Cost of Living in Turkey 2012/2013

By | on 17th January 2013 | 2 Comments

Dikili HarbourI last wrote about the cost of living in Turkey back in February 2011.  Since then the cost of living has risen, but so has the cost of living around the world.

It is still the fact that if you want to live in Turkey you have to decide what sort of lifestyle you want and what sort of monthly budget you have.

If you want to go out partying every night then you are going to need a large budget, but if you’re happy to be at home and go out once or twice a monthly then you can live on a lesser amount.

We certainly have noticed a difference in our bills over the last few months of 2012.  The cost Electricity and Natural Gas went up by around 10% in 2012 and car, cigarettes and alcohol taxes all went up.

In 2012 Petrol prices in Turkey became the highest in the world.  Though a slight drop Fuel is still very expensive here.  You will pay around 4.30 to 4.50 lira per litre.

Food prices across the globe have risen and we have seen a reflection of this in Turkey. The cost of red meat has not changed since 2011 but it is still expensive to buy and is a luxury if you are on a low budget.

What are the monthly costs?

In February 2011 I suggested around £650 was a reasonable amount to consider.   I would now suggest you look at increasing this by £100 to give you  £750 pm this will give you around 2000 Lira a month depending on the interest rate.

What do you need to consider in your monthly costs.

  • Rent/mortgage      350 > Lira pm (average 500 lira pm)
  • Electricity                65-190 lira pm (average 95 lira pm)
  • Water                          50 > Lira pm (average 40 lira pm)
  • Gas, bottled              15 > lira pm (average 15 lira pm)
  • Gas mains,         90 – 290 lira pm (average 95 lira pm)
  • Food minimum       400-550 lira pm
  • Telephone, Internet, TV 80> Lira pm

The largest expenses being your rent/mortgage and food, you will most probably average around  1000 – 1300 lira on rent, food and utilities and the additional will cover car, lifestyle, clothes and unexpected expenses.  You won’t live the high life but you can still enjoy life in Turkey.

Some additional cost throughout the year:

Flights, if you plan to make regular trips home you will need to consider cost of flights and availability from your area.

Health Care, health care is not free here and so you will need to consider paying for health insurance or take the risk of having to pay off a hospital bill at some point. Costs starting from £100> per year.

Property and Earthquake Insurance, if you own your house you will most likely want to take out home insurance and also earthquake Insurance.  The average cost of home insurance 400 lira a year and earthquake insurance DASK is around 150 lira a year.

Maintenance Fee, depending on where your house or apartment is you will most likely have to pay maintenance fee for the community areas and this varies in cost. average £50 per month

Residency Fee, if you are living full time in Turkey you will require a residency visa for more details on cost and how to apply click here Residency fee and application process.

Drinking Water, the tap water in Turkey has improved dramatically and you can drink the tap water in many areas now.  It’s really a matter of choice.  We prefer to drink bottled water and a 19 litre drum of water lasts us 1 week and we pay around 4.50 lira each time.  Some villages and towns have water fountains where you can fill up your own water bottles for free.

Heating in Winter, your utilities bills are normally lower in the summer months in the winter you need to account for heating your home, it does get cold and does snow in the winter time in Turkey.  If you have mains gas and central heating you will see a huge jump in your Gas bill.  Electric bills will also increase if you are running Air con for heating and using electrical heating devices.  If you have a wood burner then it is easier to budget for the cost of wood for the winter months.  Also be aware many properties along the coast are not insulated properly you may want to consider insulating your home to help save on costs.

Car costs, owning a car in Turkey isn’t cheap if you are happy to use public transport then this may save you a lot on your budget.  Average cost of insurance and car tax per year starts around 800 lira a year upwards.

Eating out and Entertainments and Pets, you need to budget in extra costs if you like to go out a lot or enjoy various hobbies or like to keep pets.  You will need to figure in a rough cost of what you are happy to spend on these each month.

Property Warning, if you are planning to purchase property here do your research first, find a good solicitor and check out the estate agent or builder before handing over any cash and if possible try to use a recommended company.  Many people have ended up having their dreams ruined by cowboy builders and estate agents don’t fall into the same trap.

All in all Turkey is becoming more expensive but still a lot cheaper than some places in Europe.  If you are planning to live on a pension here then please do consider yearly inflation and change in interests rates. Many come here selling up all the have at home and discover the life isn’t for them.   Try some time here in the winter months as well as the summer.  See if you can live on your planned budget.  Also remember its hard leaving loved ones and friends behind.  You also have to consider your health and the cost of care if it is needed.

© 2013 – 2015, Kerry Arslan. All rights reserved.

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2 Responses to “Cost of Living in Turkey 2012/2013”

  1. 29th January 2014

    L Dawes Reply

    Kerry, its good to see, and get, real time advice and opinions from someone actually “on the ground” so to speak. We are looking at moving to Turkey, location TBC, April(ish) 2015. We will have a monthly budget of a guaranteed £900. Looking to rent for the first 6-12 months, to get a true feel for the place, as only been there for 2-3 week holidays and visits prior, before we buy a place. As early retirees in our mid 40s we are looking forward to getting away from the so called rat race, and slow down our pace of life a little…and get the time to actually enjoy our surroundings. So thanks for your blog and your local info, very useful and I will be referring to your web site on a lot more occasions in the future. Thanks and take care.

  2. 20th February 2014

    Hank Reply

    Hi L Dawes, nice to see more people in 40’s (we are 48) that want to escape the rat race, and we want the same, probably hitting Turkey by end of 2014. Our budget is 2000 Euro per Month more or less, and that seems more than enough.

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