Greece Real Estate Guide
Greece Golden Visa Changes
Table of Contents
Greece is among the most highly coveted property destinations in Europe, captivating real estate enthusiasts with its allure. Acquiring property in Greece elevates any real estate portfolio to new heights, whether for first-time international buyers, seasoned investors, or those seeking residency. Choosing Greece is a wise decision that guarantees both substance and style.
Greece stands as one of the world’s oldest civilizations and cultures, intertwining rich history with modern real estate options. Whether it’s indulging in coastal luxury or embracing high-end urban living, Greece offers diverse choices to suit every taste and budget.
If you’re considering a move to Europe, looking for European Union residency, improving your tax situation, or exploring dual citizenship investments, Greece should definitely be your top choice. Greece Visa Homes has prepared an extensive guide on purchasing real estate in Greece and utilizing the Greek property market for Greece’s residency by investment program.
Why buy property in Greece?
Whether you’re starting an international property portfolio, growing your current real estate holdings, searching for a vacation property, or diversifying your income streams, Greek real estate is a valuable asset to consider. Its allure lies in its potential for long-term growth and the opportunities it presents for both personal and financial gain.
Greece, both as a country and a culture, presents numerous advantages for property owners. It offers the opportunity to own a piece of modern world history, along with a favorable tax environment for residents, Greek citizens, and property owners. The Greek real estate market stands apart in various aspects, distinguishing itself from the markets of other European Union nations and beyond.
Property in Greece is renowned for its affordability, even when it comes to luxurious high-end real estate. The country boasts a thriving rental market that is currently experiencing unprecedented demand, alongside a resurging economy. With the ability to cater to diverse lifestyles and promising opportunities for near-immediate return on investment, Greece stands out as an exceptional choice.
- Read Next: Is it a good time to buy property in Greece?
Furthermore, investors contemplating the acquisition of Greek real estate can take advantage of the residency by investment program. This exceptional opportunity enables them to obtain both property and residency in the EU and Greece, unlocking a multitude of possibilities.
However, it is worth noting that navigating the Greek real estate market can prove challenging without the guidance of an experienced professional by your side.
Should You then Buy Property in Greece?
Imagine calling Greece your second home! What more could one possibly dream of? The allure of Greek culture, breathtaking coastlines, delectable cuisine, stunning landscapes, thriving business opportunities, and a host of other advantages make buying property in Greece an irresistible proposition. Allow me to highlight some additional perks that are sure to entice you and expedite your decision-making process.Easy To Travel to
- Low Taxes: Greece offers fantastic tax benefits to foreigners investing in the country. If your native country has a tax treaty with Greece, you won’t have to pay double taxes. Furthermore, income from Greek properties will only be taxable in Greece, while income generated abroad remains tax-free. The current Prime Minister, Mitsotakis, has even announced a VAT suspension on real estate properties in the country, although an annual property tax will still apply.
- Affordable Lifestyle: Greece is blessed with a rich history, breathtaking landscapes, and a treasure trove of Greek values. The Greek emphasis on family, tradition, and love for the outdoors creates a tranquil and prideful way of life. Moreover, Greece offers an affordable lifestyle for everyone, whether you prefer the charm of a small town or the vibrancy of a bustling tech city. Compared to other European countries, Greece’s lifestyle is truly exceptional.
- Easy to get to: Furthermore, with its great connections with the rest of the world, you can travel to Greece without any inconvenience. Therefore, no one will ever find it troubling to reach there. In fact, once you have landed in the country, you will find out that the local transportation system too is very much affordable and connected to every town.
- Greece, an expat-friendly country, welcomes you with open arms as soon as you step foot on its land. The Greeks treat foreigners as their own, creating a sense of belonging. As more individuals from both EU and non-EU countries choose to relocate to Greece, you will likely encounter familiar faces in the crowd.
- With numerous luxurious benefits, who wouldn’t be enticed to move to Greece? If you’re considering purchasing property in the country, the next section will guide you through the buying process.
- Embarking on the path to European Residency, Greece offers a Golden Visa scheme that grants residency in exchange for investment. By investing a minimum of €250,000 in a property, you become eligible for the Greece Golden Visa. This program not only provides visa-free access to Schengen countries but also offers a multitude of other advantages.
