownership – 3%, VAT – 5% and Stamp duty 0.5% of the total value of the property.
How to check the purity of the deal?
Acquisition of real estate abroad is a serious step for all, without exception. That is why our company Veles Property, an expert in the field of transactions with foreign real estate, recommends that you carefully check and double-check everything before signing the contract of sale. Before concluding a contract, it is worth paying close attention to the past of the acquired property, that is, checking the legal purity of the property.
The stages of checking the legal purity of real estate:
- Authentication of the presented documents proving the identity of the seller. It is worth paying attention to the fact that the owner is a competent person, and the transaction was completed voluntarily.
- Examination of title documents for the sold property. Thanks to this, it is possible to determine whether the housing for sale is under arrest or in security. In addition, it is established whether ownership is disputed.
- Request information from the relevant authorities. Information is requested about all individuals, private and legal, related to this property.
- Finding out a similar reason for selling real estate.
- Collection of maximum information about all transactions conducted earlier on this real estate. The legality of each transaction is determined.
Where is it better to live, near the sea or in the mountains?
Sea: If you like the beach within walking distance, lively surroundings, proximity to various entertainment venues, do not like to use a car.
However, by the sea – it is damp and windy during a storm in the winter.
Mountains: A much larger house and plot for the same money, more greenery, peace and quiet, beautiful views, do not mind a 15-30 minute trip to the beach along beautiful roads.
What is a title deed and is it necessary to renew it?
Title deed – this is a title deed to immovable property. The TRNC government equated all lands to a single Turkish title after a ruling adopted by the European Court of Human Rights and the entry into force of the Commission for the Settlement of Land Issues in 2006.
To date, the Land Committee does not provide information on the status of land and all the lands on the territory of the TRNC are lands belonging to Northern Cyprus.
For reference, there are 4 main land titles.
- Turkish title – land previously owned by the Turkish Cypriot until 74 years. The foreign (English, German or French) title has similar advantages, i.e. when a particular piece of land was owned by a foreigner (not Turkish or Cypriot) until the age of 74. In the property documents received on land with a Turkish title, there will no longer be a reference to the title of the land, since all land officially has the title of land of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.
- Exchanged – land previously owned by the Greek Cypriot and resulting from the exchange of land between the Greek and Turkish Cypriots in the 74th year. Rights to this land are guaranteed by the TRNC government.
- TMD – land owned by the government of the UK. This land was transferred as a reward to the Turkish military personnel who took part in the 1974 war. The likelihood of any difficulties with this land is extremely small (no precedent is known in the history of the country).
- Leasehold – state lands that are intended only for rental for up to 49 years with the right to extend.
Successfully working in the UK market long enough to know the situation firsthand, we can say the following: pay attention to the quality of real estate and the availability of documents, as well as the absence of encumbrances, these are the facts that will allow you to be sure of the cleanliness of the purchased real estate.
The Government of Northern Cyprus and the Government of Turkey are guarantors of the inviolability of property rights in this territory.
Today, 90% of real estate is real estate built on lands with an exchange title. This is an absolutely reliable title. The name itself suggests that the Greek Cypriots received a similar plot of land in southern Cyprus or monetary compensation. Therefore, they are afraid that a Greek Cypriot will burst at your door, not worth it. Of course, in the real estate market of the UK there are also problematic objects (for example, old Greek houses near the border), but we do not deal with such real estate.
Why is it better to get from us, and not from the developer?
In the acquisition of real estate in our company there are a number of significant advantages:
- We offer real estate from all developers, and therefore the buyer has a choice. The developer cannot offer you a large selection, it is limited only by its facilities.
- We truthfully talk about all the advantages and disadvantages of the selected objects. And since we have the largest selection of real estate in Northern Cyprus, the buyer can always find a suitable option for purchase.
- We offer real estate at prices even lower than the developers themselves offer it (with a high volume of sales, we have good additional discounts from property owners).
- In addition to the sale of real estate, we help our customers in absolutely all matters – from buying furniture to placing children in school and applying for a residence permit.
The benefits of buying at the construction stage?
The advantages of buying real estate at the construction stage: prices are lower than market prices by an average of 15-20%, there is the possibility of phased payment, choice of finishes and the ability to make small changes to the project.
The company raises real estate prices as it builds, respectively, the closer to the end of construction, the higher the price. This is used by many of our investors who buy real estate at the zero stage of construction and resell it at the end of construction.
What you should pay attention to? Of course, on the reputation of the builder, check whether previous projects are completed, whether buyers received documents for houses and apartments. It is also necessary to check the documents for the land, permits and the project. In case of problems with at least one of the items from the purchase is better to refuse. We strongly advise you to drive through the already constructed facilities of the company and evaluate the quality of construction.
Why is Northern Cyprus such a cheap property?
We do not have corruption, a monopoly on cement, the mandatory participation of the administration in the division of real estate built. As well as humane prices for connecting communications and building materials. Relatively cheap and affordable business loans. And the appetites of local builders in matters of profit are not sky-high.
