North Cyprus Property | Double Selling

North Cyprus Property | Double Selling


In 2008 the Estate Agents Law came on to the Statute books. This law was meant to clean up the industry, give a specific ‘code of conduct’ for Estate Agents and a very important part of this law was that, for the first time, foreign buyers could confirm their interest in a plot of land/property by registering their Contract of Sale with the land registry (tapu). This was supposed to ensure that anyone doing a land registry search on land/property YOU have registered your interest in, would know this and in theory it was meant to give YOU a degree of security you never had before. Well we know from experience prior to the law, many Advocates were not doing their duty and were not conducting the necessary search on the provenance of the land they were doing the conveyancing on for their client. Remember, they have a duty of care even if they refuse to admit it.

At last it would seem that you had protection. In an ideal world where laws are enforced and where the legal professionals acknowledge their duty to their clients, you indeed would have such protection.

Now factor in greed, and those who believe the laws are for everyone else to obey, and you will realise how easily this new law has been ignored.

We have read much about mortgages being put on property after it had been sold prior to the Estate Agents’ Law. Indeed there were very many this happened to, brought to their attention when they registered their Contracts in accordance with the new law. Unusually the law was retrospective so that even if your Contract was signed prior to the new law, you were allowed to register that Contract. However, even before the new law, some mortgages are not legal because when the Banks gave out the money using someone else’s land as security, the Tapu were given mortgage documents showing that the security was land (tarla) which on many occasions was totally false information.

Indeed many of the sites were built on and sold, but no mention of buildings were on the documents submitted by the Bank’s Advocates to the Tapu. This contravenes Mortgage Law 11/78 section 21.

Another scam also has been taking place too; double selling. As the name implies, the same property is sold to two separate purchasers. How can that happen? Honest mistake? I don’t think so since the vendor pocketed both purchasers’ money. Gives a whole new meaning to double entries in accounting. I personally have not heard of triple selling, but it is not such a huge jump to imagine this has happened too.

The Estate Agents’ law makes it mandatory for a Contract of Sale to be registered on a purchases after the Estate Agents’ Law came into force. It is my understanding that Contracts that pre-date the law were encouraged to be registered but it was not obligatory. After the law came into force, every new Contract should have been registered. So, in theory, double selling is impossible. Well, yes it is impossible if you are dealing with honest, ethical people. However, it seems that the law is not always obeyed, Contracts are not always registered, even by those who make their living practising law. So any double selling after 2008 has got to be an act of theft, a deliberate premeditated criminal fraud.

Of course, we all know that double selling before the Estate Agents’ Law was negligent or deliberate or a combination to the two. I have heard of one Advocate who when confronted because both sales had gone through his office claimed that he delegated work and so had not realised about the double sale. Makes you wonder where the second lot of sales money went to and how he balance his books, doesn’t it?

Power to the people

Citizen Smith

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