19 June 2015
Q.: I must apologise for bothering you about a petty
but irritating problem that I have with the
Electricity Authority of Cyprus. In our home we have
storage heaters. The last bill came to around 3
times more than the usual. I have asked the EAC to
inspect their meter, who informed me that it was not
functioning correctly. I wrote to the EAC twice for
a refund and notwithstanding the fact that 4 months
have lapsed, I am still waiting for some sort of
refund. The local EAC inspector told me that he is
waiting instructions from the Limassol H.Q. – What
shall I do?
A.: Write a letter of complain. Give the Authority
one month and if no reply, write again. Send me a
copy so that I can chase it and the officials to go.
Q.: We have a house at the Protaras area and we are
connected with the recycling water. We got a letter
from the local sewage board that we should use our
sprinklers during the night hours. Yet the supply
comes at all sorts of hours. Sometimes early in the
morning, afternoon and sometimes at nights. So what
are we suppose to do dear Mr Loizou?
A.: Write a letter to the Board indicating your
problem. At least in this way you are covered. A
very strange situation dear Katiana – Non usual for
Cyprus mind you.
Q.: What is the width of a public road so that it is
acceptable by the planning authorities to build a
home? Our plot abuts onto a 3 meters wide earth road
and our application was refused on the basis that
the road is narrow and this notwithstanding the fact
there is a number of homes built along the very same
A.: It must be 4 meters wide at least. The building
regulations keep changing mind you and what was
acceptable before does not necessarily mean that it
is okay now. The same situation exists with the
planning zoning. An irritating and an “unfair”
treatment, but there you are.
Q.: Are you not worried about the Greek economic
disaster dear Mr Loizou? What do you think are the
repercussions on the Cyprus economy?
A.: I am worried since the international markets
relate Cyprus with Greece and this is shown on the
bonds that Cyprus is issuing from time to time with
flactuations on the required interest which relate
to the Greek situation. On the other hand, the bad
and the non-understandable situation of the Greek
economy we, as Cyprus, get Greek businesses who want
to be based here. Based on interest of shipping Cos
that are establishing in Cyprus (had the Turkish
embargo did not exist we would have a boom) it seems
that Bulgaria is the main beneficiary of this bad
situation. The Greek Banks are now recapitalized
(important for Cyprus with their local branches
here) – be it they are not subsidiary but
independent but still it worries some people.
Greece has so many things going for it, but alas, a
socialist/communist Government promised that it will
change everything – end result-disaster (similar to
our own previous Government to an extent). If one
joins a club it should follow the rules. We did as
Cyprus and our economy is getting better. The Greeks
are yet to understand the rules of the club however.
Q.: We visited a restaurant at Avdimou Bay for
dinner. We asked for a lemon (for both of us) and
the waiter duly returned with a plastic bottle of
concentrated lemon juice. We were surprised for a
country that produces and exports lemons to have the
Maria & Stelios
A.: Another example of bad management I am afraid.
Lemon trees grow everywhere even on pavements and
their cost is next to nothing. A beach tavern with a
plastic lemon bottle is all the worst. It reminds me
of the Peyia restaurant who charged the clients €2
for one lemon!! Some readers who write to this
column, reported that they have visited Crete with
the air fair being €39.50/each (return mind you)
reporting that the most expensive food they “manage”
to have, grill fish etc including one bottle of wine
it came to €15/each. In Cyprus around €30-40 per
person. They have added for non fish meze their bill
did not surpass €10/p.p. (in Cyprus a take away
souglakia pitta €5-€8/each). No wonder Crete with no
international airports have 3.0 mil. tourist p.a.
and similarly Rhodes island. No wonder also that
Cyprus celebrates a success for having 2.1 mil.
tourists. Thieving in most occasions in restaurants
– something which no one seriously touches upon is
the cause – The sleeping C.T.O. and the Ministry of
Tourism seem to live in another world.
Q.: I have read in the Greek press your article on
tax evasion regarding holiday lets of villas etc. In
Barcelona the new Mayor threatens to tax all
websites and Cos that are promoting this, without
being registered as such. An example to follow?
Andrew & Linda
A.: I am not against the private lets but regarding
my article on the subject I have suggested just
this. Register your let, pay your dues and the
income tax if any and all these being illegal to let
to holidaymakers for periods less than 30 days to
one single tenant.
