According to latest statistics from the Central Bank of Turkey, Kuwaitis purchased a total of 202 real estate properties in Turkey, ranking them fourth largest foreign purchaser of Turkish real estate in 2018.
Sharing the fourth place with Kuwaitis were the Russians who bought an equal number of properties in Turkey last year. In third spot was Iranians who purchased 332 properties, followed by the Saudis who bought 395 real estates, and topping the list were Iraqis who bought 533 Turkish properties last year.
Istanbul topped the list of Turkish cities targeted by real estate buyers with 1,839 properties, followed by Antalya, 676, then Ankara, 210, Bursa with 201 and Yalova with 142. Increased foreign investment in Turkish real estate has been attributed to a slump in the Turkish lira, which fell by 30 percent last year, and has registered a further 10 percent decline against the dollar so far in 2019, making Turkish properties relatively cheap to purchase for many foreign nationals.
Moreover, faced last year with unsold housing stock of more than one million units, the Turkish government had decided to lower the threshold for granting ‘paid’ citizenship to those purchasing US$250,000 of real estate, thereby attracting a slew of foreign investments.
By the end of 2018, housing investment by foreigners was up 80 percent, and sales climbed 82 percent in the first quarter of 2019. According to the Association of Housing Developers and Investors in Turkey, foreigners purchased $4.6 billion worth of properties in Turkey last year, and that is expected to rise at least to $10 billion this year. In the first two months of this year alone 6,489 houses were sold to foreigners.