The island of Cyprus in the Mediterranean Sea is divided into the Republic of Cyprus in the south and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) in the north. The North Cyprus real estate market has seen rapid growth in recent years, attracting foreign buyers looking for warm weather, beautiful long beach, and affordable properties.
For homebuyers in North Cyprus, one of the first decisions is choosing between a brand new property or an existing resale. There are tradeoffs to consider around pricing, quality, customization, and more when deciding between a new build and used.
Prices and Affordability of New Builds Versus Resales
One of the biggest factors under consideration is the price difference between freshly built and resale properties in North Cyprus. Newly constructed homes almost always come at a premium price point compared to existing homes on the market. However, there can be quite a range when looking at typical pricing:
- New constructions in North Cyprus can range from around £100 per square foot on the low end, up to £300 or even £400 per square foot for higher end villas and apartments.
- Resale home prices also cover a wide gamut, but tend to start around £70-£80 per square foot on the entry level, ranging up to £200-£300 per square foot for premium buildings.
Location and Neighborhood Factors
Location is a major determinant of pricing for new developments in Cyprus and usedreal estate. Being close to the sea usually commands the highest prices, especially in desirable areas like Kyrenia and Famagusta. Inland homes in villages and rural areas tend to fall on the lower end of the price spectrum. Popular developments for newly constructed include places like Alsancak, Lapta, and Karşıyaka offering great amenities and proximity to towns and beaches.
Here is a table comparing areas in North Cyprus suited for new builds versus resales:
|Emerging tourist area with new hotels and thousands of apartments catering to rental income investors.
|Features new modern villas with pools aimed at overseas families and professionals.
|Seaside town with new resort-style developments targeting short term holiday guests.
|Coastal village home to largest marina in North Cyprus. New flats overlooking harbor for profitable lets.
|Preserved neighborhoods inside 16th century walls ideal for renovating old homes full of character.
|Maze-like lanes near iconic Kyrenia Castle filled with aging small houses begging to be refreshed.
|Famagusta Old Town
|Former walled city near beaches with streets of rundown homes having potential for restoration.
|Rural area with old architecture and vineyards drawing buyers wanting to renovate lower cost homes.
For resale properties, established neighborhoods surround many of these same towns. Buying an existing home allows becoming part of an established community. But availability is dependent on what’s already built.
Accessibility, growth potential, scenery, and amenities should be weighed when looking at different areas. Daily life goals help determine whether new build or used locations better fit your needs.
Size & Features
Size and included features are also key factors influencing property prices per square meter in North Cyprus. Larger houses with pools, sea views, and high end finishes push the pricing up substantially for both new and existing homes. Smaller apartments and townhouses without premium features tend to be the most affordable options.
Mortgages and Affordability
When it comes to financing and affordability, mortgages are available from some North Cyprus banks and require at least a 50% down payment. Brand-new development often offer payment plans directly from the developer as well. Previously owned homes generally require a cash purchase or obtaining external financing. Carefully considering the true monthly costs is key to determining affordability.
The North Cyprus real estate market statistics
|Total foreign property sales
|Total sales value (USD)
|Average resale home price
|Average new build price
|Average land price per sq meter
The table shows the growth in total foreign property sales and value from 2020 to 2021 in North Cyprus, based on government records. It also displays the increase in average pricing for resale homes, newly constructed, and land over the same period according to industry reports. The sharp upward trends illustrate the real estate market expansion.
While considering new builds or resales as key factors in your property purchase, also explore our guide on choosing the right area for your North Cyprus property
Quality and Condition: New Builds vs. Resales in North Cyprus
When deciding between a recently developed and a resale property in North Cyprus, understanding the typical quality and condition you can expect is crucial. Both options have distinct characteristics that might influence your choice.
These properties usually feature modern construction methods, including reinforced concrete and thermal insulation, adhering to the latest building codes. The quality is generally high, with new electrical, plumbing systems, and contemporary finishes. Buyers can expect a high standard of structural integrity and minimal maintenance requirements in the initial years. Many developers also offer warranties, providing additional peace of mind.
The quality and condition of previously owned properties can vary widely. While some might be well-maintained and recently updated, others could require significant renovation. Older houses might not meet current building standards or may have hidden issues like structural weaknesses or outdated systems. However, used properties in North Cyprus offers the charm and character that new builds often lack, and there’s potential to upgrade and personalize an older home to your liking
In both cases, location doesn’t necessarily dictate quality, but it’s always wise to conduct thorough inspections. For newly constructed, this might mean ensuring the property meets all advertised standards and specifications. For resales, a detailed survey can help uncover any potential issues, allowing you to make an informed decision or negotiate repairs before purchase.
Ultimately, your choice depends on your priorities, whether you value the sleek, worry-free appeal of a brand-new development or the character and potential cost savings of a resale. Whichever path you choose, due diligence is key to finding a quality property that meets your needs and expectations.
Customization and Flexibility
One of the biggest perks of choosing a freshly built is being able to customize it to suit your lifestyle. With some limitations, you may be able to select layouts, cabinets, countertops, flooring, bath fixtures, and more. This allows creating a tailored living space.
Resale homes obviously come as-is, with any renovations needing to be done after moving in. Changing the floorplan or making structural improvements can be extremely costly and complicated compared to properties designed from scratch.
Along with customization during construction, new builds also provide flexibility if you change your mind on certain selections along the way. With unfinished units, modifications are still possible. Changes become much harder once a used property is purchased.
