Country home prices cooling off
Athens Plus, 2 July 2010

The prices of country houses on the whole are about 10-15 percent lower than a year ago, realtors estimate. This being the second successive year that prices have fallen to such an extent, the cumulative drop over two years is close to 30 percent.

For many, the trend has evidently brought the realization of acquiring a long-dreamed-of country home or apartment in a holiday resort closer.

An apartment in a modern complex in the historic sea-side city of Nafplio, in the Peloponnese, for instance, can now be snapped up for as little as 75,000 euros, including storage and parking areas.

In the village of Aghios Georgios Nileias, in central Greece’s scenic district of Pilio, prices of stone-built three-bedroom homes on land plots of around 400 square meters and with unlimited sea views start at 200,000 euros.

Just a two-hour drive from Athens in the seaside village of Lygia, northwest of Corinth, 55 sq.m. apartments in a deluxe complex on the waterfront start at 100,000 euros. Next to Aigio’s Temeni beach, further along the road toward Patra, 105,000 sq.m. houses with views of the Gulf of Corinth start at 160,000 euros.

On the Cycladic island of Paros, prices of homes in a condominium with gardens and a pool start at 1,800 euros/sq.m., while others in a similar complex without a pool start at 1,500 euros/sq.m. Finally, seaside, two-bedroom apartments in Maleme, in Crete’s Hania district, are going for 120,000 euros.

Developers selling more expensive options throw in the red tape cost of transfers or storage and parking spaces. Others claim higher prices are justified by higher quality, including bioclimatic specifications.

Realtor Costas Loukopoulos points out that since July 1, the prices of country or second homes have been burdened with a higher VAT rate of 23 percent.