NEWS

Rush to register properties

The long process of entering millions of properties on Greece’s first comprehensive land register started with a mad rush yesterday as some 30,000 people are estimated to have visited 75 offices where the necessary paperwork can be submitted. It is estimated that some 3 million Greeks will have to register their properties over the coming months and years. However, the process is beginning with the owners of properties in 107 areas around the country. The scheme has been highly publicized in recent weeks and this led to thousands of people gathering at the main office in Syntagma to either submit documents or find out more. «We estimate that a total of 400-500 applications, related to about 1,000 title deeds, were submitted,» said the head of the Syntagma office, Alexandros Velissarios. «The number of people who congregated here was at least 10 times as many as the number of applications. And they were not just from Athens but from all over Greece.» A total of 4,800 applications were submitted at land registry offices yesterday. Another 3,700 were submitted to www.ktimatologio.gr, a website which gives information in English as well as Greek about how the cadastre will work. The amount of people gathering at the offices yesterday caused frustration among the queuing public, as some people had to wait for up to three hours. There were complaints that people who had not completed their forms beforehand were allowed to do so while others waited. Others moaned that it was not clear what documents were needed. However, despite the fact that information sheets were readily available to anyone making general inquires, many of the people waited in line to speak to staff to learn more.