It is not fair on the registered holiday
establishments who are covered by strict regulations
having to compete with unfair competition.
My views are recorded and I have to blame the C.T.O.
and the Ministry of Tourism as well as the Income
Tax people for doing nothing.
Q.: The summer season is coming to an end but yet
good weather extends for another couple of months
and we would want to use our pool a bit longer. We
have asked for tenders to have it heated but the
cost is around €3.000 – Any alternatives dear Mr
Kyr & Christina
A.: I have heard of a gadget which you place in the
pool which warms the water at minimum cost – I am
waiting for details by the supplier and I will come
back to you.
Q.: We note what you say regarding a possible
solution to the Cyprus political problem. With
particular reference to the real estate market and
us foreign buyers who are not involved in the
dispute, where do we stand if we bought/develop
A.: I cannot offer you any ideas at this point of
time, although your point is very much appreciated.
I hold the view that foreign buyers who have a
problem should get together and form a certain group
so that their views should be heard now. Perhaps the
British High Commission could help towards this
and/or the U.N. representative so that they know
“you are here”.
Q.: We are considering of doing up our roof into a
roof garden with B.Q. etc and we have our own
separate title. Pub talk you might say Mr Loizou,
but we are told that for the provision of a counter
and pergola and placing a sink we will require a
building permit. Any truth in this? Sorry for
troubling you but your name came up during our “pub
talk” with friends of ours having opposite views.
A.K. Said (Manchester)
A.: No you do not necessarily need a permit to have
what you describe, unless you proceed with covering
parts of it, providing a w.c. (a must) etc. If you
have a title deed and “do as the Cypriots” do it
regardless (it entails some minor risk – which if
you are encountered with it submit an application
for it). I hope you had a drink for me, for giving
you, I hope, a Cypriot/"good" advice. Cheers my
Q.: Did I note some sort of racism in your last
article regarding the immigrants/ refugees or am I
A.: Far from it dear George. I do suggest you read
the article on our police etc. In the article I
point out that Europe will not be the same after 10
years if the rate of immigration continues as is.
Not to mention it, it will be hiding our head in the
sand. In the article I also referred to Cyprus being
prepared to host such unfortunate people. Having
read my article again, I think you are mistaken dear
George, but any opposing views to mine are always
Q.: We do understand the economic situation of the
country and its new limited financial resources. Yet
we found that a lot of roads have pot holes which
are left there creating a danger for drivers and
Could you raise this with the Government since you
have a better chance to be heard than us?
Ninos & Helen H”Rousos
A.: I thank you for the compliment my friends, but
do not think that I have the “muscle” that you think
I might have. Having said that and following a
similar letter addressed to me regarding the
Pissouri-Avdemou (old) road and after a couple of
letters to the District Office on my part the road
and the pot holes were duly repaired. I tend to
think that this is not because of my interest, but
more it coincided with the Governmental programme of
Q.: Going through my computer files you must have
addressed more than 1.500 Q+A over the years. Do you
get any thank you letters at the end or are people
using you for free advice?
Mrs Th. Kounis
A.: Most people appreciate my efforts. The “thank
you” letters are not published since this is not the
aim of the column.
So that you know the 1.500 Q+A you refer to and are
published are in addition to the personal/private
matters which I try to address. Some thank you
letters I get are touching and at this “mature age”
of mine, I get emotional. Cyprus Weekly and myself
as I always say, have a mission to help, especially
the foreign people who might not understand our way
of doing things.
Q.: We had to change our aluminium windows on the
6th floor of our apartment. The contractor was
practically hanging on the ledge and we did not dear
even to look in fear of an accident. All went well,
but we ask you, had an accident happen, would we
have been held responsible?
A.: If he is a private contractor it is his
responsibility to insure himself. If it is your own
employee, then you do have a responsibility. In such
cases take out an insurance to be on the safe side.
Q.: I have read in the press that the new “fashion”
of agricultural produce for export is prickly pear.
Taking this on, I am informed that Israeli producers
are on the lookout to find suitable spots for the
purpose in Cyprus. Any chance for us to join in, in
such a venture?
