Turkey’s house sales up by two-thirds in 2013There were 1.1million homes sold in Turkey in 2013, with 1% of them being bought by foreigners, and overseas property agents say demand is growing
More than 1.1million homes were sold in Turkey in 2013 – around 65% up year-on-year – and they include a growing number to overseas buyers, official figures show.
Altogether 1,157,190 Turkish properties were sold last year, compared to 701,621 in 2012. Just over 1% – 12,181 – were bought by foreigners, according to figures from the countries Statistical Institute (TurkSat).
Antalya topped overseas homes sales in 2013 with 5,548 transactions, Istanbul saw 2,447 sales, Aydin 1,112, Mulga 1,053 and Mersin 545.
Taking the latest monthly figures, for January 2014, there were 1,207 sales to overseas buyers. Antalya again led the figures with 464 sales, İstanbul came next with 243 sales, Sakarya had 119 sales, Muğla achieved 75 and Aydın 70.
Julian Walker, Director of Turkish property website www.spotblue.com, tells OPP Connect, “Looking at 2013, it was a better for us than for a number of years.
“Is that because our position is growing in the market, because of our growing reputation or because of our website, it is hard to pin down. What we do know is that it has been a significantly better year than before.”
Turkey benefits by being close to the Middle East geographically and culturally, which helps increase investor interest.
“Buyers from the Gulf Co-operation Countries and the Middle East are purchasing in Istanbul. Everybody is buying property for an investment point of view. Thirty to forty years ago, people were not so conscious of this and the market has not grown as aggressively to make money. But today people are buying for a lifestyle purpose with an eye on investment.”
The rise in investor interest is illustrated by the fact that in the first six weeks of 2014, compared with the same time in 2013, visits to the SpotBlue website have risen “by significant double-digit figures.”
The rate of increase has surprised Mr Walker. “We are a mature company in the Turkish property market and have been there coming up to eleven years, but still we have seen this very healthy increase in traffic.”
Turkish property values are also rising fast, growing 13.55% in the year to January 2014, according to the Reidin-GYODER New House Price index. But the fall in the value of the Turkish lira against US Dollars and the Euro, make property more affordable for overseas buyers, says Mr Walker.
Istanbul is attracting more interest from the Middle East and Europe, especially the European side of Istanbul, with strong interest in areas including Halkali, Beylikduzu, Bahcesehir and central fashionable districts such as Kadikoy and Levent on both sides of the Bosphorus.
Out of the total sales, almost 40% (460,112) were bought with mortgages.
Turkish property specialist Oceanwide Properties (www.oceanwideproperties.co.uk) have told OPP Connect that increasing tourist numbers are also driving up demand for property. In January 2014, there was a 3.81% annual rise in foreigners visiting Turkey to 1.1million, with big increases from some Middle East nations.
Visitors from Qatar rose 320% annually, Kuwait by 110%, China by 59%, Colombia by 56%, Saudi Arabia by 47%, Hungary by 44.51%, Tajikistan by 38.71%, Malaysia by 36%, Argentina, by 35%, Uzbekistan 34.14% and Greece 30.58%.
The biggest yearly fall in Turkey’s visitor numbers came in Luxembourg, down 28.25%, Finland, down 9.44% and Norway, down 9.17%.