To make the obvious even more plain: I do not practice law and you should consult a Solicitor before spending serious money on a home.

In many places, a sales contract for a home is only in force for a month or three. It will normally concern only the sale of the property and will have clauses about how the contract is void if you can’t get financing or the home is found to have termites. Once the sale is complete, that contract is no longer in force.

Things are different in North Cyprus. The Contract of Sale may be in force for years and is registered at the Land Office. Obviously a bit of explanation is due: There are two main reasons why you may have extended period of time before getting an actual deed.

Perhaps the most common is that you purchased a unit in a complex/development and the Developer has not completed the entire complex. Once the construction is complete, the local Municipality will check to see if the actual buildings match the plat. At that point the sub-divided deeds for each lot will be issued.

Obviously, if your home was purchased half-way through the building project, it could easily be a year or two before the final unit is complete. In the meantime, your Contract of Sale is the binding document. The property is paid for but you don’t actually have the deed. 

The only inconvenience this may cause is that you cannot build a new permanent structure on your land because then the plat would not match the actual buildings in the development. The Developer would have to re-submit the entire project again and your neighbors will be displeased. The building permit was issued based on the first plat and if you build a garage, the plat doesn’t match what is on the ground.

Normally these contracts are assignable, meaning you can sell the contract. In practice, you own the house and have control of the property. You can sell it just like you had the final deed but you technically don’t own the home, you own the contract.

The other time when you see a home without Title Deed is when the owner of the contract doesn’t want the deeds. Now, why would that be?

I’ll tell you a story: A couple of years ago my friend Ron and I were talking about his Villa and he said he didn’t want his deed. I ask why and he explained he doesn’t plan to sell the house and nobody can throw him out. He saw no reason the pay the four-thousand Pounds it would cost for him to get the actual deed. The house is paid in full and he is there legally - in perpetuity

He was right, he lived in the villa the rest of his life and when he passed away the house went to his wife. She still lives there.

When the property is transferred into your name, there is a Transfer Fee due. It’s three percent of the contract price. Not getting a deed may not be sound legal advice but it is something a few people do.