Andreas & Mary Sachs
A.: This is what I heard my dear friends also. It
appears that this fruit, which is a local delight
provided it is cleaned and served cold, is a most
refreshing fruit I can assure you. I understand that
p.p. has all sorts of uses ranging from medical to
perfumes etc. The bush can grow more or less
everywhere requiring no water save the night/morning
moisture. A place which seems that it is thriving is
Nata village, Pafos. It cost next to nothing to
plant, they grow by themselves and animals due to
spikes cannot get near. It requires some labour
however for cleaning them. You place the fruit with
the spikes in a perforated steel bucket, you shake
the fruit placed in and the spikes are cut. Then you
clean the fruit from the skin. This is as far as I
know dear readers. From there on should you need
more information get in touch with the Ministry of
Agriculture whom I found, when needed, most
accommodating and helpful – free of charge. This
fruit reminds me of tequila and how it is produced.
A bush in the desert but with a long process to get
tequila – Visit the internet dear friends which has
most interesting details including recipes.
You can imagine that if this is a viable business,
how Cyprus can be converted from its barren land
into a cactus (green) country.
Q.: You were all for the old Limassol harbour which
has been turned into a most modern entertainment
place – Any info of its success or otherwise?
A.: Out of the 40 units, 18 are in the process of
being let. I expect this number will increase as the
project becomes more “habitable” and lively. Much of
this will depends on the Cyprus Ports Authority
management and concept – doubtful when Governmental
bodies are involved in private enterprise, but I
have high hopes for a success in the near future.
Q.: I note that you have been asking the President
to fire the Environmental Director for reporting the
Cyprus Government to the E.U. regarding the Limni
development. I disagree totally with you Mr Loizou.
What is a place without proper environment I ask
A.: No problem disagreeing with me dear Stuart and
any different opinions are welcomed. It is obvious
that you are not a local of the region, nor
unemployed and nor a visitor of the Municipal
handout grocery shops. Environment is to serve the
people for its well being especially the younger
generation. There will always be losses upon
development, but I do suggest you read my historic
article on the Limni cancerous environment, which
has been improved so far at a cost of €30 mil. (now
a beautiful agricultural land). The Anassa hotel
example and the objections raised by the same people
for Athalassa park are projects to be noted
regarding mis-information and people’s well being.
Q.: We got our title deeds at long last. We noted to
our horror that the square meters/extent referred to
our apartment (102 sq.mts.) is far less than what we
were told the extent was at the time of purchase
What shall we do Mr Loizou?
A.: Don’t panic dear friend. Developers usually
include in the square meterage the covered verandahs
and an analogy of the floor common areas. This was
the practice up to around 8-10 years ago. Since then
the Lands Office in its title gives an analysis on
most occasions so recorded on the title (e.g.
covered area + covered verandahs + uncovered
verandahs). So it might be that there is no
difference as such. Now the developers/sellers
follow mostly the Lands Office records/or give an
analysis of the square meterage. The Lands Office is
not always correct mind you and should you differ
you can apply to have the deed corrected. Sales
contracts always have an attached floor plan. You
can measure it from there to ascertain the extent
(if you cannot send me a copy to offer my opinion).
At the end you can measure your property with a tape
(external dimensions mind you – not like U.K. where
the extent is measured internally net of walls and
unlike Greece where the covered verandahs etc are
In one case at Paralimni the said apartment referred
to 65 sq.mts. and the deed recorded 51 sq.mts. Prior
to the buyer taking legal action against the
developer he referred to us. We measured it from the
plans and on site and the developer was correct at
the end saving our reader a few thousand euro in
legal fees (his piece of mind in addition).
Q.: I have introduced a Co to buy a plot of land in
Cyprus. The deed recorded 46.000 sq.mts. Upon
application for a development the planning office
suggested that the extent was over estimated and the
Lands Office agreed that the correct extent is
38.000 sq.mts. You do appreciate the loss, let alone
that the project plans for which we have invested a
couple of hundred thousand euro are wasted.
Do we have a case against the Lands
A.: A mess indeed dear reader. I had a personal
experience when a bought a building plot recorded at
680 sq.mts., was revised at 590 sq.mts. Upon my
representation, the Lands Office clerk said “sue
A title deed is an official document and those who
issue it must be responsible in your case the
Government. If we start doubting official documents
I do not know where it will all end.
