As many as 50,000 properties throughout Cyprus have remained unsold for a significant amount of time as demand from local and foreign buyers remains at a low.
The figure of 50,000 is based on the difference between the number of building permits issued and the number of sale contracts submitted.
The number, however, drops to a still significant 18,000 properties when sales contracts and the number of title deeds currently being processed are taken into account.
A European Commission document revealed the figures and their subsequent consequences on the real estate industry, developers, banks and non-performing loans.
Investments in private homes have fallen to just one fifth of their highest level in 2008, according to a document seen by Phileftheros newspaper. Foreign buyers in 2015, meanwhile, made up just 12% of the number of the highest number in recent years, which was in 2007.
Between 2008 and 2009, the purchase of properties from non-permanent residents dropped 84% with the number of local buyers falling 37% over the same period.
In 2011 and 2012, sales dropped by an average 15%, dropping again by 28% in 2013.
When it comes to local buyers, they are impeded by existing loans, salary reductions and unemployment, the document said.
It also noted prices remained inflated in spite of a corrective drop in 2008. The document said mortgages no longer necessarily reflected true property value which had dropped between 30-31%.
Other EU countries suffered even greater reductions in property values, to the tune of 35% in Spain and 50% in Ireland.
Source: In Cyprus