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Yearly Archives: 2013

Visitors to Cyprus Want to Put Down Roots

The best way Cyprus visitors to truly discover a place is to live in it. One visit to Cyprus is enough to see why so many people want to do just that: after a wonderful holiday on one of the most beautiful and hospitable of the Mediterranean islands, the last thing you want to do is get back on the plane. It’s then that the memory of your stay begins to draw you back and you dream of settling here, of putting down roots, of finding that balance in life that the people of the Mediterranean seem to have in abundance.

A track of loose limestone chippings curves gently around the hillside, shaded by golden gorse bushes and gnarled old olive trees. The centre of the track is an oasis of green grass and spring flowers. Butterflies flutter on the gentle breeze, catching the dappled sunlight, which sparkles like diamonds in the grass after a light early morning shower of rain. The day promises to be fine. The warm air is scented with juniper. Little brown lizards scuttle across the rocks beside the road and the trees are alive with birdsong. Around the corner, beyond the olive trees, with the upper floor balcony framed by vines and bougainvillea, and with a backdrop of the bluest sea, your dream becomes reality: your home, your welcome in the hills, is as beautiful as that first sight of the place when the germ of an idea to settle in Cyprus was prompted by the modest ‘for sale’ sign down on the main road into the village.

The island’s irresistible pull for Visitors to Cyprus Want to Put Down Roots

That dream of long sunny days, mild winters and the slower pace of life – perhaps it comes to us all in the end; but it takes a certain amount of bravery to take those first steps towards becoming a resident of a place that you’ve enjoyed as  Cyprus visitors. You should have no qualms on the matter: do your research, choose your location, then jump in and give it a real chance. There may be setbacks, or you may have problems adjusting. Don’t give up. You have already made a brave decision. Now follow it up with determination. Embrace everything the island has to offer, and immerse yourself in a new chapter of your life.

The culture of Cyprus has developed through a unique set of influences, from Western Europe to the Middle East. Its 35 years under British rule has left its mark on the island, not least in its continued popularity as a place to settle: about 65,000 British people live here. There are the familiar reminders of home – the red post boxes, driving on the left, the widespread use of the English language – which, together with the Cypriots respect for older people, make British ex-pats feel immediately at home. Then there is the beauty of its landscapes – the dramatic mountains and valleys, golden beaches and rocky headlands, and the intimate little villages, historic ruins and isolated monasteries; not to forget the charm of its towns and lively holiday resorts. “It has been called ‘the cradle of civilisation’ offering a wonderful mix of geography, cultures and ancient history, all in a superb climate.” Sit in the cool shade one of the little restaurants around the harbour of Kyrenia, with a glass of wine, your lunch on order, and the scent of the sea, the herbs, spices and olive oil, and the sounds of the street and the crowds and the diners around you combining to make an irresistible ambience, and you will truly feel there is no better place to be.The economic climate for Cyprus visitors

Despite its economic problems, Cyprus and its people wear it well. Early in 2013, the EU and IMF recovery plan, implemented by the Cyprus government, involved freezing any account in the country’s two main banks that held more than €1000,000 (£85,000). This left many retirement plans in ruins and swiftly ended the rampant growth of the banking sector, which by then had become eight times the size of the nation’s GDP. This prompted one of Cyprus’s worst tourist seasons, with a 75% drop in bookings leaving many hotels deserted, and the UK government issuing exaggerated warnings about queues at cash points, the uselessness of credit cards and the danger of muggings. To anyone who visited the island in 2013, this all seemed ridiculous. The crime rate in Cyprus is one of the lowest in Europe and Cypriots are far more stoical in the face of such problems than they are usually given credit for. This can be summed up by the often heard comment on the island: “We’ve suffered worse in the past and survived. We are a hard-working people, and the country will recover.” This has been borne out by the latest economic analyses, which show a more promising picture than expected.

Buying property

Since the financial crisis, property prices have fallen all over the island by about 20-30%. Villas sell from around €300,000, compared to around €150,000 for a two-bedroom town house or €70,000 for a one-bedroom apartment, although prices may be lower in areas that are further from the main tourist towns, or on the northern coast.

