Renovation cost in Cyprus

Hello all,
I am looking to buy a property and I was wondering if anybody has already hired a contractor to renovate an apartment or a house in the Paphos district.
I have no idea how much it would cost per square meter to renovate an apartment (changing the floor, doing the paintings, new furniture in the kitchen, new double glaze...)
I know it depends on the quality but I would have appreciated to hear feedbacks of people that have already proceeded to some renovations.

Also I am a bit worried about the state of some buildings since I heard about the balcony that collapsed a few days ago in Paphos. I am not sure how it would be possible to know if the building is in a good state.

Lastly, is there any database available online where I can see when, where and at what price a property has been sold so I can compare the prices.

Thank you very much for your help.

I would ask qurestions on Facebook "ask anything" groups for recommendations and go see the work that was done ...

There is a government land registry service called Ariadne which users need to register for to get information such as you ask not sure if it show s price though... But what we did having done the usual trawl of properties and Areas etc we asked to see a print of the current title deed of the property we were interested  which does show land registry valuations at certain points in time....

Get yourself a good surveyor.they do exist
There have been two collapses in the last week or so ... One in the harbour area Tea for two  and another in Paphos  a 40 yrs old building

I d stick to Aristo or Leptos Developments
A little bit of background to collapses....

The blame game over the collapse of balconies on two buildings in Paphos in the space of 24 hours is well underway, as passing the buck in the event of a tragedy, or in this case a near-tragedy, is a national pastime.
Collapsing buildings in Cyprus is nothing new given the number of neglected structures especially in the old parts of the main cities. It's a miracle that more people have not been killed or injured over the years.

This time around, five people were injured in the two collapses. The first three were Nepalese nationals whose balcony on the third-floor apartment fell, taking with it the two balconies underneath and breaking their fall. The second collapse was fortunately stopped by the pergola atop the restaurant on the ground floor. Passers-by also managed to escape injury in both incidents.

After Paphos mayor Phedonas Phedonos made some inflammatory statements on Saturday directed at the government, the ultra-sensitive interior ministry hit back immediately saying it was the local authority's responsibility to take measures in cases of unsafe buildings.

Phedonos then fired off a lengthy missive to the minister, in which he also made some valid points. This was followed later on Sunday by another tit-for-tat response from the minister, all conducted very publicly through the media.

The issue of old, unsafe buildings is not new and there is no quick solution. Likely there is blame both with the local authorities and with the government as attention is only given to this problem when there's an incident. Then when the fuss dies down, it's put on the back burner until next time. Next time, however, could prove fatal.

What is new and more pressing here is that up to recently, those buildings would have remained empty for the most part, being too shabby to rent out. Now however, with the Pournara reception centre overflowing and no end to the migratory flow, unscrupulous landlords are packing third-country nationals into rundown spaces and receiving obscene amounts in rent.

And, if Phedonos is correct, it seems the government itself is abetting them because the rents are paid to the landlords by the state itself through rent allowances for asylum seekers. These unfortunate people then either have to live in an uninhabitable and unsafe building or face eviction with nowhere else to go when something happens.

Of course there are cases where a law-abiding landlord thinks he's renting out to one or two people and a few months later realises there are ten people living there instead. There is no way to regulate this, and it's not just happening in Cyprus but in most European capitals.

Even if a greedy landlord is told to either fix his building or have it declared uninhabitable, he would likely just ‘paper over the cracks' as Phedonos said, and continue to get away with it. So short of setting up a massive task force of engineers to inspect every single building more than 30 years old there isn't much that can be done except properly punish those who are caught and make an example of them as a warning to the rest.

As an engineer who has worked with concrete all his life and a man who returned to UK because of the Cypriot health system you should understand the concrete used in Cyprus is weak It has to be.Cyprus is prone to earth tremors so the concrete must give.You will find cracks in almost every building.You must use special ingredients as state buildings do to avoid this which would be expensive so on private buildings they do not use them due to cost (they should).The Cypriots just fill the cracks in and carry on.At the last big tremor I found a bloody great crack when I woke up next morning on the wall adjoining the appartment(2 inch).
You must understand that you cannot use concrete used in Britain due to temperature and tremors if you did the buildings would collapse because the concrete has no give.Were ever there is regular frost you must use very hard concete reinforced correctly  as in UK.Hot countries must use a binding ingredient to let the concrete stretch but in Cyprus forget it, but they take this weak concrete  to the extreme on most private dwellings(almost every time) and do not let it dry correctly a massive prerequisite and also do not control concrete pours correctly.If you drill a hole or even knock a screwdriver in it will go through.Try that in UK and you will bounce off.Do not get me wrong they have to use weak concrete and have used it over many years but I have seen buildings being built were they let the concrete dry in the sun over hours a complete NO NO but they get away with it plus they scimp on rea bar reinforcement.Hope this does not put you off it has to be like that but as I say some builders take it to extreme but do not worry just fill the cracks and carry on but I would not stand on a Cypriot balcony myself or buy an apartment with a balcony even in UK.Hope this has helped and best of luck.

