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  1. Hello! I’m moving to Istanbul with my wife and two young ones(infant and toddler) for a year. I plan on working from home for my company, do I need a work permit for that? I’m a software engineer that works from home so I can live anywhere. Is there a better site than sahibinden? I find the English site always switches back to Turkish. Has anyone used thebluegrounds.com? What’s a good private health insurance provider in Turkey for English speaking expats? It seems there’s lot of options online but they appear to be foreign companies with contracts there and not based in the country. Thanks for any help!
  2. Apartment Shopping If you don't speak Turkish, the first thing to do is to find a friend or a property agent who does. Turks generally go out of their way to help foreigners, and many business owners at least have someone nearby who speaks enough English to get the job done. Internet Listings By using the Turkish property listings, you'll find better deals than you would on English-language websites directed at foreigners. See the External Links section for websites which have property listings. Some have English versions, and some don't. You can use our Guide to Turkish Property Terms (see the links at the bottom) to understand what you're reading. If you check the listings daily, you may find a great place to live before anybody else does. And by printing out the listings you like, you'll have handy information in hand for your apartment shopping trip. National and Local Newspapers You can go to a local newsstand and find out what hard-copy newspapers are circulated in the area, both national and local papers. Find out on what day the new property listings are published. On that day, pick up a paper early, and be ready to start making phone calls at 09:00 AM. Good properties go fast. Property Agents Property agents, or emlak, are plentiful in Turkey, and they come in all sizes. They are a handy resource to find quality properties. Visit several of them, since there is no central directory of properties for rent, and each agent will have different apartments available. Turkish property agents get a commission for the properties they rent, equivalent to one month's rent, paid by the renter. If an agent doesn't have what you need but knows of another agent who does, and if you rent from the other agent, the two agents split the commission. For that reason, property agents will first show you their properties (sometimes including properties with characteristics you said you didn't want) before they show you those of competitors. Using All of the Above If you find in the internet or newspaper listings that an attractive apartment is being advertised by a particular property agent, you can also ask that agent to show you the properties of other agents which you found in the listings. This can save you the time of making appointments and finding addresses. Walking Around Walking or driving around a neighborhood where you would like to live ls also a good way to find a place to live. Look for a sign which says kiralik (kee-rah-look), which means "for rent." You'll also see signs which say satılık (sah-tah-look), which means "for sale." Another important term is sahabinden (sah-ha-been-den) which means "from owner." The name and telephone number of a property agency or the owner will be on the sign. The Inspection Have a good look around the property to make sure everything is in good order. Include every detail in the contract, so the landlord can't claim compensation from you when you move out. Some landlords can be very picky, and will look for any excuse to retain part of the deposit. If there is anything in the apartment you don't want to stay and don't intend to turn over to the landlord at the end of the lease, have the landlord remove it. Do not discard anything thinking the landlord will be okay with it. An old rickety set of shelves that you remove while occupying the premises may be later claimed by the landlord to be an antique given to him by a some beloved deceased relative, and used to extort your deposit from you. Previous Owners Will Have Removed Everything Which Was Not Nailed Down, and also Some Things That Were You will find that any former Turkish tenants have taken everything but the kitchen sink (they do, however, sometimes take the faucets). Even light fixtures may be removed, leaving a bare wire protruding from a hole in the ceiling. The water heater and other such fixtures will likely have been removed. Apartment Layout In cities, all apartments have a similar layout. The kitchen and salon (living room) face the outside, and the