Bad news for Airbnb, good news for tenants as rents drop

Property owners in Athens have slashed the cost of renting their apartments by up to 25 percent in areas such as the affluent seaside suburb of Glyfada, based on the latest industry data.

With the country's tourism sector in a downward tailspin due to the pandemic, there are fewer options available on renting out houses. About a third of home owners have pulled their assets from short term rental platforms, such as Airbnb, and put them up for regular rent due to record low demand from foreign visitors.

Additionally, a large number of investors have kept their home listed on one of these platforms, while also making it available for long term rent in a bid to cover all their bases.

The sharp rise in supply levels has sent the price of monthly rents falling by 5-25 percent in Athens, according to data from cited by the Athens Macedonian News Agency.

Surprisingly, homes that are in popular areas such as the Athens Riviera, the coastal stretch running from Piraeus through to Sounio, are not showing much resilience to price drops.

Industry experts see the market as correcting after soaring demand for short term accomodation sent the price of property and rents higher, fast outpacing broader economic growth, in a trend seen in many cities across the world due to the popularity of the sharing economy.

In Athens, figures show that the montly rent charged for a 60 square meter apartment in Glyfada, near the golf course, fell to 900 euros in August, from 1,200 euros in June.

The cost of renting a place in Neos Kosmos, a district that has a large number of homes on Airbnb due to its close proximity to central Athens, have also plunged. The monthly rate for 45 square meter apartment in the area has fallen to 650 euros, from 800 euros in June.

In neighbourhoods such as Palaio Faliro price drops, however, were more moderate. The rent for a 58 square meter homes (near Floisvos) was reduced to 540 euros from 650 euros, a drop of 17 percent.

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