Buying a Second Home in Turkey
So, you have a dream of buying a second home in Turkey and are a little bit daunted by the process. We understand this. Buying property in your home country is stressful, let alone another country where the process is different. But the lure is too much for foreigners to ignore, and the gorgeous weather, Turkish hospitality and delicious cuisine calls out.
Our job as a real estate agent is to help foreign buyers find their dream home in Turkey. But before we start with our helpful guide, we would like to reassure buyers that Turkey's home buying process is not as stressful as you might think. It is straightforward compared to many other countries, and if everything is in place, buyers receive title deeds in as little as three weeks. However, you still need to ensure that your purchase is worthwhile and makes you happy, so let us look at what to know before buying a house in Turkey.
Buying a Second Home in Turkey
1: Is It Safe to Buy Property in Turkey?
When Turkey first opened their doors to foreigners buying property, there were many stories about buyers losing money and not receiving their title deeds. Thankfully, the Turkish government noticed they had a bad reputation and decided to tighten the system to safeguard buyers. So, if homebuyers follow recommended guidelines and always use a solicitor, yes, it is safe. Do not use an unlicensed estate agent who does not have a good record of accomplishment. Additionally, never hand over money in person. Always send it by bank account, so there is a money trail.
2: Know Your Reason for Buying a Home
To avoid disappointment in later years, decide now your exact reasons for buying because this influences what you will purchase. For example, if you plan to move here in later years after retirement, choose a spacious home, maybe with a private garden and extra bedrooms for when the family comes to visit. For wise investment, avoid renovation projects because these tend to cost more because of material prices, workmanship costs and legal paperwork. Likewise, anyone looking at investments and capital growth, should be prepared for their cash to be wrapped up mid to long term, at least five years. To buy a holiday home, head to the Mediterranean and Aegean coasts, where Turkey's tourism industry is robust.
3: Get Your Finances in Order
Many buyers think the first step is to find a home to purchase, but it is not. We cannot stress the importance of having finances in order. Remember, the Turkish housing market is in Turkish lira, therefore find an excellent foreign exchange company that gives reasonable rates and low transfer fees since home buyers send the money via bank transfer. Likewise, consider the closing costs like notary, translator, land register, solicitors, valuation fees, and taxes. Also, factor in the yearly running costs of your new home and ongoing repairs and maintenance. Know your budget, as well as income and projected expenses.
4: Decide Where to Buy Property
You might already know where you want to buy, but if not, a variety of destinations fit the bill. As general trends, working expats and real estate investors buy in big cities like Istanbul, the most popular destination. Middle-eastern nationalities prefer places like Trabzon and Bursa because of the many similarities in culture, food, and traditions. While cosmopolitan Aegean and Mediterranean coastal towns attract European, British, and Russian buyers. If you are unsure, browse our portfolio of apartments and villas for sale in many places. Each listing contains everything to know, including price, location, features of that home, and contact details to find out more via email, telephone, or arrange a viewing. Otherwise, the following are popular places.
Alanya: Sitting at the far eastern Mediterranean, Alanya has risen in popularity over the last ten years thanks to massive investment by its local council into infrastructure and tourism. The region includes numerous neighbourhoods and places like Mahmutlar present fantastic value for money for house prices, while Alanya centre offers tremendous castle and sea views to wake up to.
Antalya City Centre: If beaches are your passion in life, Antalya city centre steps up with Konyaalti and Lara, two of Turkey's best beaches. The other advantage is the best shopping and nightlife scenes in Mediterranean Turkey. Prices per square meter are slightly more expensive, but Antalya city centre is a significant Mediterranean hub.
Belek: Golfing fans should head to Belek, Turkey's golfing capital, consisting of world-class championship courses. Beginners sign up for group or private lessons in one of the many clubhouses, while every year, there is usually a champion competition to enjoy. There are roughly 18 courses to choose from, and many golfing fans feel at home.
Upmarket Kalkan: To buy a luxury home with fantastic sea views to wake up to and an infinity pool for hot summer days, look to Kalkan. The area specialises in large villas featuring state of the art architecture. Kalkan is also a wise choice for those looking at buy-to-let since rental yields are one of the highest in Turkey.
Calis Beach: Meanwhile, sitting in the Fethiye region, Calis beach wins admiration for its long stretch of sand and stunning sunsets. This year, the local council has also invested thousands in modernising and upgrading its promenade, enhancing that Mediterranean seaside vibe.
Hisaronu and Ovacik: These two destinations originally grew to cope with the overspill of tourism from Oludeniz, but now brim full of foreign homeowners, some of whom own holiday homes and others live there all year round.
Yalikavak: Belonging to the Bodrum peninsula, Yalikavak shot to international fame when the marina, one of the few in Turkey with the ability to host mega yachts, opened its doors. The old part of town still maintains traditional Turkish vibes, so buyers alternate between two worlds.
Rustic Dalyan: This quaint destination is famous for its mud baths, Caunos ancient ruins and Iztuzu beach, which is protected by law because of the endangered Caretta turtle. Buyers find a healthy portfolio of homes for sale, including new build, resale, and traditional stone cottages.
5: Start the Home Buying Process
Once you find your dream home, it is time to start the buying process. As your real estate agent, we guide homebuyers through the whole process. We also present a payment plan of what to pay at what stage. The first step is to get your solicitor to start work. In Turkey, buyers don't have to use one, but we always recommend you do. They arrange contracts, and at the same time, we will get them notarised and make a deposit down payment via bank transfer.
We assist with getting a tax number and if the property has no valuation report, recommend official companies to carry this out. Your solicitor carries out various checks in your best interests, and once approved, the application to the land registry begins. When finished, sign for your title deeds, take the keys and step over the threshold of your new home in Turkey.
6: Need to Know: Residency in Turkey
Tourists can only stay for 90 days out of 180 days. This is something to consider depending on your purpose for buying. If you would like to live in Turkey or spend considerable time here, apply for a residency permit. The application is quick and easy, and all you need to show is that you financially support yourself and have healthcare coverage. Many expats living here use the government-run SGK scheme.
7: Citizenship by Property Investment
To live and work in Turkey, look at the citizenship real estate investment scheme. Homebuyers must purchase a property worth $250,000 or more and pledge to keep it for at least three years to fulfil the criteria. After receiving residency, they then apply for the citizenship scheme, which gives them the same rights as a Turkish citizen.
We are Turkey Homes, a property investment specialist with offices in many areas of Turkey. We hope we have provided lots of information about buying a second home in Turkey, but if you have any more questions, call us today and speak with a local agent. Alternatively, read our blog about Turkey, which talks more about buying property and living here as an expat.