Is Turkey still a good place to invest in property?

Izmir Turkey

In the second quarter of the year, Turkey's economy expanded by 21.7%. This staggering figure makes Turkey's economy one of the fastest recovering in a world ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic. Analyst Klaus Jurgens crunches the numbers for property investors. 

While the pandemic has slammed the brakes on property investment for many parts of the world, Turkey's real estate industry is an exception, Jurgens said.

"Turkey’s property market is booming and has shown no signs of slowing down during the COVID-19 situation."

Investors seeking an escape from European and Middle Eastern cities headed to Turkey this year, ensuring hotspots like Bodrum had one of their busiest investment summers on record, Jurgens said.

In the Global Property Guide, published in May, data revealed that house prices in Turkey increased by almost a third in the first quarter of 2021, up from 15% in the same period in 2020. This increase, writes Jurgens, "represents the strongest growth over the span of an entire decade". 

At the top of the table was Izmir, on Turkey's Aegean coast, which saw an almost 40% increase in house prices, double that of Istanbul, which had 20.8% growth.

Is house price growth good for property investors?

"At the end of the investor’s day it is the same old story – rising property prices make buying initially more expensive, yet ultimately promise a good return on investment as house prices are highly unlikely to decrease dramatically at any point in the medium-term future," Jurgens said.

While a speculation-based market doesn't make for a steady economy, governments cannot interfere in the market economy, he said. This means it boils down to investors finding a sustainable approach.

What governments must bear in mind, however, is guaranteeing affordable housing for Turkey's lower income demographic, Jurgens said.

"This must include the younger generation who like anywhere else finds it hard to come up with the required minimum mortgage down payments so that they can start climbing the property ladder."

Since abolishing foreign land ownership zones -- the areas where foreign buyers were forced to buy -- in 2005, Turkey has established itself as a leading investment location, Jurgens said.

While most of the initial buyers came from Germany and the UK, in later years investors have flocked to Turkey's shores from all over the world. While many rent out their property, capitalising on the country's lucrative tourism industry, most owners prefer to use their properties themselves, he said.

"[Which is] no surprise in a country with such perfect climate and scenery."


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