The crisis in Greece: the time to buy real estate

Cynical as it sounds, but the crisis – the perfect time to invest in real estate – but not all. of course, on foreign housing market, buyers are attracted primarily to the country's undoubted potential resort.

Greece's budget crisis has made this country a beautiful advertising – stories about her do not go on TV screens and newspaper pages. Greek real estate market is still very active, including through the price correction occurred, and the Russians, for the year surpassing the Germans and the British, It has become one of its major driving forces.

surprises crisis

It is interesting to trace, How to change the tone of comments of economists. A year ago, say experts, Greece survive the crisis almost better than other EU countries. Revaluation of values ​​began in October, after coming to power, the center-left PASOK. The real budget problems, hitherto successfully concealed, It proved to be very significant: the country's external debt is estimated at $300 billion.

In November it was announced, that Greece has the highest budget deficit in the EU: Treasury expenses exceeded its revenues by 12,7%, despite the fact that the European Central Bank has established a 3% limit on budget deficits. In December, the rating agencies downgraded the sovereign rating of Greece, there was talk of a possible default of the country, the risk of its exit from the euro zone and even the beginning of the collapse of the EU.

To rescue the cradle of democracy

It became apparent, that the Greeks will have to tighten the belt, although to do so they do not want, as regularly report to the authorities on the large-scale protests. According to public opinion, the cause of all ills – the introduction of the single European currency and the policy bankers.

Meanwhile, the EU was in no hurry to help Greece, assuring, that of other countries and their problems enough, and if the Greeks like to live beyond their means, it is their own business. Solve the problem of, printing money (as does the United States), Greece, too, can not: emission controls ECB.

Finally, in late March, at the summit of EU Member States have found a compromise, highlighting 22 billion, that Greece will be able to receive in case of emergency. One-third of the sum will give the IMF, and that means tough measures, aimed at reviving the economy. the main thing, that gets Greece, – even money itself, and that, that through this “airbag” banks should stop speculating on the subject of the budget deficit and mitigate the conditions of refinancing public debt.

That the whole “politinformatsiya” means for a potential buyer of real estate? The conclusion is simple: time to buy. experts believe, that the collapse of the real estate market in Greece will not, all negative expectations are already reflected in the cost of housing, While it is possible, that the price correction will continue.

Draw conclusions!

As for the real estate market, the first wake-up call came about in May 2009 of the year, and he touched the holiday home market. economic newspaper “Imerisiya” then he said, that the demand for real estate in a number of coastal areas hit 50-60%, while prices fell by 10-25%. On 60% I dropped the demand for summer rental. Hardest hit Crete, Rhodes Karpafos. The problems began, and from developers – in particular, Hellenic Homes Cretan company started bankruptcy proceedings.

However, a year ago it did not attach any special significance, because the construction business in Greece does not play a key role in the economy, as, for example, in Spain. During the year, it sold all 1000-2000 “Second homes”, 50-60% foreigners who buy. Therefore, the problems of the country are connected with the budget deficit, but not with the real estate industry.

Surprisingly, loud statements and riots, associated with the budget deficit, very little impact on prices. “housing market has not reacted too strongly to the information on the country's budget deficit. At the moment, with developers it was easier to bargain only because, what in 2009 by purchasing activity of foreign investors it was not high ", – says Vladimir Khanukaev, president Property Development S. A. The overall decline in property prices in 2009 It totaled approximately 10%.

Anna Lısova, a representative of AG Properties in Russia, confident, that the Greek real estate will always be in the price. “by the way, – she stresses, – the well-known Trump Group, which specializes in distressed assets transactions, It is now closely studying the properties of Athens and the Greek Islands, and Dolphin Capital Investors Group is ready to invest about 3 billion euros to the Greek tourism market and luxury real estate. So make your conclusions, gentlemen!”