At Greece Visa Homes, where we specialize in helping global investors and families find their dream property in Greece. Our team of expert advisors is here to provide you with comprehensive guidance on property acquisition and ensure you understand all the associated tax obligations. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions; we’re here to assist you every step of the way.
To embark on this exciting journey, CONTACT us today!
Navigating the Greek real estate market
It is important to note that non-EU citizens are legally allowed to purchase and own property in Greece. However, there are two conditions that must be met:
- Non-EU citizens are not permitted to purchase or own property within federally protected zones, specifically near military installations or national borders.
- Although it is not commonly enforced, the Greek government reserves the right to require non-EU citizens to establish their connection with the country, culture, or heritage. They may also request a formal validation of their reasons and intentions for the property purchase.
Please note that these conditions ensure the protection of certain areas and allow the Greek government to maintain oversight over property ownership by non-EU citizens.
Typically, non-EU citizens only need to consider the first condition when buying property in Greece through Greece Visa Homes. Our experts are well-versed in addressing both conditions, alleviating any concerns for our clients and allowing them to focus solely on choosing their desired property.
It’s important to note that EU citizens face no such conditions when purchasing real estate in Greece. However, regardless of nationality, navigating the Greek system requires specialized expertise and knowledge. Therefore, every investor contemplating a property purchase in Greece should rely on an experienced professional who understands the system’s intricacies, both past and present, to advocate for their best interests.
Greece, with its vast size, boasts a diverse property market. While renowned for its rich history, stunning beaches, and picturesque islands, Greece also offers a captivating blend of lush forests, majestic mountains, and modern urban areas.
Greek real estate and the residency by investment program
When considering purchasing Greek property, it’s crucial to identify your underlying motivation, as it will strongly influence where you should focus your search. Once you have determined your purpose, additional factors like budget can be used to refine your property options.
The allure of owning Greek property alone is reason enough to explore real estate opportunities in this remarkable country. However, one of the primary drivers of foreign investment in the Greek market is Greece’s highly sought-after residency by investment program.
Greek real estate and the residency by investment program
Although Greek residency is not mandatory for purchasing and owning property in Greece, the absence of residency will significantly impact one’s ability to access and utilize the property. This becomes particularly crucial with the upcoming implementation of ETIAS, the European Union’s e-Visa, slated for early 2024.
Under the ETIAS system, all non-EU citizens lacking legal residency in any EU country, including Greece, will be required to obtain approval for entry. It is important to note that this applies regardless of property ownership. The ETIAS approval is valid for three years, after which the applicant must initiate the approval process anew.
On the other hand, Greek residency remains valid for five years and is automatically renewed as long as the individual still possesses the property, meeting or surpassing the program requirements. Additionally, Greek residency can potentially lead to Greek citizenship after seven years, whereas ETIAS approval does not contribute to or facilitate EU citizenship in any manner.
Therefore, it is highly recommended for individuals considering property purchase in Greece to explore the Greek Golden Visa program. Additionally, it is of utmost importance to take prompt action, as the investment threshold is set to double on July 31, 2023.
Under the current Greek Golden Visa program, the following criteria apply:
- The applicant must be at least 18 years old.
- The ability to successfully pass a criminal background check for all countries the applicant has legally resided in, including family members aged 14 and above.
- The applicant must have obtained health insurance in Greece.
- A minimum real estate purchase of €250,000 is required.
- The funds must successfully pass Greece’s due diligence investigation.
- If the applicant requires a Schengen Visa, it must be valid.
As mentioned, the current minimum investment required stands at €250,000. However, effective from 31 July 2023, the minimum investment will increase to €500,000 for 36 popular destinations in Greece, including:
- Santorini, and
It’s important to note that for real estate purchases in the rest of Greece, the investment minimum will remain unchanged at €250,000.
The best locations for buying property in Greece
When comes to purchasing property in Greece, there are no bad regions to choose from. However, some regions do stand out, especially if you have a specific agenda in mind. At Greece Visa Homes, we have conducted extensive research on the entire Greek market, considering both current and historical factors, and taking into account various perspectives such as lifestyle, residency by investment, return on investment, and long-term revenue potential.
Based on our expertise, here are the areas in Greece that we recommend investors to consider when buying real estate.
The capital city is an exceptional place to live and invest. Among Greece’s most sought-after destinations, Athens stands out as a prominent investment hub for the Greek residency by investment program.
