Nationalities that are not entitled to own real estate in Turkey

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Questions are often asked to us, Mabanee Real Estate Company, regarding many matters related to real estate investment in Turkey and its laws, and among these questions: Who are the nationalities allowed to own real estate in Turkey and who are the nationalities that are not entitled to own?

Turkish laws in this regard are very clear... According to Turkish laws, all foreigners of various nationalities residing in Turkey have the right to own real estate in it... But the Turkish government excluded from this law five nationalities that are not entitled to own real estate in Turkey and these nationalities are the national (Syrian, Armenian, Greek Cyprus, North Korea, Cuba) for reasons that will be mentioned later... This does not mean that there are no exceptions in this matter... Citizens of these countries may be exempted from this decision and granted the right to own real estate in Turkey in In the event that the citizens of the previous countries had obtained Turkish citizenship by the usual methods (bank deposit, assets) or had been granted citizenship in an exceptional way for reasons that the Turkish government may deem appropriate.

A questioner from these nationalities mentioned above may ask: What is the reason for preventing us from the right to own property?

The reasons for adopting the ban law are due to three factors (political, historical, and international reasons).

We start first and the most important one because of its presence and weight in Turkey is the Syrian nationality, as Syrians constitute large numbers of foreigners residing in Turkey, and their percentage has increased significantly since 2011 and they have become an important weight in the Turkish economy and the labor market. The reasons for preventing them from owning real estate in Turkey historically go back to the referendum of 1939, specifically in the state of Hatay, and the reason for holding this referendum is when the state was removed from the authority of the French mandate and the annexation of Hatay to the lands of the Turkish Republic, followed by measures from the government of the French mandate in Syria and the confiscation of the property of the Turks in Syria, and then preventing the Turks from owning property in Syria... This matter has been a point of contention between Syria and Turkey since that date, and the matter has become reciprocal. There are vigorous efforts being made by Arabs and Turkish consultants to persuade the Turkish government to reverse this decision. It is expected that positive progress will occur in the future in this matter. If the door to real estate ownership is opened for Syrians in Turkey, it will definitely make a big difference in the Turkish real estate market.

As for the other nationalities, Cuba and North Korea, the reasons for banning their citizens are related to the imposition of international and UN sanctions on the two countries. Cyprus, the reason is due to a dispute over the rights of the Turkish Cypriots, whose state Turkey recognizes as “Northern Cyprus or Turkish Cyprus,” which led to the intervention of the Turkish army into Northern Cyprus to protect the Turkish Cypriots in the mid-seventies, and since that time the crisis has remained the same between the two countries. Armenia, a historical relationship and mutual concerns between the two countries about the war period between the Armenians and the Turks before World War I is still considered one of the most important issues affecting Turkish national security.

Is there a legal way that allows these nationalities to own real estate in Turkey?

It is possible to bypass the ban on owners of these nationalities from owning real estate in Turkey, but the owner of the property does not obtain full rights through it, including applying for Turkish citizenship through real estate ownership, even if the value of the property is in accordance with the laws of granting citizenship. One of these methods, and the most common one, is establishing a company in Turkey Where it allows the investor from these countries to establish a company in Turkey, buy the property and register it in the name of the company, where he has the right to use, invest or sell the property, since the property is considered one of the company’s assets, but it entails legal procedures, and that any legal action taken against the company will affect the property because the property is in this state It is considered one of the company's property and one of its assets.

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