Step-by-step: Buying Property in Istanbul

The Turkish property market is growing day by day. There are thousands of properties for sale in Turkey and hundreds of real estate agents. Each agent will tell you different things and give different advice. We have simplified the whole process in our step by step Buyer’s Guide to property.

  • Legal Basis

In accordance with the Article 35 of the Land Registry Law No. 2644, amended by Law No. 6302, which came into force on 18 May 2012, the condition of reciprocity for foreigners who wish to buy property in Turkey was abolished.

Information on countries whose citizens can buy property and estate in Turkey can be obtained from the Turkish Embassies/Consulates abroad and the General Directorate for Land Registry and Cadastre (Tapu ve Kadastro Genel Müdürlüğü).
Foreign nationals who buy property without any structures (land, field) have to submit the project which they will construct on the property to the relevant Ministry within 2 years.

  • Format of Contract

According to the Turkish laws and regulations in force, transfer of ownership of a property is only possible with an official deed which is signed at the Land Registry Directorates (Tapu Müdürlüğü).

Please note

That the legal ownership to the property does not pass with a “sales commitment agreement” or other kind of sales agreements signed before the notary. Signing a contract between buyer and seller is obviously useful when you want to agree about the modalities of the sale and helps clarifying both parties’ expectations, but from a legal point of view it is not more than a “gentlemen’s agreement”.

Step 1: Do Your Research

The Turkish property market is growing day by day. There are thousands of properties for sale in Turkey and hundreds of real estate agents. Each agent will tell you different things and give different advice. We advise that you conduct your own thorough research into which region in Turkey best suits your needs, budget, and expected lifestyle, and return on your investment.

Step 2: Research Agents

Buying an overseas property is for most people more of a lifestyle choice than just bricks and mortar, so the agent you are dealing with ought to understand and appreciate the lifestyle you are seeking to attain. If they can’t, then they will not have much chance of guiding you toward the right area and type of investment. Remember, Turkey is a huge country, larger than France, and four times the size of the UK, so there are big differences from region to region in terms of climate, culture and landscape. Only a knowledgeable and empathetic agent will be able to consult you in the right direction.

Step 3: See as much Properties as You Can

Avoid inspection trips offered by branded developers: you will only see properties sold by this specific developer, which means you’ll miss out of a huge number of properties in the region. These trips are also infamous for their hard sell techniques.

Step 4: Negotiating on Price and Terms

Whether you are buying a retirement villa in Turkey or an investment apartment, we will always negotiate on your behalf to ensure the best possible price and terms are achieved. Our extensive networks and contacts mean we can secure significant discounts from developers as well as from private sellers.

  • Costs Associated with Buying Property in Turkey

Breakdown of approximate costs of buying property in Turkey costing $100,000

  • Purchase (transfer) tax at 1.5 per cent (paid by both the buyer and seller) £4,500
  • Notary fees $100
  • Land registry fees $110
  • Municipality fees (can vary) $250
  • DASK (annual compulsory earthquake insurance) $50
  • Total $5,640

Step 5: Reserve the Property & Freeze Its Price and Terms

Once you have found your dream home, villa, or apartment in Turkey, we will reserve the property for you so we can proceed with the purchase process. The cost of reserving real estate in Turkey is generally around $1,000 and is non refundable. This amount is given to the seller as a reservation deposit and is deducted from the agreed purchase price.

Step 6: Appoint a Solicitor by Power of Attorney to Finalize the Purchase on Your Behalf

The easiest way to purchase a property in Turkey is by granting power of attorney to a solicitor in Turkey to conclude the deal on your behalf. This saves you time, means you don’t need to stay in the country while the purchase is going through, and ensures your purchase will be as smooth as possible without any hitches or hiccups.

Step 7: Conduct Final Check on the Property

After signing contracts, the purchase should take around four weeks to complete. Your appointed solicitor will during this process make all necessary checks on the property – including title check, municipality check, and military clearances to guarantee that the property is freehold registered in your name.

Step 8: Receiving of the Title Deed (TAPU)

The final step to complete your real estate purchase in Turkey is registering your TAPU (or title deed). Once we have secured all paperwork and both sides have carried out their contractual obligations – your home will be registered to your name and you will receive the title deed (TAPU) to your new home in Turkey.

This ends the Buyer’s Guide that we’ve prepared at its simplest for you.

For any questions you may have on buying property in Turkey, please feel free to contact us anytime – we’d more than happy to help!