bedrooms are on the inside. Typically there is a large master bedroom with the other bedrooms being smaller, sometimes much smaller. The washing machine goes in the bathroom. Use of electric clothes driers is rare but gaining in popularity, so there might not be room for a washer and a drier in the bathroom. Stacked washer and drier combination units are available for this purpose, if the water heater (normally attached to the wall in the bathroom) doesn't get in the way. Turks like balconies (who doesn't?). You might find that even your kitchen and bedroom have a balcony. Balconies are usually where clothes are dried, either on lines attached to the building walls or on collapsible clothes drying racks that are widely available. Turks sometimes sleep on their balconies during warm weather. Closet Space Many Turkish apartments don't have closets. So you will have to buy a wall unit to store your clothes. Curtains You will also have to buy curtains. See our article on furnishing and equipping your home for ideas on how to get set up in your new place. The Landlord Some landlords in Turkey will do little or nothing to repair anything that needs repair or upkeep. They will expect you to pay repairs, of everything, including sinks, toilets, plumbing, and electrical wiring and fixtures. One option to deal with this is to deduct the cost of any repairs you have to make from the rent, and provide the landlord with a fatura (invoice), for the cost of the repairs. Your landlord may object to this, but it is doubtful that he or she would ever go to court about it, because of the amount of time court cases take in Turkey. Besides that, the judge involved would be unlikely to side with the landlord. To be on the safe side, though, it's a good idea to have a clause for this placed into the rental contract. Important! When you apply for a residence permit, the immigration office will require a copy of your landlord's identification card as part of the documentation you need to prove you have an address. So make sure the landlord understands this and is willing to provide one. Negotiation Once you find a place that you like and can afford, try to negotiate the rent to a lower price. A few minutes of haggling may save you a lot of money. Once you reach an agreement, you will sign the rental contract. The Rental Contract Property rental contracts in Turkey are rather standard, and can be bought in a stationery store. But make sure you have someone translate it for you so you know exactly what you are signing. The typical Turkish rental contract is a four-page document (one large page folded in half). On the contract's pages are the following: Page 1: Landlord and renter personal information and the terms of the rental, such as duration and the amount of rent. Pages 2 and 3: Covers the terms of the rental agreement. Page 4: A record of payments. Each time you pay, you record the payment amount and date, and sign it with your landlord. If you deposit the rent into the landlord's bank account, have the bank add a note that the payment is for rent (kira). Save the deposit receipt. This bank deposit receipt can also serve as proof of payment. Additional Agreements: If you make any additional agreements with the landlord, make sure they are in the contract, because your friendly and amiable landlord may not be so lenient later. Terminating the Contract According to the Turkish code of obligations, you must provide 15 days notice, in writing (translated to Turkish) before the anniversary date of the contract if you want to terminate it. If you don't do this, the contract will automatically renew for the period set in the contract (as in another year) and you will be legally bound to pay the extra year's rent whether you are living there or not. When you deliver written notice, take two copies. Sign both and also have the landlord sign both. Keep one copy as proof of notice. Some tenants think they can just forfeit the deposit and vacate the property any time they want. This is not so, and a landlord can take you to court, if he or she wants to go through the trouble, and successfully sue you for the remaining balance due on the contract. If you think you might need to vacate the property some time in the middle of the contract, have a "get out early" clause written in to the contract to protect yourself. If you want to renew the contract on a monthly basis, make the new contract so it expires in one month. In that case it will automatically renew every month (instead of every year). The Deposit Although the deposit is often the equivalent of one-month's rent, its purpose is to cover the repair of any damages, and not non-payment of