Real Estate in Turkey


An increasing number of people from all parts of the world are coming to Turkey to start a new life, get a job and even find peace of mind in retirement. Over the past ten years, the country has reached a completely new level, and its progress in some industries is amazing.

The country’s unique geographical position, combined with its rich and eventful history as the cradle of several civilizations, make Turkey a special place of residence for expats and their families.

General information about Turkey

Turkey (Turk. Türkiye), officially the Republic of Turkey (Turk. türkiye Cumhuriyeti) is a country located in South – West Asia (97%) and partly in South-Eastern Europe (3%). It was formed in 1923 as a result of the partition of the Ottoman Empire, the abolition of the monarchy and the proclamation of the independent Republic of Turkey, whose President was Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.

The capital of the Republic of Turkey is Ankara, an ancient city with monumental architecture. The population of Turkey exceeds 76 million people, mainly Turks-82%, Kurds-10.6%. The rest of the population of Turkey is Arabs, Greeks, Circassians, Armenians, Jews, etc. Also, several thousand people from Russia and other CIS countries, as well as Europe, live permanently in Turkey.

The climate in the country is subtropical Mediterranean. It is characterized by hot summers with air temperatures from 25°C to 40°C and warm winters with air temperatures from 10°C to 20°C. Precipitation falls mainly in the autumn-winter period, less often in the spring. The most comfortable months to visit Turkey are April-June and September-October.

The official language is Turkish. English, German, and Russian are widely spoken in tourist centers.

The Republic of Turkey is a unitary state with a mixed form of government (it combines elements of both a parliamentary and presidential republic).

The Head of State-President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan (former Prime Minister), won the country’s first direct presidential election on August 10, 2014, and took office on August 28, 2014. (Before him, the President of Turkey was Abdullah Gul, from August 28, 2007 to August 28, 2014). Time zone: UTC+2, in summer UTC+3.


The state symbols of Turkey-the coat of arms and flag — contain the image of a Crescent moon and a five-pointed star in white on a red background. Modern symbols are respected among the country’s population and are placed in public and private institutions, as well as in homes and apartments in Turkey.

Flag Of Turkey

The history of its origin has several interpretations, but it is obvious that the symbolism is inherited from the Ottoman Empire, which until 1923 existed on the territory of today’s Turkey. Red became the color of the Empire in the XIV century. It is believed that the red color of the Turkish flag originates from Umar, the ruler of the Arab Caliphate in 634-644 and the conqueror of the territories of Egypt, Palestine and Mesopotamia. The star on the flag first appeared at the beginning of the XIX century. at that time, it was depicted as seven or eight-pointed. In 1844, a five-pointed star appeared. The modern Turkish flag was officially approved on Мау 29, 1936.

Emblems Of Turkey

The Republic of Turkey does not have an official approved state coat of arms. Instead, the emblem is often used — a red oval with a vertically positioned white Crescent and a star, similar to those depicted on the national flag of the country, and supplemented with the official name of the state in Turkish.

The Republic of Turkey is a state in southwestern Asia (97%) and partly in southeastern Europe (3%).

The capital of the Republic of Turkey is Ankara, and the largest cities are Istanbul, Izmir, Bursa, Konya, Antalya, Adana. In the northwest, Turkey borders with Bulgaria and Greece, in the east – with Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan and Iran, in the southeast – with Iraq and Syria.

Turkey is washed by four seas: Black, Mediterranean, Marmara and Aegean. Its area (including inland water bodies) is 783,562.38 km². The length of the country’s territory from south to north is 600 km, and from east to west – 1600 km. The total length of the land border is 2,628 km. The length of the coastline is 7168 km.

Turkey is dominated by mountainous terrain, and lowlands are located mainly along the sea coasts.

The highest mountains are Ararat (5165 m) in the east of the country (Armenian Highlands), Erciyes volcano (3916 m) in Central Anatolia and Uludag massif (2543 m) in the west, near the city of Bursa. In the north of Turkey there are the Pontine Mountains, and in the south, along the Mediterranean coast – the Taurus Mountains, and between them stretches the Anatolian Highlands (up to 1000 meters high).

