Use a Translator
A translator can help you in a variety of situations abroad. The thought of coping with property transactions in the Turkish language intimidates many people and for some it may put them off buying a home in Turkey or making a permanent move here. It seems alien compared to languages learned at school, yet we’ve all seen the multitude of expat kids jabbering away in Turkish and many of us have sat down with new-found friends in Turkey over a glass of raki and with a mix of sign language, broken English and pigeon Turkish you understand each other. However, the perceived language barrier should not put you off taking advantage of Turkey’s cheap property prices and magnificent low-cost lifestyle A highly proffessional translator can help you through the maze of documentation and legal procedures necessary to complete your property purchase.
Only Fools Rush In
Many people are conversant in English including many people who are selling land and property and it’s all too easy to spot your Turkish idyll and rush into an agreement with the seller without fully understanding exactly what you are getting for your money. The seller whose English seems adequate to your ears may not have such a strong command and may misinterpret your questions leading you to believe that that the land or furniture you see before you are included in the price when they are not. Instead of worrying about losing this dream property organize a meeting with a registered translator before you make any kind of agreement. Your translator will be able to liaise on your behalf with the seller, your appointed solicitor and where necessary a surveyor. Without him or her, you will never be sure of what it is you are buying. Therefore it is impertinent to hire a translator so not to cause any confusion.
Understanding What you are Signing
If you were purchasing land or property in your home country, all of the documents associated with the sale would be written in your native language. Thus, the surveyors report, papers from the Land Registry office and Planning Departments, the legal documents from your solicitor and any offers from financial institutions would be in a language you are fully fluent with. Obviously buying in Turkey, these documents will be in Turkish and in order to fully understand what each one means you should have them all translated. A registered translator will stamp and sign each document to show that they were translated properly and in the event that they were not your case will be upheld in court under Turkish law. Whilst you may have made a very reliable Turkish friend with superb language skills, their translation counts for nothing if they are not considered registered to perform official translations and their vocabulary may not extend as far as the legal terms conveyed in an official document.
A large number of foreign buyers fall into the trap of relying on the wrong people to help them through the paper trail and consequently many come unstuck when they find, later down the line, that the documents they signed do not convey what they really thought they did. Your agent may speak fantastic English and so may your solicitor and sellers, however they are not registered to tell you what is actually written down in your contract with your seller or on documents from one of the municipal departments. A skilled translator can help you with all these things. The questions you should consider are these ‘would you let your estate agent handle you legal documents back home?’ and ‘would you hand over money to a stranger in a pub purporting to have a house for sale without seeing a contract in your own language?’
Checking the Small Print
No matter how strong your command of Turkish, the documentation associated with the purchase of land or property is fraught with legal and technical terms, which could, if you do not fully understand them, mask many sins for example if you need to understand the documents from the planning office about the permission to build on your land or the contract between apartment owners regarding the annual service contract.
Using a registered translator is well worth every penny you have to spend on their fees and you will be pleasantly surprised to learn that they are not as expensive as you may think. Their fee will provide you with peace of mind about what you are signing and what agreements were made at each step of the sale. Just make sure you hire a proffessional, reputable translator
Most of all a registered translator will ensure that nothing is ‘lost in translation.’