Recent amendments to Turkish real estate law

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Various amendments affecting the Turkish real estate law have been adopted through the Omnibus Law No. 7181 on the Amendments to the Land Registry Law and Certain Other Laws ("Law") which was published in the Official Gazette dated July 10, 2019 and numbered 30827. Some of the notable amendments relate to the land registry transactions, mortgage, and risk-bearing/derelict buildings.

Amendments regarding land registry transactions

Prior to the amendment of Article 26 of the Land Registry Law No. 2644 (“Land Registry Law”), the seller and the purchaser of an immovable property were required to be present before the same land registry directorate to complete transfer of ownership. Per the amendment which will enter into force on January 1, 2020, the seller and the purchaser will be able to complete the transfer of ownership in different land registry directorates or in title deed missions abroad.

Currently, the only title deed mission abroad is in Berlin, Germany. The Ministry of Environment and Urban Planning has announced that 12 other title deed missions are intended to be established in Germany, United Kingdom, Greece, the Netherlands, Austria, Denmark, Norway, Russia, Belgium, Qatar and two Turkic republic in the Central Asia.

Amendments regarding release of mortgage

The Law amended Article 883 of Turkish Civil Code and provided the immovable property owner with the right to request the release of mortgage from the land registry directorate in case (i) the mortgage is established for a limited period and (ii) the annotation regarding the commencement of foreclosure proceedings pursuant to Article 150/C of Enforcement and Bankruptcy Law No. 2004 is put onto the title deed within 30 days following the expiry of said limited period.

This amendment will enter into force on January 1, 2020. Pursuant to Provisional Article 26 of the Land Registry Law, the aforementioned 30-day period will commence on January 1, 2020 with regard to mortgages whose limited time period expired prior to January 1, 2020 but has not been released.

Amendments regarding greenhouses

The Law amended Article 27 of the Zoning Law No. 3194 (“Zoning Law”) and abolished the construction permit requirement for greenhouses to be established for agricultural purposes in the non-residential areas within or outside the municipal and adjacent areas, provided that such greenhouses are not integrated facilities and that the approval of the relevant provincial directorate of agriculture and forestry is obtained.

Amendments regarding risk-bearing/derelict buildings

The Law amended Article 39 of the Zoning Law and decreased the 10-day period for the correction notice to be served by the authorities to the owners of the risk-bearing/derelict buildings down to 3 days. In case the notice cannot be served to the owners, the notice will be announced on the relevant authority’s website for 30 days. Prior to the amendment, the notice was served to the residents of the derelict building in case it could not be served to the owners of the building.

Prior to the amendment, the owners of a risk-bearing/derelict building were required to remedy the risks within the time period set forth in the notice served by the authorities. Per the amendment, such time period to be set forth by the authorities shall not exceed 30 days following the notice or the announcement on the relevant authority’s website. In case of failure to take the remedy actions in the required timeframe, relevant authorities can take necessary actions and collect the expenses thereof from the owners along with an additional 20% of such expenses as penalty.

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