Athens boasts a vibrant real estate market that caters to diverse tastes and lifestyles, offering properties at various price points to suit every budget, from the modest to the extravagant. The city also showcases a rich tapestry of dining and entertainment options, creating a welcoming atmosphere that resonates with all.
Considered the epitome of Greek tourism, Athens encapsulates the perfect blend of cultural, archaeological, and business travel. Its market has demonstrated a consistent and stable growth trajectory throughout history, presenting year-round opportunities for return on investment and revenue generation in the realm of real estate.
Average cost – Given the size of Athens, property prices can fluctuate considerably due to various factors. However, all areas within the capital city experience a consistent and dependable annual increase, with average prices per square meter ranging from €1300 to €2300 or $1400 to $2500.
Thessaloniki, the nation’s second-largest city, offers an enticing blend of residency options. Whether you seek an investment through real estate or a family home, this vibrant location deserves serious consideration.
Strategically positioned within the country and region, Thessaloniki provides a captivating Greek and Mediterranean experience. It serves as a critical hub for both tourism and business, fostering a dynamic economy that fuels a robust rental market.
Compared to other major European cities, property prices in Thessaloniki stand out for their affordability. This makes it an exceptional choice for urban real estate investment, combining value with potential growth.
Average cost – Similar to Athens, Thessaloniki is a bustling city with a wide range of real estate options. It is one of the most budget-friendly areas in Greece, known for its consistent year-over-year growth. The average price per square meter is approximately €1300 / $1500.
Greece is renowned for its stunning islands, and among them, Crete shines as a true gem. Being the largest Greek island and the fifth largest in the entire Mediterranean, Crete is famous for its incredible climate, charming villages, and unparalleled beaches.
Moreover, the real estate market in Crete is unparalleled, offering an extensive range of properties in the Mediterranean Sea. Whether you seek a beach house, a traditional Cretan white stone home, or a luxurious multi-million-euro new build, you can find it all here.
Despite being an island, Crete is far from isolated. It is connected to the Greek mainland by ferry, serving both passengers and vehicles, as well as to neighboring islands like Rhodes and Santorini. Additionally, Crete boasts three airports – Chania Airport, Heraklion Airport, and Sitia Airport – providing both domestic and international flights. Notably, Heraklion Airport stands as the country’s second-largest airport, surpassed only by Athens International Airport. With direct access from Athens, Thessaloniki, and numerous European destinations, these airports ensure convenient travel options.
Discover the magic of Crete, where captivating landscapes, rich history, and warm hospitality await you.
Average cost – Crete’s real estate market is characterized by its diversity, offering a range of properties with varying degrees of luxury and prime locations. Property prices exhibit a steady annual increase, with average rates ranging from €1300 to €1900 per square meter (equivalent to $1400 to $2100).
Santorini, one of the crown jewels of the Greek Isles, stands as a beacon in Greece’s real estate market. Characterized by scarcity, properties on this island are highly sought after, commanding both value and competition. Santorini boasts some of Greece’s most exclusive and luxurious real estate, granting ownership to a select few who belong to an esteemed club. Reserved for those with a deep appreciation for real estate and keen investment insight, Santorini offers a high-risk, high-reward market.
Average cost – Santorini, as mentioned, holds a prominent position in Greece’s real estate market. It boasts a luxurious standard, strategic location, and limited availability, resulting in consistent and reliable price appreciation year after year. The average price per square meter ranges from €3200 to €4900 (approximately $3500 to $5400).
Mykonos, a luxurious Greek destination, attracts discerning tourists with its opulent lifestyle, vibrant nightlife, and rich cultural heritage. Its convenient accessibility from the mainland further adds to its appeal. While Mykonos boasts picturesque beaches, breathtaking scenery, and a cosmopolitan ambiance, it also serves as a thriving investment hub in the real estate market.
However, it’s worth noting that the investment returns in Mykonos heavily rely on the summer tourist season, making it less suitable for investors seeking year-round ROI. Nevertheless, a fully booked summer rental can generate more revenue than a year’s worth of rental income in many European cities.
Average cost – Mykonos, located in Greece, is renowned for its upscale luxury market. Prices in this region have consistently exhibited a strong year-over-year increase, with an average per square meter ranging between €4500 and €6450 (approximately $4900 – $7100).
If you find yourself torn between island living and the mainland, look no further than the Peloponnese region. Situated to the west of Athens, this peninsula offers a captivating blend of history and archaeology, boasting a vast coastline that stretches across both the Ionian and Aegean Seas, ensuring a multitude of beach options to suit every preference.
