North Cyprus Property Victims | This is the Middle East

North Cyprus Property Victims - This is the Middle EastWITHOUT PREJUDICE

North Cyprus Property Victims – This is the Middle East

Another message received at NCFP

“I would like to inform readers of the severely bad treatment that I have received from Mr C [Editor: name changed], builder.
W have paid this man approximately GBP 30000 for a flat in Lapta (never completed) and GBP 256 000 for a villa in Alsancak. The villa was never completed and I am now paying another builder to finish it off. He has promised numerous (too many to count) to myself and my solicitor but his promises are empty.
The purpose of this letter is to warn readers not to deal in any way with this man. He has taken our life savings and we are having to work extra hard (we are 60 + years of age) to finish off our villa and he has no regard for us at all. Please be warned.

Kind Regards Mr and Mrs Randle”

These allegations sounds like a very familiar scenario.

NCFP have not checked the veracity of this communication, but since the writer has clearly given the reason for sending this email ‘is to warn others’, this is what we are doing.

I will make efforts to gain more information on these allegations and report back to you.

DISCLAIMER: NCFP do not necessarily agree with the opinion regarding this builder.

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14 comments to North Cyprus Property Victims | This is the Middle East

  • fluter

    Well, as we don’t know who the builder is I cannot see any come-back. Sad that the situation is now regarded as normal.

    And still they ignore and buy!

  • Polly Marples

    I am hoping the victims will comment and tell us.

  • Malcolm Channing

    Polly is right, we were given the builder’s name but withheld it in case the victim was not who they seemed but if they care to comment and in doing so are willing to put a name to the article then that’s up to them.

  • cyprussue

    Sad but as already said, not surprising. Hope before they finish off the villa they have secured the title deeds or they might be completing the villa for the builder, as he will still be the legal owner.

    Memorandums on the property are also possible. Hope the couple have thought through their actions, rather than listen to an advocate that probably got them in this mess in the first place.

    Do people not read the wealth of literature that describes the problems associated with buying in the TRNC and why it is not wise to buy off plan or on properties without deeds? Not wishing to be unsympathetic to the buyers who are sadly victims of the many legal loopholes that allow this to happen but how many more will buy with such high risks.

    It is nothing but a gamble buying in Cyprus.

  • Wallet and Gromit

    Whatever happened to staged payments?

  • Polly Marples

    No Kocan…no money.

    Too late for many, but not to late for anyone thinking of buying on the island of Cyprus….north or south (ROC),

  • Polly Marples

    Most off plan buyers in north paid staged payments, did not save them.

  • Everything relies on chance, even in the UK things can go wrong. Buying off plan with stage payments has always been risky wherever it happens. Most lawyers, worthy of that name, should advise their clients of the risks and pitfalls in such transactions. So get yourself a recommended lawyer and take their advice. If in doubt, don’t do it.

  • cyprussue

    It is not reliant on having a good lawyer, its the system that needs overhauling. Exactly how one finds a recommended lawyer in Cyprus is beyond me!

    If there was such a good thing as a good lawyer, then there would be no property problems in Cyprus. An effective advocate would start by upholding the law immediately and would therefore be advising their clients to put down a small holding deposit until permission to purchase has been granted.This is as stated by the Government. They would also be advising their clients to purchase the land before building starts on it. Stage payments would be arranged so that the largest sum of money was held until completion so that the builder has an incentive to finish but also so that if he does a runner or goes bankrupt (very common in Cyprus)the purchaser still has enough cash to finish the project.

    I suspect that there is not a single advocate in the TRNC that has given such advise but has promoted that golden oldie about PTP being a formality and worked mainly to protect the developers interests rather than the clients. Business throughout Cyprus is run on nepotism and cronyism not on legally binding contracts and an effective judicial system.The only person that can provide protection is the buyer themselves. If they wait to get PTP before handing over any money, the can then move forward with a no deeds, no money arrangement. If they hold the purse they stay in control.

    I would argue that those buyers that have put complete control and trust in Cypriot lawyers, are lining themselves up for failure and making a big mistake. Most are unprofessional and have a poor interpretation of the law and are a contributing factor in the destruction of the construction industry and the islands poor reputation. Sadly their actions have rarely ever safeguarded the purchaser, far from it, they have left the poor buyer wide open to the many well known property scams, endemic on the island of Cyprus.

  • I agree with what you write cyprussue. Sadly many buyers, on both sides of the island, proceeded under the illusion that they had the same legal protection as they had previously enjoyed in the UK.

  • Gram

    “…If they wait to get PTP before handing over any money, they can then move forward with a no deeds, no money arrangement….”
    I somehow had gained the impression that PTP had to be applied for (and obtained) on a specific property, which made me wonder what would happen should PTP be refused and you had already “bought/paid for” the property; or alternatively waited (a couple of years?) for PTP to find the property had long since been sold to someone else….
    Or can you apply for PTP without specifying the property….?

  • cyprussue

    You are correct PTP has to be applied for and obtained for a specific property. The Government are saying it should not take any longer than 3 months.In the past it could be years. So if you were wise you would pay a small refundable deposit, subject to gaining your PTP.

    When granted PTP you can then exchange deeds for money. However what tends to happen is that buyers go ahead and pay in full for a property leaving them open to builders refusing to handover the deeds, using the property as assets for loans or more commonly asking that the buyer give them additional money for the deeds.

    If you are denied PTP then the property still belongs to the builder. Legally you own nothing! Many in this situation have had title transferred to their lawyer supposedly to safeguard their purchase. This action would not instill confidence in me and is also a very expensive option.

  • cyprusishome

    With the shortened time for processing PTP there is no reason why people should not hang on to all money until it is approved. Obviously dubious builders, lawyers etc will still try to con you into buying without it, then it depends on how desperate you are to have that property. In that case if someone looses their cash….TOUGH!!!! They have been warned.

    There are hundreds of people who have waited years, having already moved into their “dream home” to find 2/3 years down the line PTP has been denied. Main reason being the Turkish Title farce or refused by the military. We know personally several who have been refused under the military rule and stand no chance of ever receiving kocan. A previous poster has mentioned putting property in trust with a lawyer, or worse, a TC friend. The lawyers take an annual fee and will charge a lump sum to transfer deeds to an eligible buyer in the future.

    Also know a case where a British buyer, in the PTP refused on military grounds category, who transferred deeds to a TC. They then sold the property to another foreign buyer and did not tell the new buyer that the deeds, and ultimately the property belong to someone else. A case of buyer beware, but is the British seller intelligent or a crook. Certainly some intelligence as they left Cyprus the day money went into their bank.

    It has been said many times about the amount of info around the internet but there are still those who say “it will not happen to me”. Once heard a couple listen to advice of Marian Stokes who still left her saying they were going to buy because the deal was too good to miss!!!!!!!!

    My own feelings are try to relate with out saying “my advice is” DO NOT BUY IN CYPRUS, certainly until the lawless building sector is cleaned up.

  • cyprussue

    Wise words Cyprusishome. A good accurate summary of what can go wrong buying in the TRNC.