The south west coast of Cyprus, around the harbour town of Paphos, is the most popular choice amongst British home-owners. There are beautiful beaches, the area is rich in cultural attractions – the town is a Unesco World Heritage site – and with the nearby airport and year-round flights to the UK, and all the amenities to be expected in one of the main towns on the island and a busy tourist destination, it makes an ideal base for families or older couples looking for a retirement home. Life here revolves around the beach, particularly at Coral Bay, a convenient short drive from the city. The contract to develop a new marina across the bay has been finalised, which include plans for restaurants, bars and increased parking. This will inevitably result in higher property prices.

For those Cyprus visitors looking for a quieter life, travel north from Paphos to the area around Chrysochous Bay and the Akamas Peninsular, and the small, picturesque fishing port of Polis. The area has everything that makes Cyprus so desirable – the long stretches of golden sands, the laid-back charm of the little shops and tavernas around the harbour, and its magnificent setting amongst pine-clad, sun-baked hills. If you are looking for the beating heart of the island, you should head for Limassol on the southern coast. In size it is second only to Nicosia, the capital. Limassol is the business centre of the island, a sophisticated cosmopolitan city where you will find a range of high class restaurants, top quality shopping and all that money can buy – from the most luxurious villas, apartments and prestigious yacht moorings to the best in international cuisine.

In short for Cyprus visitors, living in Cyprus has much to offer anyone looking to escape the discomforts and irritations of British life and culture. Those who make a success of the transition go with both eyes open and a willingness to accept that all countries have their drawbacks – although sitting on a sunny beach in Cyprus in late October with no worries besides whether to have baked sea bass or moussaka for lunch, it’s hard to see what they may be.

Visitors to Cyprus Want to Put Down Roots

Immovable Property Tax Demands

The Inland Revenue Department has started to send out Immovable Property Tax Demands by post and all property owners will receive a notice by 15 September 2013 a tax official has  said.

Immovable Property Tax Demands – Properties for sale in Cyprus The Inland Revenue Department has started to send out Immovable Property Tax Demands

PROPERTY owners (i.e. those with the Title Deed to a property registered in their name) will receive a notice by 15 September to pay their Immovable Property Tax Demand. Imposed on all owners of property as part of the bailout package agreed with Cyprus’ international lenders, notices concerning large properties have already been sent by post. Property owners may benefit from a 10 per cent discount if they pay before 16 October, while those who delay payment until after 15 November will pay a 10 per cent surcharge on their tax bill. Taxpayers can pay either at the Inland Revenue offices or electronically (presumably using TAXISnet) by citing a reference number attached to the payment notice. Properties belonging to the same owner will be considered as a whole and Immovable Property Tax will be imposed on their total value. Tax estimates for this year are based on 1980 values of property, while as of next year a new valuation will be made based on the current value of properties. At the present time it is unclear whether the tax demands will be printed in different languages to cater for non-Greek speaking property owners. Further information Immovable Property Tax bands for 2013, English translations of the required forms and guidance on payment may be found at Money off your Immovable Property Tax bill.

Read more at: Courtesy Cyprus Property News

PROPERTY owners (i.e. those with the Title Deed to a property registered in their name) will receive a notice by 15 September to pay their Immovable Property Tax. Imposed on all owners of property as part of the bailout package agreed with Cyprus’ international lenders, notices concerning large properties have already been sent by post. Property owners may benefit from a 10 per cent discount if they pay before 16 October, while those who delay payment until after 15 November will pay a 10 per cent surcharge on their tax bill. Taxpayers can pay either at the Inland Revenue offices or electronically (presumably using TAXISnet) by citing a reference number attached to the payment notice. Properties belonging to the same owner will be considered as a whole and Immovable Property Tax will be imposed on their total value. Tax estimates for this year are based on 1980 values of property, while as of next year a new valuation will be made based on the current value of properties. At the present time it is unclear whether the tax demands will be printed in different languages to cater for non-Greek speaking property owners. Further information Immovable Property Tax bands for 2013, English translations of the required forms and guidance on payment may be found at Money off your Immovable Property Tax bill.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read more at: http://www.news.cyprus-property-buyers.com/2013/08/19/immovable-property-tax-demands-by-post/id=0015565?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+CyprusPropertyNewsStories+%28Cyprus+Property+News+Magazine%29
Copyright © Cyprus Property News