Thank you so much Toon for all the info and all your help. I appreciate it a lot!

I am going to ask on Facebook and to have a look at Ariadni.

The balconies case is very sad for the people involved and very scary for us who are looking for a decent property to buy/live in.

Thanks a lot again!

@ckeeling29 Thank you so much for the info. It's very informative and clear.
So bottom line is that they have to use this kind of concrete which makes everything weak. So don't sit on a balcony in Cyprus !!
I was looking for an apartment with a terrace. I might get rid of this criteria now!!
Do you think it's the same for larger terraces or roof tops?
Thanks again for everything

I don't think you can escape the stark facts of the Cyprus construction industry

@ckeeling29 know what the strengths are ... Am used to c10. Upto c50  strengths in uk where do you think the cyprus strengths are....

Sorry,I should say weak concrete is not a must if you use proper ingredients but I have never seen them when watching them build and doubt if the poor workers who work in ridiculous remperatures for a pittance would even now how to.
I have never asked as the man who owned our complex and many others went into a fit if he saw you just looking at a crack or asked him a question.I myself learned Cypriots are not very nice people if you get inquisitive.My landlord who was a really nice chap had not got a clue but we lived there when the housing market was down and rental prices were really cheap and there were a plentiful supply so he had to be.We paid 400 euro a month for a 2 bed 2 bath with a beautiful garden on ground floor.We would still be there if not for my health.That we found was the big drawback.Private insurance was out of the question due to our age and my health, and the state hospital was awful.Your ticket number to see a doc was useless as when the last patient came out it was a free for all to get in at the hospital, but I think it has changed now.But for complicated things they sent you to Limassol (hours waiting)Most Brits advised us to rent first and never buy if possible.I could write for hours about the some times very sophisticated scams we saw and learnd about, real horror stories.The private school were we enrolled our grandson had a recently enrolled Russian pupil who was there to identify future gullible parents to become friends with their parents who were soon inviting you for drinks ect and showing you  a lot of wonderful business opportunities( I doubt if they were even his parents).The dad could crush ice cubes in your drink.After some checking I learnt he was not even russian but german he said(I catched on because I can speak German some what and he was stumped when I spoke it) plus his accountant??? and salesman??? said he catched the train when I asked if he went to Siberia a lot, the pratt.Thats when he crushed the ice cube in his glass and the man was terrified.Anyway I do not think it would matter what you asked regards concrete strength as you could not trust the answer.The wife is screaming at me as there is an air frier at Lidle she wants and I have kept her waiting.Just hope they have not sold out.Good luck.
Am inclined to agree with sentiments of workmanship here ......  Especially for refurbs etc ....we've seen lots of chancers who operate here but there are good guys too of all nationalities....

Best advice I can give is go for a resale property that has been up for a few years and the ground on which it has been built has actually settled  and without movement or visible cracks, ask other owners and ask open questions on trades people of all nationalities... There are good and bad everywhere ...

Also view in winter not summer as that's when the paint and mortar come out to hide many problems...always be suspicious of a fresh paint job .....winter tends to show the flaws and issues like damp and mould

In conclusion there hundreds if  not thousands of empty derelict unfinished properties throughout Cyprus...... Do your own due diligence speak to locals speak to other owners speak to other who may rent....ask around  the local businesses what they think of the local areas.

We just bought here last year confident of our our surveyor agent and lawyer .....and thats after 7 years renting here and 6 years renting in Malta... 
Ageing buildings need urgent inspection
Cyprus' older buildings must undergo immediate inspection, while authorities should introduce mechanisms to prevent incidents like the collapse of two balconies in Paphos from happening again.

The Scientific and Technical Chamber of Cyprus (ETEK) said it again urges authorities to assess ageing buildings, many of which pose a hazard as they require maintenance.

ETEK, the statutory technical adviser of the state, said in a statement that large swathes of the island's property list are older buildings not built to modern standards.
It said many were erected before anti-seismic building methods were introduced, with materials deemed inappropriate today.

ETEK argues that problems have been made worse due to the lack of routine maintenance of buildings which is often the main factor for their partial or even total collapse.

“Taking into account these facts and that the protection of human life must be the highest priority, ETEK's position is that preventive measures should be taken to shield buildings against damage from the passage of time, earthquakes or other disasters.”

The Chamber has submitted a specific proposal to the Ministry of the Interior for the institutionalisation of periodic inspection of buildings.

ETEK said that following the latest incidents, it would be relaunching a set of educational seminars on inspecting older buildings for its members.

It calls on the state to immediately carry out information and public awareness campaigns regarding the risks posed by the lack of maintenance of buildings, especially older ones, and the need to take measures to ensure the safety of tenants, which is the responsibility of every owner.

Cyprus' property stock has come under the spotlight after two incidents of collapsing balconies in Paphos left seven people injured, four of them seriously.

The incidents occurred 24 hours apart last week in the town.

There is not a damn thing the goverment can do except knock them down and it's not the age it's the building method which is STILL the same.
Anti tremor measures are EXPENSIVE and Cyprus day of reckoning is beginning.

