Why its best to sell with a registered estate agent
No one is allowed to advertise property (unless it’s their own) other than a registered estate agent, and the vast majority of property sales in Cyprus are handled by estate agents, particularly those where non-resident foreign buyers are involved.
It’s common for foreigners in many countries, particularly the UK, to use an agent or marketing company in their own country who works in co-operation with Cypriot agents and developers. Many Cypriot agents also advertise abroad, as well as in expatriate magazines and newspapers in Cyprus, and many also have extensive websites.
All Cypriot estate agents have staff who speak English and other foreign languages. As Cyprus is a small island, many agents have property listings covering all the popular areas and are knowledgeable about the entire island.
Cypriot estate agents are strictly regulated by law and must be professionally qualified and registered with the Registrar of Estate Agents. Nevertheless, there are some unregistered ‘agents’ operating on the island. At the end of 2004, a new law was passed which aimed to protect house buyers and control unregistered agents. The CREAA is closely monitoring those who call themselves estate agents, property consultants or property finders. Unless they’re registered, they’re operating illegally and you’re advised not to use their services. Always check an agent’s registration. Ask for the estate agent’s registration number and have it checked if you aren’t convinced that it’s genuine.
Once an agent is registered, he may choose to be a member of the Cyprus Real Estate Agents’ Association. Although this isn’t compulsory, most bona fide agents are members of CREAA and you’re strongly advised to use the services of a CREAA member to protect your interests. Members must have professional indemnity insurance for a minimum of CY£100,000. They must also possess a thorough knowledge of the law regarding immovable property. They must be able to speak Greek, have extensive experience in selling property or be a university graduate in a relevant subject, possess an untarnished criminal and civic record and not be a bankrupt.
If you have a dispute with a member, CREAA will intercede on your behalf and, if necessary, appoint a lawyer for you for a nominal fee. You may be afforded extra protection if the agent is a member of an international organisation, such as the International Real Estate Agents’ Association (FIABCI).