Real estate
June 13, 2024
Reading Time: 8 min

Buying real estate in Cyprus

Cyprus has one of Europe’s most affordable residential real estate, with an average price of €1,680 per 1 m². The most popular regions among property buyers are Paphos, Limassol, Nicosia, and Larnaca.

By investing €300,000 or more, property owners can get permanent residence in Cyprus. This program’s terms allow them to rent the properties out and earn passive income.

Here is how to buy and sell real estate in Cyprus, and what taxes to pay.

Igor Buglo
Igor Buglo

Explains housing prices in Cyprus

Cyprus property prices: how to buy and house or an apartment

Buying real estate in Cyprus

How much does Cypriot real estate cost?

Apartments and villas in Cyprus are priced lower than in other EU states. The average price of Cypriot real estate is €1,680 per 1 m²; compare this to €2,800 in Poland, €3,620 in Greece, and €6,590 in Italy.

The most expensive properties are in Limassol. Housing prices there are almost twice the national average. Nicosia and Larnaca are also in the top 3 cities with the most expensive properties.

Cyprus Permanent Residency by Investment in !year: a Golden Visa with a Purchase of Real Estate, Securities and Bonds

Cyprus permanent residence by investment

Foreigners are interested in buying real estate in Cyprus: in 2022, they concluded 60% more purchase and sale agreements than a year earlier. Apartments and houses were in the highest demand, with prices increasing by 12,3% and 3,1%, respectively.

Foreigners can buy property in Cyprus and get residency by investing in real estate for €300,000. Residential and commercial properties are eligible for the program. Investors become residents of Cyprus in 3—6 months after applying for permanent residence.

Best areas of Cyprus for buying real estate

Limassol is the most expensive area in Cyprus. Residential property prices vary from €2,200 to 3,200 per 1 m², depending on the building’s location and year of construction.

Foreigners make up about 30% of all real estate transactions in the region. UK and Israel buyers are among Limassol’s most frequent housing buyers.

Limassol has many shops, restaurants, hotels, and bars and is one of the most popular resorts in the country, along with Paphos and Ayia Napa. Limassol Marina is in the historical part of the city, with yacht docks, a beach, hotels, and a spa complex.

Nicosia’s southern part is the capital of the Republic of Cyprus. The areas in the north are the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, whose independence is recognised only by Turkey.

Property prices in Nicosia range from €1,700 to 2,400 per 1 m². The most popular areas for buying a home are Ayioi Omoloyites, Strovolos, Aglandja, and Platy.

About a third of all real estate transactions in Cyprus are concluded in Nicosia; half by non-EU citizens.

The developed infrastructure causes the high demand for real estate in Nicosia. The city has Cypriot and international companies offices, government agencies, kindergartens, schools, clinics, parks, restaurants, and shops in every district within walking distance.

Nicosia is also home to four private and two public universities — the University of Cyprus and the Open University of Cyprus.

Larnaca is the third-largest city in Cyprus. Property prices here are lower than in Limassol and Nicosia. Apartments in Larnaca are sold for at least €1,400 per 1 m².

The region is attractive due to its Mediterranean beaches, six of which have received the Blue Flag for cleanliness and safety. Property buyers also choose Larnaca because of its convenient transport system: the city is close to the international airport and one of the largest ports in Cyprus.

Real estate is in demand in Larnaca and nearby villages: Pyla, Oroklini, and Perivolia.

Paphos is the most popular area of Cyprus among foreigners. Almost half of all real estate transactions here are concluded with non-EU citizens. Apartment prices in Paphos range from €1,100 to 1,600 per 1 m².

The climate in Paphos is milder than in other parts of Cyprus, with average temperatures of +29°C in summer and +17°C in winter. The beach season lasts from May to the end of October, when the locals relax on sandy and pebbly beaches. Of these beaches, 17 are marked with the Blue Flag.

The city has one of Cyprus’ international airports, PFO. The airport can be reached in 20 minutes by bus or taxi from the city centre.

Property prices in different cities of Cyprus

Region

Property in the city centre, per 1 m²

Property in other areas, per 1 m²

Limassol

€3,190

€2,210

Nicosia

€2,370

€1,730

Larnaca

€1,975

€1,360

Paphos

€1,600

€1,160

Ayia Napa

€1,500

€1,230

Source: Numbeo

Ayia Napa has lower apartment and housing prices than in other regions of Cyprus, starting at €1,230 per 1 m².

Accommodation in Ayia Napa is usually bought for renting out to tourists. Real estate is in high demand from May to October, the beach season.

8% is the average return on the rental of real estate. One-bedroom apartments can be rented for an average of €550 per month in the city centre and for €450 per month in other areas.

Kyrenia is a city on the island’s northern coast and part of the internationally unrecognised Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Property purchase and sale transactions in Kyrenia are illegal in all countries except Turkey.