PROPERTY owners (i.e. those with the Title Deed to a property registered in their name) will receive a notice by 15 September to pay their Immovable Property Tax. Imposed on all owners of property as part of the bailout package agreed with Cyprus’ international lenders, notices concerning large properties have already been sent by post. Property owners may benefit from a 10 per cent discount if they pay before 16 October, while those who delay payment until after 15 November will pay a 10 per cent surcharge on their tax bill. Taxpayers can pay either at the Inland Revenue offices or electronically (presumably using TAXISnet) by citing a reference number attached to the payment notice. Properties belonging to the same owner will be considered as a whole and Immovable Property Tax will be imposed on their total value. Tax estimates for this year are based on 1980 values of property, while as of next year a new valuation will be made based on the current value of properties. At the present time it is unclear whether the tax demands will be printed in different languages to cater for non-Greek speaking property owners. Further information Immovable Property Tax bands for 2013, English translations of the required forms and guidance on payment may be found at Money off your Immovable Property Tax bill.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read more at: http://www.news.cyprus-property-buyers.com/2013/08/19/immovable-property-tax-demands-by-post/id=0015565?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+CyprusPropertyNewsStories+%28Cyprus+Property+News+Magazine%29
Copyright © Cyprus Property News

Immigration permits for non-EU nationals

Scales of Justice

The Interior Ministry recently announced changes to the procedures for granting Immigration Permits (Permanent Residence) to third country (non-EU) nationals who intend to invest in Cyprus. Immigration permits for non-EU nationals

THE Ministry of Interior or the Republic of Cyprus issued an Announcement on May 7, 2013 that Immigration Permits (Permanent Residence) will be issued to third country nationals under the following terms:

1. Investment/Financial Criteria:

(a) The applicant shall submit a statement from a Cyprus financial institution showing that an amount of at least €30,000 has been deposited in a reserve account, for a period of at least three years. This amount must show that it was transferred from abroad.

(b) The applicant and spouse are able to demonstrate that they have at their disposal a secured annual income of at least €30,000 increased by €5,000 for each dependent (including the spouse). This income may come from wages, work, pensions, share dividends, fixed deposits, rents etc. from abroad.

(c) The applicant shall submit with the application a title deed or purchase contract in its and/or its spouse name, filed at the Department of Lands and Surveys, for a residential or other building, of a market value of at least €300,000 (excluding VAT) and official proof of payment of at least €200,000 (excluding VAT), regardless of the delivery date of the house. Provided that the remaining value of the house will be paid from foreign funds into an account at a financial institution in Cyprus.

In case of a couple, this condition will apply for both of them, in the sense that the couple will not be allowed to acquire more than two units totally.

The above amounts should be shown to originate from abroad.

Note that the house purchase will be accepted even when made in the name of the Company and not in the name of the applicant, provided that the Company is registered in the name of the applicant and/or the name of applicant and his spouse and he/they are the sole shareholders.

Provided that if the shareholder is another legal person, it should be demonstrated that the sole shareholder of such legal person is the applicant and/or applicant and spouse.

(d) For purposes of this policy, the applicant may buy up to two housing units (apartments or houses), or a housing unit and a store with an area of 100 sq.m., or a housing unit and an office with an area of 250 sq.m., given that the total market value meets the provisions of paragraph (c) above.

The said sale must be for unit(s) sold by a development company to a buyer for the first time. From 07.05.2013, for the purposes of this policy, applications concerning resales of homes will not be accepted.

Note that purchase agreement documents for home resales deposited in the Land Registry before 7.5.2013 (date of deposit of purchase agreement will be confirmed by the Lands and Surveys Department) will be accepted for purposes of this policy.

Provided that the houses/apartments can be independent of each other, but both must be sold by the same company.

(e) Immigration permits are issued to the applicant with dependents the spouse and children under the age of 18. Unmarried dependent children aged 18 to 25 years, may submit their own separated application for acquisition of immigration permit only if they are proven students and the father and/or mother present additional annual income of €5,000 for each dependent child. Note that each such dependent child shall submit with the application all required documents specified in the list (see section 6 hereinafter).

