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Frequently Asked Questions




  • What is Right of Property?

    The notion of right of property is a notion that is included in the first chapter of the Property Law. By its simplest definition it means property over an independent unit. It is a special kind of property pertaining to the allotment and the shared spaces in the main realty. It expresses the right to establish ownership by the landlord or co-landlords of realty on each and every flat, apartment, office, store, warehouse, or storage of a finished realty.


    In order to establish the right of property, the subject building must be complete and it must be ready for use.

  • How to establish the right of Property?

    In order to establish the right of property, the subject building must be complete and it must be ready for use.


    To establish property, the owner, if an individual, or all the co-owners, of the real estate, must sign a petition and appeal to the land registry. Freehold thus established is referred to as volitional property.


    It is also possible to establish freehold via court decision. In cases to rescind co-ownership, one of the co-owners, or his/her legatee, appeals to court and the judge decides to establish the freehold.


    The freehold is established by formal deed or registration to land registry offices. It is not possible to establish property on only one part of the main estate unless the entire building has freehold rights.


    It is possible to register two or more adjoining parts of the estate to form one single unit. The registration is made via the formal deed issued by the officer or via court decision.


    The building with right of property is a building with dwelling certificate (with permission for use of the building) and qualifying for mortgage.

  • What is a land register deed? How many types of deeds are there?

    The official document (tapu), accepted as true unless otherwise proven, granted by the Land Registry Office to show the owners of a piece of land, one single unit of a building, or a parcel, is called a deed. It is derived from the old Turkish word “tapuk” which means “trust”.


    There are two types of deeds; jointly-owned deeds and private deeds.


    Jointly-owned deeds show the number of co-owners and their share ratio. The exact property of each shareholder is not indicated on jointly-owned deeds. Everybody has rights in proportion to their share on each square meter of the land. Sometimes shareholders may divide the property voluntarily, but they cannot write this down on the deed. There are a number of reasons for this. For example, it may be that in the area where the estate lies, parcels smaller than a specified area cannot be subdivided.


    Private deeds are deeds with one single owner and whose location is defined on cadastral maps.

  • Is my Project in a high-risk earthquake zone?

    You can contact the Earthquake Advisory Board in Ankara, affiliated to the General Directorate of Natural Disasters, in order to check if the real estate you bought or are planning to buy is in an earthquake risk zone, and if so the level of that risk. You can obtain contact information and a general Turkey earthquake map on the websites; www.deprem.gov.tr and www.afetacil.gov.tr.

  • How can I understand if the building is strong enough to an earthquake?

    Buildings that are resistant to earthquakes are structures that are built with regard for potential ground movements, and according to earthquake regulations. It is advised that the tests to check the strength of the building are run by authorized, experienced and credentialed civil engineers. Even though there are some points that an ordinary citizen can check, one should not forget that technical controls such as measuring the cement quality require substantial engineering knowledge. Owners of real estate built before the 1999 earthquake should have their buildings checked by a specialist and obtain a statement.


    An ordinary citizen should first search for answers to questions such as on what kind of ground the building sits; rock, riverbed, soft soil or sand. Is there water or moisture in the basement of the building? He should also pay attention to the following:


    - Are there earthquake cracks on the building? (especially on the ground and first floors)


    - Columns should always be thicker than beams (denticulate parts on the walls by the ceiling). People usually consider vertical strength which means the load-bearing strength of the building, but buildings should also be considered according to flexibility. Like an athlete they should be well-tuned, fine and flexible.


    - Obtain the blueprint of the building from the related municipality. This way you can see whether or not your building has the required permissions, and which engineering office prepared the blueprint. You can investigate the prestige and the references of the engineering office. It is possible to find important information regarding the materials and the costs; such as on how many floors the calculation was mad. If the number of floors on the blueprint differs from the actual building, you must have a professional check your building. You can also find out the year of the blueprint and which regulation it is based on.


    - The deeper the foundations, the greater the possibility of resting on solid ground. Shallow or footed foundations are less secure.


    - It must be clear if any changes have been made, especially in the lower floors, such as reducing the size of the columns, or drilling, removing or relocating them.


    - Was a ground survey performed before the project and the construction?


    - Was the construction process continuously checked and controlled for compliance with the project. Is the steel reinforcement sufficient? For example, the distance between the steel reinforcement and the side of the column or beam should be at least 2.5 cm.


    - Is the sand used in cement production sea sand? If so, and if used in the cement without being properly washed, the salt content can damage the chemical make-up of the cement over time and thus erode its strength.


    - Compare the distances between the columns. You can check the beam sizes on top of the columns from the floor plans. Perform similar checks on the upper floors as well. If you discover missing columns or beams, variance in the size of the columns or the distance between the columns, you must get your building checked by a specialist.


    - The risk of damage during an earthquake is greater in buildings where the height of the ground floor is more than 3 meters, especially if it is around 5 meters, and in buildings where the majority of the ground floor is open plan.

