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In full reflection of the continuing recession, Greek property prices and rents fell at an accelerated rate over the last 18 months, Bank of Greece data show. Whereas the drop was 11.7 percent between 2007 and the end of 2011, it has now reached 23.1 percent. According to an analysis by Alpha Bank, rents picked up 11.2 percent in the 2007-11 period. They nudged down 2 percent last year and the fall accelerated to 4.6 percent in the first quarter of 2013 and 6.1 percent in the second quarter. The study cites a number of factors for the decline, arguing that the lack of demand is due to households’ insecurity about employment and future incomes, high – and multiple – property taxes, frequent disparities between the market rates and the official property rates used for taxation purposes, and an overcautious attitude on the part of banks regarding mortgage credit. The latter declined 3.4 percent last year and fell a further 3.2 percent in the first half of 2013. The study also notes an increase in market supply, due to the need of households with many properties to cut costs reports Kathimerini.
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