Provided that such authorization will be valid until the age of 25 years. If the interested person wishes to obtain a new immigration permit, it must apply under the existing criteria as an independent person.

(f) Immigration permit may be issued to the applicant’s children over 18 years of age not financially dependent on the applicant, provided that for each of these children there is attributable market value of the acquired property of at least €300,000 (excluding VAT) as described in paragraph (c) above (i.e. if the applicant has a financially independent child aged 30 and wishes to obtain an immigration permit, he should buy a house total market value of €600,000, if he has two adult children, financially independent, must buy home value of €900,000 etc.).

In such cases, a certificate of payment of at least 66% of the market value of the home must be submitted along with the application (i.e. an amount of €400,000 for a home of a residential market value of €600,000) and each child will submit with its application all required documents (i.e. secured annual income of €30,000, deposit in a financial institution in Cyprus of an amount of €30,000 which will remain blocked for three years).

2. Quality Criteria:

(a) The applicant and spouse must submit a certificate of clear criminal record from the country of resident and generally must not constitute in any way a threat to public order or public safety.

(b) The applicant and spouse will attest that they will not be employed in any direct or indirect way in Cyprus.

Note that the applicant and/or spouse may be shareholder(s) in a company registered in Cyprus and the income from the dividends of such company is not considered as an obstacle to obtain the immigration permit.

(c) The applicant and the member of its family included in the immigration permit must be visiting Cyprus at least once every two years.

(d) All required supporting documents, which are attached to the application for immigration permit as well as their translation in Greek or English must be duly certified.

3. Procedure for Submission and Examination of Application

(a) Applications must be submitted directly to the Civil Registry and Migration Department (CRMD) personally or through a representative (relevant phones 22403921 and 22403943) with a non-refundable fee of €500.

(b) Applications submitted in Cyprus, either personally or through a representative, will be submitted in a common dossier. (Each document of the application will be punctured and attached in the dossier and numbered in blue ink from the first to the last page, this being the responsibility of the person submitting the application).

The dossier will include also a registration form for all documents submitted with the application and for any other supplementary documents by or on behalf of the applicant.

(c) The application shall be speedily processed by the CRMD and submitted to the Minister of Interior. For the purpose of this type of immigration permit, an interview with the applicant will take place only in certain cases considered necessary by the Director General of the Ministry of Interior.

(d) The Ministry of Interior will inform the applicant or his representative and the CRMD on the decision of the Minister of Interior.

(e) The holder of an immigration permit should be visiting Cyprus at least once every two years and comply with all the provisions of relevant legislation.

4. Transitional Provisions:

After the publication of this Announcement, any citizen of third country who applied for an immigration permit Category F may, if it wishes, submit to CRMD additional information to demonstrate conformity that the criteria in paragraphs 1-3 of the Announcement are fulfilled, through a new application form so that the review of the application is performed in accordance with the provisions of Regulation 6(2) of the Aliens and Immigration Regulations and based on the above criteria and relative procedure.

5. Time schedule for the issue of immigration permit

If the criteria of this Announcement are met and unless there are reasons relating to either the criminal records of applicant, either on grounds of policy or public security, the application will be considered by the Minister of Interior in a positive way and the immigration permit will be issued.

It is estimated that by applying the procedure described in this Announcement, the examination period of the application from the date of its submission, will not exceed 2 months.

6. Application Forms

Available online the following forms:

  • Application form (M.67).
  • List (check list) of documents submitted with the application (in Greek and English).
  • List (check list) of documents submitted with the application (in Greek and English) for adult children in accordance with paragraph 1(e).
  • Affidavit for the annual income of the applicant, together with other evidence (in Greek and English).
  • Declaration confirming non-employment of applicant in Cyprus (in Greek and English).

7. More info:

Authorized Officer: Ms Panagiota Nathanael – Administrative Officer CRMD
Elena Pieri – Administrative Officer CRMD
E-mail: pnathanael@crmd.moi.gov.cy
epieri@papd.mof.gov.cy
Phone: 22804496 / 22804495
Fax: 22804491
Web page Ministry of Interior: www.moi.gov.cy
MINISTRY OF INTERIOR May 7th, 2013

Courtesy Cyprus Property News

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