The Turkish real estate market is poised to recover more quickly than others because it is among the least leveraged and least negatively affected property market, reports Sunday’s Zaman, the highest circulation English-language newspaper in Turkey. Prices in Istanbul, and Turkey as a whole, did not drop as much as elsewhere due to the lack of a developed mortgage financing system. Most property owners own their property free and clear, so as prices dropped and bargain hunters came looking, Turkish owners could afford to wait for prices to recover. For these reasons, the majority of investors queried by Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) international investors ranked Turkey as #1 or #2 compared to Greece, Romania, Ukraine, Russia and Azerbaijan.
The downside of Turkey’s real estate is a stagnated market where values are hard to gauge, which deters some investors. The trend seems temporary, says JLL, which projects that when the bargains are gone in hard hit places like Russia, investors will return. Prices will rise with full recovery possible as early as second half of 2010. Others are less optimistic, citing the absence of financing as preventing swift recovery, much as it prevented a dramatic crash.