PROPERTY

Short-term renting still lags

Short-term renting still lags

The Greek short-term rental market remains some way off its pre-pandemic highs, as its recovery in the last 12 months has not sufficed to cover its contraction during the lockdowns.

At end-January 2022 there were 73,232 offerings across Greece, which was 1.85% down on three years earlier but also 12% down on January 2020 – i.e. just before the pandemic broke out, when major expectations on the future of short-term leasing were generated. That was more so in popular summer resorts but also in the center of Athens, where there were 10,309 offerings against just 7,440 late last month.

The data originate from researchers AirDNA and concern active property ads (with at least one rental over the last 30 days) according to the information supplied by Airbnb and Vrbo.

They showed that last July the difference between 2021 and 2019 was quite large: In July 2021 there were 112,700 ads across Greece and 7,759 in the center of Athens, while in the same month in 2019 there were 132,800 and 11,590 properties respectively.

Consequently, supply has not yet approached the pre-pandemic levels: Properties on offer in 2021 were 15% fewer on average than in 2019, which also explains the higher prices, given that demand in popular resorts matched that of 2019. The second conclusion drawn is the seasonal element that continues to dominate the country as destination, unlike the center of Athens that appears to have its own, mostly domestic audience, which explains its small fluctuation during the year.

Of course once travel flows are fully restored, probably as of this summer, the emergence of more properties is expected, especially for the summer season.

One cannot help noting also the considerable preference of guests for holiday resorts at the expense of major cities, which has become the norm not only in Greece but abroad too. In its latest annual survey, for 2021, AirDNA pointed out that major cities continue to lag the more remote areas. This is the outcome of health safety concerns that spread after the pandemic broke out.