In my opinion you could compromise instead of
compensation to get a “relaxation” based on the
recorded on the deed extent, even if this means an
extra floor. I feel confident that the Ministry of
Interior will go for this rather than having to pay
Q.: We have had a notice recording our house value
as at 1.1.2013 at €280.000. we bought the house in
2013 for €210.000. How on earth these people can
come up with such a difference?
Ronnie Cragan (Germany)
A.: You can lodge an objection, but prior to this
ask the Lands Office how they have come up with this
figure. Maybe the house extent adopted is not
correct, the land extent etc. This will cost you
nothing. If not satisfied you can lodge a formal
objection (mind you prior to 31.12.2015) duly
supported by a valuer of yours. It might cost you
around €500-€600 but bearing in mind the property
additional tax, the sewage/Municipal taxes etc which
are based on the 1.1.2013 value, it will be a
Take one step at a time dear Ronnie and come back to
me if you think that I might be of some help.
Q.: I remember 3 years ago there was a British
person who built a house but because of the change
of regulation his house (built without a permit) was
illegal and was threatened to be served with a
demolition order by the local Improvement Board.
A.: My dear Anna you have a good memory. The matter
has been settled and I expect the owner, lives now
in a licensed house. We raised the matter with the
local planning authority and we had good points to
refer to, notwithstanding that the “British person”
as you say had his own failings.
Q.: I know that you are proposed by the European
Business Awards for “caring of your clients” – Any
A.: Andrea, I have just received a letter saying
that we will not get the award. I must say that the
proposal having come from this body, I felt a bit
disappointed – C’ est la vie as the French say. In
consolation I thank you dear reader for keeping me
Q.: I noted what you have said about the Italian
restaurant at Pissouri properly runned by the
Columbia Group. Have you visited the Indian
restaurant across the road? I do not wish to promote
this restaurant in particular, but it is another
plus for Pissouri Bay for you to know.
A.: Unlike Chinese food which I find untasty, Indian
food with all the spices to go is all for me (a
mater of taste mind you).
My wife does not like Indian food so here you are. I
have not visited the place notwithstanding my
stomach indicator – Having married for 38 years I
have no chance to visit the place soon I am afraid!
Q.: Hi there,
Firstly thank you so much for this answer last
month. I have another quick query if you do not
We are experiencing noisy neighbours still despite
the landlord's promise. We now have a new house to
move in for next month. We think we have every right
not to pay the last month's rent because of many
broken promises by our landlord that she would only
make sure there were "2 people who were quiet" next
door to us. It has been anything from 4 to 8 people
and they will not stay quiet despite many requests.
Our contract was for 12 months but we are moving
early because of these problems. We want to say to
the landlord to keep the bond for our last month.
Could you please tell me if there are any legal
steps she can take to prevent us doing this, or
force us out of the house before we move out? I know
she will not be happy at the situation but morally I
believe it is the fair thing.
Thank you again so much and best wishes,
A.: You can try it, but I doubt if it is worth the
trouble and the expense if the landlord objects to
Q.: There is a lot of argument for and against
having dog beaches. Can you offer any solution drawn
from your wide experience Mr Loizou?
A.: The attitudes on either side are very strong.
You might remember the Zyghi shooting and the Polis
murder on the very subject. Independently of the
zoning, dog owners should respect others opinion be
it right or wrong. I take my own dogs rarely in
deserted beaches and having made sure that there is
no one around. Usually I visit the ex-Limassol
cement factory area east of Limassol, but there are
others (Ormidhia village etc). Having said that, I
am not 100% certain if allowed as such!!
Q.: I have just been told that prior to let/sale
one’s property, he must provide an energy
certificate to present to the would be buyer/tenant.
Is this nonsense or something serious?
A.: It is nonsense but quite legal. Yes you are
supposed to provide a certificate of the energy
category of the property, either for let or sale. It
costs around €1.50/sq.m. to provide such a
certificate. So for a 100 sq.mts. apartment having a
rent of say €280 p.m., one must pay €150 (one off
mind you). So yes the law is there but not
implemented by the interested parties. Mind you, you
might run into trouble if, for example, a tenant
wishes to terminate a lease giving as an excuse the
non existence of the certificate.
Q.: We have 4 tiles broken but we cannot find
replacements of the same colour. These broken
ceramic tiles give a very bad impression to the
whole building. What shall we do, we went around
practically to all the tile importers without
success. Any suggestion Mr Loizou?
