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British buyers remain optimistic about Turkey

26th July 2007 Print
Once solely a haven for holiday makers, Turkey has grown in popularity with many Brits buying property overseas reveals currency specialist HiFX in its latest Global Property Hotspots Report, which this month sees a significant increase in enquiries from Brits looking for ‘Turkish delights’.

Despite the recent election turmoil, it seems British buyers remain optimistic about Turkey’s economic progress and the country’s accession to the European Union.

Mark Bodega of currency specialists HiFX says, " Having delivered Turkey's most successful term of government in recent times, Prime Minister Erdogan has succeeded in bringing the Turkish economy firmly under control; he has opened the door to major international investment and moved the country to final accession to the European Community.”

Turkey has emerged as a mainstream market with a growing Tourist industry that is feeding the real estate sector. British buyers are now the second largest group of foreign property owners in Turkey, with 12,000 properties according to the latest Turkish government statistics. German owners are the most numerous, accounting for almost a quarter of the property which has been bought by non-Turkish citizens. This is in line with the long-standing relationship and history of migration between Turkey and Germany.

The latest elections have also shown that Erdogan's AK Party is now well positioned to deliver further political stability, economic growth and social reform. Turkey's GDP per head is not much lower than that in Romania, a recent EU member. Rates of both unemployment and inflation in Turkey have fallen to high single digit figures – quite an achievement, given that it is only five years since Turkey had an inflation rate of 70 per cent.

“Like Spain 30 years ago, Turkey’s low property prices are attracting more than just the holiday makers – Brits are now lining up to buy holiday homes there. The Southern resorts of Fethiye and Marmaris were first in on the action but it seems we’re now turning our attention to the Northern Bodrum and Cesme peninsulas” says Bodega

Bodega continues " Foreign investors are now diving into a range of sectors, from telecoms to steel to banking and with land reform implementations in 2006 this has made the purchase and development of land less restrictive. In addition, the Turkish government is offering fantastic interest rates to people buying property and are investing in all important infrastructure improvements such as roads and motorways to help the economy move forward. All of this, points to a positive long term future for the country, with their recognition that tourism will continue to be very important for the economy which is also reassuring for buyers of holiday homes."

Buyer Beware?

When buying as a non-national in Turkey, your purchase needs to be approved by the military - to ensure the land you are buying does not fall within a restricted zone. This is only a formality but the procedure can take from three to six months. Buyers are therefore advised to use a reputable solicitor who is fluent in both English and Turkish and can tackle problems over the title of properties.

Whether branching out to some of the newer hot spots or buying property in more traditional places like France or Spain, HiFX always urges its clients to plan carefully and consider the currency risks associated with buying a property abroad – currency fluctuation can make a huge difference to the amount of money you pay and protecting yourself from these fluctuations should always be part of the planning process.