27 February, 2020
Cyprus Rent Control Law: a New Era
The Cyprus Rent Control Law of 1983 has long been regarded as controversial. On the one hand, many appreciated the protection it gave tenants who were facing serious problems. On the other hand, that protection often went to such an extreme – even where unwarranted – that owners were reluctant to let any unused property, even forfeiting income, for fear of being stuck with delinquent tenants. But things are set to change.
The most recent amendments proposed by the Parliamentary Committee on Legal Affairs, which were approved on 31st January 2020, are far more balanced and realistic.
How the new law works:
The new amendment stipulates a 2-month deadline for shops and a 3-month deadline for residences. Once the new law is implemented, any tenant who fails to pay for four months can now expect serious consequences. Here is a summary of the step-by-step process:
- 1. Tenant fails to pay rent for 4 months.
- 2. The owner gives delinquent tenant 21-day written notice/warning.
- 3. Unless payment is received, the owner can initiate the eviction process by filing an application with the court registrar.
- 4. The tenant then has 14 days to make all payments (showing receipts).
- 5. Unless payment is received, the court will have 3 days to accept or reject the owner’s eviction application.
- 6. If the application is accepted, the eviction procedure will begin.
While this new amendment will allow owners to take effective action against non-paying tenants, it is above all expected to serve as a deterrent. Now that eviction is a real possibility (unlike it was in the past), the once slack attitude towards rent will change – something property owners have long been hoping for.