Process and Timeline for Purchase
The process for purchasing a property in North Cyprus depends greatly on whether it is a new build or resale:
New Build Purchase
- Select a development and work with the builder to choose or customize a unit based on available layouts, options, and prices.
- A sales contract is signed and deposit paid to reserve the chosen unit.
- Progress payments are made at intervals during the construction process, often over 12-18 months.
- After completion, the balance is paid and closing completes to take ownership and receive the title deed.
- Timeline from purchase a new built home Cyprus to completion ranges from 1-3 years. Delays are common.
- View and evaluate properties on the market to select one within your budget.
- Make an offer based on the asking price and negotiate terms with the seller.
- Once an accepted offer is in place, hire a solicitor to oversee the closing process.
- The purchase amount is paid in full and the title deed transferred to complete purchase.
- Timeline can range from 1-3 months after an offer is accepted.
Resale homes allow more immediate use and possession. But newly constructed provide the advantage of securing a property off-plan early before price increases.
Financing Options in North Cyprus
When purchasing property in North Cyprus, understanding your financing options is crucial. Generally, buyers can consider bank mortgages or developer payment plans, each with its own set of terms and conditions.
A few North Cyprus banks offer mortgages to foreign buyers, typically requiring a down payment of around 50%. Interest rates and terms can vary, but they generally range from 7-8% with terms up to 15 years. While the specifics might differ slightly between banks, this gives you a general idea of what to expect.
Developer Payment Plans
Many developers provide flexible payment plans for new build properties, allowing buyers to pay in installments over the construction period. Common terms might include a significant down payment (e.g., 25-50%) followed by staged payments until completion. Some developers might offer short-term interest-free periods or other incentives to make their plans more attractive.
Non-residents should note that they might face different terms and may need to demonstrate financial stability or residency qualifications to secure the best rates.
In all cases, it’s wise to shop around and compare options. Engage with financial advisors or mortgage brokers who specialize in North Cyprus property to ensure you get the best deal tailored to your circumstances. Remember, the right financing plan will depend on your personal financial situation, estate type, and long-term investment goals.
Maintenance Fees and Ongoing Costs
Brand new homes come with the advantage of being virtually maintenance-free for the first few years, aside from minor upkeep. In contrast, previously owned houses may require immediate repairs, upgrades, or renovations.
Developers take care of exterior maintenance and repairs on new builds during the warranty period. Things like repainting, roof leaks, or structural issues are covered. Used homes have no such warranty, leaving the owner responsible for maintenance costs right away.
For multi-unit developments, both newly constructed and resales involve homeowner association fees. These cover commune amenities and services. New developments in Cyprus sometimes come with discounted HOA fees in the first years of ownership.
Over the long term, all buildings incur regular maintenance and improvement costs. But resale buyers shoulder more initial expenses compared to new construction.
Legal Considerations When Purchasing Property in North Cyprus
Navigating the legal landscape is a key aspect of successfully buying property in North Cyprus. Being aware of relevant laws, title deed requirements, taxes, inheritance rules, and ownership rights ensures your transaction goes smoothly.
- Title Deeds: The official title deed represents legal proof of property ownership, similar to the UK Land Registry system. In the TRNC, buyers register holdings under one person’s name or jointly as a couple on the contract and title deed. Upon purchase completion, ensure proper title deed transfer including required notarization.
- Property Taxes: The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus levies an annual real estate/infrastructure tax on properties, calculated based on type, age, size and value. Budget for taxes around 1-2% of a home’s value per year. Capital Gains Tax applies if reselling for a profit within 5 years.
- Inheritance Rules: The TRNC has detailed inheritance laws regarding property assets, generally splitting evenly between lawful wife and children. Assets can transfer to survivors jointly or be divided among inheriting parties. Seek legal guidance to handle succession properly.
- Ownership Rights: Foreign nationals have the legal right to buy property and acquire title deeds in Northern Cyprus on par with Turkish Cypriot citizens. For non-residents, no restrictions exist on owning one home. Seek legal counsel when acquiring multiple investment properties.
- Dispute Resolution: For contract disputes with developers or other issues, buyers can pursue formal legal resolution through the TRNC judicial system and court system, using lawyers registered to practice locally.
By proactively understanding Northern Cyprus property laws, foreign buyers put themselves in a strong position, allowing real estate transactions to go smoothly while ensuring your interests and assets are fully protected throughout the purchase process. Seeking qualified legal advice is highly recommended.
Closing Thoughts and Key Takeaways
New build and resale both come with pros and cons in North Cyprus. Price, quality, customization, timeline, location, and costs weigh on the decision. Key takeaways include:
- Freshly built offer pricing premiums but guarantee quality and customization not available with resales.
- Resales provide value pricing but varying conditions requiring inspections and potential repairs.
- New builds allow tailoring a dream home to your needs before construction versus living with an existing layout.
- Off-plan purchases secure newly constructed ahead of time while resales offer faster occupancy.
- Popular areas like Kyrenia and Lapta offer both new developments in Cyprus
- and used neighborhoods to consider.
Ongoing costs are lower initially with recently developed thanks to warranties and discounted fees.At the end, lifestyle goals and budget drive the choice between new versus existing homes in North Cyprus. Doing thorough research and understanding these key factors will lead to making the optimal decision. The country’s beautiful scenery, year-round sunshine, and affordability make it a great place to buy property.