How the New Property Laws in North Cyprus Affect Foreign Buyers


How the New Property Laws in North Cyprus Affect Foreign Buyers

The new property regulations in North Cyprus, effective May 2024, strictly enforce the “one property per person” rule for foreign investors.

The reinforcement of this rule highlights the government’s commitment to maintaining a balanced real estate market and preventing the concentration of property ownership among a few investors. These changes are expected to create a more transparent and equitable property market in North Cyprus, benefiting both local and foreign buyers.

-Previously, foreigners could buy a standalone house on up to 5 dönüms (approximately 6,665 square meters) of land. The new law reduces this to 2.5 dönüms (approximately 3,333 square meters).

Investment in Land:

– While the allowable land area for foreign investors remains at 60 dönüms (approximately 80,000 square meters), the required investment has been increased from 3 million Euros to 20 million Euros.
– This investment must be in the industrial, education, or healthcare sectors, and the investor must complete the investment within two years. Failure to do so will result in the confiscation of the land.

Regulations for Companies and Trusts:

– Previously, foreigners could acquire unlimited land through companies or trusts. The new regulation classifies any company or trust with even a 1% foreign ownership as foreign, thus subject to the same restrictions as individual foreign buyers.
– Foreign-owned companies and trusts can now acquire only one residential property or up to 60 dönüms of land with a 20 million Euro investment.

Mandatory Registration of Unregistered Properties:

– Foreign nationals must register any unregistered real estate they currently hold. Excess properties must be sold within two years, and all relevant contracts must be reported to the Land Registry Office within six months.
– The Council of Ministers has the authority to extend the two-year period by an additional year.
– Violations of this regulation will result in fines up to 500 times the minimum wage.

Turkish Citizens Can Now Purchase Three Properties in Northern Cyprus

The recent amendment to the “Real Estate Acquisition and Long-Term Leasing (Foreigners) (Amendment) Bill” allows Turkish citizens to buy up to three properties in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC). This significant change was passed by the Republican Assembly with a majority vote, bringing about substantial shifts in property ownership regulations in the region.Key C

Increased Property Purchase Limit:

– Turkish citizens, along with citizens from countries recognizing the TRNC and those allowing TRNC citizens to purchase three properties in their own countries, can now buy up to three apartments or houses in the TRNC.
– For other foreign nationals, the limit remains one apartment or house.

Implications of the New Property Laws

This new amendment aims to regulate and control foreign ownership of real estate in the TRNC more strictly, ensuring that investments are beneficial to the local economy and society. It also seeks to prevent uncontrolled accumulation of property by foreigners, thereby addressing concerns over land and property use within the region.

How the New Property Laws in North Cyprus Affect Foreign Buyers

To avoid any inconvenience under the new property laws in North Cyprus, consider the following advice:

1. Work with Local Lawyers and Consultants:
Ensure you work with local lawyers and legal consultants who are citizens of the TRNC. Only they can provide legal consultancy services in the region.

2. Engage Local and Registered Real Estate Companies:
It’s crucial to work with local and registered real estate companies to protect your rights. Non-local agents might not safeguard your interests adequately.

Real Select Estates: Ensuring Legal Compliance

If you have bought a property from Real Select Estates and have engaged us for your legal consultancy, rest assured that all our clients’ contracts have been legally registered. Additionally, all applications for permission to purchase immovable property have been submitted to the ministry.

The process of obtaining ministry permits can take 1.5 to 2 years due to the high volume of applications. However, there is no need to panic. Lawyers are working diligently to ensure that clients do not suffer any inconvenience due to the new immigration law.

Detailed Overview of New Property Laws

1. Purchase Limits for Foreigners:
– Foreigners can only buy one house or one dönüm of land. If the land of the house is large, it cannot exceed 2.5 dönüms, and you cannot build another house.

2. Restrictions on Shared Title Deeds:
– Foreigners cannot purchase immovable property with shared title deeds.

3. Sales Contracts and Building Permits:
– When signing sales contracts, the condominium ownership deed must be ready. This clause has been extended temporarily by one year to prevent inconvenience, allowing sales contracts to be signed if the building permit is ready within that year.

4. Mandatory Registration of Sales Contracts:
– Those who purchased a house with a sales contract before this law came into force must register their contracts with the land registry offices and apply to the ministry for permission to purchase immovable property within six months.

5. Multiple Sales Contracts:
– If you have purchased more than one house with multiple sales contracts, you must register one contract with the land registry office within six months. For the other contracts, you must pay a fee of 1% of the sales price and inform the ministry.

6. Trust Agreements:
– Trust agreements made before this law came into force must be registered with the land registry offices within 75 working days. Additionally, you can now only make one trust agreement under this law.

7. Project Purchase Limits:
– Foreigners can purchase up to 80% of a project, while TRNC or Turkish citizens can purchase 20%. Citizens of the same country cannot purchase more than 50% of a project.

8. Transfer of Land:
– Foreigners who have obtained ministry permits before this law came into force must complete the land transfer within six months.

Penalties for Non-Compliance

The penalty for non-compliance with the provisions of the law is 500 times the minimum wage, approximately 500,000 STG.

As stated at the beginning, there is no need to panic. Our company and I will always be by your side to ensure you do not suffer any inconvenience. We, as lawyers, will make our objections to this law. I hope to bring you good news in the next video. Stay healthy and with love.

Özyar Tugut


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