As Turkey Expert, we put special emphasis on using an independent solicitor
Legal aspects involved in property purchase in Turkey
Real estate in any country always works as per the local state rules. You should understand them clearly before making a decision to purchase a property, especially on foreign lands. Taking the guidance of an individual property lawyer helps greatly to make purchasing a property in Turkey a smooth process.
Here are some legal aspects involved in property purchase in Turkey which everyone should know:
Land Register Law
Irrespective of the type of property – residential, commercial, agricultural, or industrial, the property purchase in Turkey falls under Law 2644 of 2012. This is also termed as Land Register Law.
Turkish Property Legislation
The ownership of a property in Turkey applies as per legal restrictions that come under article 35 of the Turkey constitution. The rules vary according to the citizenship of the buyer and the nature of the property purchased. You should understand the zoning schemes, citizenship restrictions, and your individual eligibility as per Turkey law.
Turkish civil code
Article 633 stipulates the important criterion that a foreigner should abide by for the registration of land and property in Turkey on their name. The aspect of registration is crucial, especially in cases of foreigners purchasing a property in Turkey.
Absence of public notary
Turkey's property works on a different note when it comes to the notary process. In general, in most European countries, both the property owner and the prospect buyer approach a notary for the name transfer. The allotment of the new title deed is taken care of by a notary, which handles the ‘transfer deed’ to the buyer. With this, the property registration gets completed.
However, in Turkey, property registration is not undertaken by a notary. Instead, an authorized official from the Property Registry Department takes care of the whole process.
This demands that:
• Both the property seller and the buyer be physically present during the time of the entry of the property register entry.
• In case, if the buyer is not able to be present in person, then a legally authorized individual can complete the process on their behalf, provided they are equipped with a notarial deed.
• Once the property is entered into the register is successfully done, the buyer is given proof of ownership, the tile deed in other words, which is is called Tapu in Turkish.
Legal restrictions on foreigners purchasing a property in Turkey
As a foreign investor looking to purchase a property in Turkey, you should be aware of the following restrictions:
• As a first step to purchasing a property in Turkey, you should check your eligibility for the same with your home country. You can obtain this information from your embassy or an individual property lawyer based in Turkey.
• Foreign investors seeking to purchase real estate in Turkey are subject to certain regulations that they can find with the Turkish embassies or consulates in their home countries.
• You cannot purchase a property that is under Military or Government possession.
• As a foreigner, you can buy a maximum of 600 acres of land in Turkey. This figure may be subject to change with time and a property lawyer would offer better legal help about the same.
• If you purchase land in Turkey with an intention to construct a project of your own, you must submit the project plan for approval prior to two years before initiating the construction. The Turkish ministries would scrutinize the same, appraise the purpose of the construction and give their permission accordingly.
The necessity of a solicitor for property purchase in Turkey
Turkey’s real estate has been grabbing attention for all good reasons in the past couple of years. Besides offering lavish residential homes and commercial property at a proportion of prices that you would need to spend in other countries, Turkey has got a lot more in its real estate to offer for foreigners.
If you are considering real estate purchases in Turkey for investment or for settling and retirement, then most probably real estate deals should not be new to you. Then you would be wondering why do you need a lawyer for purchasing a property in Turkey at all.
Here are solid reasons why real estate experts and attorneys suggest that you seek the help of a Turkey property lawyer, especially if you are a foreigner interested in purchasing a property in Turkey.
Comfort with paperwork
Turkish property purchase involves a lot of paperwork which often is in the Turkish language. As a foreigner, it can be convenient for you to get through this process if you hire an English-speaking Turkey property lawyer.
When you are purchasing land in Turkey with an intention to start your project at a later time, the whole process may certainly take time. Meanwhile, many things can change in terms of social, economic, or commercial aspects. When you have legal assistance with you, it can be so assuring that such changes won't impact you.
In some other cases, if you are purchasing a property under construction, the builder may delay making the final delivery of the property. As a foreigner, it might not be feasible for you to travel to Turkey all the time for dealing with such issues. If you have a legal representative who can handle real estate matters on your behalf, things would be smooth.
Due diligence process
Turkey’s real estate rules mandate that foreigners who are interested in purchasing the property be present in person for the inspection of the property prior to purchase. This is termed as Due Diligence in Turkey's real estate purchase. This stage is important because at the end of this stage itself a comprehensive report on the property is obtained to the prospective buyer. This report helps in understanding if the property is free from any past legal issues, or has any pending payments on its name, etc.
As a foreigner, if you cannot make it personally for such mandatory visits, you can comfortably ask your real estate lawyer in Turkey to get the required help.
Dealing with real estate agents
Choosing a proven real estate agent is of utmost importance particularly when you are purchasing in foreign where you have language constraints and are not much aware of local rules. Any mistake in choosing a real estate agent can create owes and can dampen your spirits.
Chances of exploitation from real estate agencies or creating unwanted delays cannot be ruled out. You can deal with all these aspects if you have a confident legal aid with you.
Dealing with taxes
Foreigners buying and owning property in Turkey may be subject to taxes at various stages. For instance:
• Taxes while the purchase of the property – which includes transfer fees, VAT and stamp duty
• Taxes after owning the property – tax on rental income, tax on other income from Turkish sources
• Taxes related to property ownership – land tax, house tax, farming land tax, commercial property tax, etc.
• Taxes are related to sale and inheritance of property - capital gains tax, inheritance tax, etc.
Thus, with a reliable independent property lawyer in Turkey, your journey from purchase to the maintenance of property shall remain a comfortable one.
How else can a solicitor in Turkey be helpful?
With a power of attorney that is delegated from you, a Turkey property lawyer would help in each and every step of property purchase in Turkey. They help in:
• Scrutinizing the sale contract
• Sign the documents on your behalf
• Check the clearances for the property
• Help in third party signatures and verification
• Eases language barriers and communication
• Helps in writing will and property transfers
• Offers general legal advice as and when applicable.
• Choosing an independent property lawyer in Turkey
Now that you are equipped with enough guidance about why you need a property lawyer in Turkey, your next step should be choosing an individual property lawyer who is not connected with the real estate agency you are dealing with. This helps you in multiple ways:
• You can get to check with different individual lawyers and come to know their fees and services offered.
• You can stay assured that the lawyer is working for your benefit as they have no direct relationship with the real estate agency.
• You can also gather extra information or use the lawyer for any other personal legal help that is beyond just property dealing.
Seek the right help when buying a property in Turkey
Investing in real estate and owning a property can be a dream come true. When planned properly and undertaken with professional guidance, real estate deals can be smooth sails for us. Especially foreigners need to proceed with double caution when investing in other countries. And here is where a professional lawyer’s advice helps immensely.
Choosing an independent property solicitor in Turkey will ensure peace of mind throughout the process of purchase. The information given here is for educational purposes and should never be considered as an alternative to professional lawyer guidance. A proven Turkey property lawyer would help you navigate the whole process with their legal expertise.