BUSINESS

Teleworking boosts demand for houses

NIKOS ROUSSANOGLOU

TAGS: Property

Residential property prices are showing signs of stabilization according to market professionals, even though transactions remain considerably below pre-pandemic levels and the economy is definitely on a recessionary course. Market insiders point out that prices may be stable after a couple of years of growth, while forecasts for 2021 and the years after remain optimistic.

“Contrary to other property categories such as stores and possibly offices, the residential sector is expected to show significant resistance in the immediate future and prices will not undergo any significant pressure,” says Yiannis Xylas, head of chartered surveyors Geoaxis.

“This is due to the realization by candidate buyers of the value of an additional room in their house, which would be ideal for using as an office,” he adds.

The market is already recording a rise in demand for larger houses or assets that can be refurbished so as to create the necessary work or study space. In this context, instead of potential buyers going for a newly built or relatively new apartments, they would rather spend the same amount of money on an older property with an additional room.

“In a newly built apartment block in Agia Paraskevi, an additional room costs around 30,000 euros. With the same amount of cash, a buyer may prefer to purchase a second-hand flat that would offer one more room than the new apartment,” explains Xylas.

The emergence of teleworking in the spring, a trend that continues going strong this fall as the second wave of the pandemic strikes Greece, has underscored the importance of additional square meterage or the ability to redesign the interior of a house. The aim is for properties to offer maximum use, allowing, for example, rooms to be split up or quiet areas to be created.

Xylas believes that the trend will endure even after the pandemic, bolstering demand for houses and, therefore, prices.

“Working from home has underscored the significance of a functional house. Therefore, this trend is expected to continue into the future, with house design likely to take into account these new requirements, so as to offer flexibility and ease in the interior formation of rooms and spaces,” he tells Kathimerini.

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