Istanbul Rental Property Boom

By : Nick Marr

Istanbul is in the midst of a serious rental boom, and savvy investors are cashing in, says a leading agent in the region. With an influx of new, beautifully-finished modern properties offering excellent additional facilities, Universal21, the leading agent in Istanbul’s south-west region, has released new data that highlights an exciting evolution in the city’s rental market.

• 47% of tenants in Istanbul are professionals; 35% are foreigners (Universal21)

• Growing demand for furnished, one-bed apartments (Universal21)

• Istanbul listed as ‘Aspiring’ in latest European Regional Economic Growth Index (LaSalle)

The company, established in Istanbul since 2008, claims that the type of properties that are now in hot demand has altered in recent months, to suit a changing demographic of renters. They now find that the majority of those renting properties in the Turkish city are professionals within Istanbul (some 47%), followed closely behind by foreigners (35%) and students from outside of the city attending university (18%).

Adil Yaman, Director of Universal21 explains how this marks an evolution in Istanbul’s rental market,

“In recent years we have certainly noticed a growing interest in Istanbul property, both from a second-home perspective and from an investment standpoint but it is within the last few months that we have really observed a change. Not only has there been a huge influx in the demand for properties to rent but with the majority of prospective tenant’s today professionals or from overseas, the type of property that is in demand has changed.

Real estate sales to foreigners have increased from $4 billion to $5 billion since the implementation of the law of reciprocity, and Çelik noted that currently 500,000 to 550,000 units are being sold in the Turkish real estate sector and that if 5 percent or 10 percent of these sales are to foreigners, it creates a business volume of $15-20 billion. Çelik said that such foreign sales should be increased to about 50,000 to 55,000 units per year.

AK Party deputy Vedat Demiröz also announced new regulations regarding “Stamp Duty and Law of Reciprocity” to revive the sector and Emlak Konut GYO General Manager Murat Kurum noted that stability and security in Turkey are of utmost importance in shaping the perceptions of foreign investors. Businessmen attending the meeting noted that despite the recent terrorist attacks, Turkey continues to be the safest harbour in the region.