What sets the Peloponnese apart from other Greek regions are its affordability and laid-back lifestyle, making it an ideal choice for year-round living or generating vacation income. Moreover, the region boasts a significant number of properties that qualify for Greece’s residency by investment program.
When considering the Peloponnese, some of the standout cities to explore include Kalamata, Corinth, Nafplio, Port Heli, and Plyos.
Average cost – Peloponnese, one of the most budget-friendly real estate markets in Greece, continues to experience a consistent year-over-year growth. The average price per square meter ranges between €1300 – €1700 / $1400 – $1850, making it an attractive investment opportunity.
Also known as Chalkidiki, this region in northern Greece is famous for its distinctive peninsulas that extend from the mainland, resembling fingers and showcasing Europe’s most pristine natural beauty.
Chalkidiki offers a wide array of unique features, including exceptional real estate opportunities. It is highly sought-after for the Greek residency by investment program, thanks to its remarkable tourism demand and ideal suitability for residential living. With an abundance of amenities like golf courses and marinas, as well as a well-developed infrastructure, Halkidiki truly stands out.
What adds to Halkidiki’s appeal is its accessibility to Thessaloniki, making it a perfect weekend getaway for urban dwellers. Moreover, its flourishing rental environment makes it an excellent choice for long-term revenue and return on investment.
Experience the allure of Halkidiki – a premium destination that combines natural beauty, convenience, and endless possibilities.
Average cost – Hidiki combines lifestyle, nature, and luxury in one of Greece’s most affordable markets. It offers the added benefit of a historically strong record for year-over-year increase, with prices ranging between €1300 – €1700 per square meter ($1400 – $1850).
The legal process for buying Greek property
Investing in Greece’s real estate market can be perplexing for foreign investors. Greece boasts a legal framework that sets it apart within the European landscape. A comprehensive understanding of the legal process is crucial for property buyers, but having a seasoned expert well-versed in the Greek market and system by your side is invaluable.
At Greece Visa Homes, our team comprises experienced property specialists with extensive knowledge of Greece. We are ready to assist anyone looking to invest in Greek real estate for various purposes, including residency through investment.
The Greek legal system
Greece follows the ancient Roman Civil Law system, which is also prevalent in most of Europe. It is important to note that this system differs significantly from the British Common Law system used in the UK and the US.
In common law systems, the interpretation of the law and court precedents hold utmost importance. However, in civil law systems like Greece, the written word of the law, defined in everyday language, takes precedence.
Therefore, it is crucial to have an expert in Greek law when engaging in any business transactions in the country. Their expertise will ensure a thorough understanding and adherence to the legal framework.
Property ownership in Greece
In the Greek legal system, there are two recognized forms of property ownership:
- Freehold, which entails permanent ownership, and
- Leasehold, which involves temporary ownership
While freehold is the most common form of ownership in Greece, it is important to note that temporary ownership does exist. Without proper legal guidance, one may unknowingly find themselves embroiled in a property dispute. Therefore, it is crucial to have an experienced expert in the Greek property system by your side, advocating for your interests. Their invaluable support cannot be overstated.
Three steps to buying Greek property
Step 1: Market Search
When embarking on a real estate investment, the initial step is to identify the property that aligns with your preferences. This entails establishing specific criteria such as:
- Size, and
- Purpose of the investment.
Once you have found the ideal property, it is crucial to engage the services of an attorney who will thoroughly investigate all aspects of the property, including potential legal issues and any existing liens. This comprehensive due diligence ensures a secure and informed purchase.
Greek Land Registry Search
To ensure that the seller has the legal right to sell the property, it is imperative for the buyer to obtain a current land registry search. While it is technically possible to do this without the help of an attorney, it is worth noting that navigating Greek bureaucracy and having a fluent understanding of the language can be quite challenging. In such cases, it is highly recommended to seek the assistance of an attorney, as they possess the expertise and knowledge to handle these matters effectively and efficiently.
Step 2: Pre-Contract Agreement
The pre-contract agreement, plays a crucial role in the legal process as it sets forth the terms and conditions for the upcoming purchase. These include important details such as the purchase:
- Closing date, and
- Payment terms
It is imperative that you have an attorney review the pre-contract agreement, as accepting the contract typically entails a 10% deposit of the property’s specified purchase price. Once you have signed the pre-contract agreement, it becomes binding, and no modifications or alterations to the sale’s terms and conditions can be made.
