«Real Estates …. The Real Estates»

  Article By : Marinos Kineyirou|  Published at : Politis Newspaper| 01-03-2012

MARINOS KINEYIROU

«Real Estates …. The Real Estates»

Marinos kineyirou Manager of Marinos Estate Agencies LTD

Marinos Kineyirou Manager of Marinos Kineyirou Estate Agencies LTD

By Stamatis Filippis

In light of the conditions of uncertainty being raised because of the global financial crisis that has also affected the activities of Real Estate Agents, the Cyprus Association of Estate Agent Entrepreneurs, fully aware of the problems caused by the global crisis, it is able to process and promote measures which will reduce to a minimum degree any negative effects that may arise. The Vice-president of the Cyprus Association of Estate Agent Entrepreneurs, President of the Real Estate Agent Entrepreneurs Association of Larnaca- Famagusta and Property Auctioneer, Mr. Marinos Kineyirou, in an exclusive interview in our magazine «PERIODIKO»,  talked  about the economic crisis, the reasons why the cities of Larnaca and Famagusta face the biggest problem in real estates in relation to the other districts of Cyprus, what the Cypriot banks have to do, the illegal estate agents and what we should be care of, as well as about the preserved buildings that the authorities ignore risking human lives and should take drastic measures because their owners are waiting to be torn down in order to erect new buildings.
Among other things, he said that we should all work together in good faith to find the best approach to strengthen the economy of Cyprus that is imposed more than ever.

Specifically, when Mr. Kineyirou was asked how much the crisis has affected their own field, he told us: «the crisis caused problems regarding the real estate properties and created a feeling of concern and uncertainty in every buyer”.
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THE CYPRIOT OWNERS MUST UNDERSTAND THAT THEY HAVE TO COMPROMISE WITH THE CURRENT PROPERTY PRICES IN ORDER TO CREATE STABILITY IN THE MARKET.

How do you think the market can be helped for a new breath of life?

«I believe that the market stabilization will be helped by the support of our Association. As everyone knows, there are a number of foreign property owners in Cyprus who, due to the global economic crisis sell their properties at low prices. The interested buyers would buy properties from foreign vendors, which are found in very good prices. However, the Cypriot owners do not decide easily to sell, and wait for the good old days when the real estate prices were soaring. As an association, we will find soon various ways so that Cypriot sellers understand that they have to compromise with the current prices, in order to create stability in the real estate market. They have to understand that this is not a temporary situation and the prices will not change soon. We have to follow the market as is».

Will the current situation affect the Cyprus market?

«If the market continues to move only with the foreign vendors, at some point this is going to stop. We have to inform the Cypriot sellers and buyers about the whole situation, through various announcements, seminars or events, in order to understand the seriousness of the problem and begin to trust and accept the current facts, for the good of all of us.”

THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR FOR BUYING A PROPERTY IS PSYCHOLOGY.

Do you observe any difference in the property prices at the moment in Cyprus?
«There is a price reduction in all categories. The lowest reduction is noticeable in apartments and then in houses. Plots and lands etc. come later.
The reason of greater price reduction of apartments is because the owners of most apartments are foreigners. Price reduction in the rest of the real estate is not appropriate, in order to help the market to breathe. »

Are the property prices in Larnaca and the free Famagusta area in a more unfavorable position in relation to the other districts of Cyprus?

Clearly it is greater because the most demand for purchase was from foreign investors. Now, due to the global economic crisis, the foreign investors are not so interested and thus we have been led to a further price reduction.

THE BANKS DO NOT HAVE ANY OTHER CHOICE BUT THE REDUCTION OF INTEREST.

However, the reduction of property prices still did not brought the expected investments by the Cypriot buyers. Why do you think this is happening?

There is a feeling of distrust and doubt in the buyer’s psychology. The major factor for purchasing a property is psychology, and unfortunately it is affected by the economic crisis. I would say that there is interest in buying only when there are great opportunities. But, Cypriot sellers are not determined yet to reduce the prices and do not realize the great economic problem that exists. Those who decreased the prices, their properties were sold easily.

EACH INTERESTED BUYER SHOULD MAKE A GOOD RESEARCH BEFORE BUYING A PROPERTY IN ORDER TO HAVE A PROPER INVESTMENT.

How could the Cypriot banks help the real estate market, based on the current facts?

Certainly by reducing the interest rates it will help. The banks do not have another choice and must do so, despite the fluidity problems that they face. This is the only way the real estate market and its prices would be stabilized. Otherwise, the banks would be exposed with regards to their coverage over the lending they have provided so far. I think, the reduction of interests would be a great motive for every interested buyer.

What advice would you give to the buyers?

