Life in the real estate market due to the “freezing” of transfer fees

  Article By : Marinos Kineyirou|  Published at : Politis Newspaper| 13-05-2012

Marinos Kineyirou: Vice-president of the Cyprus Association of Estate Agent Entrepreneurs,  President of the Real Estate Agent Entrepreneurs Association of Larnaca- Famagusta and Property Auctioneer.

Marinos kineyirou Manager of Marinos Estate Agencies LTD

Marinos Kineyirou Manager of Marinos Kineyirou Estate Agencies LTD

Life in the real estate market due to the “freezing” of transfer fees

New breath in the real estate market has been given in the last few months, due to the election of a law to suspend the payment of transfer fees for six months. The Plenary of the House of Representatives passed the bill unanimously to suspend the payment of transfer fees on real estate transactions where VAT is paid and a 50% reduction of fees for cases that do not pay VAT. The relevant proposed amendment was published on the 2nd of December 2011 in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Cyprus and will be valid until the 1st of June, 2012. Also, another amendment has been put forward according to which, the legislation will be applied to situations that submit the purchase and sale agreement but, it was not possible to issue the title deeds within six months.

As a member of the Cyprus Association of Estate Agent Entrepreneurs, in our letter addressing all the competent bodies regarding the issue of suspension / change of transfer fees for 6 months, we complain about the fact that we did not have the opportunity to express our views concerning the modifications approved by the Parliament. The bill makes a discrimination against both the real estate buyers and sellers. Specifically, it promotes the interests of one class of society (of the developers) who have new apartments or houses for sale, because this legislation includes only the first sale and as a result, only the development companies can benefit. However, the legislation does not include all the properties, hence resulting in discrimination; it is not proper for a buyer to purchase a property without being able to benefit from the law and be placed in a second category as opposed to all the other citizens. At a meeting of the association with the Cypriot political parties DISY, EVROKO and EDEK, the association has recommended the continuation of the existing legislation for another 6 months with some changes, such as the abolition of transfer fees for all properties without preconditions. The parties AKEL and DIKO have not scheduled appointments with the association yet, although with the proper planning, the above amendment of the law can bring significant benefits.

The association stresses that its proposal is about the stimulation of the development, and any piecemeal solutions will not solve the problems that exist in their entirety. Even if there has been a temporary breath in the construction sector, at least it is a motive, and the legislation needs to be examined because there are distortions that create big problems.

The intention of the association is not to deprive the revenues from the government, which do not exist anyhow, but to strengthen our construction sector and avoid a further economic recession.

The measures recommended by the Cyprus Association of Estate Agent Entrepreneurs would trigger a resurgence of interest.

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