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Top Short-Term Rental Locations in Greece

Top Short-Term Rental Locations in Greece

Located at the picturesque southern edge of the Balkan peninsula, Greece is a breathtakingly beautiful country celebrated for its deep-rooted history and vibrant cultural heritage. Famously known as the cradle of Western civilization, Greece has profoundly influenced the worlds of art, philosophy, politics and literature.

Tourism in Greece is booming and the country is a hotspot for investors. From January to August 2023, Greece welcomed over 17.4 million international visitors and the numbers keep climbing. This surge in tourism opens up fantastic opportunities for property managers and investors looking to dive in.

Additionally, the Greek rental market is looking great for investors. With a strong flow of tourists, affordable property prices, solid housing market performance, and high rental yields year-round, Greece is an inviting place for anyone thinking about investing in short-term rentals in Greece.

The Tourism Industry in Greece

Tourism is a cornerstone of the Greek economy, engaging 10% of its population and contributing 20% to the GDP. In Greece, the tourist season stretches from April to October, although cities like Athens attract visitors year-round. Before the pandemic, tourist numbers annually surpassed 30 million.

To accommodate this influx, much of Greece's real estate market is geared towards short-term rentals. Platforms like Airbnb boast over 90,000 listings, highlighting a strong preference for short stays. Consequently, there's a notable scarcity of options for medium to long-term rentals, which tend to be snapped up quickly, primarily by students and foreign professionals.

Why Invest in Short-term Rentals in Greece: Pros & Cons

Greece's breathtaking beauty is enriched by its rich heritage, Mediterranean climate and laid-back lifestyle. A short-term rental here offers not just the potential for steady passive income but also the chance to indulge in the luxuries the country provides.

Here are some pros and cons to consider before you decide to set up shop:

The pros

  • Attractive market conditions:

If you’re looking to purchase your short-term rental property, the Greek property market is currently thriving, fueled by significant demand, especially from international investors drawn by incentives like the Golden Visa Program. 

Economic growth, enhanced stability and demographic increases have all contributed to a robust demand in the housing market. Despite rising property prices across Europe, Greece remains an affordable option with the average house price around €2,408 per square meter, offering many budget-friendly choices.

  • Strong rental returns:

Greece’s rental market is strong, with an increasing demand, especially driven by its thriving tourism sector. This results in high occupancy rates, providing investors with substantial passive income and attractive rental yields, typically ranging from 5% to 8%. The most lucrative returns often come from the top tourist destinations. In 2022 the vacation rental sector alone contributed 1.65% to the nation's GDP.

  • Robust economic performance:

Greece stands out as one of Europe’s fastest-growing economies. Despite the setbacks from the COVID-19 crisis, the country has shown remarkable economic resilience, leading to growth in employment opportunities. According to the OECD economic outlook, the real GDP increased by 2.2% in 2023 and is projected to rise by another 1.9% this year.

The Cons 

  • Seasonality:

In Greece's prime tourist spots like the islands, rental demand peaks during the summer months but tends to dip significantly in the winter (November to March). While there's still a chance to secure bookings during the off-season, it's important to consider that properties may remain vacant during these quieter months.

  • Bureaucracy:

If you choose to, buying property in Greece can be incredibly rewarding but it also involves a complex, time-intensive and costly bureaucratic process. Expect to navigate through extensive paperwork and detailed legal procedures

Although Greek law doesn’t require foreign investors to hire lawyers, having one is advisable to streamline the process and avoid potential legal pitfalls. A lawyer can help coordinate and manage all necessary actions efficiently.

Where to Invest in Greece: Prime Locations for Short-Term Rentals

Where to Invest in Greece: Prime Locations for Short-Term Rentals 
Vacation rental management software, Airbnb Management Software, Short-term Rental Management software

Source (Airbtics) (Information as of January 2024)

Top  Short-term Rental Locations in Greece

Fira

Fira, also known as Thira, is the bustling capital of the Greek island of Santorini. This picturesque town is iconic for its cliffside views of whitewashed buildings set against the deep blue of the Mediterranean—images that have become synonymous with the island's allure.

Beyond its stunning visuals, Fira is a vibrant center of activity on the island. It's the go-to place for some of Santorini’s finest shopping, dining, nightlife and arts. The town not only offers cultural landmarks but also serves as the heart of the island's social scene.

When do most people visit Fira?