rent. While legally it is limited to a maximum of three month's rent, it can be negotiated, and you should never pay any more than reasonably necessary. Important! If you do decide to hand over cash to your landlord, beware of any request for an excessively high deposit. Some landlords ask for a high deposit amount because they intend to keep it when you vacate, using any excuse to not refund it, assuming that you are at a disadvantage and unlikely to sue them to get it back. The proper way to pay a deposit is not by handing cash to the landlord. According to the most recent version of Turkey's Code of Obligations (Turkish law), you and your landlord should go to a bank and put the deposit into a kira depozito ortak hesabı (rent deposit joint account). If you do it that way, then the bank, by law, must return it to you upon request after three months of the date you vacate the property, unless the landlord informs the bank, in writing, that there is an active lawsuit against you for damages. If your landlord balks at this, don't rent from that landlord. Rent Increases If you pay your rent in Turkish lira, your landlord cannot legally raise your rent more than the yearly increase in Turkey's wholesale price index. Aydat, the Kapıcı, and Yönetici Aydat (pronounced like "eye-dot"). It is a monthly payment which covers common area lighting, cleaning, elevator maintenance, and the salary of the kapıcı (kah-puh-juh), if there is one. The kapıcı (literally translated "door man") looks after the building and maintains it. He will almost always live on the ground floor of the apartment. He may also do additional duties like paying your utility bills, getting you a loaf of bread and a paper in the morning, and even fixing things in your house for a small fee. The main thing you would need to be careful of when dealing with the kapıcı is asking him to do things which are beyond his expertise. For example, your kapıcı is not a car mechanic (if he could fix cars, he wouldn't be a kapıcı!). For work which requires a professional, such as electrical work, hire a professional. The yönetici (yuh-neh-tee-jee, manager) is a resident who collects the aydat and makes the required payments. Utilities The landlord will sometimes keep the utilities in his or her name, since there is no penalty or impact on one's credit rating for non-payment. The utility is simply shut off, and a fine is paid to restore it. If you get the utilities in your name, you can pay them at various banks or at the Turkish post office (PTT). On the back of your utility bills is a list of places where you can pay them. Some of the banks only take these payments in the morning or afternoon hours, depending on their policy. The water bill needs to be paid at the water department at the belediye (beh-leh-dee-yeh), or municipality. You can have your utility bills automatically paid by your Turkish bank account. To do this, go to your bank and take your utility bills with you, so they can arrange for automatic payments. You can also give the bills and the required cash to your kapıcı and have them pay them for you-this is a common practice in Turkish apartment complexes. Most every city and town also has a consolidated bill-paying shop. For a small fee, you can pay all of your utilities there, at one time. Other Notes If you're single, you may find that some Turkish landlords won't rent to you. Don't take it personally. Some Turks are rather traditional, and don't want to rent to anyone but a married couple or a family. See Also Furnishing and Equipping Your Home: A guide to finding white goods (appliances), furniture, and other helpful equipment for setting up your home in Turkey. Renting in Turkey Forum: Our forum devoted to renting apartments or properties in Turkey. If you have a question, please ask it there. Guide to Turkish Terms for Buying or Renting Property External Links www.sahibinden.com (sahibinden means "from the owner," but you'll also see property companies advertising there as well. Look for "Emlak" (real estate, or property) and "Konut" (Residence) www.hurriyetemlak.com: Look for "Konut" (Residence). It has English listings. www.milliyetemlak.com: This one has English listings also. www.turkstat.gov.tr: Here you can find the Producer Price Index (PPI) for Turkey. If your landlord wants to increase the limit, it cannot exceed the percent change in the PPI by law. Ken Grubb As a special investigator for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and teacher for the University of Maryland, Ken Grubb has lived and worked in Turkey since 1997. He now lives in Antalya, where he researches and writes guides to help others live skillfully in Turkey.