What is better house or apartment?
The answer directly depends on your goals and financial capabilities. The difference in the cost of maintenance and taxes differ slightly (except with the exception of really large houses).
For life, we recommend buying a home. For investments (rental, for children, etc.) – apartments are better suited.
Buying property on credit or by installments?
It is possible, but with some reservations. Most likely they will not give a bank loan to a foreigner with sources of income incomprehensible to local bankers. But there is an opportunity to take advantage of the finances of a construction company. The first installment is usually 25-30%, and the interest on the loan in the region of 7-10% per annum. Loans can be obtained for up to 15 years.
Please note that you will only receive title to the property (title deed) after you pay the last payment, which does not prevent you from using the property, renting it out and getting it on the basis of a residence permit contract. Early repayment is always welcome. Delays in payments mean heavy fines and, risks of loss of real estate. Another feature of credit sales is the guaranteed absence of discounts on such objects.With full payment in 99% of cases, you can get a discount of 5-10% of the cost, which is a pretty nice amount. By the way, with 50% payment, installments for 12-24 months are possible for 90% of the objects sold, not including secondary real estate.
Can I register a property for two owners?
To issue a property immediately for 2 people is very simple. And both of these people will be able to obtain a residence permit in Northern Cyprus. Although, in fact, to obtain a residence permit it is not necessary to purchase real estate. To do this, it is enough to show the government a contract, say, on a rental property and a sufficient amount in the account for living in Cyprus for a year.
We usually recommend to our customers that if they immediately need to make a residence permit, but don’t have money in their account, first transfer money to pay real estate to their account, get a residence permit, and then pay real estate with this money.
We don’t have any donation procedures. Everything is much simpler, one person transfers real estate titles to another person. If we are talking about the long-term prospect of transferring real estate titles from one person to another, in this case it will be necessary to pay a tax for the transfer of titles (3% is paid by the one in whose name the titles are transferred, if this is his first purchase of real estate in Northern Cyprus, and the one from whose name the titles are transferred from the first such transactions does not pay taxes at all).
And if we are talking about the possible transfer of real estate from one name to another in the next few years (1-2-3 years), it’s still easier, we will immediately plan it and you won’t have to pay any taxes. In general, we do not have a bureaucracy, everything is made very simple, the laws work clearly, the officials are very welcoming and friendly, you will like it.
Features of life in Northern Cyprus
How to open bank account?
To open an account with a bank in Northern Cyprus, you will need the following documents:
- A copy of your property sale agreement.
- Valid passport.
- Help from the city headman of your place of residence.
How to fly to Northern Cyprus?
There are two ways to get to Northern Cyprus, fly directly to Northern Cyprus or through Southern Cyprus. Those who fly through Southern Cyprus can then go back and forth via the line of demarcation as much as they want. You do not even get a stamp on the border crossing in your passport, but put it on your computer or on a separate sheet, if you ask. But for arriving in South Cyprus you will need a visa.
If you fly directly to Northern Cyprus, you do not need a visa, the entry stamp is also put on the arrival sheet. You will not be able to call into Southern Cyprus this time, although if you have an open Schengen in your passport, you can cross the border to the South – but not fly through the airport of the Republic of Cyprus.
The complexity of this method: you have to fly with landing at some of the airports in Turkey, it may be Istanbul, Antalya, Dalaman, etc. We all prefer to fly in this way, with Turkish airlines that fly from different cities, for example: Rostov, Kiev, Minsk, Odessa, Simferopol, Donetsk, Dnepropetrovsk, Baku. The destination port – Lefkosa / Nicosia / Ercan – is one airport, but they can be named differently.
How to get a residence permit?
A residence permit can be obtained by purchasing real estate in the UK for any amount, unlike the UK and Spain, where there is a lower amount of the value of the acquired property. Our company, within the framework of after-sales service, can help resolve issues with obtaining a residence permit.
Pensioners and children may not apply for a residence permit (up to 18 years and after 60). Residence permit gives the right to stay in the UK for up to 1 year without leaving. If the residence permit is prolonged for 7 years, then you can obtain citizenship of the UK. A citizen feels more confident, for example, opening a business is much easier than a foreigner.
In some cases, it is possible to obtain a residence permit for long-term lease of real estate with a contract.
Utility costs in TRNC?
Typically, the property owner pays each month the cost of water and electricity on the meter. In the winter months, the cost of electricity is more spent, in the summer – for water. Real estate tax is paid once a year – it is small and amounts to 1 TL (Turkish lira) per 1 m2.
If the air conditioners are new, inverter, then they can be used for heating and cooling. The standard monthly electricity bill for a family of 3 people is usually 200 – 400 TL. Water – 50 – 100 TL.
Usually a small monthly fee for garbage collection and cleaning of the territory is paid. If this is a complex, especially with a swimming pool, there is an additional charge for pool maintenance and gardening services on site. It can cost from 20 to 50 pounds (the more expensive and prestigious the place, the higher the price of the service).
