Buying Properties In Istanbul

Real Estate Market In Istanbul & Properties Buying In Istanbul

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When a person wants to own a property, many questions will arise in his mind, especially if he intends to buy the property in Istanbul …
So these questions are answered differently. Also that will be done by depending on the experience in this field of Istanbul real estate market, here we touch the door with some answers that may be convincing in light of our experience in the Istanbul real estate market …
Among these questions, where, when, and with whom will this future choice be initiated …

Budget can also be a determining factor. If the budget is under 500,000 TL probably the best option would be one of the suburbs. There is also probably not much point looking on the Bosporus unless the budget is in excess of 5 mil TL, given the fact that there is limited supply of these properties on the market and always in high demand from locals and foreigners alike.

Some buyers just want downtown. Well, they are in luck. You could even argue that there are at least a half dozen downtown, all having their particular claim to the title.

Downtown on the Asian Side? Well, that would probably have to be Kadikoy or Bagdad Cad. But for those who live on the European Side, there is an equal argument for areas such as Beyoglu, Sisli, and the CBD area of Levent.

Istanbul-Taksim-Istiklal-street-public-view

public view in Istiklal street-Taksim, Istanbul

Others would argue that the seaside gem of Bebek is the only true downtown (if you drive a Ferrari). It is hard to argue one over another, as it is merely a matter of taste or perhaps where people work, or even where their family has lived for generations, as can often be seen in the likes of such neighborhoods as Kadikoy. All represent dynamic and vibrant downtown neighborhoods with ample restaurants, bars and entertainment venues of all sorts. They are also all more or less transportation hubs, so when seeking to buy a downtown property, beginning a search in one of these areas would be an appropriate start.

Others would argue that the old quarter in Beyoglu is the true downtown, dating back hundreds of years to the mercantile operations around the famed Galata Tower. It calls itself home to the largest concentration of expats, and is also the undisputed cultural and entertainment center of Istanbul, though Kadikoy has made impressive inroads in the past 5 years. It is also hands down the tourism center of the city. If people only know one street name in the whole of the city it is sure to be Istiklal. It goes through its ups and downs, but surely still has a strong claim to be the true downtown, both past and present.

Istanbul-Taksim-city-public-view

public-view of Taksim city

Prices can range anywhere from 7000TL/ sqm. Expect to pay much more for a property with a view. Finding tenants is pretty easy if the property is kept in good order and the fee is appropriate. For more information Contact Us.

A lot of foreigners end up in Sultan Ahmet during their stay in the city. Although it has a lot of character and history, this is truly a tourist destination and offers little value in the way of property to buy. Not to mention the fact, much of the quaintness would wear off after a while and you would be stuck with tourist prices for restaurants and line ups, etc. Finally, there is very little residential in the area.

Bosporus properties are really an entity unto their own. The market is quite opaque and not many estate agents have a good price history for the area, as so few properties change hands.

Owners of property in this area will often not put their property on the market unless they are in financial trouble, thinking that it is irreplaceable.

In many respects, this is true, but it does lead to uneven asking prices and expectations. This market is probably best left for Qatari sheikhs and local business moguls. Prices (with a view) start from 30.000 TL/ sqm and go much higher for a villa with some historical charm and a good position along the waterfront. It is in many senses, by far, the most impenetrable real estate market in the whole of Turkey.

Buyers often purchase property here as conspicuous consumption, or as assets, rather than along strictly applied principles of investment, so often the selling process is guided by such indiscernible subtleties. However, if you want bling with a capital B, the Bosporus is up there with some of the worlds finest and most naturally beautiful straits of water. If you are just looking to impress a few friends, we suggest some more modest options. Read more

Once the preserve of the Ottoman elite and affluent foreigners working in what was Constantinople, the mansions, known as yalis, were made famous in novels and more recently through modern Turkey's hugely successful TV soap operas.

If you are looking for what constitutes pure suburbia in Istanbul when buying property, there are luckily many options, and also affordable ones. These areas are home to a lot of the construction of huge high rise building complexes, new universities, hospitals and shopping malls. There is usually quite a time-consuming commute to the city center, but with the increase in the Metro system infrastructure, as well as the addition of the 3rd bridge, the super-cool underwater tunnel, and the pragmatic Motorbus, many before inconceivable locations have opened up for living as well as for investment.

Beylikduzu is one of these shining stars, with many choices in new buildings with all the facilities (swimming pools, concierge, playgrounds, fitness studios, etc). Though not technically luxurious, they are quite utilitarian and time-saving. Prices in such complexes can start as low as 5000TL/ sqm, but are starting to go up. Developers are also offering more attractive payment plans than in years past.

If Beylikduzu is not your cup of tea, you could do a targeted investment near the 3rd bridge or the colossal 3rd airport. Both areas are booming with new construction. Proximity to airports can often be interesting in that the profile of tenants is quite good: they often spend less time at the property (hence, less wear and tear), they usually command greater than average local salaries, and are usually well-educated.

If none of these options suits you, then you could always try something along the Black Sea, or the Islands in the Marmara Sea. Saying that there are many options for purchasing a property in Istanbul is really no exaggeration.

Ah, but let there be light!!! Istanbul property has often been viewed as a safe haven, at least by those in the region, many of whom are used to some very un-safe alternatives.

