Illegal estate agents hog sector
by Nikos Roussanoglou, ekathimerini.com, 10 July
The freeze in the property market over the past couple of weeks as a result of the capital controls imposed by
the SYRIZA-led government and the overall negative climate in the economy may have a positive effect, at least
for the estate agents who manage to survive the squeeze. Sector representatives say that conditions are likely
to lead to a contraction in the phenomenon of illegal estate agents, which has led to unfair competition.
"The lack of activity is very likely to force a number of unlicensed agents out of the market and toward other
professional activities," says one agent with decades of experience in the sector.
According to the federation of estate agents (OMASE), in the last few years the number of illegal agents has grown
bigger than that of their legal counterparts, leading to social security contribution evasion and undeclared labor.
While some 4,000 agents operate legitimately today, there are an estimated 5,000 people who have appeared in the
property market posing as estate agents and processing property transactions and rentals.