Why there are so many villas in Greece available to rent or buy

If one check’s out listings on real estate sites or property management and rental apps, they will see that there are a lot of very luxurious villas available in Greece. In fact some of the biggest, most gorgeous and most perfectly equipped villas in Europe seem to be located on that tiny country, which isn’t known for its wealth. Some people may assume that those listings are just scams and that there’s probably something wrong with them, some fine print that will rob of them of their money. That however is not true. It might seem weird to you, but there are a lot of good reasons why there are so many luxurious villas in Greece.

The crisis

Now, most people know about the financial crisis that greatly affected many countries in 200 and lasted for several years. Greece underwent a financial crisis of its own during that period and the government had to take on a huge bailout loan from the EU and the IMF, thus entering a period of strictly austerity that greatly reduced the income of most Greeks. Simply put, no one in Greece, from the poorest families to the richest tycoons were left unaffected from the crisis. Things however weren’t always like that. Greeks used to be EXTREMELY wealthy.

The golden years

From the mid-nineties forward, the average income of the Greek family kept becoming greater and greater and as a result, a lot of businesses became very successful almost overnight. It’s not an exaggeration to say that by the time the 2004 Olympics happened, Greece was one of the most countries in Europe, as far as GDP and average income was concerned. The problem however was that the Greek economy was a bubble ready to burst. It was a bubble built on loans and government spending, so when the time came to pay back those loans, the economy collapsed.

Home owners by tradition

Greeks have always understood the value of real estate. For them owning land or a house was the most important investment a person could make. Anyone who was not a home owner in Greece, was considered poor or unsuccessful professionally and financially.Greeks are known for being a bit excessive and the same applies in their investment style. Greeks don’t just own the house ir apartment they live in,they usually also own a summer house and the home their parents grew up in.Furthermore, they are always looking out to buy new property, as soon as they can afford it.

The property boom of the golden years

This brings us back to the “origins” of all those villas that are available to buy and rent in Greece. During the so called golden years, all the rich and nouveau rich people in Greece invested in real estate and they built luxurious villas that would serve as their primary residence or summer house, depending on the location. Pretty much everyone took on a pretty substantial loan in order to get the funds needed for the construction and furnishing of those luxurious villas. The real estate boom was so large in scale, that the construction sector became the main source of income for most Greek families.

The crisis strikes

When the financial crisis erupted however, even the wealthiest Greeks so their profits and bank accounts take a significant hit. Furthermore, there was a significant tax hike on property taxes which up to that point, were almost negligible, especially when compared with property taxes in other countries in Europe. This caused many Greeks, including the wealthier ones, to default on their loans, which resulted in thousands of properties becoming available on the market, almost overnight and that’s why there are many luxurious villas on the market today! And it’s not only the amount of villas available, but the fact that even the best luxury villas in Greece are now sold in extremely low prices compared to previous years.

Things to look out for when renting a car on Greek islands

The Greek islands are definitely among the most popular vacation destinations in the world. One of the things that make them so popular, is the fact that not only are they gorgeous, most of them are rather small, which means that you can easily enjoy them within a few days. Santorini, an island known all over the world for its unique volcanic geography and breathtakingly beautiful sunsets, for example is only a few kilometers big and very easy to explore. However, if you would like to offer everything your chosen has to offer, you will need a car.

Cars are needed on the Greek islands because although there is no shortage of public transportation and bus routes – especially on popular islands like Santorini – , a lot of the most beautiful beaches are not accessible by bus. Besides, being reliant on public transport means that you’ll have to carefully plan your vacation and your trips and meticulous is the last thing any reasonable human being would like to do while away on holiday.

Renting a car however is never an easy task, mainly because there usually is a lot of fine print involved and there can even be some price gouging going on, depending on when you choose to rent your car. With that being said, let’s see what you should look out for when renting a car in Santorini or any other island.

The terms

It goes without saying that the terms on which you will be renting your car are the most important deciding factor when it comes to deciding whether to prefer an agency or not. Most car rental agencies are online these days so take some time to read the terms carefully before renting a car. Never agree to a deal “blind” i.e. without having read the contract. If there is a term or condition that you don’t understand, don’t hesitate to contact the agency and ask for additional information.

Insurance

Most car rental agencies will offer you some insurance when you rent a car from them. Just make sure that the package they offer includes pretty much everything that you consider important. If there is one thing that the contract should include, is road assistance. The last thing you want happening in a foreign place is getting stuck in the middle of nowhere because of a breakdown.

Car type

Most car rental agencies have a wide range of cars at their disposal, of course it goes without saying that anything other than a regular sedan or compact car will have a pretty expensive rate, which is why most agencies will offer 4x4s and SUVs first when you visit their sites . You don’t need SUVs and fancy sportscars on most Greek islands, since they have well maintained roads. Also, with the exception of popular islands like Santorini, the roads on Greek islands can be rather narrow and they feature many tight turns due to their topography, which makes driving large cars on them a very difficult task. Keep your money and just rent a regular car.

Choosing local over multinational agencies

This tip might seem a bit weird and even unintuitive at firsts, but it will make sense once you read this. A popular tourist destination like Santorini is home to tens if not hundreds of car rental agencies. Local agencies have to find ways to compete with the “big dogs” and the other local agencies on their island, which is why they offer some pretty fantastic packages and deals. Simply put, a local agency’s rate will be way cheaper than that of a multinational corporation for the same type of car. This is because the local company doesn’t have a reputation to fall back on when it comes to attracting business from tourists, which means that their only option when it comes to attracting business is offering amazing deals. Furthermore, the people working at local agencies are locals, which means that they can provide you with valuable tips and information regarding the island you’re on. They are also available 24/7 to offer you any assistance that you will need.

Aposperitis is here…

Mykonos is one of the most beautiful holiday destinations.

Mykonos is an island that knows how to offer you luxury in your stay as well as in your entertainment.

Our aim is to inform you with various articles on tourism and travel in Greece and our ultimate goal to be able to gather information about most and wonderful villas on the island of Mykonos and the Cyclades in general.

Enjoy the video below…