Cyprus Mail

Massive rent increases for Turkish Cypriot properties reported

House refugee committee head Nikos Kettiros

Rents on commercial Turkish Cypriot properties in Limassol have sharply increased, the House refugee committee heard on Tuesday.

Rent increases from €150 to €2,800 a month and in another case from €30 to €999 a month were reported.

The increases were instigated by the interior ministry’s Turkish Cypriot Property Management Service.

Approved tenants sent letters to the parliament and the committee, resulting in a request to the service to freeze the rent review process until the new rent calculation criteria are brought by the service to the relevant committee.

Commenting after the meeting, committee head and Akel MP Nikos Kettiros said many complaints were received from displaced persons, mainly from city and district of Limassol, about a rapid increase in rent prices imposed without warning by the Turkish Cypriot Property Management Service.

“We called for an ex officio investigation into the matter to see how the service calculates the rent increase,” he said, noting that the committee itself had previously called for a rationalisation of rents for Turkish Cypriot properties.

We have never stood, nor will we stand, for these rents that were imposed in the past, of €20-€50 per month. Rationalisation is to impose the increases that should be imposed, but at reasonable levels,” he said.

Kettiros noted that the purchases made in the area for apartments “possibly by oligarchs to obtain passports, possibly for money laundering for cases that are being investigated”, are used as data to impose market rent on people who continue since 1974 “to be aluminium workers, engineers, or carpenters. They did not change the use of their premises. When they change it, the rent rate should be revised,” he said.

He added that until new criteria are submitted by the Turkish Cypriot Property Management Service then the increase in rent prices will be frozen.

Kettiros said that they have been requesting the rent prices criteria be revised for nine years, and that the service promised to file the new criteria this month.

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