THE PROPERTY MARKET IN GREECE IS A MAGNET FOR DOMESTIC AND FOREIGN INVESTORS
At the center of European and international interest is the real estate market in our country, with investors looking for opportunities for all kinds of real estate from residences, offices, storage spaces to land to be used and redeveloped for commercial and recreational purposes. Despite the new challenges, the real estate market in our country shows exceptional strength, according to converging estimates formulated at the annual conference of Prodexpo during which the overall picture of the market was presented, underlines the APE-MPE.
The residences in Greece are a magnet for foreign residents
According to research presented during the Prodexpo conference, an increasing number of citizens from various foreign countries are looking for homes in Greece, with Athens, the Cyclades and Halkidiki being at the top of their preferences. In particular, according to Spitogatos Insights research, one fifth of the total searches on the company’s platform come from abroad. The greatest interest comes from Germans, who are looking for properties throughout the country, mainly in mainland Greece, with Thessaloniki and Halkidiki being their top preferences.
Second in searches is the USA, both by Greeks in the diaspora and by Americans, who are interested in buying a summer home in expensive areas, such as the Cyclades and the southern suburbs of Athens. In third place we find the United Kingdom, where searches are also divided between Greeks and Britons. The focus is on residences in the center of Athens, the southern and northern suburbs and the Cyclades. Next come the Spanish, the Cypriots and the French, with the latter showing increased interest recently, especially in Paros, the rest of the Cyclades and the center of Athens. From the rest of the countries, the interest of the Bulgarians in relatively cheap real estate in Kavala and Halkidiki stands out, as well as the Israelis, who entered the list of top prospective buyers for the first time. The interest from Israel grows year by year in the center of Athens, the southern and northern suburbs and the Cyclades. According to data also presented at the conference, significant demand for urban real estate comes from digital nomads as well as students, with demand falling short of supply as a large stock of real estate is in need of upgrading. However, a fact that strengthens the growth prospects of the individual sectors of the economy, such as construction, which are linked to the real estate sector.
International hotel chains give a vote of confidence to the real estate market in Greece
However, it is not only ordinary private investors from foreign countries who are looking for real estate in Greece in order to invest. Leading international tourism brands come to our country or strengthen their presence by investing in the real estate market or taking over the management of hotel units. As Nikos Chantzos, Founder & MD, Hotellect Consultant, Marriott International said, “we returned to Greece because there are opportunities”. For his part, Leon Avigad, Founder & Co-Owner, Brown Hotels said that the group started the activity in our country out of love for Greece and then it became a business choice. We have a clear strategy with privately owned hotels that we work on ourselves, we do not lease them to third parties. We don’t go to “fillet” areas. For example, we are interested in the wider area of Omonia as it has opportunities, lower prices compared to Syntagma for example, and it is an area that is 10 minutes from the center. Here in Greece you have everything”.
Urban renewal everywhere
Large investments are also made in the field of renovations, small and large in size, by Greek and foreign companies. Reuse of old industrial sites after renovations for residential, commercial and recreational purposes is also underway. As Dimitris Andriopoulos, Dimitris Andriopoulos, president and CEO of Dimand said, “Greece is an opportunity in itself.” As mentioned by Antonios Robolis, associate professor at Panteion University, growing cities swallow the first industrial areas, with the result that these areas are now inside the city and the industries are moving to the outside. Dimitris Manousakis, Managing Partner, KENTRIKI and International Associate of Savills, cited as a successful example the reuse of the former industrial facilities of Papastratos in Piraeus, saying that the effect on the area is very positive, with the development of many new uses. Helliniko leads developments and gathers the interest of strong international consortia
However, the largest urban regeneration not only in our country but also in Europe which leads the developments in the real estate industry and in general regeneration is in full progress in Elliniko, as construction sites are opening one after the other creating new jobs which in full development of the project will reach 75,000. Contributing in this way to the return of our talented fellow citizens from all branches of the economy and sciences who have left our country.
As the managing director of Lamda Development, Odysseas Athanasiou, has stated, the first green, smart city in the world is being created from the ground up, a model at an international level, highlighting new landmarks that aspire to attract global interest, with the Metropolitan Park standing out, as it will be the largest coastal park in Europe. As already announced, Greek and foreign companies and consortia of international scope have chosen after relevant tenders for the individual projects. A project that, as Dr. Spyros Latsis said, at the recent inauguration of the project in the presence of the Prime Minister, is addressed to all Greeks.
Uncertainties in the spotlight and in the real estate sector
The energy crisis, rising interest rates, ESG challenges, increased construction costs and a host of other challenges are by no means leaving real estate investors indifferent. The most optimistic, however, see every new challenge as an opportunity and emphasize that properties and renovations that really have added value will endure. As mentioned at the Prodexpo conference, the market, not only domestically but also internationally, will diversify into quality real estate and second rate real estate. Investors will gradually crown real estate and major renovations as a safe investment with more targeted placements in specific properties such as green buildings but also renovations that focus on sustainability, new technologies and living standards.