There are tentative signs that the property market in Cyprus is recovering with prices and sales rising and a return of interest from overseas buyers.
The latest quarterly index from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) shows price increases in almost all cities and particularly in Larnaca while the latest monthly data from the Land Department shows sales up 37% year on year.
The RICS data shows that prices for both houses and flats increase by 0.3% and 0.2% respectively in the second quarter of 2016 with the biggest increase for apartment in Larnaca with growth of 1.1% and houses in Paphos also up 1.1% for houses.
RICS has included prices for holiday homes for the first time and shows that values for apartments increased by 2.7% while prices for houses were up by 1.1%.
Year on year prices are also up. Compared to the second quarter of 2015 prices for apartments are up by 0.5% and for houses they have increased by 1.1%.
The lettings sector is also showing signs of recovery. Across Cyprus, on a quarterly basis rental values increased by 0.4% for apartments and 0.5% for houses while year on year they increased by 4.9% for both apartments and houses.
Throughout the country the residential market has bottomed out, the index report suggests and explained regions where the market dropped the most such as Paphos, Famagusta and Larnaca are showing some signs of price stability.
It also says that the outlook is positive as during the second quarter of 2016 the Cyprus economy showed some signs of stability, with the economy’s performance being better than expected and tourism mildly outperforming forecasts.
The October monthly report from the Department of Land and Surveys shows that year on year sales increased by 37% and this follows a rise of 44% in September, 50% growth in August and 26% growth in July, suggesting a positive upward trend.
Sales grew in all districts in October month on month led by Limassol with sales up 63%, followed closely by Famagusta up 62%, Larnaca up 28%, Nicosia up 25% and Paphos up 8%.
In the first 10 months of 2016 property sales have risen 32% to reach compared to the same period in 2015, led by Limassol with growth of 44%, followed by Famagusta up 33%, Larnaca up 29%, Nicosia up 26% and Paphos up 24%.
The official data also suggests that overseas buyers are returning to the Cyprus market. In October there were 45% more properties sold to international buyers but it should be noted that numbers are small, 161 compared to 111 in October 2015.
A breakdown of the figures show that sales to overseas buyers increase by 150% in Nicosia, by 100% in Famagusta, by 74% in Limassol, by 23% in Paphos and by 7% in Larnaca.