Along with the travel and tourist industry and the financial sector, the real estate sector makes for a considerable portion of Cyprus’ overall economy, which generates more than 80 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. In the first three months of 2016, there was a 28% rise in the number of property titles that were sold when compared to the same period in 2015. This indicated that the market was gaining confidence. Investors can take advantage of a variety of particularly alluring benefits provided by the nation, such as a reduction of transfer fees by fifty percent for any transactions or a complete exemption from any future capital gain tax imposed on revenue.
The steps involved in registering a real estate agency in Cyprus
Real estate agents in Cyprus are subject to the jurisdiction of local laws and are mandated to hold valid professional licenses in addition to registering with the Registrar of Estate Agents. In 2004, new laws were enacted to protect homebuyers and put a stop to brokers who were not registered with the state. The Cyprus Real Estate Agents Association (CREAA) maintains a vigilant watch over agents in that country. Even while not all of the agents in the country are registered with this Association, it does provide individuals who seek to operate in this sector higher credibility, which is essential when starting a real estate firm in Cyprus.
How to register in Cyprus with CREAA
CREAA members are required to have comprehensive knowledge of the regional immovable property laws and to have professional indemnity insurance with a minimum coverage amount of CYP 100,000 (EUR 171,653). The following requirements must also be satisfied to join the CREAA:
- Greek language proficiency;
- Extensive industry sales experience;
- A relevant degree from an accredited institution;
- A spotless criminal and civic background, and
- Lack of bankruptcy.
The registration application
The following documents must be included with the application for a legal entity’s registration in the Agents Register:
- the company’s articles of incorporation and its memorandum of incorporation;
- the receipt showing that the application cost of €200 was paid;
- the company’s certificate of establishment;
- the certificate identifying the company’s secretaries and directors;
- the stockholders’ names and addresses;
- the certificate that verifies the registered office address.
Filing a licensing application
After that, a legal body must apply for the granting of an annual license either online via the website of the competent authorities or by mail or in person to the Council of Real Estate Agents. The following paperwork has to be included with the application:
- the current year’s €200.000 in insurance coverage;
- the property deeds or another document (such as a leasing agreement) attesting to the applicant’s ownership of the offices;
- a certificate of employment from the Social Insurance Services for each employee;
- a solemn declaration that the legal entity’s previously filed certificates have not been altered;
- approval by the board of directors for the filing of the application form by a third party (if applicable);
- the €250 license fee payment receipt duplicate.
To verify the suitability of the applicant’s offices, the inspector for the Council of Real Estate Agents conducts on-site inspections.
Renewing and maintaining a license
Licenses can be obtained by natural individuals as well as legal companies, therefore anybody can potentially operate in the field. The registration certificate does not contain an expiration date for its validity. The expiration date for each annual license is the 31st of December of the year in which it was given. The renewal is subject to the same terms and restrictions, and it will set you back €250. The identity card for the agent will cost an additional €20.