Updated June 2019
Did you know that Turks buy property in Turkey in a different way than foreigners? Most foreigners don’t know this- even those from the UK, Russia, and other countries, that have already bought, and have been owners for years.
So how is the procedure different? Guided by estate agents that specialise in selling property to non-Turkish speaking buyers, a foreign buyer is invited to inspect the property- and the emphasis is always on the pictures, the size, and visits to see the interior, exterior, the location, etc
Next step? Pay a reservation deposit. Does this mean that the seller can not sell the property to someone else? No, there is no legally binding contract to prevent selling to someone else. Is the estate agent required to take the property off their ‘for sale’ listings? No, but some agents may say they will, but do they? Rarely, if ever…. So what is the purpose of paying a reservation deposit? In practice, the reservation deposit commits the buyer to the transaction, not the seller.
Next step? Apply for a permit from the Turkish authorities for the property to be owned by a foreigner, often called a Military permit. In practice, these days this is rarely an obstacle, but it does take some time- at least a couple of weeks, sometimes as long as five to ten.
Finally, arrange an appointment at the Land Registry for the final payment and transfer of ownership title, and payment of taxes, and miscellaneous charges, etc.
Sometimes along the way, the foreigner may become more concerned and careful, and ask for a contract. Sadly, the contract they are given is rarely in good legal form (called a ‘pre-sales’ contract), and almost never issued with the proper legal procedure (notarised). This means the contract’s validity is questionable- even those overseen by local lawyers.
So this is the procedure agents guide their foreign buyers through. Unfortunately, one key important step, perhaps the most important step, is missing… a legal search of all permits, title, cadastral, and structural details about the property. Should a buyer rely on the agent’s answers and assurances about these key issues? Never. What happens when a buyer asks for documents showing the information requested? Most often the agent insists the buyer pay the reservation deposit first.... Should a buyer pay over a cash reservation deposit before receiving the legal search documents? Never- problems with permits are widespread. Usually an agent will risk losing a buyer, before doing this work, of providing the documents (and the seller may never know!).
So the purpose of paying a reservation deposit is two fold: to ensure the buyer is committed to the transaction before having a legal search done on the legal status of permits, ownership, etc; and to ensure the agent receives their commission- because the agent doesn’t give the reservation deposit to the seller, but retains it as part of their commission!
At mytapu.com, business for foreign buyers is done in a new and better way. A way that is much safer for buyers. Thanks to mytapu.com, foreigners can now receive in advance an Eksper Rapor covering all key legal issues, and buy a property with-out paying a reservation deposit, and without a pre-sales contract of questionable validity.
The Team at mytapu.com are pleased to announce that the myatpu.com way of buying property, with an Expert Appraisal Report, has now become a Turkish Regulatory Requirement for property purchase by foreigners, as of February 15, 2019, and will also be required for purchases by Turkish nationals in the future..
And guess what…? This how local Turks buy property - without paying any reservation deposit. Instead, locals simply pay the full amount at the Land Registry or Tapu office on the day of the transfer of title. This is why Turkish buyers from Istanbul and Ankara use mytapu.com when buying property in Turkey, and retirement homes on the Turkish Riviera….
So if you have found a property, on an agent's website or elsewhere, and want to make sure it’s safe to buy, tell the experts at mytapu.com, and they will do what’s required. The Safe Way to Buy Property in Turkey is just like the locals do. And now at mytapu.com foreigners, too, can buy like the locals!