@ckeeling29 I agree even with anti tremor build specs the likelyhood is they get ignored or watered down... Brown envelopes have been in short supply for years lol

You get an EU passport if you invest half a million euro in Cyprus.Were I used to live Russians built mansion's they never even lived in, to get one,In case they fall foul of Putin.How the EU allow it beats me.
They don't anymore they stopped the golden passports a while back (Nov 21) not just here but malta and a few other places too..... Plus a few have had their golden passports cancelled ..there was.about 1500 applications in review as a result

However they have now offered fast track  permanent residency with investments in property of over €250-300k.... Of course it doesn't stop corruption and brown envelopes are still popular as some arrests of officials  have proven recently
We loved our five years in Cyprus,but woke up one morning in 2017 and could not feel left leg and soon right.Spent thousands seeing private doctors but no good they pass you on to their mates and even had to tell heart doc to stop phoning.If you can remember it was a brit with dementia,lost his wife and had no other familly and was wondering round paphos hospital in filthy pyjamas made my mind up to leave.But had hell of a time convincing DWP I was back permanently(thought I was on fiddle) to claim disability.A woman asked if anyone could help him on the site. Pity they have or had rotten health service.
Update on collapses

Saying it wanted to bolster public safety in the wake of two balcony collapses, Paphos Municipality is taking action over nine buildings deemed dangerous or unsuitable.

The municipality is seeking an eviction order for three of the buildings. For five others, procedures have been underway for several months to render them safe, it said.

The announcement follows a meeting of the municipal council to discuss two separate cases of balconies collapsing last week – the first at the Sylva court on Nicos Antoniades street near Kennedy square which resulted in the hospitalization of three Nepalese workers, and the second on Poseidon Avenue.

For Paphos Mayor Phedon Phedonos, both incidents have highlighted inadequacies in the legal framework which he said allows unscrupulous landlords to exploit vulnerable third country nationals and asylum-seekers desperate for a roof over their head.

His harsh criticism, including of state policy to subsidise accommodation for asylum-seekers without checking living conditions, led to a harsh exchange with Interior Minister Nicos Nouris as to the respective responsibilities of local and central government over the safety and suitability of buildings.

In a statement, Paphos Municipality said it was taking action within the framework of the responsibilities assigned to it by law to end the risk of buildings and create an effective and functional legal framework to check the suitability of buildings as regards their static adequacy.

It said that the municipal council had reviewed the situation in the town as regards dangerous buildings in the light of the collapse of part of two buildings on Nicos Antoniades street and Poseidon avenue.

“Evaluating the technical data submitted to it and based on the advice and views of the municipality's legal advisers, the council decided to take specific measures as a matter of urgency in relation to nine buildings which the past three years present problems of risk and/or unsuitability of use and habitation,” it said.

For the above, proceedings have started in line with the municipality law and the road and buildings law, which among other provide for a one-off administrative fine of up to €10,000 and a daily fine of €200 for continued non-compliance.

In three cases, the municipality said an eviction order is being sought. For five, proceedings have been underway for the past three to 18 months to end the risk, in line with the roads and buildings law. It did not elaborate which procedure was being applied to which buildings, nor clarify about the ninth case.

The municipal council also decided to ask the union of Cyprus municipalities to seek amendments to what it described as ineffective legislation regarding building checks so as to establish regular and strict controls of their suitability after a certain number of years from their construction – for example 30 – for the issue of suitability certificates at regular intervals.

In order to speed up checks of the suitability of old buildings with apparent external problems, it was decided to bolster the municipality's technical services department with a civil engineer for two years. Approval has been sought from the interior and finance ministries.

“Paphos Municipality calls on owners of buildings within its boundaries to rise to the occasion and acting with responsibility, proceed with technical checks of their buildings and all the necessary maintenance and repair work as this is required by public safety and the town's image and reputation,” it said.

Owners should know that potential accidents at their buildings could lead them to having to pay thousands in compensation, it added.

“The municipality also calls on owners of such buildings to end their unbridled exploitation of migrants (asylum-seekers, foreign workers) and other individuals by renting unsuitable premises, which in most cases leads to crowding and a real threat to public health and safety,” it said.

Finally, it urgently called on the state to establish a new mechanism to end subsidies of rents at buildings which are unsuitable and dangerous or do not have the permits required by law.
Tried to take some one to court in paphos,told not to by solicitor,takes years.
When civil war broke out muslims went north leaving land and buildings vacant.Certain politicians after some time started renting the vacant properties and land out against all UN and Cypriot law but going on to this day.Chief of police in Larnaca or Nicosia was sitting drinking with two top mafia when a man walked in and shot one through the head.Copper fined me 40 euro for no helmet,later saw him with his kids on his motor bike (no helmet as well) When building collapse dies down it will be forgot.
Water can get through tiny holes and minute cracks to  rea bar(if its there) and only qualified people with correct expensive equipment can see it.Moral,keep off balconies.
Thank you very much for all the info @toon and @ckeeling29
It really helps and buying in Cyprus doesn't seem as easy as I thought it was
Dont be put off there are good guys out there as well as the bad guys