Some might say that real estate is real estate, but Athanasios Kikis, an attorney associated with the ‘Areio Pago’ – Greece’s Supreme Court – and founder of the Athanasios Kikis & Associates Law Office, urges potential investors to avail themselves of respected experts.
The coronavirus pandemic has changed the reality on the ground – and on the Internet – for the search for real estate, whether it is for purchases or rentals. Kikis adds that, “for Diaspora Hellenes there are special difficulties in monitoring the developments,” that the professionals at his firm can help with.
Those developments now include a war in Europe and economic disruptions all over the world.
The year 2022 began with hopes and anticipations – especially for the end of the pandemic – and as Kikis noted, there is a special symbolism in the year for Hellenes as it marks 100 years since the Asia Minor Catastrophe. History is an important part of his life, as he has been living in the historic city of Thessaloniki since his birth. “My father comes from Vlasti, Kozani, while my mother comes from Askos, Thessaloniki. I love both the place where I live and the homelands of my parents. For this reason I decided to open a branch of my law office in Askos. It is important to honor our roots and history, and this year is another opportunity to prove it. The Greeks of the Diaspora, keeping the ties with the homeland intact, are the best example!”
He thus feels a strong bond with Hellenes abroad, and he especially looks forward to helping them maintain their connections with the Patrida, homes and other kinds of properties constituting both pragmatic and symbolic ties. For most Diaspora Greeks, however, especially those born outside Greece, the Greek legal system and real estate market is a complete mystery.
Asked how his firm can help, Kikis told The National Herald, “the distance and the inability to follow Greek legislation creates problems in markets they are interested in and in the management of their real estate, but our law firm can assist with all legal issues that may concern Greek-Americans. In recognition of this kind of service – immediate and efficient solutions regarding the issues faced by Greek-Americans – our office has been included by the embassies of the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia on their lists of preferred law firms in Greece. In real estate matters we work with brokers, civil engineers, and tax experts. It should be noted that my wife, Arsenoi Vasileiou-Kiki, is a public notary, a fact that facilitates the swift handling of the notarial affairs.”
Asked what makes his firm ‘special’, Kikis didn’t skip a beat: “In a word I would say ‘specialization’. Our office, as a multi-member law firm, has specialized knowledge and experience in the whole range of law, while practicing throughout Greece. Our foremost principle is providing excellent customer service, which is done quickly, economically, and with attention to quality. For these reasons, our office has won several awards, such as first place in the international competition Corporate Intl Globalworld. Specialization and our continuous training guarantee the quality of our services.”
THH asked what kind of documents Diaspora Greeks to take care of in order to invest in, buy, and rent real estate in Greece – and how his firm can help. “Our law firm can help all expatriates in the whole process of buying, selling, and managing real estate in Greece. With our many years of experience in the field, we offer immediate resolution services. A Tax Identification Number (TIN), also known as the AFM ‘Afimi’, is sufficient – and we can issue a new one in case it does not exist. It should be noted that a ‘power of attorney’ is required for investments in Greece. The reliability of our office and constant communication with the client make all processes simpler and faster.”
He emphasized that, “despite the distance between Greece and the United States, our office can offer you complete security. The transparency of the procedures offered by our office satisfies all the conditions required for the completion of transactions.”
Kikis was also delighted to talk about his hometown. “It is worth noting that the attractions of the Region of Central Macedonia have recently prompted Hollywood to establish studios in Thessaloniki, with several films having already been shot on the streets of our city, with various big stars such as Antonio Banderas, Jason Statham, Megan Fox, and many others. That will increase the global recognition of our city when these films are released in cinemas. From my position as Regional Councilor of the Region of Central Macedonia, I can confirm that the Region as a whole contributes to the realization of Thessaloniki and our region in general as a center of development and investment growth.
Thessaloniki, with its beauty as a center of culture attracts buying interest in the real estate sector – and it will make leaps in the coming years, with a growth rate that we believe will reach 12% per year. There are opportunities where one can invest today in Thessaloniki that offer substantial and rapid returns. Major infrastructure projects such as the highway flyovers, the expansion of the airport, and especially the soon-to-be-completed Metro will generate a high growth rate in investments and tourism. In addition, Thessaloniki has also become a pole of attraction for investment in the fields of innovation and new technologies, attracting even more investment in our city.”
Thessaloniki has ‘arrived’ as an investment destination for real estate in the minds of investors, Kikis said, “and the law firm Athanasios Kikis & Associates is ready to serve them.”
Athanasios Kikis & Associates Law Office, Martiou No 39, Efkarpia Thessaloniki, tel. +30-2310554154, +30-6972507304, email: email@example.com, www.kikislaw.gr.