Most people visit Fira from June through September. July and August represent the peak tourist season, attracting the most visitors, while June and September are considered shoulder months—offering all the vibrancy with fewer crowds, making it a perfect balance for those looking to enjoy the locale’s lively atmosphere without the peak season rush

Market Details according to Airbtics:

  • Occupancy rate: 83%

  • Median revenue: €74,653

  • Average nightly rate: €242

  • Number of listings: 564 listings

  • Most popular type of listings: private/hotel/shared rooms (221 listings) 1BR houses (205 listings)

Mikonos (Mykonos)

Mykonos stands as a premier destination among the Greek islands, drawing visitors with its mix of glamorous nightlife and quaint, picturesque scenery. Known for its iconic, whitewashed windmills and vibrant atmosphere, Mykonos has something to offer every type of traveler.

The island's nightlife is perhaps its most famous attraction, offering world-class clubs and bars where the music and dancing stretch well into the early hours. It's a vibrant scene that attracts renowned DJs and party-goers from around the world, making it a staple for those looking to experience the best of European nightlife.

Beyond its party reputation, Mykonos is a haven for fashion enthusiasts and shoppers. The island's winding streets are lined with unique boutiques where you can find everything from high-end fashion to local artisan products. It’s an ideal spot for those looking to blend shopping with their beach vacation.

When do most people visit Mikonos?

The tourist season in Mykonos starts around Greek Easter in April and lasts until the end of October. The peak season spans from mid-July to the end of August when the island is most crowded. 

Many visitors prefer September and October for the warm sea and quieter atmosphere as the tourist season winds down. Spring, specifically May and early June, is also popular for its pleasant weather and smaller crowds as the season begins. 

So Mikonos will be attracting guests for more than half the year making it a very profitable place to own a vacation rental.

Market Details according to Airbtics:

  • Occupancy rate: 76%

  • Median revenue: €63,562

  • Average nightly rate: €226

  • Number of listings: 844 listings

  • Most popular type of listings: 1BR houses (380 listings), private/hotel/shared rooms (161 listings)

Chania

Chania, a picturesque port town, captivates visitors with its charming blend of Turkish and Venetian architectural influences. Among its historic features is one of the world's oldest lighthouses, a testament to the town's rich history. The port area is a vibrant hub, lined with excellent restaurants offering stunning views of the harbor.

When do most people visit Chania?

Chania sees the highest influx of tourists, both local and international, during July and August. However, this charming town is well-suited for visits any time of the year. It's important to note that most tourist-oriented amenities and establishments typically operate from April to October, offering the full range of services during these months.

Market Details according to Airbtics:

  • Occupancy rate: 72%

  • Median revenue: €24,053

  • Average nightly rate: €90

  • Number of listings: 1986 listings

  • Most popular type of listings: 1BR houses (941 listings), 2BR houses (489 listings) 

Paros

Paros, a beloved destination among both tourists and Greeks, may not draw the crowds of Santorini or the vibrant nightlife of Mykonos, but it has carved out a niche with its own unique appeal. The island is cherished for its stunning beaches, quintessential Cycladic charm and a wide array of entertainment options, making it a captivating choice for those seeking a blend of beauty and activity.

When do most people visit Paros?

Visitors looking to enjoy warm waters, sunbathing and vibrant nightlife typically choose July or August for their trip to Paros. However, those who prefer milder weather perfect for sightseeing and fewer crowds choose the months of April and May or from mid-September through October

Market Details according to Airbtics:

  • Occupancy rate: 78%

  • Median revenue: €31,142

  • Average nightly rate: €108

  • Number of listings: 515 listings

  • Most popular type of listings: 1BR houses (212 listings), 2BR houses (131 listings) 

Rhodes Town

Rhodes Town is the epitome of a Greek island getaway, featuring quintessential sugar cube houses with blue doors, abundant sunshine and cozy tavernas where you can enjoy fresh grilled seafood accompanied by ouzo. 

The town's fame comes from its rich historical and natural attractions, including a stunning acropolis, a well-preserved medieval town, lush alpine forests and expansive sandy beaches. This blend of cultural heritage and natural beauty has made Rhodes a beloved destination for writers, artists, and film stars alike.

When Do People Visit Rhodes Town?

The peak tourist season in Rhodes Town runs from June through August. This period is ideal for those looking to enjoy classic island vacation activities like sunbathing and swimming, thanks to the consistently warm weather, with average temperatures around 32°C (90°F). However, it's also when the town is most crowded and prices are at their highest. July often marks the hottest month, while August sees the largest influx of tourists, making the town bustling with activity.

Market Details according to Airbtics:

  • Occupancy rate: 69%

  • Median revenue: €23,307

  • Average nightly rate: €91

  • Number of listings: 1176 listings

  • Most popular type of listings: 1BR houses (575 listings), 2BR houses (257 listings)

Exploring Vacation Rental Opportunities in Greece

Greece’s growing economy and tourism popularity are big pluses for investors. While the seasonal tourist flow and some complex property laws need consideration, smart investments in these popular areas can really pay off. If you’re looking to get into the vacation rental market, Greece offers some exciting opportunities.

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