A.: Try 2-3 reputable importers and offer them say
€50/tile with a minimum quality in hope that their
manufacturers will be interested to make similar
ones. There are also several manufacturers in the
internet towards to whom you can apply. A most
difficult job I must say – if successful come back
to me so that the readers can share your experience
being a wide problem.
Q.: There are so many things going on, that I wonder
if people get to know. At the Nicosia Garden Café,
there was a jazz festival taking place next door –
good quality music, mostly young and enthusiastic
musicians and free of charge.
Where is someone supposed to know of these events?
A.: Use the internet, the local Municipality news,
the C.T.O. and the Cyprus Weekly with a weekly
agenda on most events.
Q.: What a lovely idea regarding the new museum you
placed forward. The multi national and multi
chronological order, replacing the one room museums
all over Cyprus into one is all the best for
Nicosia. Any response from the Authorities?
A.: Our proposal was not submitted to the
Government, neither I expect that I would have had
an answer had it been submitted.
Q.: For the first time over my 20 years stay in
Cyprus-Protaras area, I have encountered “face to
face” a huge turtle and some dolphins at a distance.
I could not believe it but then I suspect reactions
from developers and beach land owners. What do you
A.: Lovely on the one hand since these sensitive
animals appear when the waters are clean and
somewhat warm. Do not chase turtles or attempt to
touch them since they bite. It is a plus but if the
never illogical so called environmentalist have
there way, the Protaras beach area will be out of
bounce by bathers.
Q.: Dear Antonis,
In one of your articles you mentioned a swimming
pool law that refers to the number of units that
applies if a lifeguard is needed or not.
We only have 3 units in a private property with
small pool and would really like to be able to have
a link to this law so we can take a look at it
If you can refer us to an English version that would
be best, otherwise a Greek one will suffice. I have
spent quite some time trying various searches to
find this law, but have not succeeded.
Your help would be very much appreciated.
A.: This has been answered in a previous publication
I hereby attach for the readers’
information, information regarding the changes to
the Wills & Succession law as published by Neocleous
Law Firm – Limassol.
CHANGES TO THE WILLS AND SUCCESSION LAW
A recent change to the Wills and Succession Law has
important implications for many British people and
nationals of other Commonwealth countries with
immovable property in Cyprus. Like many countries in
the world Cyprus has a “forced heirship” regime.
Section 41 of the Wills and Succession Law, Cap 195,
sets aside a specified proportion, known as the
statutory portion, of a deceased person’s estate for
close relatives. The statutory portion must be
passed to the relatives concerned and cannot be
disposed of by the individual’s will. For example,
if an individual dies leaving a spouse and a child,
three-quarters of the value of the estate is
reserved for them and divided equally between them.
Only the remaining quarter of the estate can be
disposed of by the individual’s will. Prior to July
2015 British citizens and citizens of most former
British colonies (excluding Cyprus) were exempt from
the forced heirship provisions. However, Law 96(I)
of 2015 withdrew this exemption and the forced
heirship provisions now apply to anyone who dies
domiciled in Cyprus and to the succession to any
real estate located in Cyprus, regardless of the
domicile of the deceased person. These changes,
which also affect shares in Cyprus companies, can
give rise to unforeseen and undesired consequences,
particularly if relations between the surviving
individuals are not good. There are a number of ways
in which the status quo ante may be restored and
freedom to dispose of one’s property as one wishes
can be regained, depending on individual
circumstances. We strongly advise anyone potentially
affected by the changes to take specialist legal
advice at the earliest opportunity.
For further information please contact Christos
Q.: Just a short note for your readers to note Mr
Loizou. There are people especially children, when
they swim, sea water gets in their ear and it does
not come out later, having to end up to doctors who
suck the enclaved water with a syringe. We had this
summer alone 3 occasions where our grandson had to
visit at 3 times the doctors costing us, each time
€50. We were given in addition some form of wax and
on another occasion some sort of plastic screws to
prevent the water coming into the ear – Not
A. My own experience tells me:
• Place in a small plate olive oil
• Wet cotton big enough not to go in the ear pipe
itself and large enough to cover the entrance
• It works and we use this grandmother’s recipe
• Use the cotton one at a time – not for reuse.
