Utilities are rarely included in the rent. Often, a "condominium fee" is charged, in addition to the monthly rent, to cover such things as janitorial services, the lighting and cleaning of corridors, stairways or elevators, garbage pick-up, etc. This fee varies with the type of complex. Landlords are also permitted to raise the rent on an annual basis, although many landlords do not do this.
At this time, OTE is the only company that offers landline service throughout the Crete territory. A contract is initiated with the assistance of Housing personnel.
Your telephone bill:
1. Bills are issued every two months. All bills include a flat fee; a Valued Added Tax Form is required for you to be exempt from the19% taxes.
2. Telephone calls are calculated on the following factors: length of call, distance, and the time and day that the calls are placed.
3. Telephone calls from your home phone to cell phones can be very expensive.
Note: In addition to phone service fees, your bill will include a charge for the units you have used during the billing period. A unit does not represent a single phone call but rather it is a mix of distance called and time called. Calls to cellular phones may cost more than making international calls, depending on the time of day they are made. Reduced rates are available on weekends depending upon the OTE package plan selected by the customer. You will need to provide your own phone.
All Greek electricity is 220 volts, 50 cycles. Therefore, you will need a transformer to convert electricity for your American household appliances and adapters for Greek outlets, which are round-pronged. An important point to remember is that heat generated by a 60 Hz motor operating on 50 Hz can be a safety hazard. This problem is most critical with refrigerators. While most other motors are only used periodically or, by design, can get rid of heat, most refrigerators tend to build up heat. Electric supply is measured in kilowatts. Depending on the size of your dwelling, the number of water heaters, your family's size, your usage patterns and the number of electric appliances you operate, the number of available kilowatts you need will vary. The Housing Department will assist you in determining your needs. But always keep in mind electricity is expensive in Greece!
Your electricity bill:
DEH (the Greek Electric company) sends bills every two months, but reads your meter only about three times a year depending on the location of the property. In between readings, DEH will send you estimated bills, based on historical patterns of usage for your rental property. This practice may result in a high bill when the actual reading takes place by DEH when the reading is above the amount estimated. The housing office will document your initial DEH meter reading and recommends you to perform a meter reading monthly on your own and provide it to the Housing Department/Utilities Branch for review and documentation to assist you upon receipt of your electric bill. At this time, we will ensure that your contract was initiated with the correct reading and explain when to submit your readings to us. This practice shall prevent you from receiving bills that you may have difficulty paying. You should learn to estimate your own usage and set aside sufficient funds; a safe estimate is 12 euro cents per KWh up to the first 800 hrs, 15 euro cents over 800 up to 1600 hrs and 20 euro cents 1600-2400 hrs of consumption. Electricity in Crete is expensive, if you have questions ask your housing staff.
Should you select a house/apt with an electric split unit system only will result in higher electric bills. While the majority of our listings include both the split unit system, solar systems and fuel oil it is recommended to take the initial reading and keep track of your usage. It is also recommended to set your thermostat at a reasonable temperature to shut off when the sun is out and when you are not home.
The water contract remains under the name of the landlord at all times. In most cases, the landlord pays only the water flat-fee and the resident is responsible for any over-usage. The cost of water is subject to variation on the basis of housing areas, cubic meter consumption and price of water established by the supply company. When you are asked to pay a water bill, we recommend that you ask for a copy of the bill and forward it to the Housing Department/Utilities Branch to ensure you reimburse the landlord the correct amount.