It’s now one of Turkey’s most popular holiday resorts, but way back in its earliest days, Alanya was renowned as a haven for pirates. Their ships preyed on vessels while they traded with local warlords and the leaders of wild tribes living inland, and it took the Romans to finally drive them out.
It’s all a far cry from the Alanya we know today, renowned for its warm welcome and cosmopolitan approach. You might be surprised to know that, historically, approximately 30% of property sales to foreign nationals in Turkey have been in Alanya.
But when you consider that some one million visitors holiday in the area each year, injecting as much as £1bn per annum into the local economy, perhaps you can understand why. When so many people fall in love with the region and return time after time, then buying a holiday home in Alanya – or even moving there full time – makes sense.
But why has Alanya proved so resilient to global challenges such as Covid-19, and how is the property market likely to perform in the months to come?
Realistic asking prices
Alanya’s municipal leaders were perhaps a little cannier when it came to identifying the opportunities presented by international tourism than those from neighbouring towns and cities along Turkey’s Mediterranean coast.
Many didn’t really cotton on until the 1970s and ‘80s, but Alanya had already been building fast for a decade by then. So, when Europeans and Russians discovered Turkey as a holiday destination, the town was one step ahead.
The pace of construction snowballed in the 1990s, particularly after Antalya International Airport opened in 1998. However, everything has a limit and eventually a glut of new builds prompted property prices to slow and stall.
Popular among the Danish in particular, Alanya also struggled in 2005 in the wake of controversy over cartoons in a Copenhagen newspaper which offended the Muslim world. Later, the conflict in neighbouring Syria, and terror attacks in Ankara and Istanbul in 2016, also had an impact on tourism across the country and a knock-on effect on real estate.
Prices have recovered in fashionable destinations such as Antalya and Kalkan and Fethiye, but Alanya has once again been quietly doing its own thing. Exclusive villas and stunning apartments in Alanya are no less smart or modern than those elsewhere, but the prices are considerably lower.
Buyers who already know this might not thank us for pointing it out but, if you take a look at properties in Alanya, you can find some real bargains. With the Turkish lira also currently struggling a little on the international money markets, right now is a great time for overseas investors to buy in.
Plenty of choice
One thing the building boom has provided in Alanya is plenty of choice when it comes to available properties. Technically Alanya isn’t a city but it’s not much smaller than some other conurbations which are in relatively easy reach.
Antalya’s a good example; it’s also popular as a holiday destination and boasts some ultra-modern beach resorts. However, building restrictions have curbed development, particularly along the sea shore. As a result, the variety of homes on the market in Antalya is more limited.
Asking prices in Antalya tend to be higher, as fewer available homes means more competition among buyers. Therefore, the glut of homes in Alanya we mentioned earlier is currently an advantage.
If you’re looking for affordable property investment on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast right now, we’d urge you not just to be dazzled by the glitz and glamour of other resorts, but to seriously consider Alanya too.
It’s all about location
We’ve already mentioned Alanya’s Mediterranean location and its proximity to the international airport in Antalya. Alanya itself also boasts its own attractions, not least the historic castle, the Red Tower overlooking the harbour, Cleopatra’s Beach, the Damlataş Caves and the old walled city dotted with well-preserved examples of Ottoman architecture.
However, the freer approach to development in Alanya has also allowed more construction along the shore which means more homes with sea views. Fully furnished resale apartments are therefore not as hard to find, and neither are brand new homes within easy reach of the beach.
After all, Alanya’s Mediterranean location means it enjoys an average of around 300 days of sunshine a year and relatively mild winters. As a result, a vibrant, year-round expat community is well integrated with local Turks. Germans are the most numerous, although you’ll hear plenty of Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish, Iranian and Russian spoken too!
It would be disingenuous to suggest Covid-19 hasn’t had an impact on property in Alanya; it has.
However, it hasn’t been entirely negative. It’s true that there have been fewer overseas buyers around thanks to travel restrictions, but the shortfall has been mostly made up by wealthy Turks from the bigger cities where coronavirus infection rates have been higher, prompting many to seek an escape to the coast.
Both the rental and the resale sectors have benefited from the increase in domestic demand. Some Turks only want somewhere for the short term while others have seen the benefit or investing a lump sum now in an asset they anticipate will only grow in value.
However, the spending power of the indigenous population has been curtailed recently by economic policies. The country’s leaders are pursuing a boost in exports and employment by raising interest rates, but the net result has been a significant decrease in the value of the Turkish lira against the dollar, pound and Euro.
Foreign investors have therefore enjoyed a significant increase in spending power, with some smart luxury properties now within range of their budgets.
In response, asking prices have leapt up in popular locations such as Istanbul, Izmir and Bodrum as sellers have tried to protect their investments. But, in Alanya, where more homes are currently on sale, the rise has been less dramatic. Obviously, that’s good news for locals trying to get a foot on the property ladder but, for now, it also leaves the door open a little wider for overseas investors.
There’s no knowing how long this may last, though. If you’re considering investing in property in Alanya, our advice is to act sooner rather than later.
How we can help
If you would like to know more about property for sale in Alanya, please feel free to contact us or browse our blog for additional information. You can also see our full portfolio of homes in and around Alanya on our website here.