Consumer Protection in Cyprus

Защита прав потребителей на Кипре
17 September 2021 DOM LiVE
842

The EU countries have one of the highest safety standards in the world.

We all take this fact into account when choosing a country for permanent residence, business, recreation or study. When you understand that European standards are the absolute norm, and shopping is somehow more pleasant, isn't it?

Cyprus has been a member of the European Union since 2004 and actively strives for a European way of life in all areas.

All buyers in the country, regardless of citizenship, are equally protected by the Consumer Protection Law of 2021.

The law requires sellers to provide buyers with as much information as possible about who they are and what they are selling, how much it costs, including all taxes, shipping and additional costs. All this information should be publicly available.

According to the Cyprus Consumer Protection Service (CPS), when making any purchase, the buyer secretly enters into a contract with the seller.

Cyprus has a standard European two-year warranty for movable purchases purchased from authorized sellers.

This is not counting the additional guarantee and the service that some businesses provide to their clients. But keep in mind that it is advisable to report a defective product within the first 6 months, after this period you will have to prove that the cause of the breakdown is in the quality of the product.

Also, each customer has 14 days during which he can change the product if, for example, he is not satisfied with the color or design. This even applies to bulky goods such as cars or weightless substances such as consumer credit. The exception is personal products, sterile medical supplies, and the like.

Moreover, the consumer has the right to challenge the quality of the product if it does not correspond to what is stated in the advertisement, exchange it or return the money.

The provisions of the Consumer Protection Law do not apply to second-hand purchases.

The rules of the law apply to new, discounted goods, as well as secondary products purchased in a store or from private sellers registered on special trading platforms. It's the same with online shopping. But, the law is powerless if an adult voluntarily gave money to a gray seller, and the product does not suit him with something.

Unfair contract terms are prohibited by law.

There is no reason for concern: today it is simply impossible to deceive the buyer and scary stories about the text in small print in the agreement in the EU are not relevant. European rules include a number of terms in the texts of contracts that can be interpreted as unfair, and therefore unenforceable. In addition, the contract must be written in a simple, intelligible language, otherwise all ambiguities will be interpreted not in favor of the seller.

A contract that is contrary to legal regulations simply cannot be valid. At the same time, the buyer has the right to dispute one or more points, while remaining the seller's client. Another question is how much it will cost and whether the game is worth the candle. The role of the Cyprus Consumer Protection Service (CPS) is to educate and protect the consumer in general, not to resolve individual disputes. So, most likely, you cannot do it without a lawyer.

In real estate, consumer protection rules are slightly different.

In the real estate sector, the aforementioned Consumer Protection Law of 2021 (Part II on Unfair Contract Conditions and Part VII on Unfair Business Practices) may also apply.

When buying real estate, the buyer signs a contract that does not spell out the right to return or exchange the purchased property. A person buys a specific apartment or villa.

The Cyprus Consumer Protection Service (CPS) also confirms that immovable property cannot be returned or exchanged, but the validity of the contract can be challenged. Disputes about the return and exchange of real estate relate to contractual relationships and, in particular, contractual disputes. They are governed by the provisions of the Law on Contracts, Chapter 149.

When buying a property under construction, the buyer also signs the apartment plans and technical specifications that the company adheres to when building a particular facility.

Developers in Cyprus generally build according to technical specifications and municipal building licenses. 

Защита прав потребителей на Кипре. Узнайте о своих правах и используйте их.

Unfortunately, there are also unscrupulous builders.

In the event that the buyer nevertheless purchased a home from the company that built the complex, violating the issued permits and technical specifications signed at the time of purchase, the consumer should seek legal advice and go to court.

Apartment exchange is practiced in some Cypriot companies if the client wants to buy more expensive housing.

For example, a buyer bought an apartment and later wanted to buy a house from the same seller. But, this issue is being discussed directly with the construction company at the time of such a decision.

Who is responsible for the quality of the home after purchase? And why does the house need a Committee?

The developer does not bear any responsibility for the quality of life and the condition of the house after delivery. The buyer is given a 2-3 year guarantee for a specific object, but not for the entire residential complex or the entire apartment building. Unfortunately, after a couple of years, a house with a beautiful picture on an advertisement may not be recognized if the quality of the building leaves much to be desired.

After delivery, the house is serviced by the management Company or the Committee. They are usually chosen by the residents. The committee is most often responsible for paying bills for the maintenance of the building (electricity, water, elevator, pool maintenance). Sometimes the Committee will collect a vote and the management Company is elected by a majority of the votes cast. Some large developers offer their own professional management company.

Is it possible to avoid noisy neighbors in an apartment building?

The purchase contract specifies that the buyer must abide by the House Committee rules and treat other residents with respect. If something out of the ordinary happens in the apartment, the rest of the tenants can sue such a neighbor.

There are restrictions on the number of residents. For example, a one-bedroom apartment can accommodate a maximum of four people. However, the company has the right to refuse to buy an apartment. Sometimes a potential buyer for an expensive luxury apartment is interviewed.

Try to choose companies with extensive experience and a good reputation, with a focus on providing quality after-sales services to their customers.

The Cyprus Consumer Protection hotline is at 1429. For information on potentially hazardous products, please visit Safety Gate.

Защита прав потребителей на Кипре

Have you decided to buy an apartment or a house in Cyprus? Contact the DOM Real Estate portal! The website has a large selection of real estate objects - residential and commercial. Experienced agency specialists will be happy to help you make the right choice.

Read more:

  • Mukhtars in Larnaca (link)
  • How to buy property in Cyprus? (link)
  • Recommended appliances and furniture to be in a rental property (link)
  • Studio vs. 1 bedroom apartment in Cyprus. Which one is right for you? (link)
  • Types of property in Cyprus (link)
  • Apartment vs. House in Cyprus: which one is the best choice? (link)
Source: DOM, europa.eu
Photos: Pixabay
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