Greece Offers Landlords Subsidy for Commercial Space Rent Cuts


(Photo by Eurokinissi/ Dimitropoulos Sotiris)

ATHENS – With an untold number of Greek businesses shutting for good during a long lockdown aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19 and thousands more still teetering, the government said it would offer incentives to landlords to lower rents.

That's aimed at keeping companies going and prevent the horror show repeat of a near decade-long economic and austerity crisis that saw scores of thousands of businesses to under and the Greek capital's streets filled with empty storefronts.

Property owners who strike an agreement with their tenants for a rent cut will get a tax cut up 40% of their losses, depending on the level of rent reduction, said Kathimerini, although it wasn't said why property owners would accept that amount.

There would also be conditions for the payment of the remainder of the rent within the agreed timeframe or the applicable month, and the Federation of Property Owners (POMIDA) said it's the first time rent cuts would depend on paying the balance on time.

For example, the paper said, in the case of a monthly rental of 1,000 euros ($1180.71) a 300-euro ($354.21) rent cut will see the state pay 120 euros ($141.69) to cover 40 percent of the loss, but still leaving the landlord to lose the rest.

The new regulation concerns a rent reduction of at least 30 percent for the months of September, October, November and December 2020, following an agreement between the landlord and the leaseholder that is declared to the Independent Authority for Public Revenue. 

The draft law also provides for the mandatory maintenance of the 40 percent cut for  tenant-companies in sectors that continue to be hurt by pandemic, such as those in tourism, food service, transport, culture and sport, as well as for workers who have been furloughed during the crisis.