Greece Considers Ban on Short-Term Rentals for Golden Visa Properties

The Greek government is reportedly deliberating whether to include restrictions on the use of golden visa properties as short-term rentals, such as AirBnBs, in the new set of real estate rules it plans to bring to parliament “next week,” according to Ekathimerini.

Like their counterparties in Portugal, Greek authorities are under pressure from local residents to improve the affordability of housing, especially as regards rental costs.

The proposal suggests “evicting” investors who acquire properties through the Golden Visa program for short-term leasing in the center of Athens and other parts of Attica. According to reports, the plan has faced some opposition, and the administration will discuss it within the week before bringing the relevant amendment to Parliament, where they hold an absolute majority of seats.

The amendment will also include changes to the limits of the Golden Visa program, which are expected to take effect in May. Prime Minister Mitsotakis has already signaled that the new thresholds could rise to as much as EUR 800,000 in municipalities where buying pressure is high. The government has also aired proposals to introduce three pricing tiers, ranging from as little as EUR 250,000 to as high as EUR 800,000, depending on the municipality.

Application volumes for the Greek golden visa remain at all-time-high levels, despite the doubling of minimum investment requirements in 36 municipalities last year. Over the last 12 months, average application volume for the program has exceeded 700 a month, turning Greece into Europe’s most popular golden visa destination.

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