The issue of properties is necessary for everyone.  It is not a risk, because there have always been and continue to be increases and reductions of prices. Currently, there are very good opportunities for investment. My advice is that everyone should do a good research before buying, so that to have a proper investment. The Cyprus Real Estate Agents Association (CREAA) operates more than 25 years, and is the only professional association of estate agents in Cyprus which currently enumerates 185 licensed Members.

Can you please tell us Mr. Kineyirou what are the main goals of your Association?
The basic goals of our Association are:
— «The protection and promotion of non-profit interests of the estate Entrepreneurs.
— The Legal Protection Legislation of the profession of real estate agents in Cyprus.
— The organization, coordination and cooperation of Estate Agent Entrepreneurs to support and promote their non-profit interests.
-To inform on all legislative, administrative, urban planning and other measures, provisions, proposals or bills that affect the development of real estate wealth and the real estate sector.
-The study of all matters affecting the development of land, the real estate and tourism development and of related fields, the continuous monitoring and informing members about the Government’s activities and of other organizations that affect or tend to affect the non-profit interests of the above organizations and take measures to protect the non-profit interests of members.
-The implementation of the Code of Ethics, as outlined by the International Regulations can be implemented in accordance with the Cyprus Legislation.
-The development of cooperation or association with other organizations that have similar purposes.
-The publication of a newspaper, magazines etc. that are relevant to the purposes of the Association.
-Lend or guarantee money for the purposes of the Association upon such terms and security which will be considered appropriate, provided that the purpose of the association is non-profit.
-Carrying out any other projects that aim to achieve the above aims or to promote non-profit interests of the members of the Association. »
The Cyprus Real Estate Agents Association (CREAA) operates more than 25 years, under the auspices of the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce & Industry  (CCCI) and it is the only professional Association of estate agents in Cyprus, which currently enumerates 185 licensed Members.
It is also a leading member of the International Real Estate Federation (FIABCI). Several members of the Association are members of the Federation, which operates in Cyprus as FIABCI-CYPRUS CHAPTER.

The illegal real estate agents
Even though important steps have been taken so far and the measures which are still promoted by the Council and the Cyprus Real Estate Agents Association (CREAA), in some cases, minor weaknesses and problems emerge, which are under constant surveillance and resolution to combat illegal real estate agents, who increase day by day.
It has been a while since the Estate Agent Registration Council, in cooperation with the Cyprus Association of Estate Agent Entrepreneurs have started a campaign against the illegal real estate agents. In light of the current economic crisis, the Council has undertaken austere measures against the increasing number of illegal real estate agents.  There are people who will denounce in the court of law any real estate agent who is working illegally. The Council has already denounced such cases throughout Cyprus.  Some illegal real estate agents are working in various important posts through which they come in touch with lots of people daily. There are many customers who are approached by an illegal real estate agent in a tempting manner with a small or no fee at all, and not only they fail to realize that they are being exploited, they even follow any kind of illegal activity thinking that they serve their own benefit. This is how the customer can be exploited.
The real estate agent licensee works in the sales sector with a small percentage of a specified commission, while the illegal misinforms the seller or the buyer for his personal profit that may sometimes reach the 70%. When this happens, the illegal real estate agent cannot be denounced because there would be no supporting evidence against him. But, when sales are conducted with the legalized procedures by a licitly registered real estate agent, he can be accused for anything considered unlawful and legal proceedings can be instituted against him according to the legislation. Moreover, a real estate agent licensee, due to his long professional experience can advise a seller and a buyer for their benefit.
What is more, the licensee can protect the customer in case of a judicial problem because of his insurance coverage. There have been many cases however, that with an illegal real estate agent it is possible that the customers may lose their money without managing to claim it back because they are accomplices in the illegal act and therefore are prosecuted. The illegal real estate agent cannot declare his dealings to the several Governmental Departments since any kind of buy and sell action is done through untaxed black money.
The state and the Estate Agent Registration Council must take serious measures so as to protect the ignorant citizens from the illegal real estate agents. We have to stop this illegality because everyone is exposed to danger. Every real estate agent who is working directly or indirectly, without a legal license issued from the Estate Agent Registration Council -an entity of the Public Law- commits a penal offence.
Every real estate agent licensee however, should have his registration certificate and license affixed in a clearly visible position in his office, as well as the registration and license number should be present in his advertisements so as all the customers can check his License. If the customers have any doubts, they are welcomed to get in contact with the offices of the Cyprus Association of Estate Agent Entrepreneurs.

Preserved Buildings

Although the responsible departments and municipalities announce that owners of listed buildings are obliged to repair and maintain in excellent condition these buildings which advance the tradition of folk heritage, however, we observe that the authorities themselves disregard to take drastic measures against those who break the law. Several owners of those buildings are waiting to be demolished to erect new buildings, thus avoiding the requirement for restoration of the old building. It is imposed by the competent authorities to take the necessary measures against the owners to avoid mourning a possible loss of human life.

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