If either buyer or seller is not Cypriot, the contract can/ should be in English. Once it is prepared, and the deposit (usually between 20 and 30 percent of the purchase price) is in place, the parties can sign. This contract contains a clause that determines a completion date, usually within 28 days, and completion must be made by this date, otherwise the deposit can be lost and the purchase cancelled.
Note: The contract is legally binding - there are no let-out clauses.
Stamp duty must then be paid by the buyer for the contract. This starts at 0.15 percent of the purchase price, and the contract should then be deposited as soon as possible at the Land Registry Department, for specific performance. This is essential as it officially commits both parties to the transaction. The deposit costs euro €1.71 (2009).
From Signature to Completion
In the time period between signature of contract and completion (or transfer of title), the seller must settle all property taxes in relation to the property, such as Local Authority Taxes, Sewerage Taxes (if applicable), and Capital Gains Tax.
Certificates for each of these must be available for transfer of title otherwise the transfer cannot go ahead. Transfer forms also need to be completed, and then signed by all parties, and stamped by various government departments.
It is the buyer's responsibility to ensure the mortgage is in place and the bank will be present for the transfer.