House sales remain stable ahead of rate hike taking effect
ISTANBUL - Reuters
DHA PhotoThe Turkish housing market maintained last year’s level of sales in January, before the Central Bank’s massive interest hike, which was expected to curb buyers’ appetite by raising mortgage interests, took hold.
According to House Sale Statistics released by the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) on Feb.24, 87,639 houses changed hands in Turkey throughout January.
Of the sold houses, 1,207 were sold to foreigners, with approximately one third of them in Antalya, Land Registry and Cadaster data announced by TÜİK has shown.
Following the holiday resort province Antalya, where 464 houses were sold to foreigners, Istanbul ranked second in foreign housing sales with 243 houses. The northwestern province of Sakarya ranked third with 119 houses.
In overall sales, Istanbul has maintained its top spot by accommodating 20 percent of the house transfers, while Ankara and İzmir followed it with 11.6 and 6.1 percent shares respectively.
To protect the Turkish Lira from further sliding, on Jan. 28 the Central Bank more than doubled its borrowing rate from 3.5 percent to 8 percent, and raised the lending rate from 7.75 percent to 12 percent.
The rise in interest rates is expected to negatively affect the ability of mortgage borrowers to take new loans.