THE NUMBER of property sales contracts deposited at Land Registry offices across the Republic of Cyprus during May 2018 rose 23 per cent compared to May 2017 according to official figures published by the Department of Lands and Surveys. This follows increases of 29% in April, 23% in March and 46% in February. During May a total of 828 contracts or the sale of residential and commercial properties and land (building plots and fields) were deposited at Land Registry offices across Cyprus, compared with the 758 deposited in May 2017. Of the 828 contracts deposited, 392 (47.3%) were for properties purchased by non-Cypriots.
The figures show a continuing improvement in the economic conditions, coupled with government measures (such as the citizenship by investment scheme). However, the recent decision by the Council of Ministers to limit the number of citizenship applications to 700 a year may result in a fall in sales to non-EU citizens. (The figures include an unspecified number of properties acquired by banks as part of loan restructurings.) While sales in both Larnaca and Limassol fell by 5%, they rose in the remaining districts. In percentage terms Famagusta led the way with sales rising by 108% followed by Nicosia, where sales rose by 30% and Paphos, where sales rose 10%. Although the number of sales in Limassol declined 5% in May, it still recorded the highest number of sales during May reaching 282.