The main rivers are the Tigris, Euphrates, Sakarya, the longest river Kyzyl-Irmak (1150 km), the largest lakes are Van and Tuz. Turkey is equidistant between the equator and the North Pole.

Turkey is a predominantly mountainous country, so the climate is on average mountainous and continental.

On the coast of the Mediterranean and Aegean seas, the climate is subtropical Mediterranean. In summer, a hot and dry climate prevails the average air temperature is +23…+35°C. The driest period is July-August. In winter, there is a lot of precipitation, snow cover is not formed. The air temperature does not fall below +10°C. The beach season on the Mediterranean coast is the longest in Turkey – from the beginning of April to the end of October. In July, the water warms up to +28°C. Especially popular is the holiday in the “velvet season”, in September and October: the summer heat subsides, and the sea remains warm.

The climate of the Marmara coast is similar to that of the Mediterranean. However, the bathing season is shortened to the period between June and September. Winter is mild, but cooler than on the South coast.

On the black sea coast, the climate is temperate-marine, with its characteristic warm summers and cool winters. The average temperature in winter is +5°C, and in summer +23°C. It often rains throughout the year, and the total amount of precipitation falls up to 1000-2500 mm per year. In summer, the average temperature is +27°C. The water in the sea warms up to +26°C.

The climate of the center of the country (the Central Anatolian region) is approaching the continental one with its sharp contrasts of annual temperatures. In winter, frosts up to -4° C are frequent, and in summer the air warms up to +38°C. Precipitation is typical for the winter months and is more moderate compared to the black sea coast.

The Eastern regions of the country (the South-Eastern and Eastern Anatolian regions) have a pronounced continental character. In summer, hot and dry weather prevails (in July up to +42°C), and in winter – cold and snowy (frequent frosts up to -16°C). Most precipitation falls in the fall and spring.

Turkey is the first country in the world where religion has been separated from the state. This happened in 1928 after the reform of Kemal Ataturk, and freedom of religion was guaranteed to everyone in the country. Currently, the overwhelming majority of the Turkish population is Muslim. There are a large number of mosques – 78,000.

Islam is a monotheistic religion, the founder of which was the Prophet Muhammad. Compared to other world religions, Islam emerged not so long ago – in the 7th century A.D. in the western part of the Arabian Peninsula. The dogma, which can be considered the basis of Islam, sounds like this: “There is no other God but Allah, and Muhammad is his prophet.”

There are five pillars at the heart of Islam: adherence to the strictest monotheism, i.e. belief in the one Allah, performing a daily fivefold prayer, observing fasting in the month of Ramadan, material donation, Hajj – making a pilgrimage to Mecca. A Muslim must regularly, five times a day, perform a prayer – namaz: at dawn, at noon, in the afternoon, after sunset and at the beginning of the night. Before prayer, ablution is required. Islam stands for purity. “Purity is half of faith,” these words are attributed to Muhammad. Every adult Muslim, if he is healthy and financially provided, is obliged to make a hajj – a pilgrimage to Mecca.

Once a year, a Muslim must fast. Devout Muslims should fast from morning prayer until evening prayer. It is required to refrain from anything that can give pleasure.

The holy book of Islam is the Koran, which was transmitted to the Prophet Muhammad by Allah through the archangel Jibrail.

The most important religious holidays:

  • Ramadan Bayram, also called Sheker Bayram (symbolizes the end of the fast);
  • Kurban Bayram (holiday of sacrifice – people slaughter animals as a sign of sacrifice, some of which are given to the poor).

Turks are sensitive to their religion, observance of the rules, instructions and sermons of the Holy Quran. When visiting mosques, tourists should show respect and follow a number of rules: dress more modestly, cover your legs at least to the knees, and women should better cover their heads with a scarf. Tourists are better off not visiting mosques during prayers.

