Real Estate Litigation

Real Estate Litigation

Ketenci&Ketenci is highly recommended by several directories worldwide on real estate / property law matters. We provide significant advice from a Turkish property law point of view in respect to the disputes that may arise, thus represent our clients before Turkish Courts accordingly.

Our corporate litigation practice focuses on:

Our real estate litigation experience spans numerous sectors including hotels, resorts, hospitals, office and retail space, planned residential and mixed use buildings.

We routinely represent clients in disputes and litigation involving the following areas;

  • Real estate development or construction projects
  • Residential and commercial property rentals and related lease agreements, landlord/tenant disputes
  • Real estate-related contract, tort, fraudulent conveyance and fictitious sales transactions
  • Trespass proceedings, adverse possession claims and partition actions when ownership rights in properties shall be separated
  • Construction disputes, including subsidence, excavation, general contractor and subcontractor disputes
  • Conflicts arising from inherited lands and properties
  • Land-use restrictions and zoning
  • Management and operating agreements pertaining to shopping malls, multi-use buildings, resorts etc. as well as common area maintenance and other reconciliation issues
  • Disputes between unit owners and/or building managers resulting from Condominium Law
  • Litigation regarding fair market value, urban redevelopment issues and relocation

We aim to find effective and business-oriented solutions primarily in disputes. Our broad knowledge regarding Turkish Real Estate Market and our former experiences in Real Estate Market help us to find useful solutions for our clients. We advise effective solutions in order to settle the dispute using the methods of negotiating settlement, bringing an action or pursing alternative dispute resolution. The expertise of our real estate litigators is supplemented by the experience of our substantial real estate group, which specializes in development, investment, planning, construction, environmental and residential issues.

Real Estate Investment

In last decade, international real estate markets significantly focused in Turkey. It is the 17th largest economy in the world and the 6th largest economy in Europe, with a GDP of approximately USD 800 billion in 2014. Accordingly, the interest of local and foreign investors in the real estate market progressively increased every year.

Favored geographical location; large scaled urban renewal; large capacity and strength in the construction sector; population growth and demographic advantage; increasing per capital income; and ease of doing business are the main reasons of the demand growth in Turkish real estate sector.

The total number of houses sold in the property market reached 1,165,381 units in 2014; likewise sales of real estate to foreigners began to increase following the cancellation of the reciprocity law.

Ketenci&Ketenci provides legal opinions on every sort of major real estate development, including commercial, retail, office, industrial, residential, hotel and etc.

Housing Market

The current situation, along with strategic plans and future projects in the pipeline, offers huge potential for investors in Turkey’s real estate sector. In terms of the annual price growth index, with an 18.5 percent rate of increase, Turkey emerged as the best-performing housing market in Europe, ahead of Ireland, Luxembourg, Estonia, and Iceland. The increase in population and migration from rural areas to urban areas created rapid growth in the cities in Turkey. According to results of the Emerging Trends in Real Estate Survey performed by Urban Land Institute and Price Waterhouse Coopers, Istanbul is ranked as the third most attractive real estate investment market among all European Cities.

Urban renewal and mega projects rule the agenda for the predictable future, particularly in Istanbul with projects such as Eurasia Tunnel, Marmaray, Canal Istanbul, the third Bosphorus bridge, and Istanbul’s third airport.

Office Market

The office market has been developing rapidly as of 2002 as the number of multinational companies, foreign investments and large national companies has grown in Turkey, particularly in Istanbul. Turkey’s office space market, one of the most important dynamics of the real estate sector, holds huge potential for investors. Office construction licenses obtained throughout Turkey increased by 27 percent, hitting 6.84 million square meters.

Business Centre Area in European side of Istanbul holds almost fifty percent of the office stocks in Istanbul. On the other hand, thanks to establishing new business districts in Asian side of Istanbul, the office stocks have been rapidly increasing in Asian side as well. Class A office space supply is expected to reach 6.5 million square meters by the end of 2017 with the completion of projects like the Istanbul Finance Centre in Asian side. Initiated in 2009, the Istanbul Finance Centre is a project to build and create a financial district in Istanbul that will become both a regional and global financial hub. The expected cost of the project will be approximately USD 2 billion. According to projections, the Istanbul Finance Centre will provide employment for 30,000 people. Once completed, the financial district will be larger than its counterparts in New York and London.

