Apartment prices up 2.5 pct, biggest jump in ten years - Bank of Greece

Apartment prices up 2.5 pct, biggest jump in ten years

Apartment prices in Greece rose 2.5 percent in the third quarter of the year, in the largest jump seen in ten years, data from the Bank of Greece showed Monday.

The rise comes as the country's economic recovery, fuelled by a tourism boom, helps lift real estate prices, that tumbled by more than 40 percent during its eight year economic crisis.

The third quarter jump is the biggest annual rise in apartment prices seen in the country since the first quarter of 2008 when prices advanced by 2.9 percent, according to the bank data.

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In the July to September period, prices of newer apartments, added 2.9 percent, while homes more than five years old saw prices increase by 2.2 percent. A breakdown of the figures shows that the broader Athens area was the best performer with prices gaining 3.7 percent, while in Thessaloniki, they moved 2.2 percent higher.

Although lending remains tight and disposable incomes low, demand in the sector has been rising sharply due to the country's tourism boom that is fuelling investments in properties put up for short term rentals.

This is also helping drive a spike in new building activity. Figures released on Monday by the Hellenic Statistical Authority showed that new construction permits issued in August rose 13.3 percent to 1,015.