Few people are arguing against Turkey being one of the top overseas property investment choices of the post-crash era. The countries stable, booming economy and tourism sector, rapidly growing population and mortgage market, increasing accessibility and low property prices are proving a combination too powerful for investors to resist. And this is before we mention its core attributes; namely an abundance of sea, sand and 300 days of sunshine per year.
However, nobody buys property in Turkey, they buy a property on a street, in a town, in a region, and where to buy can often be a daunting choice.
Choosing a property
The first step in choosing a property is to choose where to buy. The best place to buy is primarily determined by the reasons for buying.
There are three main reasons for private individuals to buy property in Turkey: a holiday or retirement home (a lifestyle choice), a holiday home investment, or a pure investment.
Obviously choosing a holiday home is the widest choice, because it is determined primarily by where the buyer(s) would most like to holiday for years to come. However this type of purchase is fairly rare, because most holiday home buyers will be looking to rent out their property at least some of the time, if only to solve the problems caused by a property sitting empty.
Choosing a holiday home
Thus most holiday home buyers fall into the category of holiday home investors. A holiday home investor must sacrifice the 100% freedom of choice, by an amount dependent on exactly how important rentals are. Someone who is looking to pay part of the mortgage costs will need to weigh rentals above their own taste, while someone looking to keep the property aired out will factor it in only slightly. Anyway, here are some of the top choices for holiday home investors:
Fethiye is one of the top tourist towns in Turkey, but it also benefits from its proximity to Dalaman and Olu Deniz, both of which are within 20 minutes by car. Dalaman has a well served international airport, and also compliments the range of activities and facilities found in Fethiye. Dalaman was Brits top choice in 2008 according to ABTA.
Olu Deniz is a spot so beautiful it is government-protected. Property for sale and rent is in short supply, and this boosts the rental market in Fethiye. As such Fethiye rental properties commonly earn 6-8% rental yields, factoring in reasonable (as in off season) usage.
This might strike some people as strange, but it is a rapidly emerging coastal town offering the lowest property prices in Turkey. Altinkum property prices are so low, that you would expect it to be a backwater, yet the largest marina on the Aegean opened here in 2009. The multi-million pound marina features over 1000 moorings, shops, restaurants, a multi-screen cinema, multiple helipads and more. Altinkum rental yields are at 5-6% and rising, and there is also great hope for capital appreciation as well.
Those are two with unique strengths, but there are many more. There are dozens of towns in Turkey offering an abundance of sun, sea and sand, but holiday home investors are primarily looking for somewhere with plenty of shops and restaurants, a long season and shops and restaurants with year-round opening (so you can stay off season), and proximity to an airport. Bodrum, Antalya and Dalaman are just three more towns that fit the bill.
Choosing the right investment property
When it comes to pure investment, we are primarily talking about residential letting. Investors in this field will nearly always limit their searches to cities, and mostly major cities with large and rapidly growing populations.
In Turkey the most popular choice right now is Istanbul, which was just named the fastest growing city in the world by the Brookings Institute, followed by Ankara and Izmir. All have one main thing in common; large and rapidly growing populations.
Turkey's population is currently growing faster than any country in Europe (Cite: Global Property Guide report - Turkey: Europe's Best Residential Property Investment?).
Istanbul's population is growing fastest and is expected to hit 15 million by 2023, up from the current 12.7 million. It is also expected that Istanbul will need 250,000 of the 500,000 homes needed in Turkey by 2015. Ankara's population will grow to 4.5 million during this time, and Izmir's to 3.5 million during the same period.
What's more, according to Turkstat 50% of Turkey's population is under 29. This gives Turkey an incredibly large and powerful workforce, which is definitely a factor in its economic growth.
Turkey is now the fastest growing economy in Europe, and when this is combined with the population growth, and mortgage market growth currently at 20% per annum, it translates to massive growth in demand for housing to let and to buy in the coming years, making buy to let property investment in these cities a very good idea indeed.