Step 3: Final Purchase Agreement
Once you have completed all the necessary legal examinations of the property and agreed to the terms, the next step is to finalize the transfer of rights. This involves signing the actual purchase contract, known as the “apografos,” and paying the remaining balance of the agreed-upon purchase price. It is crucial to ensure that all taxes and fees are paid in full at this stage.
Purchasing and owning property in Greece involves a comprehensive list of legal documents that are of utmost importance. As the new property owner, it is essential to receive and review all these documents diligently.
The following legal documents are typically required when dealing with property in Greece
Legal fees involved in purchasing Greek property:
- Certificate of Ownership: This document confirms the ownership status of the property and is issued by the Land Registry Office.
- Building Permit: These historical documents provide evidence of the property’s development, ensuring its compliance with relevant codes and regulations.
- Energy Performance Certification: This certification establishes the energy efficiency rating of the property.
- Tax Clearance Certificate: This certificate confirms that the seller has paid all taxes and that the property is up-to-date and in good standing.
- Tax Identification Number (TIN) – Both the buyer and the seller must possess a valid Greek tax identification number (AFM or TIN) to legally engage in any business transaction, including the transfer or sale of a property.
- Certificate of No Debt – Property buyers must obtain certification from the local tax office, confirming that the buyer does not owe any outstanding debts to the Greek government.
- Greek Bank Account – Depending on whether you’re participating in the residency by investment program or conducting a stand-alone transaction, having a Greek bank account may or may not be required. However, it is highly recommended.
These documents are vital for facilitating seamless and legally compliant property transactions in Greece. Apart from taxes, there are also legal fees associated with any form of property transfer or sale that must be paid.
The legal fees encompass the following:
- Notary fees: Notaries are responsible for preparing, reviewing, and registering the final contract.
- Land Registry fees: The Land Registry Office charges a fee for registering the sale and change of ownership.
- Attorney fees: While not obligatory, it is crucial to engage the services of an attorney, and the associated cost will vary depending on the attorney and the extent of the services required.
- Agent fees: Similar to practices worldwide, real estate agents and agencies levy a fee or commission for their services.
Residency requirements and fees for Greek property
It’s important to note that purchasing a property in Greece does not automatically grant non-EU citizens a residency permit to legally reside in the country. Non-EU citizens who buy real estate in Greece will still need to comply with the Schengen Zone‘s 90-days in / 90-days out requirements, which also applies to accessing the property.
Additionally, once the European Union’s e-Visa, ETIAS, is implemented (expected in early 2024), all non-EU citizens, regardless of property ownership, will be required to obtain the ETIAS e-Visa to enter Greece.
A Greek residency permit, valid for 5 years and renewable throughout property ownership, can be obtained at a cost of €2,000, with additional fees for spouses and family members.
It’s worth noting that the Greece residency by investment program already incorporates these requirements for real estate purchased as an investment.
By improving the writing quality, optimizing word choice, structure, readability, and eloquence, the meaning of the original content is retained.
Tax considerations for property in Greece
Greece imposes various distinctive taxes on property transfers and purchases, which can significantly inflate the total cost of the intended purchase. Therefore, it is vital to possess a comprehensive understanding and awareness of these taxes from the outset. This knowledge is crucial for making informed decisions and ensuring financial preparedness throughout the property acquisition process.
Make sure you read our detailed article on property taxes in Greece.
Property transfer tax
Also known as the Transfer Tax on Property Rights, the transfer tax is a government fee that must be paid when the final contract is signed. Unless otherwise agreed upon by the parties involved, the buyer is responsible for paying this tax. The specific amount to be paid is determined based on the value, location, and age of the property. Generally, for newer constructions, the tax rate falls within the range of 8% to 13%:
- €85,001 to €130,000 = 8%
- €130,001 to €220,000 = 9%
- €220,001 to €300,000 = 11%
- €330,001 and above = 13%
Annual property tax
The Greek government imposes an annual tax on all properties, with the amount owed determined by several factors such as location, value, and usage. In general, this tax is calculated based on the estimated rental value of the property in its respective market, typically ranging between 0.025% to 0.035% of the property value.
VAT – Value Added Tax
In Europe, like in other parts of the world, Value Added Tax (VAT) is a common tax applied to most goods and services. While this tax is universal within the European Union, each country has the authority to regulate its implementation.