Bank sale legal fees
Q.: I was told by the Bank that they are ready to
take in my property in exchange of the outstanding
loans. I am also informed that the exchange will not
bear capital gains tax. So we are saving on this
increasing the bank’s net income. Will I be correct
to add on my property’s value the capital gains owed
by the Bank?
A.: I don’t think so. This is a benefit by the bank
and you are lucky to be offered a deal in exchange
with your debts. Make it more attractive for the
bank and do not insist on having all gains to your
Q.: I read n your recent article that the
Protaras/Famagusta area is running out of tourist
homes. My first impression was “here we are another
estate agent emerging us to buy”. I now tend to
agree with you since after a 15 days research,
inspections etc we managed to find through local
owners and estate agents only 7 units some of which
had no titles (only 4) – all on the beach.
Asking price range from €7.000-€10.000/sq.mts. – a
This is an apologetic letter of having “bad
thoughts” about you Mr Loizou.
A.: No problem Kelly, it goes with the job I am
afraid. Bear in mind that:
• If a property has no title this is not a huge
problem provided you do your due diligence and
examine why the property has no title as yet. If may
be a red tape matter only or it could be more
• Get a mortgage release, if mortgaged, and examine
if the relevant property taxes are settled.
• Bear in mind that real estate bought by 31.12.2016
bears no transfer fee (if VAT applicable) or 50% (if
VAT is not).
• Resale on the property that you buy will bear no
capital gains tax if bought by 31.12.2016.
• If income is what you are after and depending on
size, location etc this could be anything between
€10.000-€20.000 p.a. through holiday home letting
• Protaras/Ayia Napa/Sotira area property values are
directly related to the proximity to the beach and
its quality. If for let the provision of a pool is
more or less a must, whereas 3 bed(+) are in higher
demand than small units – Apartments is a hit and
miss situation – I refer to houses.
Q.: The goal of 300.000 Chinese tourists the C.T.O.
boss says is the target for the next couple of
years. Is this possible and if it is how will this
help the real estate?
A.: I am informed that the present numbers of
Chinese visitors are around 10.000. The 300.000
seems to me to be very optimistic but then the
C.T.O. boss says that only one Greek island, gets
200.000 and why not 300.000 for Cyprus? It sounds a
logical expectation but then Greece is now “the
place” to visit, whereas we have our own problems
with visas etc. If it happens however (300.000
visitors) it will help to a great extent the Cyprus
real estate market – bearing in mind that not all
Chinese have a €300.000 budget only – There are
millionaires there of a great number and as long as
we keep our head with some brains (see the shopping
mall of 500.000 sq.mts. by a Chinese investor at
Larnaca turned down for unreasonable reasons) we
Q.: What is the progress on the crocodile farm, the
dolphins’ park – Any news?
A.: Your name dear Angela almost coincides with the
German Chancellor, change the c to g and there you
Jokes apart, there is a big fight going on with the
environmental authorities regarding both. As I
always say we are the holiest than the holly in
Cyprus. My own approach is that we should have one
goal in Cyprus economy at this point of time the
employment of the younger generation in particular.
If these projects help I am all for it (as I am for
the casino – notwithstanding in some respects –
acceptable objections). I investigated the crocodile
park process and I was informed of all sorts of
objections regarding the fear of escaping crocodiles
and this notwithstanding that similar establishments
exist in Israel and Paris (the latter with 2 mil.
“We are here to govern” said the Minister of
Interior – Govern I say – If you think it helps
Cyprus go for it, the rest is not so important
considering the immigration of young people
especially, the Municipal groceries and the handouts
etc which kills any healthy spirit.
Q.: I have seen in the TV that the C.T.O. is a
aiming to attract around 300.000 Chinese tourists
over the next couple of years provided that we
overcome the red tape regarding visas etc and of
course the direct flights. What is your opinion on
A.: You will read in the articles to come that
Cyprus is “a heaven but without angels”. We should
go for it at all costs even if mistakes happen in
the process. If the 300.000 Chinese tourists happen
it is approximately 20% of the existing ones. From
what I understood the Chinese need clear air (save
the two weeks in summer we have it) and hospitality
(we have it to a large extent). As we are
subsidizing various airlines to bring tourists in
Cyprus, we could enter into some form of an
agreement with Chinese airlines on a similar basis –
What do I know Gina, but if there is such
opportunity we will be crazy not to go for it (the
Chairman of the C.T.O. referred to a small Greek
island – I miss the name, that it hosts 200.000
Chinese p.a. So there you are, we have to wait and
see, but the curse of our red tape gives me doubts.
