As Greece’s real estate market continues to boom, many investors are eyeing Athens as a prime location for investment opportunities. With foreign capital inflows reaching a historic high in 2022, people from around the world are buying properties in Greece not only for relocation but also to apply for a Golden Visa. This visa provides its holders with a residence permit and the option to apply for Greek citizenship later.
According to Ilana van Huyssteen-Meyer, our expert on Golden Visa programs, Athens is the go-to region for most Golden Visa holders who seek short-term and long-term lettings opportunities. However, experts advise against investing in older blocks in the historical center of Athens, around the Acropolis, due to the frequent repairs and low capital growth potential. Let’s discuss the top five districts in Athens to buy investment property and why they are a better option for investors.
Pagrati is one of the hippest and nicest areas in Central Athens, located close to most of the city’s attractions. This area is close to Kolonaki, where tourists often prefer to live. Pangrati is also a good district for Airbnb property and still has options to choose from, unlike Kolonaki, where it is almost impossible to find a property for sale. Rental yields here will be around 3-4%, and the capital gain in the future is promising. Pagrati is also included in The 50 coolest neighborhoods in the world list by Times Out magazine.
Here you can find multiple bars, fine dining restaurants, eateries, and ethnic shops, says Chris Lepeniotis, a real estate expert at D&A Invest. Investment-wise, it makes a lot of sense as you can find nice properties within the price range of Golden Visa’s current minimum investment, around €300,000-400,000. Despite this, Lepeniotis claims it’s hard to find some luxury or new properties in Pagrati since most buildings date back to the 1960s and 1970s, sometimes to the 1980s.
Glyfadais a suburb south of Athens located along the coast of Athens, next to Ellinikon. Glyfada is a posh area that is very popular with expats. It is predominantly a green, quiet, and safe family neighborhood.
In Glyfada, you can choose between new developments and older buildings constructed in the 1990s and 2000s, as there are enough available offers in both categories. This area falls under a new minimum investment of €500,000 that will go into effect in May 2023. For this amount, you can buy an 80 square meter apartment in Glyfada with two bedrooms and one bath in a 2010s building, with private storage space and parking space.
Ilana van Huyssteen-Meyer
Migronis expert on Golden Visa programs
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Petralona is one of the fast-appreciating neighborhoods which expands all around the hill next to the Acropolis. The properties here are not visually appealing because Petralona, like most of Athens, was built between the 60s and 70s. It’s a great option if you want to invest in a middle-class location.
In Petralona, it is possible to find a good apartment with two bedrooms and two bathrooms for €250,000-300,000. Once you secure your investment, you can rent it out to tourists for a short-term basis or to local families and students for the long term, as there are two universities nearby Petralona.
Zografou is the neighborhood around the Athens university, about 4 km from the city center. It is the most popular district for student rentals, so the best investment option here will be a one-bedroom apartment. You will probably get more yield with older buildings, but you will make more money on capital growth with the new ones. Think about what is more important to you.
Alimos is a southern area of Athens, which offers new developments with prices starting at €7,000 per square meter. On the other side, it borders Ellinikon, an area that used to be an old airport but is now the most ambitious urban development project in modern Athens. There will be a large park, homes, hotels, shops, a marina, and 31 miles of walking and biking paths, and it is due to open in 2026.
Savvas Mina, the overseas director of the construction company Zafido, predicts that the opening of Ellinikon will upscale the price of properties in the whole neighborhood of Alimos to a starting price of €8,000 per square meter so you can count on the capital gain in the future.
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