Retail Market

Moving to the retail market, remarkable growth has been driven by high retail demand. Oxford Economics’ forecasts indicate a 3.2 percent growth in retail sales between 2014 and 2018, higher than mature European markets. The number of shopping centres, including the projects that have already been announced, is expected to exceed 400 by 2017. Combined, these centres would account for 12.5 million square meters of rentable area. Istanbul will definitely continue to maintain its charm for retail investors in the coming years. According to the Council of Shopping Centre Investors’ data, the leasable area per 1000 people is 246 m2 in Ankara, 227 m2 in İstanbul. The Istanbul Metropolitan Area has 104 shopping centres with a total gross leasable area of 3,809,736 million square meters. With these figures, according to JLL’s Cross Border Retailer Attractiveness Index 2015, Istanbul is the 7th most attractive market in Europe after London, Paris, Moscow, Milan, Madrid, and Rome.

As a well-known tourism destination, Turkey is the 6th most popular tourist destination in the world. From 2002 to 2014, the number of international tourist arrivals increased 200 percent to 39.8 million.

By the end of 2014 there were 13,436 registered accommodation facilities, accounting for a combined capacity of more than 1,250,000 beds. There are currently 281 projects in the pipeline that would add 74,130 much needed beds to Turkey’s short supply. As of 2014, there are more than 165 hotel chains in Turkey, with 15 percent of these hotels being owned by international investors. Based on Turkey’s 2023 Tourism Strategy, it is aimed to reach 63 million visitors with USD 86 billion foreign tourism revenue and USD 1,350 revenue per foreign visitor.

Strategically situated at the crossroads of Europe, the Middle East, and Central Asia, and home to almost 78 million people, Turkey has easy access to 1.5 billion consumers and has undergone a profound economic transformation over the past decade. The increase in population and migration from rural areas to urban areas created rapid growth in the cities in Turkey. According to results of the Emerging Trends in Real Estate Survey performed by Urban Land Institute and Price Waterhouse Coopers, Istanbul is ranked as the third most attractive real estate investment market among all European Cities.

How can Ketenci&Ketenci assist you on your real estate investments in Turkey?

Ketenci&Ketenci have particular expertise in conducting complex multi-jurisdictional transactions, real estate portfolio acquisitions, dispositions and financings, and in the establishment of investment funds and joint ventures.

Ketenci&Ketenci provide legal services mainly in relation to following matters related to Property & Real Estate Law;

  • Acquisitions and dispositions of retail, office, hotel, industrial, recreational and residential properties,
  • Acquisitions and dispositions of businesses of which real estate is a material asset,
  • Providing legal opinions as to choice of investment structures,
  • Providing legal analysis of leases and other property contracts, performing a research on the regulatory compliance, performing title searches and reviewing,
  • Resolving disputes arising from the purchase, financing, management and sale of real estates or businesses with real estate holdings,
  • Acquisition, construction and permanent financing, from both the lender's and the borrower's perspective,
  • Drafting, negotiating and implementing the loan and security documentations,
  • Duly transferring the title deeds before the title deed registries,
  • In case of foreign buyers, applying for military permission of the real estate before the competent authorities,
  • Coordination of all aspects of land use planning and development process, including dealing with government and public agencies, securing regulatory approvals, and representing clients before administrative courts, title deed registries and municipalities,
  • Drafting and negotiation of construction contracts,
  • Construction financing, from both the lender's and the borrower's perspective,
  • Litigation involving construction lien matters, delay claims and bonding claims, and liquidated damages claims,
  • Retail, office and industrial leasing, from the landlord's or the tenant's perspective,
  • Providing legal advices on landlord-tenant disputes arising during the term of a lease or upon its termination.

In addition, we provide advise to our private clients when purchasing property in Turkey and abroad.

Our service is effective in minimising the risk and addressing our clients' ongoing and emerging requirements which also includes:

  • Dealing with contracts,
  • Concluding the purchase,
  • Due diligence on the property itself and the real estate agencies,
  • Representing client before Title Deed Office,
  • Representing client before Notary,
  • Completing all necessary registrations,
  • Litigation,
  • Financial advice