In Greece, property transactions generally incur a VAT rate of 24%. However, there are exceptions to this rule, which can be complex to navigate without the guidance of a knowledgeable tax expert. These exceptions include situations involving:
- first-time buyers
- undeveloped land, and
- distinctions between new and old construction.
Greece imposes an annual wealth tax called the Unified Property Tax (ENFIA) on specific investors and property owners. This tax is not directly triggered by the purchase of a property, but rather by factors such as the:
- Property’s value,
- The number of properties owned, and
- The overall net worth of the investor or property owner.
According to the current Greek law, the tax amount is predetermined and updated yearly. For reference, here are the ENFIA tax amounts for 2022:
- up to €70,000: ENFIA tax ranges from €0 to €1,000
- €70,001 to €200,000: ENFIA tax ranges from €280 to €2,800
- €200,001 to €500,000: ENFIA tax ranges from €630 to €6,300
- €500,001 to €1,000,000: ENFIA tax ranges from €1,350 to €13,000
- €1,000,000 and above: ENFIA tax ranges from €2,700 to €27,000
Please note that these amounts are provided as a general reference and may be subject to annual revisions.
Average monthly utility costs in Greece
Estimating utility costs worldwide can be challenging due to variations in consumption and individual/family needs, as well as factors like property age, location, and amenities.
In Greece, new luxury constructions can easily span over 500 sq. meters (5400 sq. feet), with some properties exceeding 1000 sq. meters. Luxury apartments typically range from 150 to 500 sq. meters (1600 – 5400 sq. feet).
Utility costs in Greece, on average per person and per 100 sq. meters, vary as follows:
- Electricity: €60 to €100
- Heating & hot water: €40 to €80
- Water: €20 to €50
Finance options for buying property in Greece
Prospective foreign property buyers and real estate investors seeking to purchase property in Greece have a multitude of financing options at their disposal, ranging from publicly available to privately sourced funds.
The Greek mortgage market
In Europe, banks generally tend to avoid mortgages as they are not considered a fundamental product of the European financial system. However, it is worth noting that mortgages are available in Greece for non-Greek citizens and residents who have a valid Greek tax ID number and a Greek bank account, which are both required for the real estate process.
To be eligible for a Greek mortgage, there are certain basic requirements that must be met. The applicant must be at least 25 years old and able to pay off the mortgage by the age of 58. Additionally, having a Greek tax number and a Greek bank account are necessary.
In general, mortgage terms in Greece can range from 6 to 30 years. Banks typically ask for a down payment ranging between 20% to 30%. While the minimum amount for a mortgage can be as low as €10,000, it is uncommon for a bank to lend more than 80% of the property’s value. Unlike in the US, the down payment is not optional.
It is important to understand that the terms and conditions of bank loans can vary between institutions and for non-Greek citizens compared to citizens. Specifically, non-citizens may be subject to higher interest rates.
Greek banks commonly offer the following types of mortgages to foreign buyers:
- Fixed-rate mortgages: These provide a stable monthly payment throughout the entire mortgage term.
- Variable rate mortgages: Monthly payments fluctuate with market conditions for the duration of the mortgage.
- Hybrid mortgages: These combine a fixed and variable rate. The rate is fixed for a specific period of the mortgage and then becomes variable for the remaining duration.
- Interest-only mortgages: The owner only pays interest for a specific number of years before starting to pay towards the principal.
It is crucial to remember that while this information provides an overview, it is always advisable to review the specific terms and conditions with individual banks.
Private financial institutions
If a buyer is unable to qualify for a mortgage or chooses not to use a Greek bank, there are various options available for private financing, including mortgage lending companies. Additionally, if the buyer has a Greek bank account, they can leverage financial services in their own country, transfer the funds to their Greek bank account, and complete the real estate transaction in that manner.
It is important to note that when transferring funds into Greece for real estate purchases, especially as part of the residency by investment program, strict due diligence investigations are conducted to comply with both KYC and AML laws and regulations.
Equity release presents a convenient opportunity for investors in Greece who already own property. It enables them to utilize their current property holdings to finance the acquisition of additional properties. It is important to note, however, that this option is only feasible if the investor possesses a substantial amount of equity in their existing portfolio.
Moreover, it is worth mentioning that the interest rate associated with equity release is typically higher compared to that of a traditional mortgage.
