Ukrainians fleeing the war to Cyprus have increased demand for property rentals in Limassol and Paphos, industry officials say.
The interior ministry said the republic has taken in 2,935 Ukrainians since Russia’s February 24 invasion of Ukraine, with most of them seeking to reunite with families already living on the island.
The head of the Association of Cyprus Real Estate Agents (CREAA), Andreas Kauris, said that demand from Ukrainians leads to an increase in rents in Limassol. Kauris said demand from Ukrainian refugees has accelerated rent growth as the ongoing war in Ukraine has further fueled inflation. He argued that the war would ultimately make it difficult for the real estate sector to recover after two years hit by the coronavirus pandemic.
Real estate agent and member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Real Estate Appraisers Andis Tilemaciu said: “There has been uncertainty and confusion in the market in recent days” due to a combination of increased demand for housing and worries about the future. Tilemachu said no one can estimate how much damage the war will do to the island’s real estate market, as no one can predict how long the conflict will last. “Usually, after a war is over, neighboring countries win as people leave the conflict zone.” He believes that Russians and Ukrainians leaving the region will settle in Cyprus because of their relationship with the island and its EU status.
Paphos real estate agents are also reporting an increase in demand for property from Ukrainian citizens.Local real estate agent George Petru said there is high demand from Ukrainian refugees who want to settle in Cyprus and are looking for an apartment or house to rent with the help of their relatives who are already living in Cyprus.
“Demand from Ukrainians is growing day by day. Demand tends to be for higher end properties. When it comes to demand from local residents, there are many old houses that are significantly larger than new apartments and houses at a much lower price,” Petru said.
While Limassol and Paphos are seeing a surge in demand for property, in coastal cities the real estate sector is in limbo due to the war.
Vassos Zakos, a real estate agent based in Famagusta and Larnaca, said the war took stakeholders by surprise. They expected the market to recover after two years of uncertainty caused by COVID-19.
“Even if the war ends today, if the prices of fuel and other essential commodities do not return to normal levels, market uncertainty will continue with negative consequences for all sectors.
“If the price of gasoline rises to 2 euros per litre, people will be less willing to buy or rent property.”
Zakos also commented on the decline in the supply of apartments and houses for rent seen in recent years in Larnaca as new properties on the market are for sale only.
According to him, increased demand and reduced supply of real estate for rent are detrimental factors for the development of the city.