Getting Started

How to find your dream property in Turkey

Getting Started

Before you do anything, know whether you are buying a home or making an investment. Next, think long and hard about whether you want a newer or older property.

If you are buying as an investment or to let, remember that profitable properties might not be properties that you particularly like. Consider who will be renting or buying from you over whether you would live in a place.

The age of your property is also an important factor. New properties are in better physical shape and generally come with cheaper maintenance and energy costs, but older properties are often situated in better locations and have “character” that new buildings lack.

How to search for property in Turkey

The best way to find a place is to walk around in your area of choice and look at the signs in the windows. Every available flat/house will display a sign that says satilik (for sale).

Searching in person will help you orient properties in relation to one another and other landmarks in the town or city. The more you know about location (and the prices of other real estate in the area), the better equipped you will be to negotiate with property owners. Obviously, when shopping for properties in rural areas you will want to use listings to first decide which properties you want to visit in person.

If the property´s location and condition seem suitable, try to find it on several real estate websites. Don't call the dealer that has this property in his portfolio directly just yet. Individual properties usually have more than one online listing, and they are listed at different prices. Looking at several listings will give you a rough idea of the property´s true value. This is important to know before you start negotiating with the owner. Sites like Turyap  are perfect for these kinds of searches.

Turkish real estate agents

It is very difficult to buy a property in Turkey without a real estate agent (emlakçi). Agents are paid on commission by both buyer and seller, and that commisssion is always negotiable. If you are a good negotiator, the commission should be reasonable. Try for a commission around 3 % of the property´s value.

Unless properties are being sold directly by owners or developers, they will be listed with agents (in most cases more than one). Always check with an agent to make sure he has authority to sell the property he is advertising. Many agents will list a property they are not actually selling (this is called “flying a kite”) in hopes of attracting buyers they can refer to the actual seller for a commission.

Do not expect your agent to have detailed specifications of the properties he represents. In Turkey, agents work to list property and guide buyers to it. While they will show you porperties in person, they usually do not view technical specifications as their responsibility. Always assume that an agent´s commission is more important to him than your well-being - visit properties in person and have them valued by an independent source.

If you decide to buy a property without using an agent, you can look for signs in windows saying sahibinden (from the owner). As always, it pays to research similar properties online to get a feel for prices in the area.

Further reading

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