Some sellers, most commonly large-scale developers, offer their own forms of financing to buyers.
The seller determines the terms and conditions of financing, but buyers enjoy a higher approval rate with seller financing – accompanied by a much higher interest rate than a bank-issued mortgage.
A favored choice among both foreign investors and Greek citizens is the leaseback option. With leaseback, investors can purchase a property and then lease it back to the developer or a property management service for a predetermined period. During this time, the developer or service pays rent to the owner.
The leaseback arrangement allows investors to transform their property into an immediate revenue stream, enabling them to realize a return on investment from the start. Additionally, investors retain the flexibility to access the property for personal use, such as vacations, provided that the specific details and dates are agreed upon in the contract.
List of Things to Consider Before Purchasing Property in Greece
What are your criteria?
The kind of home you desire may vary based on factors such as family size, amenities, and surroundings. If you’re alone or with your spouse, a one or two-room apartment should suffice. However, if you anticipate your parents and children joining you, selecting a villa would be a prudent decision.
Must-haves and nice-to-haves?
When property in Greece, it’s crucial to ensure that it meets all your needs. Location is key, especially proximity to your workplace and good transportation connections to other towns. If you have children, it’s even better to choose a property near educational institutions. Additionally, having outdoor space and being close to markets are important factors to consider.
What is your budget?
Greece offers a wide range of property options to suit every budget. Once you have determined your budget, you can effortlessly explore affordable houses. Depending on your budget, you can choose to settle in any city or town that offers properties within your price range.
What is a deal-breaker?
Certain with the property can truly make or break a deal. During your tour, you might come across various flaws such as house maintenance, the condition of the pool, and whether or not it’s pet-friendly. Above all, it’s crucial to consider the safety of the surroundings before making a decision to purchase a house here. Don’t overlook any of these factors, as your new home should be nothing short of perfect for you and your family.
Cryptocurrency and buying Greek property
With the global growth in popularity, options, legitimacy, and accessibility of cryptocurrencies, their use in everyday transactions as an alternative to fiat currencies is becoming increasingly common.
While it is possible to purchase property in Greece using cryptocurrency, a direct property purchase with cryptocurrency is currently not available. Crypto entrepreneurs and other high-net-worth individuals who wish to invest in the Greek real estate market by leveraging the value of their crypto portfolio will need to liquidate their crypto in a manner that satisfies Greece’s due diligence requirements.
One option to consider is a crypto-backed loan from a credible and licensed source, utilizing a centralized platform and state-of-the-art blockchain analysis. This can potentially provide the best route to meet the necessary criteria.
Nevertheless, Greece remains one of the world’s frontiers in the realm of cryptocurrencies and is a digitally developing economy. The experts at Greece Visa Homes are available to discuss various potential routes to purchasing property in Greece, including the option of investing in Greek residency through real estate, which can eliminate the future need for applying for the European Union’s ETIAS e-Visa.
For a comprehensive review of your individual situation, do not hesitate to contact your personal Greece Visa Homes expert today.
FAQs: Buying Property In Greece
Property Survey in Greece?
Certainly! Once you’ve discovered your dream property in Greece, it’s crucial not to hesitate in thoroughly examining its current condition. Conducting a comprehensive inspection yourself can involve assessing the electrical system, plumbing, water supply, hot water boiler, central heating, and more. Additionally, ensure the fences are stable, check the driveways and roads, and be mindful of any encroaching eaves on neighboring buildings.
Important note: If the seller restricts your ability to properly inspect the property, it’s advisable to terminate the deal promptly.
Is It Easy To Buy Property In Greece?
Purchasing real estate in Greece can be a straightforward process if the buyer does their due diligence. Once the property has been selected, it is important to engage a competent lawyer who can efficiently handle the necessary documentation, expediting the process. Additionally, according to the Greek constitution, every buyer must be a taxpayer. This necessitates obtaining a tax number, a simple procedure that can be completed within a day. Subsequently, the buyer can proceed with paying the stamp duty, which typically amounts to approximately 3 percent of the transaction value.
Lastly, the acquisition must be finalized before a notary and registered at the local Land Registry. By following these steps, the buyer can navigate the process smoothly and successfully acquire the desired property.
Can Foreigners Buy Property In Greece?
