A preserved building is every building for which a preservation order has been issued by the Minister of Interior according to Article 38 of the Town and Planning Act (Law no. 90/1972).
A preservation order may be issued for buildings with a particular architecture, historical, social or any other special interest or character. The typology, the morphology and the materials used for the construction of the building, as well as any historical/social events related to it, all play a role in its evaluation. An important criterion is also its location, that is, whether it is located in an area of special character or a compact historical/traditional core. Buildings located outside these areas can be declared as preserved only if they are considered to be of exceptional or particular peculiarity or importance.
Preservation Order application
Applications for declaring buildings/areas as preserved can be made for buildings/areas located in all parts of Cyprus (towns and villages). The application is submitted at the Preservation Department which is located at the Central Offices of the Town Planning and Housing Department, before the commencement of any construction work. For any interventions on a preserved building (maintenance, construction works or alterations), besides the required licenses according to the Law, meaning the Planning and Building Permit, a special license must be first obtained (Consent of the Minister of Interior).
One can also engage in general preservation, alterations, restoration, construction of an addition etc., with the purpose of improving a building, to cover one’s modern needs etc., given that these are consistent and do not negatively affect the authentic character of the building. In addition, there are no any limitations regarding the transfer, sale or rent of a preserved building, other than the terms referred to in the preservation order.
In case an owner of a preserved building wishes to be granted subsidy for the maintenance of a preserved building, he must submit an application to this direction to the Head of the Town Planning and Housing Department. The subsidy plan concerns the maintenance/restoration of the building and is granted as a unified set solely for its full maintenance, and only once. It is possible to be granted afresh for the full maintenance of the building, after a period of approximately 20 years from the previous grant of incentives. In the event that the building suffers damage beyond the usual wear and tear due to specific causes (i.e. earthquake, fire, soil settling), the granting of a subsidy is then possible prior to the expiration of the 20-year period.
Taxation of preserved buildings
In Cyprus, there are some tax incentives in place granted to owners of such preserved buildings, i.e. tax exemption in relation to the following:
Additionally, provided certain conditions are met, any expenditure incurred for the preservation of such property is an allowable expense.
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*Spyros Demetriades’ painting from the exhibition’s collection themed “Old Streets embraced by the Present”.