Q.: This is not a particular real estate subject but
I wish to have your views on the possible Cyprus
political problem solution. Who will have the
priority the existing user or the legal owner?
A.: What a question dear Stelios. On our G.C. part,
we look at this question for our protection only.
Yet we must see it from both sides. For example the
thousands of refugee homes that we built on T.C.
land and including possible the Limassol hospital,
shall we allow the legal owners to take possession
and compensate the occupiers (e.g. the refugee homes
etc). What can I say, an emotional subject not
easily resolved I am afraid and it is beyond my
capability to give any concrete idea.
Q.: Some Pissouri residents got together in order to
expose the huge problem that exists in some areas,
which is causing subsidence of buildings. The
residents claim that the problem started the year
2011 and notwithstanding the warnings given to the
relevant authorities, no action was undertaken,
making the problem worse and which now includes in
addition the breaking of underground pipes and
damage to services. According to this action group
approximately 50-60 housing units are facing such
Your opinion dear Mr Loizou and who is to blame/pay
for the needed repair.
Α.: Difficult to say. Pissouri soil in certain parts
is made of clay and this is the cause of the
problems. The developers/civil engineers and of
course the District Office ought to have taken this
into account at the design stage. Also some initial
damage, e.g. cracks on the asphalt etc tend to
become bigger since water penetrates underneath
through the cracks, causing the clay to bulge in wet
conditions and shrink in dry ones.
I doubt that the Government will undertake any
remedial works save the repair of public (not
private) roads. Good to check if any insurance cover
for this, but the setting up of this pressure group
might help towards the authorities addressing the
Q.: I have noted in your last articles urging
foreign local people who acquired property in the
T.C. areas to get together in order to ascertain
their “rights” (if they have you add). I now note
that there is somewhat of a “pressure” group on the
subject asking what will happen to their
Do you think that you will be liked by the G.C.
property owners in the T.C. occupied areas?
Jeremy (name withheld on request)
A.: If a solution is to be found dear Jeremy it must
not have lose ends at least on the real estate part.
I don’t think it is a matter of liking or not but a
common sense not to keep in the cold unaware buyers
in the T.C. part. We must do, this time, the job
right, in order to avoid future problems and not to
appear later, when we all think that we have solved
an ageing problem.
Q.: Cyprus is a paradise on earth you say in your
last article dear Mr Loizou. I beg to differ, there
are no many wrong doings in this country that my
experience tells me otherwise.
A.: Each one of us has his own experiences. I can
only go by mine and others and reading the
international press I still hold the view that I
have. I am sorry to disappoint you Robert.
Q.: Dog treatment in this country is absolutely
terrible. You must have seen the recent report on
dogs tied up on apartment balconies. Shocking is it
A.: I could not agree with you more dear reader.
Bear in mind that the Chairman of the Animal
Protection Society is the wife one of our employees
– So we have first hand information on the
unacceptable goings on.
Q.: I have experienced the same bottled lemon juice
treatment at one of the Melada restaurants. How
right you are Mr Loizou.
Chris & Christina Miles
A.: Some people just do not know how to work
professionally and I am highlighting some points
from time to time for consumers and restaurateurs
Q.: When you say that investors for income are
seeking 5%-6% paid on the acquisition cost, does it
include the acquisition cost in addition i.e.
transfer fees, legal etc.
A.: No – It is actually the sales price as such.
This is what the evidence of market sales show.
Q.: I note what you say about restaurants etc. Is
this a real estate subject or you wanted to make a
point Mr Loizou?
A.: In an indirect way it is, since we aim to have
Cyprus as a good place to live with professionals in
all aspects. Buying a home and living in Cyprus is
not just the value of a house, but quality of life
during one’s stay.
Q.: I note what you say about security of living in
Cyprus and I agree with this. Yet I note the
terrible car accidents that happen in the island
mainly amongst younger people.
A.: Car accidents have nothing to do with security
of living, be it Cyprus is not known for careful
drivers. In addition, aged people are another
problem for car accidents mind you.