How to buy an apartment or house in Cyprus

Foreigners can select a home in Cyprus themselves or with the help of licensed investment program agents. Agents assist them with housing purchase that leads to getting Cyprus permanent residence by investment.

Buyers can use online real estate sites to select a property by setting filters by city, property type, price, number of rooms, and other options.

When finding a property they like, buyers must find a lawyer and notary in Cyprus to assist with the purchase and sale transaction.

A lawyer is required to check the transaction’s integrity. For example, a preliminary Due Diligence on a property shows whether it pledged with a bank. Legal assistance costs up to 1% of the real estate value.

How to buy a property in Cyprus as a foreigner, step‑by‑step

1

Choose a property on the island

This can be done remotely. Immigrant Invest has a database with a careful selection of titles in Cyprus.

2

Get the government's permission

Non-EU citizens must receive a permit to acquire property in Cyprus from the Council of Ministers of Cyprus. When buying housing in a new building, the seller receives permission on behalf of the client.

3

Open a bank account in Cyprus

An online application is permitted, but the account will be activated only after a personal visit to the bank’s branch.

4

Enter a preliminary agreement

This will reserve the property for two months. During this period, the seller has no right to change the property’s value, rent it out, resell it or transfer it as collateral.

5

Make a down payment

The amount is typically 10—30% of the property’s price.

6

Conclude the purchase and sale agreement

At this stage, the buyer pays the remaining property value minus the down payment.

7

Get a title deed

The new owner of the property submits an application to the Cyprus Land Department, pays a fee, and receives the documents.

Licensed investment program agents accompany the investor at all stages of obtaining permanent residence, from collecting and submitting documents to buying a home. For this purpose, the state of Immigrant Invest has international law lawyers and real estate specialists who select properties based on the investor’s tasks.

Taking out a mortgage in Cyprus: what is the process?

A mortgage in Cyprus is only available to citizens or foreigners with a residence permit or permanent residence.

The average mortgage rate in Cypriot banks is 3,34%. The interest rate depends on the property’s value, the term, the down payment amount, and the borrower’s financial condition. For example, at the Bank of Cyprus, the mortgage rate varies from 2.95 to 4% per year, and the maximum amount of financing is €500,000.

Banks in Cyprus issue mortgage loans for five to forty years. A borrower must be at most 65 by the time their mortgage is to be paid out.

A down payment is from 10 to 35% of the cost of housing. The larger the initial payment amount, the lower the loan overpayment and interest rate.

Some banks charge a fee for completing a loan. For example, at Ancoria Bank, the commission is 1% of the loan agreement amount.

Taxes and fees when buying property in Cyprus

Stamp duty is a one-time tax that is paid when buying a home. The bid depends on the property value:

  • up to €5,000 — 0%;

  • up to €170,000 — 0,15%;

  • over €170,000 — 0,20%.

The fee must be paid within 30 days after the purchase and sale transaction is concluded.

VAT at 19% is paid when buying a new house or apartment in a new building. If the owner buys housing for permanent residence, they can pay VAT at a preferential rate of 5%.

The transfer tax is paid by buyers of resale real estate. The tax rate is calculated on a progressive scale and depends on the property value:

  • up to €85,000 — 3%;

  • up to €170,000 — 5%;

  • over €170,000 — 8% off.

Property maintenance costs in Cyprus

The annual municipal tax is paid by property owners in Cyprus; it is charged in the amount of €55 to 185, depending on the housing area.

The cost of housing maintenance in Cyprus includes taxes and utilities: electricity, water, Internet, and digital television. On average, utility bills per person living in an apartment of 45 m² are €114 per month.

Electricity. Cyprus is one of the top ten European countries with the highest electricity tariffs: Cypriot residents pay €0,33 per 1 kW. According to Eurostat, the average figure for the EU countries is €0,28 per 1 kW. Electricity bills in Cyprus are issued once every two months.

Water supply. Tariffs for cold water depend on the consumption volume, and Cyprus has no centralised hot water supply. The cost of one cubic meter of cold water is:

  • €0,9 — under 40 m3per month;

  • €1,43 — 41 to 80 m3;

  • €2,45 — 81 to 120 m3;

  • €5 — 121 m3 and more.

Internet and digital TV. Cyprus has several home Internet providers: Cyta, Primetel, Epic, and others. The Internet connection is free of charge, and the cost of the tariff depends on the Internet speed. For example, in Primetel, the monthly payment will be €14,99 per month for Internet speeds of 10 Mbps and €39,99 for 100 Mbps.

Payment for digital TV depends on the number of channels included in the package. For example, the minimum package price at Epic is €7.99 per month, and the connection itself is free.

3 reasons to buy a property in Cyprus

1. Safety. Cyprus is one of the top 20 world’s safest countries, according to the insurance company Insully. For the rating, 180 countries were evaluated according to various criteria, including the frequency of natural disasters, the quality of medicine, the number of crimes, and the number of road accidents. The higher the ranking, the safer the country is.

