By Aysu Bicer
ANKARA (AA) - Turkey saw 146,903 house sales in September with an annual increase of 15.4%, the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat) said on Wednesday.
"Istanbul had the highest share of house sales with 15.8% and 23,265 sold house," TurkStat said in a statement.
The capital Ankara and the Aegean province of Izmir followed Istanbul with 14,906 and 8,830 house sales, respectively.
"The least house sold provinces were Hakkari and Ardahan with 19 house sales," it added.
Some 51,393 houses were sold for the first time, decreasing 14.7% in September versus the same month last year, it indicated, adding that first house sales had 35% share of all house sales in Turkey.
Istanbul -- Turkey's largest city by population and a key tourist center -- took the largest share of the pie with 16.2% or 8,347 house sales.
Official data showed that the capital Ankara and the Aegean province of Izmir racked up 3,921 and 2,887 total of housing sales, respectively.
Mortgaged house sales were recorded at 57,811, surging 410.2%, over the same period, making up a 39.4% share of all house sales in Turkey.
- Sales to foreigners
Official data showed that property sales to foreigners decreased by 25.6% year-on-year in September, reaching 4,177 units.
Istanbul led sales with 1,924 houses, followed by the Mediterranean resort city of Antalya (744) and Ankara with (239).
Among foreigners, Iraqi nationals topped the list with 781 houses. They were followed by Iranians with 489 and Russians with 248 house sales.