Earlier this summer, Centered | RCG hosted a mission to Athens and Santorini, Greece. The trip focused on real estate property tours, an introduction to the Golden Visa Program and Greek culture.
The trip was a total of seven days – five in Athens and two in Santorini – all of which were spent learning about the real estate process and connecting with other global professionals who expressed interest in Greece.
The property tours allowed us to tour investment opportunities and learn more about the real estate market in Greece. We visited different types of properties ranging from single unit condominiums, to three & four star hotels. In addition to the property tours, the group was able to learn more about the Greek real estate process and the similarities and differences of how real estate transactions are conducted compared to the United States. It was interesting to learn that commissions are usually paid out by the seller and the buyer, typically equating to two percent paid by the seller and two percent paid by the buyer. Exclusive listings are not typical in Greece, and a majority of the deals are completed by leveraging local and international relationships in order to match a buyer and a seller.
Real estate in Greece is protected by title and deed, so buyers and owners of real estate can be assured that their property rights are protected. It should be noted that this is similar to real estate protection and property rights here in the United States.
We also met with Enterprise Greece, a public entity that helps support and promote investment into Greece. Here we learned more about the Golden Visa Program, which allows foreign nationals who invest 250,000 Euros or more to be eligible for a five-year European Union Residency visa. This has been very attractive for those countries that do not benefit from the Schengen visa. As U.S. citizens, we are allowed to enter into the EU without a visa and travel freely; however, countries that do not have this luxury seek opportunities to gain visas into the EU in order to make investment easier and to create flexibility of access into the EU if needed for business or personal reasons. Even for U.S. citizens, there is a benefit of having an EU Residency Visa if there is a need or desire to identify as an EU resident for business or personal pursuits.
The group took in the Greek culture as well. From the food to historical tours, we were able to experience the history of Greece and the phenomenal restaurants and culinary specialties it is known for. We visited the Acropolis, Parthenon, the Theatre of Epidavros and several monuments that showcased the background and history of ancient Greece.
Greece is a country that is currently going through a renaissance, as it was severely affected by the recession in 2008. The country has now rebounded, gained recognition and support from the European Union and demonstrated its resiliency. As the real estate market and investment opportunities continue to improve, there are still opportunities to invest for those seeking profitable returns and equity.
I’d be happy to connect with anyone who would like to discuss Greece in depth and provide you with resources that may help you and your clients explore Greece as an investment opportunity.
If you would like more information on our next Real Estate Investment Tour, or would like to discuss more about my recent trip to Greece, connect with me anytime.
Author: Robert E. Rosmis, CIPS, CNE, COO & Co-Founder, Managing Broker, Centered | RCG