Russian in line

Greece is attractive, what, one side, Property is much cheaper, than in Spain, Italy and France, and on the other – higher quality of life, than in Bulgaria, Croatia and Montenegro. characteristically, that the holiday homes are happy to buy and Italians and French, However, the main buyers of Greek real estate, as noted by Anna Lisova, – this British, Germans and Russians.

Vladimir tells Khanukaev: “More Europeans like small islands, Russians prefer to Crete and Halkidiki. Demand for Greek real estate from the Russians is growing thanks to low prices, convenient air service, transparency of legal ownership registration procedures, Well, of course, the natural beauty of Greece and its cultural ties with Russia”.

In an effort to more fully reveal the potential of the resort Greece, government in recent years, actively encouraged the development of tourism infrastructure and create favorable conditions for investment in large hotel complexes, wellness and spa centers, congress halls, business centers, ports and harbors. for instance, according to Anna Lysova, “express authorization” for the construction of large investors made out for 100 days, the state was ready to subsidize in various years from 50 to 60% the cost of a number of projects, which brought a profit of 200-500% of the construction costs. Due to the budget crisis the program had to be suspended at the beginning of 2010 of the year – presumably for a period of about six months, until the situation becomes clearer.

Tastes and wallets

Despite, that advertising is dominated by very expensive items, from 5000 euros for 1 quarter. m, Greece is easy to find suitable accommodation and within 2000 euros for 1 quarter. m, but the available proposals should be considered very carefully. This also applies to the legal side of things, and the selection area. So, Center Athens Greeks themselves do not find comfortable accommodation and prefer to settle in private houses on the outskirts of the city.

In the practice of AG Properties majority of transactions are concluded within 300 thousand. euro, and, according to general statistics, the average price of real estate in Greece, purchased by foreigners, – near 120 thousand. euro.

Even with a budget of up to 100 thousand. Euros can find a decent apartment of about 70 quarter. m – eg, Crete. Wide choice and in the elite segment of the Greek property market. In August, according to press reports, for the right to own private island Skorpios (the previous owner of which was the billionaire Aristotle Onassis) competed Bill Gates, Roman Abramovich and Madonna.

The crisis with the use of

certainly, during the crisis are growing risks of buyers in the primary market, though the waves of scandals “defrauded investors” Greece should not expect.

Vladimir says Khanukaev: “Of course, there are construction companies, who have difficulty, however, this is not a mass phenomenon. Normally coastal projects implemented by small construction companies, which, even in case of a temporary decrease of consumer activity can cope with such demand fluctuations and avoid bankruptcy”.

“In those cases,, when construction companies have no debts and credits, they in quiet mode even finish building luxury villas in the most prestigious resorts, – adds Anna Lisova. – A big Greek developers of new “kneading”, more recently actively spend vast sums on advertising and PR, can boast only arrested bank accounts, debts and the queue of creditors”. In general, the construction and real estate business in Greece was not much to refinance.

experts believe, now there was a very favorable situation for the purchase “second home” in Greece. Of course, Realtors are almost always full of optimism, but now there is a reason to listen to their arguments. И AG Properties, and do not predict the collapse or even a substantial decline in housing prices in the coastal zone, despite the fact that for bargaining with the sellers have every reason. On some sites, you can get discounts 10-15%. Vladimir believes Khanukaev, By the end of summer, when developers see demand stabilize, seek discounts will be harder.

There are other factors, attract Russian buyers: from 2009 year in Greece has become possible mortgage loans for citizens of, non-EU. According to the company “Real Estate Services – Real Estate in Greece”, available loans at a rate of 4,7% of up to 15 years, there are programs with the possibility of collateral property in Russia.

However, for the vast majority of Russian buyers of real estate in Greece, the main argument is the climate and the amazing beauty of its coast and islands. Greeks themselves – people are bustling and sparkling, and the festive part of the Russian soul feels in this Orthodox country home. Therefore, for those, who have already arrived in Greece and fell under her charm, all thinking about the right moment and the notorious investment attractiveness just go by the wayside.

Author – Petr Chernov

журнал Homes Overseas

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