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Comprehensive Guide to Turkish Property Law for Foreign Buyers

Posted by BlogEditor on 5 July 2024
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Understanding Turkish Property Law for Foreign Buyers

For anyone thinking of buying a home in Turkey, understanding the basics of Turkish property law is essential. This knowledge will help safeguard your interests and ensure that you stay involved in the legal process of applying and signing for your title deeds. Let’s delve into some common questions and key aspects of Turkish property law for foreign buyers.

Is it Safe to Buy Property in Turkey?

Yes, it is safe to buy property in Turkey. There are many foreign homeowners in Turkey, some of whom live here year-round, while others use their homes for holidays. Since Turkey passed laws allowing foreigners to buy real estate, the process has become streamlined, ensuring that foreign buyers are well-protected and informed.

Which Nationalities Can Buy Property in Turkey?

Before 2012, many foreigners were restricted from buying property in Turkey due to reciprocal agreements. However, that law was abolished in 2012, allowing many nationalities to invest in Turkish real estate. While most nationalities face no restrictions, a few do, and detailed information can be found here.

What Can Foreigners Legally Buy?

According to Turkish land registry law 2644, articles 35 and 36, foreigners can purchase residential properties, commercial premises, and land. However, there are some restrictions:

  • No more than 30 hectares countrywide.
  • No more than 10% of the total area of a defined district.
  • The property or land must not be within a military zone.

Do I Have to Use a Lawyer?

While there are no legal requirements to use a lawyer, it is strongly advised for foreigners. A lawyer is responsible for drafting the sales contract, getting it notarized, and checking the property for debts or military restrictions. Attempting this process without knowledge of the language, law, or system can be risky.

Using Translators

Sales contracts need to be translated into your native language, and a licensed translator must be present when signing for title deeds at the land registry office. Both the land registry and notary offices work with accredited translators.

Can I Appoint a Power of Attorney (POA)?

Yes, you can appoint someone as POA to buy and/or sell property on your behalf. The wording must be exact as outlined by the Turkish government. Most people appoint their lawyer, but it can be anyone you choose. If you cannot make it to Turkey, visit the Turkish consulate in your home country to carry out the procedure.

Applying for Military Clearance

Military clearance is a standard procedure for property purchases in Turkey. The check is conducted on the property, not the individual. In the past, this process could take months, but since March 2019, military clearance is no longer required.

Can I Get Turkish Citizenship by Buying Property?

To obtain Turkish citizenship through real estate investment, the value of your new home should be at least $250,000, and you must keep it for three years.

What Taxes Need to Be Paid?

When purchasing property in Turkey, a stamp duty tax of 4.4% of the purchase price must be paid. If buying a resale home, this cost is typically split between the buyer and seller. Selling your home within five years incurs capital gains tax. However, Turkey has agreements with many countries to avoid double taxation.

Can I Rent Out My Property?

Yes, you can rent out your property. For short-term holiday rentals, you must sign up for the GIYKIMBIL system, registering the details of each guest. Additionally, you must pay income tax on rental returns, with guidance available from the local tax office.

If I Buy Property in Turkey, Can I Work?

Owning property in Turkey does not automatically grant the right to work. A separate work permit is required for legal employment.

More Information

This guide covers the most frequently asked questions about Turkish property law for foreigners. For more personalized advice, feel free to contact us by phone, email, or visit one of our offices to speak with a sales representative.

By understanding these aspects of Turkish property law, you can make informed decisions and navigate the process of buying property in Turkey with confidence.

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