Athens houses unaffordable for most Greeks

Most locals find it increasingly hard to buy a house in the capital given the soaring rates

Athens houses unaffordable for most Greeks

Athens is now one of the five most expensive cities in Greece to buy a property as regards the purchasing power of Greek households.

The Greek capital ranks fifth, as it takes 11 years for a worker with an average salary to acquire a 20- or 30-year-old apartment of 60 square meters, highlighting the soaring of residential rates while household labor incomes did not increase at the same rate. Just three years ago, 8.5 years of salaries was required for the same property, which is in line with the European average.

Compared to Athens it is (relatively) more expensive to acquire a property only in Tel Aviv, Paris, Tokyo and Hong Kong. At the same time, Athens is now on a par with London, while surpassing cities such as Munich, Zurich, Geneva, Amsterdam, Vancouver, Frankfurt, Dubai, Los Angeles, Stockholm and Miami.

The above is based on a relevant analysis by Cerved Property Services, combining data from Ergani and UBS. The research was presented on Tuesday in the context of the 17th RED Meeting Point by CEO Dimitris Andritsos. In 2018 the average selling price of a residence in Greece was 175,000 euros, while the average monthly salary was €1,071. By 2023 the average selling price of a home had shot up by 57% to €274,831, while, on the contrary, the average salary in the same period had increased by only 19.5%.

While some of Greeks’ income is understated, as more than 50% declare an income of less than €10,000, salary earners in particular have seen their purchasing power decline dramatically, even after the recent salary raises.

This is also certified based on other indicators. For example, based on price per sq.m., the housing market in Greece is among the cheapest in Europe, costing €2,200/sq.m., being more expensive only than Latvia, Romania and Bulgaria.

The most expensive market is that of Switzerland, where the average price/sq.m. reaches €15,000, but because salaries are also much higher, in the end the purchase of property by citizens is more accessible compared to Greece, and especially the market in Athens.

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