Living in Izmir: Why Expats Adore Turkey’s Pearl of the Aegean
The benefits of living in Izmir far outweigh any qualms foreigners may have about moving countries. We know deciding to live in a new location where the language, food and culture are different is a massive lifestyle decision to make and not one to be taken lightly.
However, once the small technical details like finding somewhere to live, arranging residency permits and gaining a sense of familiarity are over, that is when newcomers can relax, and see Izmir shining through in all its glory. If you are sitting on the fence though and wondering if it is the right thing to do, here is why others made a move.
Living in Izmir: Three Reasons to Make the Move
A leader in Trends and Social Living
Known as Smyrna in history, Turks have recognised Izmir for decades, because it is a leader in modern trends. Its cosmopolitan atmosphere attracts many nationalities of foreigners, and it also has a place in the heart of Turkish retirees. Mastercard says it is the first place in Turkey on their Life Standard Index, the Ministry of Development puts it at first place on their Social Capital index, and the diversity of business makes it the second most popular place for investment, after Istanbul.
The city centre is the third largest in Turkey, and every year, 1.8 million tourists descend on the region to enjoy a modern Turkish lifestyle. The area has never been a follower. It’s a leader, and this reputation is engrained in Turkey’s history and future. Anyone looking to move because of business, work, education or even just to make a real estate investment, will find many opportunities.
Diversity of Locations
When people speak of Izmir, most think of the city centre only, but the name refers to a larger peninsula including many coastal resorts and inland villages. Altogether, potential expats can choose from 30 districts to make their permanent home.
Off the beaten track destinations like Tire and Odemis play host to tourism or modern-day business, so would suit expats who want a full-on traditional Turkish lifestyle. Bornova, Buca and Konak, in the city's heart centre offer everything on your doorstep including schools, shops, banks and excellent transport links.
Alacati, Cesme, Foca and Dikili coastal resorts, whose fame has spread among Turks and foreigners, is also a perfect beach-side destination. Unique characteristics of all 30 districts accommodate many buyers, young and old, budget or luxury.
If you plan to buy property, our viewing trips include a visit to prominent districts and neighbourhoods. Also, see our portfolio of property for sale in Izmir that highlights the diversity of each region.
Izmir Versus Istanbul
For many Turks and foreigners, the peninsula is an ideal alternative to Istanbul because it offers everything on the same level but with a cheaper cost of living, and a more relaxed lifestyle. Esteemed reputations of the nightlife and shopping scenes, and business, education and health facilities match those of Turkey's largest metropolis, but people don’t pay over the odds to tap into them.
In 2017, Daily Sabah newspaper reported 16,000 Turks had moved from Istanbul to the peninsula. They cited reasons for the new domestic migration trend as less traffic, better opportunities, lower household costs and less stress!
An article around that time called “35 Reasons to Move to Izmir” also went viral in Turkey. No-one must compromise on lifestyle standards, but if you choose the peninsula over Istanbul, you get a cheaper cost of living.
More Articles of Interest
Districts for First-Time Buyers: If you plan on living in Izmir but are not sure of where to buy, this article lists three popular communities for foreign buyers and why they feature so highly. Including central neighbourhoods and coastal resorts for a more laid-back lifestyle, they are leading the trends of the area’s real estate market.
Reasons to buy property in Izmir: As Turkey’s third largest city, and including many smaller towns and villages, its active real estate market attracts international investors. Whether you want somewhere to live, or a long-term capital appreciation project, this article talks about how buying there can benefit you.