Q.: I want to thank you for your article on E.U.
citizens of having free medical care or at some
cost. I did not know about this I took your article
at the hospitals and “Voilà” - You are right.
A.: Thank you Jenny, Cyprus Weekly and myself are
here to help out the readers and others.
Q.: If I was the Shacolas Group I would have left
this country and invest in other cash hungry
countries, such as Greece, Bulgaria and even far
away countries such as Armenia and Azerbaijan where
the group would have been welcomed without
frustration etc etc.
A.: What can I say dear Nicos. This is the country
we have. It has its good and bad points. My own
stand on the matter is that people with cash who
love this country such as the Shacolas Group and
Photiades Group project are one of the few examples
to “exploit” their will for investments for the
benefit of the Cyprus economy.
Q.: Can fishermen fish within the red-ball bathing
A.: I am not aware of any restrictions regarding
people with fishing rods provided the hook end is
near the shore (say 2-3 meters) and in localities
where bathers do not use – e.g. near rocks etc. To
be otherwise it will mean amateur fishermen/young
people will not to be able to use the jetties etc.
Q.: We want to take our young child on a pram for a
walkabout in our neighbourhood. Yet the lack of
pavements on a continuous position makes our walk
dangerous. What can one do in such occasions Mr
Patrick & Lena
A.: I appreciate what you say and security of the
people is paramount. Use the various large parks
that are within the towns (see Limassol and Nicosia
especially). If you have one near your home it is
fine. If not go by car to the nearest one – I agree
with you that otherwise it can become dangerous,
both because of the lack of pavements, careless
drivers, cars parked on pavements etc. Don’t risk it
Q.: Can non E.U. citizens claim a 5% VAT for a home
purchase as opposed to the 19% otherwise?
A.: Yes, it applies to all home buyers if a
permanent and only house in Cyprus. The word
“permanent” does not mean that it must be as such,
but “your permanent home while in Cyprus”. I will be
publishing an article on the subject giving details
since there is a matter with requirements attached.
Bear in mind that VAT bearing properties do not have
transfer fees. So in some occasions VAT properties
cost in total less than the non VAT ones.
Q.: Our ground floor apartment neighbour built a
fireplace and placed the chimney along the external
wall of the block reaching the roof. He was
confronted by the administrative committee but he
said this is within his rights – Any truth in this?
A.: Unless there is such a right in the general
agreement, he is not allowed to do this. The
external walls are in common ownership and the
residents must agree otherwise he is acting beyond
Q.: Our next door neighbour installed central
heating using gas. The tanks are right next door to
our garage. Is he allowed to do this?
A.: Provided he takes the required protection e.g.
fencing etc as this is required by the authorities,
he is, in my opinion within his rights.
Q.: I have a full comprehensive insurance for my
car. I had an accident (which was my fault) and the
repair bill came to €300 duly paid by my insurance
Co. I am afraid now that this will increase my no
claim bonus and increase the insurance fee. Was
there something I could/can do to avoid these
A.: Usually full comprehensive insurance includes a
free car provision during repair period. If such a
case and provided you have a spare car or can do
without for a few days, agree with the insurance Co
that you will not claim the provided car
(approximately €25-€30/day). In such a case the
insurance Co provided it will not increase its cost
and in exchange keep the N.C.B. and increase amount
Q.: There is a most interesting Cypriot charity
“called Sophia” which is active in Africa and
especially Kenya. I understand that one can adopt
one or more of the unfortunate children for €20-€30
p.m. which pays for their food and education. What a
lovely care by small Cyprus today for the needy.
Lenia & Agis
A.: You are quite right and it is an admirable
effort with a lot of money and human effort run by
one of the Shacolas Group daughters Marina. I have a
number of friends who have taken this on – A most
touching effort especially if you know the person
(Marina) involved not only actually working with her
hands, but giving money and encourage friends and
others to contribute. An appreciation metal by the
Archbishopric or the Government will not be a miss I
This help is personal and there is a face and a name
on the adopted children and who knows, if you want
to visit them at the charity you will be most
welcomed. A friend of ours who has adapted 2
children (brother and sister) visits them once a
year and are now at the high school ages. He is now
making efforts to bring them to Cyprus for higher
(Sophia Foundation email: