ATHENS – Greeks just can’t catch a break: whacked by the COVID-19 pandemic that saw many out of work for months, with utility bills going sky-high, now many can’t afford soaring rents.
Coming on top of inflation also driving up prices of food – which is taxed as high as 24 percent – rents are going up as much as 50 percent in the capital, putting them out of reach for many.
“There are also significant increases, between 30% and 40%, recorded in other major cities such as Thessaloniki, Patra and Volos,” an analysis by Alkis Kafetzis, a member of the Institute for Research and Social Change (Eteron), showed.
“When one factors in the rental hikes in 2020 and 2021, the rise in energy rates and the general increase of the consumer price index, it is easy to conclude it has become particularly difficult for households to secure and maintain an affordable residence,” the study also found, said the newspaper Kathimerini.
The paper said that real estate agents RE/MAX Hellas showed a 5 percent increase in rents across the country from the autumn of 2020 to 2021 but it’s much higher in the main cities, including Thessaloniki and Patras.
In Athens’ pricier northern suburbs, rents have gone up 17 percent in a year and 11.6 percent in the city center, 14 percent in the southern suburbs and 12.7 percent in the port area of Piraeus.