  3. If you're a renter, one of the documents you'll need for your residence permit application is a notarized copy of your rental agreement. When you go to the noter (notary) to have this done, they may insist that you first pay the damga vergisi (stamp duty) at the tax office. What is the Deposit Stamp Tax? The stamp duty is a tax on the deposit paid by a tenant to a landlord. It must be paid, by the tenant, after the first year and every year after that. In Turkey, notaries are lawyers appointed to their positions. They're are obligated to make sure the law is followed whenever they notarize a document. Few people in Turkey have ever heard, much less paid, the deposit stamp tax, but some notaries will go by the book and insist you pay it. How Much is the Deposit Stamp Tax? The tax is .01% of the deposit. As an example, I had a rental contract in which I gave the landlord a ₺650 deposit. I had to go to the district tax office to pay a mere ₺6.16, then go back to the notary with the receipt before he would give me a notarized copy of my rental contract. It made no sense to me since a deposit isn't income. Regardless, it's the law! Other Options Go to another notary. Maybe they'll be unaware of the tax or won't insist you pay it. Use a previously notarized copy of your rental contract. When you get a rental contract notarized, the notary puts a stamp on the back with a document number and keeps another copy of it in their archive. If you're still living in the same place and have recorded that previous document number, go back to the same notary and ask for another copy. The notary won't ask for you to pay the stamp tax because they're not notarizing anything. Pay the Tax. Take your rental contract and the business card of the notary to the tax office responsible for the mahalle (district) where you live. Because the people at the tax office may be unaware of this tax you're trying to pay, have them call the number on the notary's business card and hand your mobile phone to them. The notary can explain the situation. You can also point to the amount of the deposit on your contract and say kiracıyım, deposito damga vergisi ödemek istiyorum (I'm the tenant, and I want to pay the stamp duty for the deposit). Better yet, write that down and show it to them. Otherwise, they might think you're the owner of the apartment and are trying to pay tax on the rent you've been receiving. To pay the tax, you'll fill out a form and be sent to the vezne (cashier), where you'll pay the tax and get a receipt. Take the receipt back to the notary, and they'll give you a notarized copy of your rental contract. Apply for a Residence Permit Ken Grubb As a special investigator for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and teacher for the University of Maryland, Ken Grubb has lived and worked in Turkey since 1997. He's now retired and living in Antalya, where he researches and writes guides to help others live skillfully in Turkey.
  4. I changed my phone number after I got my house renting contract. Should I renew my contract because of the different telephone number?
  5. Hi @Ken Grubb Do I pay the deposit directly to the landlord or deposit it into a bank account?
  6. Hello everyone-love this forum and all its assistance/advice. I am needing a reliable website to find short term (less than 6 months) rentals. I found some but they looked unreliable. Or, where would be a good place to get rental listings in person. Thank you in advance. Ramin
  7. After renting for a few months with no real issues... the apartment then developed 2 electrical issues. Two lights stopped working and I replaced one no problem as that would fall under "my" responsibility. However the other one can't be replaced as it was wired in somehow and would require an electrician to be removed. Also some of the electrical sockets stopped working around the same time. Checked the fuses, reset them and still not working. Contacted the agent who then took over a week to contact the landlord / owner and I was told that I need to pay to make the repairs and "if" they think it's a fault of the apartment then I can submit the information to see "if" I would be credited for the money spent. The solar heater also stopped working for over two weeks and not sure if it's worth bringing that up. Based on the experience of the community here.... is it safe to say that the Turkish law is not like the USA or UK law where these types of repairs are handled by property owners?
  8. Star

    Rent renewal

    Hello guys, I should renew my rent next week. Owner told that 20 percent will be increased. However, this is unfair. I checked the TUKETICI website and it is maximum 16% previous month and February it would be less I guess. https://kira-artisi-hesaplama.hesabet.com/ Some people said that you can bargain to even 10 % since many renters cannot pay on time and if anybody pays regularly he can persuade owner. Anybody has any experience?
  9. @Ken Grubb Hello, I saw a house in Izmir which is somewhat good. The problem is that they want 6 months or a year rent at the time I make a contract. Thus is somewhat weird for me. For instance, for 6 month rent the monthly rent is 1100 so I shiuld pay 8800 (deposit and comisyon) once! For a year contract the rent is 1000 and I should pay 14000 Even though the house Is somewhat good but it is not logical to pay all at once. Maybe I want to get out and they say the money will not be returned unless it is really emergency case. Any idea?
