Greece: An investment magnet for the real estate market
With inflation shaking the Greek property market, many potential buyers have been left wondering if this a good time to invest in the Greek real estate market.
Tonya Kokkolis, from estate company eXp Realty, talked to Neos Kosmos, and explained why investing in Greece is still worth it.
“Real estate in Greece is more lucrative than in most European countries – and real estate is considered the most profitable industry in Greece,” says Tonya, who is professionally involved in buying and selling real estate in both Australia and Greece.
She stressed that Greece’s stability in the investment market, involves “good growth potential for the coming years”, adding that “attractive investment opportunities will continue to drive the Greek economy higher.”
The Greek real estate evolution
The cost of business activity hit high figures in the early 2000s, particularly in regard to business licenses and compensation. And there was a noticeable lack of loans while people did not seem comfortable buying property.
The economic destabilisation and uncertainty brought on by the pandemic left legitimate questions, in relation to investment actions.
However, according to recent estimates, Tonya is optimistic about Greece’s investment potential today.
She sees the challenge of the pandemic “as an opportunity for change”, and believes that Greece has shown exceptional resilience and “unique flexibility in the overall market picture.”
Greece has turned into an “attractive destination,” since the lure of investors lies in tourism.
Furthermore digital platforms have made it possible to work remotely, with “lower operating costs”, which have made Greece as a “more investment-friendly destination”, with “excellent investment opportunities.”
“With a rich cultural heritage and an abundance in natural beauty, our country is undoubtedly an object of admiration for those who visit it,” she adds.
What has also benefited the country greatly is the advanced expertise of Greek companies in travel and hospitality, that promote “luring” packages and offers for travellers.
Two homelands does not make you less Greek
Born in Melbourne to parents from Sparta, Tonya returned to Greece in the 1990’s, and ventured into real estate in 2006.
In 2018 she moved back to Melbourne with the aim of creating a “channel” for buyers to and from Greece.
Kokkolis, said that although foreign investment has been a great support for the Greek economy, it is equally important “not to forget our origins, our roots, our traditions.”
“I do not believe that we should only seek foreign investors, ignoring how much Greeks need to keep ties with their homeland”, she said.
Determined to keep these ties alive, she said that her own vision “does not stop here.”
“My vision is to help the Greeks in our community benefit from the Greek real estate market as opportunities have been created that are expected to bring high returns,” she states.
Driven by her love for Greece, Tonya feels connected to her roots “through Hellenic values”, while admitting that “by choosing two homelands, you are essentially choosing two lives”.
“Having two homelands doesn’t make you less Greek.”
Areas with major investment activity
Islands consistently demonstrate “strong performance” due to tourism, Tonya said and added that “Athens along with urban areas will continue to grow,” while changes in lifestyle brought by the pandemic seem to have had a positive impact in regional areas.
“Any downturn will probably be short term,” she said, and expects that the return on investment will continue to hover around the 8 per cent-10 per cent.
China, the U.S., Israel, and Cyprus as well as many European countries have recently demonstrated strong investment activity.
Barriers for property investors in Greece
Kokkolis, said that what prevents potential buyers from investing in real estate in Greece is “not knowing the basic legislation on property ownership.”
“I advise investors to choose an international company that provides quality services with qualified and experienced executives in the real estate sector, offering a complete package of services.”
She thinks that both the paperwork and the completion of the transaction are important to be done with great care, as any misinformation can lead to wrong choices.
Attention to detail
Before any investment in property, it is essential to know all the legal processes Kokkolis said.
Attention must be paid to all procedures leading to the signing of the contracts, as well as all in those cases where the buyer is of a foreign country.
She explains that if the buyer is not aware of the procedure, there is a high likelihood that they will find themselves in the unfortunate position of “buying a property to which they have no rights”.
“They should therefore choose the real estate agency that will guide him correctly” she concludes.