The most popular areas in Athens to rent and the ideal apartments
Property rentals have served as a "life jacket" for the Greek real estate market during the last seven years of crisis, as economic asphyxiation has pushed those seeking residence to prefer to rent than buy.
"Pole of attraction" for prospective tenants are apartments of 2 and 3 bedrooms, relatively new or refurbished, at prices starting from an average of 300 euros and up to an average of 600 euros. Of course, the initial listing prices lessen after the usual "bargain", which can lead to rent reductions from 5% to 15%.
As the inventory of unsold homes remains high, the interest lies in finding property of small and medium value, considered "good deals". According to Alpha Bank data on the development of apartment rents, it is apparent that, from the first quarter of 2012, when they began their fall, until the fourth quarter of 2015, a cumulative price decline of rents of 20.4% was recorded.
"The market is moving, as it does, from rentals," says Spitogatos Network CEO, Dimitris Melachroinos. "Sales are historically low, since the estimation for the number of transactions in 2015 is 13,000, from about 150,000 in 2008. This is a reduction of over 90%, while prices have fallen an average of 45%." Aspiring tenants are highly selective when it comes to choosing an area to look for an apartment, while their preferences on the type of residence also differ. They show a clear preference to cheaper areas and medium sized, good quality homes.
The most popular areas for home search in the center of Athens, are mainly the neighborhoods of Ampelokipoi, Pagkrati and Neos Kosmos, according to statistics from property portal Spitogatos.gr. At the southern suburbs, the areas that stand out are Nea Smyrni, Kallithea and Glyfada, while those who prefer the Northern suburbs mainly look for houses in Kifissia, Chalandri and Marousi. In the Eastern suburbs, top search areas include Artemida, Nea Makri and Gerakas, while at the Western suburbs, the areas of Peristeri, Galatsi and Petroupoli are the most popular amongst aspiring tenants. «In searches, we observe an increase in all the websites that we manage (spitogatos.gr, tospitimou.gr, homegreekhome.com, spiti24.gr). ). People are searching, and not only looking for property to rent," underlines mr. Melachroinos.
"The types of property hunters vary. There are those who watch the general pulse of the market, the regular visitors looking for the perfect opportunity without hurry and those who are actively searching and communicate daily with the advertisers."
500 to 800 euro
Newlyweds or families with small children usually turn to rentals of medium sized and large apartments, with good construction and in areas far from the center, while the center is preferred by students and people living alone. To the north and south suburbs of Athens there is a preference for 3-bedroom apartments (70-120 sq.m.), under 15 years and at prices around 500-800 euros, depending on the region, construction and size. In Eastern Attica, prospective tenants look for apartments of 60-80 square meters, while in Western Attica there is a preference for large apartments (100-120 sq.m.) up to 600 euros. In areas popular for students, studios and 2-bedrooms are preferred (especially near the subway), provided they are in good condition and at prices of 150-300 Euros.
The "ideal home" brings together economic characteristics (heating and maintenance) as well as safety. In house searches through listings, heating with natural gas, good construction (of the last decade), aluminum frames, few shares and nice view (3rd and 4th floor are preferred), play an important role. Desired is also the existence of a fireplace, warehouse, parking position, while the energy certificate which is a must in listings, is not a reason to reject a house by the prospective lessor.