If it is a private house or villa, the decision is made by the owner, hires workers, a cleaning company, or does everything himself.
What is the situation with heating facilities?
The average temperature in Northern Cyprus in winter is +15, so, for example, apartments with good insulation can not be heated at all. A large house, of course, is good to keep warm so that it is comfortable in it. As a rule, air conditioning is enough to heat a house. In order to have “dry heat” in the house, they usually install autonomous heating systems (diesel or gas), and radiators inside the house. You can also make floor heating (water or electric). This is not very common, but in Northern Cyprus there are specialists who can fulfill such an order.
How is the sewage system in Northern Cyprus?
Villas always have autonomous septic tanks (in extreme cases, one large septic tank per village, for example, of 20 villas). The city has a centralized sewage and cleaning system.
Roof terraces, what are the benefits?
Almost all apartments located on the top floor of a house in Northern Cyprus have separate roof terraces. It’s comfortable. Terraces are separated from one another. Each apartment on the top floor has its own terrace. On the terrace, as a rule, there is a sink with a faucet (for example, a standard kitchen sink). Often large barbecue stands, pergolas (these are such wooden sunshades), deck chairs, and flowers in pots are often installed. Less often – a shower or a jacuzzi. I know a couple of examples when tenants arranged full-fledged study rooms (covered with a roof) on the roof terrace.
In Northern Cyprus, the attitude to the premises is very different from the usual for us in the Union. For example, we build bedrooms of the minimum acceptable size, since people really only sleep in the bedrooms (our compatriots are used to using the bedrooms, among other things, as an office, a nursery or a library). And all life takes place on open balconies and terraces. In addition to the aforementioned infrastructure, paintings can be raised on terraces, garden furniture put up, television, a music center, etc. are connected. The complete absence of crime and predictable weather make it possible. Thus, we have not large bedrooms, a large number of balconies and terraces, a living room combined with a kitchen with obligatory access to a balcony or terrace.
Another interesting detail. For example, if the apartment building is three-story, the top floor is considered the most valuable (because it has a separate roof terrace, because it often has better views, and there are no neighbors from above), the next floor is valued next, because either the balcony it has more, or it has a separate piece of land (and this is almost a villa. Apartments on the middle floor are considered less valuable. As I understand it, in Russia-Ukraine the assessment of the number of storeys of apartments is directly opposite.
How much does it cost to build a pool?
Construction companies give the price of a 5×10 pool at around £ 20,000. You can make a heated pool. This is almost never practiced, since water heating is expensive. The beach season in Northern Cyprus lasts 7 months, usually in the winter they just do not use pools. You can make a pool under glass, although a heated outdoor pool can suit you (given that in winter there are no real cold weather in Cyprus).
How to find a job?
To do this, you need to know at least English or Turkish and have a desire to work. The minimum wage is 430 pounds per month.
Students can work on a work visa, many companies take workers on a tourist visa, since there is no real control over this.
Residence permit does not give the right to work, you need to apply for a work visa. By law, students can work 20-24 hours, or for 3 months on vacation.
Most companies take workers with both a residence permit and a tourist visa, because applying for a work visa is an additional cost for the employer. Therefore, employers, as a rule, take for a trial period without a work visa, and if a person is satisfied, they make him a work visa.
It’s difficult to find work remotely, it’s easier to search already on the spot. For young people, the option is to work in one of the many casinos, for example, as a dealer (with training) or a waiter.
What taxes and fees should I pay?
- Payment of a lawyer who conducts a transaction in the amount of 1000 pounds.
- STAMP DUTY at registration of the contract – 0.5% of the property value.
- 5% VAT arises on purchases in the primary market.
- A one-time tax on the transfer of land title deed in the amount of 3%.
- Annual tax – 1 round. Lira for each square meter of floor space per year.
And unlike developers, we work in the secondary market.
When you purchase a resale, VAT is usually paid. But here you need to be extremely careful, because some developers require payment of VAT not when receiving keys, but when transferring the title. Thus, if you buy a resale, the owner of which did not translate the title in your name, there is a possibility that VAT was not paid for this resale. Such situations are rare, but nonetheless have a place to be.
How much money to take with myself?
- To reserve an object, you must pay a deposit of $ 1,000 or Euro. The amount is paid in any currency at the current rate. The paid amount is then deducted from the total amount of the contract.
- Payment of attorney’s services – 1000 pounds (this amount includes: drawing up a contract for the purchase of apartments, checking all legal issues related to the legality of construction and ownership, drawing up powers of attorney and contract, registering a contract with the Tax Office and the Land Committee, control of financial settlements between the buyer and seller for the purchased apartments, as well as the transfer of real estate titles in your name).
- Stamp Duty Payment – 0.5% of the property value.
Tax on rental income?
There is a tax on rental income. The rate of 10% of income. They recommend paying monthly.