Representatives of other religions also live in Turkey, Christianity and Judaism are the two most common. This is a sign of the country’s rich history, Turkey is home to many biblical characters. On its territory, there are many places that are considered sacred in the Christian religion. In Turkey, all religions and beliefs are respected, everyone feels free – for example, there are more than 300 Christian communities (mostly Greek and Armenian churches) and 36 Jewish synagogues in the country.

According to the Turkish Institute of statistics, the country is home to about 85 million people. Since the establishment of the Republic of Turkey in 1923, the country’s population has increased almost 5.5 times. The population density varies depending on the region of Turkey: the coasts of the Black, Marmara and Aegean seas are most densely populated. The most sparsely populated area is the Hakkari region in Eastern Turkey.

75% of Turkey’s population lives in cities, the largest of which is Istanbul (about 14 million people). The second largest city is Ankara, the capital of the Republic of Turkey (about 4.7 million people). Third place is taken by Izmir (3.4 million). The average population density is 80 people per square kilometer. The number of men slightly prevails over the number of women. Children born in a family where the mother or father is Turkish are also considered Turkish citizens.

Turks make up the vast majority of the population (more than 80%). More than 10% of the population are kurds living in mountainous areas in the East of the country. The remaining part is represented by small ethnic groups: Greeks, Armenians, Arabs, Jews, and others. The Turks are a polite, tactful and sympathetic people. They are friendly to visitors and understand other people’s traditions and customs.

The language picture of Turkey is as diverse as the national one. The only official language of the country is Turkish, which is spoken by representatives of almost all nationalities. The second most widely spoken languages in Turkey are North Kurdish and zazaki. You can also hear Albanian, Iranian, Armenian, Azerbaijani and Georgian speech on the streets of Turkish cities and towns. Many Turkish residents speak English and German. The service workers in many resort towns is quite well-spoken in Russian.

The country’s monetary unit is the Turkish lira (TRY), in 1 lira 100 kurus. Currency can be exchanged at hotels, exchange offices, banks and post offices. It is more convenient in exchange offices: the rate is more favorable. However, it should be noted that only banks issue certificates of exchange, which may be needed at customs. You can also buy local currency at post offices with PTT signs: the exchange rate is always favorable there, but large amounts may not be at the cash desk.

In the resort areas, exchange offices work daily, in other regions, Saturday and Sunday are days off. The rate indicated on the scoreboard is often valid only for transactions with large amounts (over 1000 USD). Do not try to catch cashiers of fraud: real numbers are usually spelled out in small beads under the sign. We do not recommend changing all the cash at once: exchange rates in Turkey fluctuate significantly.

Dollars and euros are accepted almost everywhere, and prices in foreign currencies may be even slightly lower than in Turkish lira. Credit cards are also acceptable, there are ATMs at every step. The owners of road maps will have no problems either: in big cities, they are cashed out everywhere.

The Turkish health care system consists of three main types of medical institutions: public, university and private clinics. The quality of the equipment and the competence of the staff of the majority of both public and private hospitals in Turkey meet or exceed international standards. The low cost of treatment in Turkey is combined with the excellent quality of diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation.

Today, several of the largest private clinics and medical centers in Turkey have made an unprecedented breakthrough in introducing the latest medical technologies. Turkey has every reason to become a new leading destination for mass medical tourism. The statistics of Turkish clinics over the past three years indicate an annual increase in the number of patients from Germany, England, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark, the USA and the Middle East.

It is in Turkey, in particular in Antalya, that the best plastic surgeons in Turkey now prefer to operate. Many of them have worked in clinics in America and Europe for many years. Turkey has opened one of five laboratories in Europe analyzing the human genetic code. Several Turkish clinics, including the Radiotherapy Center of the Medical Park medical group in Antalya, are deservedly considered one of the best cancer centers in Europe, where doctors help not to live out life, but to prolong it as much as possible. Medical Park Medical Center is equipped with the most advanced technologies such as nuclear medicine, radiation oncology and bone marrow transplantation.

Clinics specializing in reproductive technologies have been operating in Turkey for 5 years. Two such centers hold leading positions in Europe in terms of successful indicators in IVF (in vitro fertilization) procedures.

