Turkey: House sales up 23.5% in 1st half of 2020

A total of 624,769 residential properties in were sold in the first half of 2020, the country's statistical authority announced on Tuesday.

Housing sales increased 23.5% or 118,973 units in the six-month period, year-on-year, according to the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat) data.

During the first six months of this year, 197,772 new houses were sold, while the remaining were second-hand sales.

İstanbul -- Turkey's largest city by population and one of its top tourist centers -- took the lion share of housing sales with 106,311 units over the same period.

Official data showed the capital Ankara and the Aegean province of Izmir followed İstanbul with 69,078 and 39,331 housing sales, respectively.

Mortgaged housing sales were recorded at 266,734 -- a 42.5% share of all sales over the same period.

In June, housing sales increased rapidly by 109.7% to reach 190,012 units -- 58,632 new and around 131,380 second-hand -- on a yearly basis.

Turkish state-lenders lowered interest rates for housing loans in June -- 0.64% for new houses and 0.74% for second-hand houses -- and extended loan's maturity up to 15 years.

HOUSE SALES TO FOREIGNERS

In January-June, some 14,262 houses were bought by foreigners, down from 19,952 units from the first half of 2019.

İstanbul was the top city for foreigners with 6,902 property sales, while the Mediterranean resort city of Antalya (2,708 sales) and capital Ankara (964 sales) followed it.

Iranian citizens were top buyers of Turkish properties with 2,628 housing sales. Iraqis, Chinese, Azerbaijanis and Russians were among the top five.

In June 2020, foreigners bought some 1,664 housing units, down from 2,689 on an annual basis.


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