Athens, the 2022 commercial property capital of Europe

It has the continent's best outlook in capital gains from realty investments and rentals

Athens, the 2022 commercial property capital of Europe

Athens looks forward next year to being the commercial property capital of Europe, based on the projected course of prices and rental rates for 2022.

The latest annual survey by PwC and the Urban Land Institute on the European property market shows that the Greek capital will lead the ranks in future capital gains and rental hikes among 31 cities. Notably, the Athens market gained the highest marks regarding the future course of both rental rates and sale prices.

The study surveyed property investment firm officials and foreign investment fund managers, who highlighted the considerable prospects of the Athens market, as well as the fact that the country is drawing much more interest from the international investment community now than in previous years.

In the same survey last year, Athens ranked ninth among 31 cities. This year, the Greek capital is followed by Copenhagen and three German cities: Berlin, Hamburg and Munich.

Although compared other European cities Athens boasts a relatively small number of foreign institutional investors, they believe that it offers particularly strong growth prospects. This optimism stems from both the expected further rebound of tourism and the political stability that Greece offers compared with its neighbor. As the head of one investment fund points out, “for the first time in decades Greece has a government that is stable and business-friendly. This stability is in stark contrast with the situation in Turkey.”

Sector professionals note that prices in Athens are at the start of a new upward cycle, as the health crisis came before the market had properly emerged from the financial crisis of the previous decade. Consequently, most investors agree with the view that prices and rents still have a considerable margin for growth in the coming years, also affected by the country’s economic growth. On the contrary, the rising cycle seen in other European cities before the pandemic means they have no clear outlook for capital gains.

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