Summer house rents soaring ahead of holiday season

Summer house rents soaring ahead of holiday season

Gülistan Alagöz-ISTANBUL
Summer house rents soaring ahead of holiday season

Holidaymakers are already searching for summer houses to spend their vacation in Turkey’s coastal towns but only to find that rent prices have skyrocketed.

On average, the rent of an apartment in the tourist hotspot Bodrum, on the Aegean coast, is now around 30,000 Turkish Liras ($2,000), while prices for luxury units can go up to between 100,000 and 250,000 euros.

In Alaçatı and Çeşme, rents for a regular apartment are around 6,000 liras, whereas it is 150,000 liras for villas.

In Kaş, another favorite holiday destination, the rent of a villa is 4,000 liras a night.

Rents are on the rise also in the southern province of Antalya. But the reason for this increase is not holidaymakers but Russians and Ukrainians who are moving to the province after fleeing the ongoing war in Ukraine.

Demand for summer houses picked up after the coronavirus pandemic broke out as people wanted to stay away from the crowded cities.

Rents rose significantly in the wake of COVID-19 because of a limited supply of such houses. The increase was particularly significant in the popular resort towns.

“Demand is already huge. Landlords are not willing to lease out their properties on a yearly basis but only on a seasonal or monthly basis. Rents vary depending on the location, how close it is to the beach,” said Süha Kumbasar, a real estate consultant in Bodrum.

The higher rents are causing problems for locals, forcing them to seek cheaper houses.

“For instance, civil servants working here are moving to remote parts of the town,” Kumbasar said.

Şebnem Ünlü, another realtor in the town, recalled that a couple of years back, the monthly rent of a house was somewhere between 3,500 liras and 5,000 liras if it was rented for a year.

“It is very difficult to find a house to rent for a year. Even if you find one, you should pay at least 10,000 liras per month,” she explained.

Prices in Bodrum go even much higher. The monthly rent of a luxurious villa in this resort town during the high season is between 100,000 and 250,000 euros, according to Veli Armagan Akyuz, a real estate investment expert.

A landlord asked for a monthly rent of 2.4 million liras for a five-bedroom villa and someone rented it for two months, said Onur Doyan, a real estate agent in Bodrum.

Demand was strong for detached houses in 2020 and 2021 because of the pandemic, which already had pushed prices and rents higher, a realtor in Çeşme recalled.

“The pace of the rise in rents seems to have slowed. There is still demand for the summer season, but the number of deals made is not high. Landlords are asking for high rents, but potential customers want to negotiate the price,” İlki Küni said.

In Antalya, the situation is no different but for another reason. The demand for houses in the touristic province is on the rise due to Russians and Ukrainians who are fleeing their countries because of the ongoing war and want to live in the city until things calm down.

“Rents have risen 100 percent in [the district of] Alanya within the past two months. Landlords prefer foreigners over local customers because they know that foreigners will accept all conditions, such as rent and security deposits they put forward,” said Ümit Becer, a real estate consultant.