  10. Hi, I'm relocating to Antalya and considering renting a villa in Palm City (or similar compound with like facilities: 24 hour security, indoor/outdoor pools, gym, etc). Do you, or anyone you know have any experience in Palm City? Are there any other compounds (within 30 mins to the heart of Antalya) that you would recommend also considering? Any recommendations and/or feedback would be appreciated; especially on issues that are not highlighted in the glossy company brochures (like potential electricity cuts, sewerage/drainage odours, noise, etc). Guidance appreciated. Thanks in Advance, Dean
  11. Hello friends, I have a question in my mind which I would like to share and ask. What is the average age of a building (Bina) in Istanbul? An apartment complex age as defined by Belediye laws? If someone has an apartment in a building and after its age is over lets say after 40 years when the building is demolished and a new building is made on that plot; what happens to those who already owned an apartment in the old building? Are they accommodated or their money is finished as old building is gone and they need to buy another flat if they wish to live in the building? What does law say about these two things and what is practice normally done? Looking forward.
  12. idel

    Moving to Adana

    Hi, Had plans to move to Adana last year but it didn't work out. Long-story short, will be in Adana in a few days to look for apartments (kiralik). Can you please recommend a good and trustworthy real estate agent? I'd appreciate it. tx
  13. Dear all finally I shipp all my stuff from dubai yo istanbul. It gonna takes 1.5 month, i am looking for a temporAry full furniture flat for this 1.5 month and then i have to find a big flat . i search a bit and this real estate really surprise me. Very disappointed. Any advice ? Any help ? Thanks pooria
  14. So after going thru so much trouble to get into this flat I have seen that it was a huge mistake. So the major problem that I have is the landlord who I realize is a 'slum lord'. I had to call him and ask if anyone had ever complained of the elk bill. In Feb I was here all of 20 days and it was over 200 tl. March was nearly 250. April was 175. May was 142. I cannot understand this as I have nothing. I literally use elk for a lamp, my computer, the hot water shower thing, and to boil water for tea. I never bought a fridge and washer. long story there. Use friends washer and the fridge is useless as I am one person and usually eat outside. So the elk has a problem. But he said... no one has ever complained. Then we have the water issue.. its always above 50 tl. how?!?!?!?! again he said no one ever complained. And then it got warm. I was sleeping and woke up to find ants in my bed. Not one or two... I mean like 100! And they were hundreds on the floors. I smashed them and called the land man immediately. He said to get the spray because no one ever complained before and they were coming from the garden. I can't use the spray as I have asthma and a cat. He told me like 5 times to use the spray. it was endless. So I suggested that he caulk the floors as I could see holes in the baseboards. He told me to do it. Ok. I did. I spend nearly 100 tl on that stuff.. only to find the ants still coming in. So last month when I paid the rent I told him that I will leave. small white lie. I said that I would be gone by August 10. He said to meet him on august 10 to hand over keys. But here it is July 1 and I look like I have been to war. I have dozens of bites and my cat does too. So the question is: seeing as how I gave a deposit of the amount of the rent and I want to leave July 20, can I say to him that I will leave July 20 and he can keep the deposit and I will pay all bills to zero and call it quits? I mean is that not what the deposit if for? He would not give it back anyhow even if I had only stayed here one day. I realize this now. I just don't want any problems with the police and all. I am not sure what the process is here when someone wants to out someone from a flat. I mean, do they call the police and have the police bother you? Do they report you to the courts? I am leaving of my own will with no problems. I just want to leave here and live like a normal person!!! HELP!!!!!
  15. What are the types of short term residence permits? I need to avoid the tourist type because it doesn't lead to citizenship. Is there really such a thing as a renter's residence permit that is stated on the web page below? https://www.permitinturkey.com/ I am a renter, so if this option does exist I didn't see it on the residence permit application as an option so how would I apply for this type of permit and does it lead to citizenship?
  16. Hello dear members, İ need your help and advices please İ am planing to move for İstanbul for to join my fiancé, but we cannot find a flat according to his salary. İt is around Büyükçekmece. Does anyone knows how to find a flat with maximum 600 TL? And please, can you advice me for finding a job there? İ am biologist and speak arabic, french and english.
