Turkish property sales soar
Foreign buyers bought more than 6000 properties in October - a 134 percent increase over the same month in 2017.
A raft of measures introduced by the government to increase sales and spending are behind the figures. These include changes within the real estate sector, as well as incentives aimed at people wanting Turkish citizenship. In October, the government lowered the minimum investment spend necessary to gain a Turkish passport to $250,000 - down from $1 million.
Buyers have also been attracted by relatively lower prices following the lira's plunge earlier this year. While the currency is now recovering, buyers are still rushing to take advantage while it's still depleted.
Of the 6276 properties sold to foreigners in October:
- 2283 units were in Istanbul
- 1160 units in Antalya
- 448 units in Marmara
The buyers were predominantly from the Middle East and Europe:
- Iraqis bought 1439 properties
- Iranians bought 557
- Kuwaitis 378
- Germans 341
- Russians 336
Figures from the Turkish Statistical Institute show foreigners bought 30,341 properties between January and October. To put that into perspective, in 2016 foreigners bought 18,189 units.
Association of Housing Developers and Investors chair Altan Emas said the housing sector will generate $6 billion this year, and should rise to $10 billion next year. He said the rollout of loans for domestic buyers and greater overseas promotion geared at those wanting to invest in Turkey would help bolster demand, pushing sales to foreign buyers to 40,000 this year.
Property Turkey director Cameron Deggin said the numbers were encouraging. "The jump in the number of sales is due to new government measures, but as we've seen in the past, property sales to foreign buyers have always linked up with tourist figures, and the country's tourism industry is back to full flow this year."
Deggin predicts Istanbul, Turkey, home to the country's star tourism attractions and a thriving economy, will continue to shine in 2019.
"We've seen so much investor success in developing parts of the city, and this will continue next year as urban regeneration projects continue to entice investors."