In Antalya, there is an ophthalmological center equipped with the best European and American equipment, where the most modern operations in the field of laser vision correction and microsurgery of complex eye diseases are performed. Special programs within the framework of medical tourism – “Rest with the benefit of the eyes” are deservedly popular among foreign patients from European countries.

20 years of public and private investments in Turkish healthcare have produced impressive results: today, Turkish medicine offers its patients all kinds of examination and treatment methods at the level of world standards and at economical prices.

Going on a trip to Turkey, do not forget about your safety. Medical care in Turkey is paid, so it is more profitable to have medical insurance, which will save money on paying for medical services, if necessary. As a rule, the cost of medical insurance is included in the tour price. Such medical insurance will be optimal for tourists who do not suffer from a chronic illness, do not intend to engage in extreme sports or who are not representatives of the senior retirement age.

If the travel company does not issue medical insurance or the tourist is not satisfied with the package of risks, you can contact the insurance company. It is necessary to clarify which accident will be recognized as insured, how to behave, as well as information about telephone numbers, which clinics it works with, what services it provides and what expenses it covers. If you had to bear part of the costs yourself, you must save all the documents that are issued by doctors and the clinic (an extract from the clinic indicating the diagnosis, an invoice for payment of medical services and a receipt, referral for additional examination, a prescription indicating the cost of each prescribed medication). Such documents will become the basis for obtaining compensation from the insurance company.

Medical insurance for a residence permit in Turkey

In April 2014, amendments to the law on the residence of foreigners in Turkey came into force, according to which Genel Sağlık Sigortası medical insurance is required to obtain or extend a residence permit.

The insurance policy must necessarily indicate:

  • inpatient medical care;
  • outpatient medical care;
  • medicines;
  • medical supplies.

If a foreigner is insured in his own country, and there is an agreement on the recognition of health insurance between this country and Turkey, there is no need to take out additional insurance.

* There is no such agreement with the Russian Federation yet.

Turkey’s highly developed and highly disciplined education system has undergone a series of major transformations over the past decade. For example, compulsory eight-year education was introduced, the overall quality of education was improved, and the number of schools and other educational institutions was increased. In addition to public schools, there are other options for obtaining education: private and funded schools, as well as international schools for foreigners operating throughout the country. Along with schools teaching in various European languages ​​such as English, German, French and Italian, there are educational institutions teaching Russian, Japanese and Chinese.

Turkey attracts foreign pupils and students not only for its beauty and climatic conditions, but also for the fact that it easily combines Eastern traditions and European way of life. Moreover, the popularity of Turkish education among Russians is due to the close economic ties between Russia and Turkey, and knowledge of the Turkish language will allow not only to successfully climb the career ladder in international companies, but also to engage in teaching or work as a translator.

The Turkish education system is fully controlled by the country’s Ministry of Education and includes two main areas – formal and non-formal education. Formal education is preschool, primary, secondary and tertiary education. Non-formal education is education that is not part of the formal education system, but is also sponsored by the Ministry of Education.

Preschool education is a preparatory stage for the entire subsequent educational system and is not compulsory. Primary education is compulsory for children over the age of six. At the end of each academic year, exams are held to assess the acquisition of the curriculum. If the student does not cope with the assignment, he stays for the second year. Upon successful completion, primary school graduates upon reaching the age of 11, after which a diploma of primary education is issued.

Secondary education is also compulsory and consists of two stages, the first lasting three years, the second six years. Secondary schools are public and provide free education. Also, secondary education can be obtained in Turkish lyceums, which is more prestigious. Graduates of secondary schools and lyceums can continue their studies at universities after passing the entrance exams. If an applicant collects a passing score, then education at the university is paid by the state.

Higher education in Turkey is represented by both public and private universities. Turkey has a huge number of universities, academies and high schools providing various study programs. One of the largest universities in the country is Istanbul University, founded in 1453. Specialized universities are also considered very prestigious: Middle East Technical University in Ankara, Aegean University in Izmir, Ataturk University in Erzurum. Education in universities is conducted in both English and Turkish.

