QUESTIONS RELATED TO LEGAL MATTERS
Yes. North Cyprus requires a visa for resident status. People coming from the U.K. and other major European countries automatically obtain a 3-month visa upon arrival. An extension of this time period can be granted, provided you successfully apply for a residency permit (implying that you plan to settle permanently). Typically, as the visa process can be long and tiresome, many people opt to hire a solicitor.
Generally, solicitors charge around £1,000 – £1,300 for a purchase contract and £300 for the permit. This fee covers the handling of all applications required for living in North Cyprus. Solicitors also help in ensuring the validity and legality of transactions.
As mentioned earlier, the employment of a local solicitor is not required but is highly recommended. For a general fee a solicitor will personally follow-up on transactions at the local government offices. Furthermore, the solicitor will check your Contract of Sale to be signed by you and the developer of the property, therefore ensuring its legality and authenticity. A permit for owning a home is required.
Certainly, the last thing anyone wants is to be surprised with unanticipated charges. We have created a list below, of common taxes, fees, or charges that apply:
- For any property purchased in North Cyprus it is required to pay VAT, which at the moment, is 5%, and a title deed fee, which is 6%. The title deed is paid to the Registry Office once the title is registered under your name, and can be paid several months after the keys are in your possession. It is important to note that these percentages are of the government valuation of the property and not the sales price, and that this value is usually significantly lower than the actual sales price.
- There is also a small contract stamp duty that buyers must pay, which is a 0.5% payment to be made on signing a contract of purchase.
- Water & electricity connection fees, which vary according to the project.
NOTE: The Tax Authorities have given first time investors the incentive of a one time opportunity to reduce the title deed fee to 3%.
At Omağ Estate, we aim to facilitate all of our clients needs, including those who live abroad. If you are interested in purchasing property but are not able to travel immediately, we would be happy to assist you. Simply submit an inquiry and one of our team members will contact you and personally walk you through the process.
Your passport is the only document required.
At present you are individually only allowed to own one property at a time, unless you have a local company registered in Northern Cyprus. According to Property Purchase (Foreigners) Law and other relevant regulations, Law No: 109, Foreigners’ purchase is limited to one donum (donum is a measurement of land equivalent to 1,600 square yards, 1,338 sq. meters or 14,400 sq. ft., 0.336 acre) of land or one immovable property, unless you register a local company in Northern Cyprus with Turkish Cypriots acting as 51% nominee shareholders.
Probably, the most common word you will hear in dealing with property purchase in Northern Cyprus is the “koçan (pronounced as kochan)”. “Koçan” means, “deed” and there different kinds of Kocan’s in the Turkish Cypriot legal system.:
- Pre-1974 British or other foreign ownership
- Pre-1974 Turkish Cypriot ownership
- Post-74 Turkish Cypriot Ownership (also called TRNC Title Deed): These properties were given to Turkish Cypriots in exchange for their lands that they left in South Cyprus (exchange of land / property) or (awarded land / property) to Turkish Cypriots by the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (“TRNC”) Government. Based on the TRNC Constitution that was enacted in 1983, all the deeds rectified and named as TRNC deeds are freely transferable to foreigners. The famous Annan Plan also gives international recognition to these properties.
- Leasehold – properties owned by the TRNC Government who will grant long-term leases of 49 years or more.