Property sales in Cyprus up for fourth year in a row in 2017

Residential property sales increased in 2017 for a fourth year in a row and prices have also been rising making the outlook for 2018 one of the most positive for years.

The latest figures from the Department of Lands and Surveys shows that during December 2017 sales increased by 36% to reach their highest level since July 2008 with 25% bought by overseas buyers.

Sales rose in all districts with the highest rise of 113% recorded in Nicosia, followed by a rise of 94% in Famagusta with an increase of 94% while sales were up 23% in Limassol, up 18% in Larnaca and up 10% in Paphos.

Year on year sales were up 24%, the highest level since the property bubble burst in 2008. Although sales in Larnaca fell by 1% year on year, they rose in all the other districts. Annual sales in Famagusta rose by 44% followed by Nicosia with a rise of 42%, Limassol up 27% and Paphos up 23%.

A breakdown of the figure shows that sales to domestic buyers increased by 53% in December 2017 compared to the same month in 2016 and in all districts. In Nicosia sales to domestic buyers were up 133%, in Famagusta up 107%, in Limassol up 39%, in Paphos up 22% and in Larnaca up 18%.

During 2017 domestic sales rose 21% compared with 2016. Although sales fell by 7% in Larnaca, they rose in all the other districts. In Nicosia they were up by 44%, in Famagusta by 38%, in Limassol by 25% and in Paphos by 14%.

Sales to overseas buyers fell in December by 2% overall compared with December 2016. They increased by 33% in Famagusta, by 29% in Nicosia and by 21% in Larnaca, but these increases were outweighed by falls of 17% in Limassol and 5% in Paphos.

During 2017 as a while overseas sales rose 33% compared with and increased in all districts, up by 61% in Famagusta, up 38% in Paphos, up 33% in Limassol, up 31% in Nicosia and up 15% in Larnaca.

Prices and rents have also been rising. The most up to date quarterly index from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), which covers the second quarter of 2017, shows that across the island prices for both houses and flats increased on a quarterly basis by 1.6% and 1.5% respectively.

The biggest prices increase were in Limassol with a quarterly rise of 3.8% for flats and houses. In Larnaca prices remained stable while values for holiday homes across Cyprus increased by 2.6% for flats and 1.9% for houses. Limassol recorded the highest quarterly increases for holiday apartments with an increase of 4.2% and Paphos for holiday homes with an increase of 3%.

Across Cyprus, on a quarterly basis rental values increased by 3% for apartments and 1% for houses. Compared to the second quarter of 2016, rents increased by 8.3% for flats and by 10.2% for houses.