Last chance to pick up a euro bargain?

Estate agents are warning British buyers that now could be the last chance to pick up a euro bargain, as the euro begins to strengthen, despite the resignation of the Greek PM.

Alexis Tsipras announced his resignation yesterday, only months after he was elected on an anti-austerity ticket in January. Since then, Tsipras has led his left-wing Syriza government into lengthy negotiations and, ultimately, a new bailout agreement to keep Greece in the eurozone. That agreement came at the cost of many painful state cuts and reforms.

“The political mandate of the 25 January elections has exhausted its limits and now the Greek people have to have their say,” he told the press. “I want to be honest with you. We did not achieve the agreement we expected before the January elections.”

While the country is entering a renewed period of uncertainty, though, the euro is faring “better than expected” against the pound, following seven-year highs earlier in 2015, which prompted a boom in the number of British buyers looking to bag a bargain.

“We’ve seen interest rates in Portugal drop from 13.85% in January 2012 to 2.41% in May 2015 and this has led to many mortgage providers slashing their rates. At the same time, the best FX rate for eight years means that UK buyers can now get a lot more property for their pound. It’s the ideal combination for those looking to pick up a bargain dream home in the sun,” comments Ideal Homes Portugal Founding Director Chris White.

Indeed, the low interest rate and excellent exchange rate have been set against a background of slowly rising prices in Portugal. The property market has bottomed out since values plummeted back in 2007 and the early stages of a sustained recovery are underway. For British buyers, the timing has been perfect.

“What a difference a few weeks can make!” adds Angelos Koutsoudes, Head of OverseasGuidesCompany.com. “On Tuesday 11th August, the Greek government reached a final agreement with their creditors, meaning the expected possibility of Greece exiting the Eurozone is no longer a risk – for now. Combined with the outcome of [the recent] Super Thursday in the UK, where the Bank of England (BoE) confirmed that there was unlikely to be an interest rate rise before Christmas, our partners at SmartCurrencyExchange.com have confirmed that sterling is on the way down, and the euro is beginning to strengthen.

“Alongside this, economies are strengthening in previously unstable Eurozone countries that are popular with British expats, such as Portugal, Spain and Ireland, with the property market prices recovering in line with this. It’s very possible that now may well be your last chance to take advantage of both the weakened euro and low cost property to ensure your new dream overseas property is a bargain!”

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