  17. We're planning to spend 3 to 6 months living in Antalya (arriving towards the end of May) but are not sure of the best way to find a suitable rental property, given our lack of Turkish language. We're also not sure of how much rental prices are for the type of place we're looking for. We've looked at numbeo.com but now need to see how actual prices relate to actual properties. Specifically, we're looking for: Furnished 1-bedroom apartment or house with washing machine A good internet connection (given typical speeds in Antalya) Walking distance to the sea and local shops, but not necessarily central. A local rental rate. Something inexpensive! We are digital nomads on a tight budget and need to find a place that is as good value as possible, while still meeting the above criteria. And, is there's anything else we need to be aware of that's specific to renting in Antalya or Turkey more generally? I've read something about water considerations which I don't fully understand, so if anyone can shed light on that I'd very much appreciate it.
  18. I'm looking for accommodation in May, a one bedroom place either near the mountains or somewhere in walking distance to the beach. Just wondering if anyone can suggest a place. Also wondering what the cost per month might be. I'll need it for a minimum of 6 months.
  19. So today my issue is with the rent contract/agreement I need to bring to renew my residence permit. I did not get a new agreement but now that I am asking for one, my landlord and the emlak (real estate agent) are asking for 400TL! This not only seems extremely shady and possibly illegal, but I also can't afford this. So, the questions are: Is it normal to pay that much for a contract, which would normally be my right to have? Is there another way to prove that I live here? Would just a letter from my landlord, signed and notarized be enough?
  20. I am considering looking for a long term rental property preferably in Oba, Alanya. I was wondering if anyone can offer me any advice regarding this, I have so many questions and I'm not sure where to begin. How much should I expect to pay for a 2 bed furnished place? What additional costs am I likely to incur? Is Oba more expensive than nearer to Alanya centre? Can I allow family and friends to stay there when I am not there? Where should I begin to look for properties i.e., private rentals or estate agents etc.? I am hoping to come over in February to start looking, and I want to come prepared.
  21. I am moving into a new apartment as this one is near to my workplace. Today, when I was carrying some of my luggage into my new room, my neighbor opened his door. He was at least 60 judging by his looks. He stared at me and my friend suspiciously and then started to ask questions. I didn't quite catch the conversation between him and my friend. However, I could clearly feel his unhappiness and unfriendliness because he was definitely muttering. My friend seemed pretty embarrassed. Later I asked my friend what was going on. He told me that he did not welcome my living here. I asked whether he was unhappy because I am from China. My friend said he did not welcome any single man living next to his door. i was surprised to know that. My friend also added that single men are more easily to be refused when they are renting houses in Turkey. I am feeling a little bit down. I said Merhaba and smiled really nicely to him. He just shut the door in front of my face. .
  22. Good afternoon I have just got a job in a nursery in Istanbul and will be moving in August, and wondered if people could give me some advice please? Is 4500TL a good wage? How do I go about finding accommodation? What are the start up costs like (e.g deposits etc) Is the commuting really as bad as everyone says it is? How do I go about getting a bank account? Is it easy to make new friends? What are the best supermarkets? I know I have asked a lot of questions but I'm sure that you lovely people can help Thanks in advance
  23. Hello all, I am new to these forums. I have read a few topics, and I think this is a very useful place to gather information about Istanbul. I am coming to Istanbul University for PhD. My department is in Avcılar campus. Need guidance on the following issues: Where can I get a cheap 1+1 apartment near Avcılar? If there is any member of this forum who is studying or working in Istanbul university, please let me know.
  24. Hi - can anyone give me some guidance about the general cost of renting a room in a flat in Istanbul? I had a cursory look the last time I was over and it seems Manchester prices - £400- £500 a month is achievable. I'd prefer to stay somewhere pretty close to the centre - Besitikas, Galata, Beyoglu Or even somewhere over the other side like Yusufpasa? Ideally I'd like a flatshare, but a hostel initially or staying with a family could be an option. Anyone know about deposits etc - how the whole renting thing works in Istanbul ? Plus which are the best publication/ websites for listings? I'd be grateful for any info.
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