Yes, anyone can purchase property in Greece without restrictions. However, EU citizens or residents enjoy more advantages in the process. For them, the transaction is usually seamless. On the other hand, non-EU individuals need to demonstrate their connections to Greece and their genuine interest in the real estate. Their application is evaluated by the Ministry of Defence, which carefully assesses the submitted proof of intent and connection.
How Can a Foreigner Buy Property In Greece?
In order to purchase a property in Greece, there are several requirements that need to be met. The first step is to become a taxpayer by opening a bank account and obtaining a tax number. Once these formalities are taken care of, the buyer’s lawyer will review the property titles and prepare all the necessary documents for the transaction.
The next crucial step is signing the title transition contract, which can only be done when the buyer is prepared to pay the full price of the property. Afterward, all the documents are submitted for registration, and the Land Registry issues a certificate for the property title. The only remaining tasks are choosing the desired property and negotiating the price with the seller.
Is Greece A Good Place To Buy Property?
Following the global economic crisis of 2008, Greece underwent a significant transformation. Not only did its economy recover, but its cities also experienced comprehensive gentrification processes that revitalized the real estate market. Although Greek property prices are still below their pre-crisis peak, they offer relative affordability compared to other European countries.
This, along with the country’s immense potential, makes it an opportune time to invest in Greek real estate. The market’s recovery is further supported by the thriving tourism industry, which contributes to the resurgence of property values. Seize this moment to capitalize on the enticing prospects offered by Greek properties.
Is Buying Property in Athens, Greece a Good Investment?
Greece’s economy has made a remarkable recovery since the 2008 financial crisis, largely due to its thriving tourism and real estate sectors. With each passing quarter, the country continues to heal and demonstrate stronger performance. The property market, which suffered a significant blow during the crisis, has shown a resurgence as interest in Greek real estate returns and prices begin to rise. Although property prices are still below pre-crisis levels, there is a notable upward trend, particularly in Athens, the capital of Greece. As Greece gets back on track, investing in Athens property presents an excellent opportunity for potential investors to reap the rewards in the future.
What is the Deposit Amount I Need to MakeTo Buy Property in Greece?
You can easily make a down payment transaction using online accounts and platforms like TransferWise. This convenient service provides customers with access to exchange rates and information about international money transfer charges. In Greece, the typical deposit amount for real estate is 10 percent of the total price.
Does Greece have Property Taxes? How Much Are Property Taxes in Greece?
Yes, property taxes exist in Greece. They are diverse and can vary depending on the specific circumstances. Here is a comprehensive breakdown:
- Agency/Agent fees: Typically 2.00% or 2.5% plus VAT.
- Lawyer fees: Usually range from 0.40% to 1% plus VAT (23%).
- Notary fees: Generally range from 0.65% to 1% plus VAT (23%).
- Registration charges: Typically 0.5% plus VAT (23%).
Additionally, it’s important to consider that exchange rates may differ across institutions. Opting for a favorable bank can significantly reduce costs.
What Are The Costs Of Buying a Property in Greece?
The primary expense when purchasing a property in Greece is, naturally, the real estate value. Typically, a 10 percent down payment is required before the legal transaction takes place. Additional costs and taxes are incurred throughout the process, encompassing taxes, agent fees, lawyer fees, notary fees, and registry charges.
How Do I Choose the Right Property?
When it comes to choosing the right property, the first step is knowing what you truly want. In Greece, where every type of real estate can be found, it’s crucial to decide on the desired form of the property beforehand. While sticking to popular choices might seem like a safe bet, there are other options, such as apartments, that offer great benefits and are often overlooked by many investors. How To Buy Property in Greece?
The second aspect to consider is the condition of the building itself. Greece, with its rich civilization dating back thousands of years, boasts breathtaking historical architecture. However, it’s important to note that maintaining such properties can come at a cost. Therefore, it’s always wise to inspect the real estate beforehand and ensure everything is in order.
How Can you Buy Property in Greece?
Pasing property in Greece is not significantly different from other locations, depending on the buyer’s efforts. By carefully selecting a property with professional assistance and ensuring proper legal documentation with the help of a competent lawyer, there should be no cause for concern. Once the ideal real estate is chosen and the necessary paperwork is completed, the buyer will be responsible for additional fees such as the notary fee, stamp duty, and registration fee. After the transaction is approved by the notary, the buyer must register the property in the local Land Registry. Upon completing this final step, the buyer officially becomes a property owner in Greece.