2. Permanent residence by investment. Residency can be granted to foreigners who have invested at least €300,000 in real estate. The money can be invested in a new building’s commercial real estate or housing.

The foreigner must also confirm the annual income: at least €50,000 for the principal applicant, €15,000 for the spouse, and €10,000 each for each child in the application.

Permanent residence does not need to be renewed; it is issued indefinitely. It is enough to come to Cyprus twice a year to maintain this status. After five years, investors can apply for citizenship.

3. Guaranteed rental yield. Foreigners with residence permits can rent out real estate long-term. They must get a licence from the Ministry of Tourism.

The rental rate depends on the region, the lease term, and the property area. One-bedroom apartments can be rented for an average of €1,400 in the centre of Limassol, €840 in Larnaca, and €750 in Paphos. The average rental yield in Cyprus is 9%.

Landlords pay rent income tax on a progressive scale of 20 to 35%. No tax is levied if the property brings the owner less than €19,500 per year.

Main takeaways about real estate in Cyprus

  1. Limassol, Paphos and Larnaca are the most popular areas for buying real estate among foreigners.

  2. Apartments are growing in price faster than other properties. Apartment prices increased by 12,3% in 2022.

  3. Cyprus permanent residence by investment in real estate can be obtained by foreigners who bought housing from a developer. The minimum investment amount is €300,000.

  4. A mortgage is available for Cypriot residents. The average mortgage rate at banks in Cyprus is 3,34%.

  5. Property in Cyprus can be rented out: income is taxed at 20 to 35%. The average rental yield is 9%.

Immigrant Invest is a licensed agent for citizenship and residence by investment programs in the EU, the Caribbean, Asia, and the Middle East. Take advantage of our global 15-year expertise — schedule a meeting with our investment programs experts.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Which Cypriot regions have the most expensive properties?

    The average cost of real estate in Cyprus is €1,678 per m². The most expensive villas and apartments are in Limassol, Nicosia, and Larnaca.

    Cyprus permanent residence can be obtained by foreigners who have bought apartments in new buildings or new houses at a price of €300,000. After five years, the owner can apply for citizenship.

  • What does buying a property in Cyprus give you?

    For investments in real estate starting at €300,000, a foreigner can get Cyprus permanent residence. The procedure takes 3 to 6 months.

    Other ways to get Cyprus permanent residence take longer. A foreigner must have lived in Cyprus for at least five years to apply for the status.

  • Can I buy an apartment in Cyprus and get citizenship?

    The Cyprus passport is obtained in one of three ways: through marriage, naturalisation, or descent. The Cypriot government closed the citizenship by investment program in real estate in 2020.

    Foreigners can get Cyprus permanent residence when buying a property worth €300,000 or more. After five years, they can apply for citizenship.

  • Can foreigners buy property in Cyprus with a mortgage?

    Foreigners can take out a mortgage to buy a home in Cyprus if they already have a residence permit.

    The average mortgage rate is 3,34% per annum. The rate depends on the initial payment amount, the borrower’s financial condition, the property’s value and the mortgage’s term.

  • Does the amount of stamp duty in Cyprus change?

    Stamp duty in Cyprus varies annually, but only slightly. Stamp duty ranges from 0.15 to 0,20% and depends on the property’s value.

  • How long does it take to open a bank account in Cyprus?

    Citizens of the country and foreigners can open bank accounts in Cyprus, for example, to take a mortgage. Alpha Bank Cyprus and AstroBank work with non-residents. Foreigners with a residence permit or permanent residence are likelier to open an account in a Cyprus bank.

    To open a current account, you need to contact the branch of the selected bank personally. The bank will review the application and verify the client’s trustworthiness. Verification can take anywhere from one week to one month.

  • Do I need to insure my property in Cyprus?

    Insuring real estate in Cyprus is recommended, but there is no umbrella real estate policy. For example, General Insurance of Cyprus provides separate theft, burglary, fire, and natural disaster plans. The cost of insurance depends on the type of property, the sum insured and the damage caused.

  • What do you need to buy a property in Cyprus?

    Foreigners can buy property in Cyprus after getting permission from the Council of Ministers of Cyprus.

    The buyer and the seller enter into a preliminary contract of sale, in which they fix the price of an apartment or house, the payment procedure, and the rights and obligations of the parties.

    The buyer opens a current account in a Cyprus bank, to which they deposit 10 to 30% of the housing cost. The deposit will not be returned if the buyer changes their mind and recalls the transaction.

    The remaining property value, minus the deposit, is paid after signing the main contract to purchase and sell apartments or villas. Then the new owner receives the title of owner, a document confirming real estate ownership in Cyprus.

  • Are there any restrictions for foreigners buying property in Cyprus?

    Yes. In Cyprus, a foreign citizen cannot buy a plot of land or real estate with an area of more than 4,000 m².

    Cyprus permanent residence can be obtained by non-residents who have bought one or two new properties with a total value of at least €300,000.