ECONOMY

Foreign investment in holiday homes nearly doubled in Q1

The flow of funds from abroad destined for the acquisition of properties in Greece – mostly holiday homes – surged 78.6 percent in the first quarter of this year from Q1 2014, according to data released by the Bank of Greece.

In total, 49.3 million euros was invested in the Greek property market from abroad, against 27.6 million in the same period last year and 27.5 million in 2013.

That figure indicates the great margin for recovery in the holiday home domain, given that it was recorded during a period when the market conditions were far from ideal due to the change in government and the uncertainty that continues to prevail today. Buyers from abroad invested a total of 250 million euros in the local home market 2014 as a whole, against 168 million in 2013.

Private construction activity also registered growth in the first few months of 2015.

Data from the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) showed that the volume of new private constructions soared 35.6 percent in March, against a small annual rise of 4.1 percent seen in March 2014. This volume increase follows a 36.5 percent rise reported in February.

In the January-March period there was total annual growth of 29.2 percent in the volume of new constructions, against a 17 percent decline recorded in the same period in 2014. There was also a significant increase in the number of new building permits, as they rose 8.7 percent against a 25 percent decline registered in the first quarter of last year.

This recovery is attributed to the fact that the first months of the year saw significant investment in nonresidential buildings, such as manufacturing unit extensions, and improvements in farming installations and tourism accommodation.