  • What is real estate tax value? How is it calculated?

    The value of a real estate stated on real estate tax records is called the real estate tax value. It is calculated according to the value of the land, which is updated every 4 years. The price of land per square meter is determined by a commission composed of public offices. The value of the buildings is determined by the Ministry of Finance based on unit construction cost announced annually by the Ministry of Public Works and Settlement. Real estate taxes are paid to the municipality of the area where the estate lies.


    If you own a piece of real estate, you can calculate your real estate tax value by multiplying your land ratio by real estate value tax per square meter of other properties on your street. Then you add the gross square meters of the estate, multiplied by the construction unit costs defined by the Ministry of Public Works per construction class.


    If you have an elevator and central heating, you add these as well. You deduct the value of wear and tear, again defined by the Ministry. This provides the base rate of the estate’s tax value. You then multiply this amount by the estate tax ratio to calculate the tax owing.


    Real estate tax is 0.2 % of the main building for residential, 0.4 % for offices, and 0.6 % for land. However, these ratios are different outside of urban areas.

  • When is the real estate tax paid?

    The real estate owner who does not pay the required taxes on time is obliged to pay indemnity at the rates defined by law. If failure to pay continues, the municipality may place an attachment order on the estate registration and the owner will end up paying the penalties while selling.

  • Can there be a discount in the real estate tax?

    There are some cases where the individual is exempt from paying the real estate tax. Retirees, widows and orphans, widows or orphans of military casualties, veterans or handicapped, if they possess only one single estate, and if that estate is smaller than 200 square meters, and if they do not have any other income, are not liable to pay real estate tax.


    In order to qualify for this indemnity, the individual must complete the “Information Form about Retirees, Widows and Orphans with One Single Estate”.


    For this, retirees must supply a certificate showing that they are actually retired; individuals without income must obtain a certificate showing that he/she is not a taxpayer and he/she is not insured; veterans, widows and orphans of military casualties must supply a certificate proving their circumstances, and handicapped people must obtain a health report from a public hospital.

  • What is a Floor Garden? Is it included in the Leading Estate?

    This is an area allocated to serve its floor, and designed as a single unit or as an attachment to one of those single units. Floor gardens are not included in the leading estate and it is possible to fill this area with soil for planting.


    The term floor garden is defined in the Istanbul Public Works Legislations and does not exist in every city.

  • Are all projects residences? What does “residence” really mean?

    Nowadays the term “residence” is used to describe luxury housing projects. Indeed real residence refers to a building that engages in commerce, and provides service and housing functions all at the same time, and also serves as accommodation. Even though it is expected to have many floors, this is not an obligation.


    Real residences offer quality service, social facilities and security to their residents. They have high security standards. They also provide modern and fully-equipped reception services 24/7, and technical services to houses. They are living areas with boutique shopping centers, health centers and comfort.


    Residences offer a more secure life. These apartments in smart buildings where everything is controlled by computers facilitate an easier way of life. Sports centers, malls and restaurants are included in such projects.

  • What kind of services to expect in a residence

    We can list the minimum services that a residence should offer as follows:


    Secretarial and reception services, daily cleaning, dry-cleaning, shopping service, technical service and maintenance, housekeeping, security, trash collection, disinfection, planting services, management, and daily care service of shared areas such as pool.


    Valet parking, private driver, food service, ironing, washing, tailor, car wash, social facilities, drinking water services and office services can also be listed.

  • What should I do if the contractor does not keep his promise?

    If you make an investment on a real estate Project such as office, residence, or store, it means defective commodity if promises are not delivered by the contractor. However, in order to contest for your rights, you must have these promises in writing. This means you should draw up a sales contract.


    Based on the contract, you can make claims if promises are not kept. For example, if the household appliances written on the contract are not included or if they are not of the requested brand, or if the project is not finished on time. But in order to do so the problem should not originate from you.


    One of the ways to seek your rights is to appeal to the arbitration committee for consumer problems in the related district governorate. The board can do the legal research for you and inform you about the appropriate course of action. But Mehmet Bülent Deniz, Founder President of the Consumers Association, advises the prosecution of a consumer evaluation case, because the highly technical nature of construction makes the arbitration route a very lengthy process. Deniz advises:


    “In such cases the consumer should take a consumer evaluation case at the Magistrates’ Court to ascertain the status of the construction and the defective goods defined. Then he must send an official warning to the opposing side and request that the defective goods be fixed. Advance notice should be given for demands on completing late construction or fixing construction related problems. If the opposing side does not abide by the warning, the consumer earns the right to prosecute a case in court. Consumer cases are exempt from fees. Only an official communication fee is required from the prosecutor. There is a 30 day period to send the warning for residential abodes. This means the individual has 30 days to give notice about the defective good. He cannot be any later. However, if this is a hidden defect, meaning that the defect is revealed only by use, the expiry date for legal processes is two years.