For admission to a Turkish university, foreign applicants must submit an application to the “Student Selection and Enrollment Center” (OSYM – Öğrenci Seçme ve Yerleştirme Merkezi) – an organization that admits foreign students to Turkish universities; have a high school diploma, pass entrance exams and take a test in English or Turkish. Also, a prerequisite for admission is the completion of the Turkish language course, or the last class of the Turkish school. The number of study places for foreign students is predetermined, so you need to be well prepared to pass the competitive selection. Entrance exams can be taken not only in Turkey, but also in some cities of Russia. The cost of considering an application for admission to a university and passing the exam is about 80 euros. The cost of training at state Turkish universities ranges from 400 euros to 1000 euros per year, in private universities, training costs a little more: from 4000 euros to 10,000 euros annually.

Phone code: 90

International prefix: 00

Turkey has a nationwide eleven-digit telephone number system. The first four digits indicate the area code or the mobile operator’s index (usually starting with zero), the remaining seven are the subscriber’s number. Toll free or payable call numbers start with 0800.

The telephone system in Turkey is of high quality and relatively low cost. Most of the services are provided by Turk Telekom, whose blue payphones can be found everywhere. They work with prepaid cards, which can be purchased at any post office or kiosk. When buying real estate in Turkey, it is possible to connect a telephone in every apartment or villa.

To call from Russia to Turkey from a landline phone, dial 8 – 10 – 90 – city code – subscriber number, to Russia from Turkey – 0 – 00 – dial tone – 70 – city code – number.

The mobile network covers almost the entire territory of Turkey with the exception of some mountainous regions in the east. There are three mobile operators in Turkey: Turkcell, Vodafone and Türk Telekom. Each network has good coverage and quality of service. You can buy SIM-cards of local operators, as well as recharge cards, in the official sales offices of mobile operators, post offices. To purchase a SIM card, you need a passport. In Turkey, there is no roaming within the country, and you can call one city to another at your own rate. When changing the operator, you can leave the previous number.

* Since July 2005, Turkey has introduced rules according to which phones imported from abroad must be registered (if the phone will be used with a Turkish SIM card). To register your phone, you must pay the local tax state duty 20 000TL, indicating the IMEI code of your phone. Then, along with the receipt of payment, he will go to the office of the mobile operator, taking with him a passport, a residence permit, a receipt for payment of the state duty. (Registration can be done without a residence permit, but then the phone will be active for only 3 months). Registration cost depends on the operator. If the imported phone is used with a Turkish SIM card and is not registered, then the period of its use will be from 1 week to 1 month, after which the phone and SIM card will be blocked. At the same time, other SIM cards used with this phone will also not be detected by the network.

Some rules:

  • only 1 telephone can be registered for one international passport;
  • one telephone can be registered only once within 3 years;
  • You can register your phone no later than 1 month after entering Turkey;
  • a registered phone can be imported and exported from Turkey an unlimited number of times.

Network technologies are widely spread in Turkey. Internet cafes operate in all major cities and resorts in Turkey. Many high-end and mid-range restaurants and hotels have Wi-Fi hotspots. In Turkey, the main ADSL provider is TTNET from Turk Telekom, which provides Turkish landline telephone and Internet access via telephone line and fiber optic technology. Another convenient Internet option in Turkey is Superonline, which provides unlimited access to the network. Also, mobile internet is available throughout Turkey.

Post offices in Turkey are designated by the letters PTT (Posta Telefon ve Telegraf). All PTT branches have exchange offices, money transfers and travel checks. There are also express mail services (APS), with the help of which you can send letters, documents and small parcels to 90 countries of the world. In post offices there are special branches for telephone conversations, where you can use a regular pay phone, or you can order a conversation in advance, with payment after.

Emergency phone numbers:

  • phone code +90
  • police – 155
  • gendarmerie (in the suburbs) – 156
  • ambulance – 112
  • fire protection – 110
  • reference (phones) – 118
  • international operator – 115
  • assistance in case of an accident or road accident – 247-06-99

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