Property Acquisition in North Cyprus

We understand that the process of purchasing a home and the legal complexities can be intimidating, especially for international buyers. We present this detailed guide on buying property in North Cyprus to provide clarity and help. This overview explains the permission-to-purchase procedure as well as the key steps of the conveyancing process. However, it is critical to remember that this article just provides general instructions. Seek competent legal counsel for specialized guidance tailored to your specific circumstances. If you have any questions or need more information on real estate, please contact our knowledgeable team.


Obtaining Purchase Permission

Property buying in North Cyprus requires authorization and particular restrictions for non-TRNC nationals. The Law No. 52/2008 on Immovable Property Acquisition and Long-Term Lease (Aliens) specifies that foreign people or corporations may purchase immovable property in North Cyprus with the authorization of the Council of Ministers. The quota is established at one property (home or apartment worth no more than 5 donums or land worth no more than 1 donum) per person. This prohibition applies to both the acquisition of property and the registration of contracts.

Notably, spouses are now recognized as different entities with independent purchasing rights. While authorization is not required to get into a contract, it is required to transfer title. The procedure for obtaining approval to purchase is detailed below.

Our trust services can be used in situations where acquiring several properties or bypassing the authorization route is preferable owing to processing time. We provide specialized advice and solutions, including trusts and businesses, to investors seeking larger-scale investments.


A Step-by-Step Explanation of the Conveyancing Process

The conveyancing process in North Cyprus is divided into five stages:

Contract pre-exchange

Contract exchange

Contract stamping and registration

Application for Purchase Permission

Title transfer


Let’s take a closer look at each level to gain a better understanding.

  1. Contract Pre-Exchange

The procedure starts with your initial instructions. We’ll obtain the appropriate information and documentation during our initial appointment, including client information forms, purchase permit application forms, and identity documents. Property information, including the sale price, payment plan, and fixtures and fittings, is also gathered.

The next step is to draft, analyze, and negotiate the Contract of Sale. Thorough examination of title deeds, site plans, specifications, and other essential papers verifies the property’s legality and conformity. On request, searches at the District Lands Office can be conducted to confirm property ownership and assess any encumbrances.


  1. Contract Exchange

The Contract of Sale is signed and exchanged in the presence of witnesses once all parties have approved it. It is recommended that you save a copy of the original Contract of Sale.


  1. Registration and Stamp Duty

Law No. 38/2007 requires all Contracts of Sale to be registered at the District Lands Office within 21 days of signing. Before registration, stamp duty tax and half of the title transfer fee must be paid. If paid within 30 days of signing, the stamp duty charge is 0.5% of the purchase amount. The title transfer fee is 6% of the assessed value of the property and is due at the time of registration.


  1. Purchase Permission Application

The next step in gaining permission to purchase is to apply to the Ministry of Interior. A power of attorney, identification copies, purchase permission application forms, and a police report revealing criminal history from your home country are all required paperwork. The application is reviewed, and if it is approved, the Council of Ministers grants consent.


  1. Title Transfer

Title is transferred after permission is granted. Taxes are paid based on assessed property value once valuation papers are filed to the District Lands Office. The transfer fee, VAT (if applicable), and capital gains tax are all taxes. The taxes owed upon transfer of title are determined by the District Lands Office’s assessment.


Taxes on Title Transfer

The following are key taxes in conveyancing transactions:

For international buyers, the transfer fee is 12% of the assessed property value.

VAT: 5% of the sale price or assessed value, whichever is greater.

Capital Gains Tax: This varies depending on the vendor categorization.

Adherence to these principles and legal procedures is required when purchasing property in North Cyprus. Seek professional help for a smooth process and correct information that is geared to your individual scenario.