Jan 22, 2019
Today, residential property in Athens is 40% cheaper in comparison to 2008: this means the potential for price growth is high – Source: Depositphotos, sborisov
Why You Should Invest in Athens Real Estate
Demand from foreign investors is currently being fuelled by cheap, so-called “Golden Visas”: a Greek residence permit can be obtained through the purchase of a property of at least €250,000. In the rival markets of Spain and Portugal, the thresholds are set at €500,000…and Latvia, where such a visa also costs €250,000, investors are only allowed to purchase a single property.
The Greek property market is heterogeneous. Locations like Mykonos, Rhodes, and Santorini, for example, are already alive and kicking – local hotel occupancy rates run at 80–90%, and property prices in popular districts exceed €10,000/m2.
Athens is very likely to become the next Greek city to witness another period of growth in the real estate segment. For this to happen, a number of preconditions are already being fulfilled:
1. Economic recovery
Athens is the economic center of Greece, generating 19.9% of the country’s GDP – more than any other EU capital. It is logical to presume that the recovery of the Greek economy would have a direct impact on the capital.
The general decline in the national economy, which began in 2008, is now slowing down. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Greece’s GDP will grow by 2.8% in 2017. According to Trading Economics forecasts, the country’s economy will continue to grow by 1.2% per annum on average up to 2020.
2. An increase in the number of tourists
Athens is the country’s tourist capital, thanks to its well-preserved cultural heritage and comfortable climate. According to the Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE), in 2016, the capital attracted every third international tourist to the country, which is 1.5 times more than the second-most popular city, Heraklion.
According to SETE, the number of international tourists visiting Athens almost doubled between 2012 and 2016, growing from 2.6 million to 4.5 million.
Overall, this is a good time for the country’s tourism industry, with rival destinations being seen as unstable. According to the preliminary data from UNWTO, tourist arrivals in Turkey fell by 29% in 2016, while the number of visitors to Greece increased by 5%.
According to MasterCard, Athens is among the top 20 European cities in terms of number of international tourists spending a minimum of one night at their destinations. Prices are relatively low there: according to 2016 data from global hospitality industry tracker STR, hotel rates in Athens are lower than tourist hubs like Paris, Rome, Barcelona, Amsterdam, London, and Dublin.
3. Low prices with a potential for growth
Property in Athens is cheaper than in many other European capitals: about thrice cheaper than Lisbon, Madrid, and Berlin, five times cheaper than Vienna, and almost eight times cheaper than Paris.