Why Do I Need a Turkish Residence Permit?
A standard Turkish Tourist Permit allows you to stay in Turkey for no longer than 90 days in any 180 days. This means expats - or those who wish to stay for longer - should apply for a Turkish residence permit rather than take a day’s visa trip out of the country to get their passports re-stamped. Applying for a permit was once a time-consuming hassle. However, with Turkey finally joining the 21st century and introducing an online system, it is now easier than ever to apply for a visa.
All About a Turkish Residence Permit
How to Apply for Residency
Visit the Directorate General of Migration Management website to get the ball rolling. Start by inputting all your information to get an appointment at the nearest DGMM office. After filling in the online form, the system says where your closest DGMM office is, shows available times and dates for appointments, and informs you what you need to bring. Foreign applicants may reside in Turkey until their appointment date. However, you may not travel in and out of Turkey at will, although you can exit and re-enter Turkey within 15 days once the application is submitted.
How Much Does a Turkish Residency Permit Cost?
The prices of residency permits vary and are dependent on the length of time applied for. When you apply for your permit online and choose your DGMM appointment date, the system will automatically calculate the permit fees, which can be paid for by credit card or at the nearest tax office.
What Documents Do I Need for a Turkish Residency Permit?
The online system will tailor the list of documents to your specific situation, but you will likely need most, if not all, of the following:
1. Four (Take six just-in-case) clear biometric passport size photos on a white background.
2. Two copies of your TAPU/ Turkish Title Deeds or rental agreement stating where you live and how much you paid. (Also, take the original in case they ask to see it).
3. Two passport copies plus the original (You need colour copies of the visa entry stamp and main details page; ensure your passport is valid for the entire duration you apply for).
4. Your Turkish tax number. If you have not got one, visit your local tax office to receive one.
5. Proof that you have healthcare coverage.
6: A bank statement proving you have sufficient funds to look after yourself whilst residing for the given period in Turkey. If you have a Turkish bank account, ask them for a printed breakdown of funds.
7. Documents about your children and spouse (if applying for a family residency permit) such as birth certificates, passports, and photos.
Once the application is submitted and approved, your new Turkish residency permit will be delivered by the post office. Upon your first application, the permit will be valid for one year. After that, you become eligible to apply for two-year permits. Finally, if you have had residency for eight years, you also become eligible to apply for the long-term residence permit, which is issued indefinitely. Watch our episode on YouTube that talks more about residency and common questions asked.
Can I Work in Turkey with a Residency Permit?
Having a Turkish residence permit does not entitle you to work. The government is very strict about illegal workers, and if caught, they face deportation, a fine and having their residence permit revoked. There are also stringent rules for employers regarding how many foreigners they can employ and in what sector. For this reason, we strongly recommend finding a job before you come to Turkey and going through the work permit application process with your future employer.
Citizenship by Investment
Did you know that if you plan to spend at least $250,000 on property and pledge to keep it for at least three years, you will be eligible to apply for Turkish citizenship? This brings with it so much more advantages, including the right to work and the opportunity to pay into a Turkish pension scheme. In addition, you don’t have to keep reapplying because it is a one-time application. Find out more here.
All About Living in Turkey
Now, the hard part is over; you can look forward to your new life in Turkey. Some ex-pats fit into it straight away, while others take time to readjust. There are also other matters that you need to consider, like learning the language, driving a car, keeping in touch with friends and family back home or bringing pets into the country. We discuss them all in our guide to expat life in Turkey.
We are Property Turkey, a real estate investment specialist with offices in many parts of the country, including Istanbul, Antalya, Bodrum and Fethiye. If you want to buy property at the same time as getting your Turkish residence permit, contact us today. Our agents are on hand to guide you through the process. Alternatively, see our range of apartments and villas for sale in many areas of the country. Each listing contains everything to know, including price, location, home features and contact details to find out more via email or arrange a viewing. Our blog about Turkey also talks more about places, the culture, traditions, food and living in Turkey.