Bankable stuff. Bricks and mortar and all that, a kind of Turkish gold. Above the din of panicked markets and currencies, and no-name analysts from this or that Capital Group, the shiny towers of Istanbul's skyline boasts an impressive array of both new and old architecture, with minarets hearkening back to a glorious Ottoman past while the silhouette of some of the finer examples of modern buildings nod to a Dubai-like future, if not even greater. Well, at least that is the narrative preferred.

But on this balmy late summer day on the Bosphorus, I am getting more calls daily from developers' sales forces trying to enlist me to sell their property than ever before. Actually, multiply the average by 10. I have actually gotten into the habit of telling them our office has closed when I realise it is another sales pit-bull on the other end of the line.

They used to say with proud contumely, Our project has a sales office. Potential clients can come directly to us and early find us by themselves.'

I have not heard any of the same bravado for several years at least. Most are inexperienced junior sales staff put in a tough spot, cold calling on agencies they know do not have many real buyers. But the lure of hitting jackpot is there : you are a foreign real estate agency and may hold the magical - though somewhat fictitious key - to vast sovereign wealth funds of Arabian extract, private equity dying for a final resting place, and perhaps even more improbable wonders. Of course, some are just hard-working sales staff going through their rolodexes and doing good detective work.

Levity aside, Istanbul is still a great real estate market and one of the world's truly great and dynamic cities. Therefore, a well-researched property acquisition rarely will go astray. The key is to look a little deeper than the initial glossy brochures you will inevitably be met with and to unlock the hidden value through your research and persistence.

So, in the face of all this turmoil and uncertainty, indeed even crisis, what can be done?

Well, successful businesses look inward and try to plug up holes and cost-cut in times of difficulty. The Turkish real estate market is no different. Some bad habits formed during peak years and now is a great opportunity to address those inefficiencies' or drags' on the market.

This list, by no means exhaustive, points out many areas in Istanbul real estate market where improvement could be made by various parties from; the developers to estate agents to the foreign buyers, and even to the government level by introducing policies that promote and facilitate the sale of property to foreigners. There are of course many things that could be done for domestic purposes as well, yet for our purposes here, narrowing the focus to the segment that relates to foreign purchases, is sufficient.

Something very strange is happening in Turkey these days, though I have probably been the last to point it out (Well, in fairness, I have also been saying it for a while!).

Everywhere you turn in Istanbul, viewers are transfixed to TV screens that are at bulging and blaring with economists, pundits of one variety or another, politicians new and old, as well as stock market graphs and $ vs TL quotes that seem to fluctuate faster than the moving eye.

Wild stuff. And a far cry from the heady days of circa 2005, when barely a storm cloud on the grand Turkish Empire was visible, from Istanbul to Aleppo, and from Ankara to Tehran.

New finance ministers and the old, new Eu ministers and others left out to pasture, vie for air time to get their shot to expound, often ex cathedra, on the profound sense of crisis that charges through the concern-laden summer air that canopies the Bosporus, a channel very much inured to talk of crisis; diplomatic, political, economic or whatever you care to mention.

But this one has gripped the imagination of one and all; the Turkish population itself, the government, the opposition, the so-called West' and the EU - all left just a little more than dumbfounded. How could this country - just a few short years ago - the darling of the Middle East and a favorite of those inside Washington and Brussel's power corridors, and a country achieving blisteringly high growth rates into the bargain, arrive at such a state where the TCMB (Central Bank) had to make an emergency 6.25 % increase in the interest rates? Strange beyond strange.

There have been many scapegoats put forward and many attempts to make sense of the situation. To some, it is all about a US pastor held on terrorism charges, that Turkey refuses to release, to others, Turkey's leaning towards Iran and Russia, and its planned purchase of military hardware from Russia, supposedly non-Nato compliant. Or finally, a result of the many gaping and open wounds festering in the Syrian catastrophe. The Turkish diplomatic assault has variously attributed the shaky economy to economic warfare - posed by - we are not sure, exactly - Interest rate lobby groups, foreign powers and so forth. Luckily, many of these are mostly political in nature and could expect to be resolved through diplomacy. Perhaps, also, the eroding effects of time will wash away some of these issues and a new normal will emerge. Ample fodder for upcoming PhD students to labor over, for sure.

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About The Author
keith-boyle

About Us: My Bricks is a unique real estate company in Istanbul. With over a dozen years of experience in downtown Istanbul, Keith has been involved in countless transactions. He tirelessly researches for the best opportunities for his valued clients. In addition, Keith has project managed over 50 renovation/restoration projects (see Keith in action on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLaLIjo9X-A&pbjreload=101). We source all kinds of properties, from budget properties up to luxury villas on the Bosporus. We give personal service to our clients; often doing zoom and WhatsApp sessions 1-1 and also webinars where clients can benefit from the wisdom of Keith’s other clients. In these webinars issues such as taxes, legal issues, design and renovation and identification of property opportunities are addressed. These sessions are typically run on Saturdays and Sundays. Come and join us; just contact Keith for details on: WhatsApp/telegram at +90 531 582 3876). Our living and breathing passion is real estate in the downtown area. We look forward to virtual sessions where you walk side by side with us along the streets or in real life when you arrive in Istanbul. We are fully equipped to help you with any logistic matters you may require, from obtaining citizenship through investment to managing your assets professionally here in Istanbul. At this point in time, the agency is transforming and we have investment coming in. It is an exciting time to purchase in Istanbul. I look forward to doing the ground-work for you and launching you on your way to a profitable and enjoyable investment. Kind regards, Keith Boyle

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