In the village of Kefala, about 30km south-west of Athens, a wooden fairy-house in one of the most remote villages in the Greek countryside sits empty.
The owner of the house has not been there for five years, when his son was a school student.
He has lived in the house since and has not paid rent, according to the local council.
“I have no idea what’s going on,” he said.
“It’s a place of refuge for people who have no place else.”
The village has a population of about 15,000 people, and has a long history of being a haven for migrants fleeing persecution.
Many have been forced to return to the country.
“The village has been living without electricity and water for years,” said the owner of a construction company, who declined to be named.
“In the summer we had to bring water from the sea and send it back to the village.
In the winter we had no water and no electricity.
Now, I don’t know where to go, and I don´t know how to pay the rent.”
Many families have been evicted from the houses, and in one case, three houses were demolished, said the construction company owner.
“They took away the wooden houses and put wooden houses in them.
We have a lot of wooden houses here,” he told Al Jazeera.
“There is a shortage of wood and no one can do anything with them.”
In the summer of 2018, the owner told Aljazeera he received a letter from a government department asking him to find a buyer for the house, which he said was worth about $300,000.
“But they never answered,” he added.
“So I sent them a message on WhatsApp.
They told me they are still waiting for me.
The house was empty.”
In a statement, the Kefla municipality said the town “does not have a formal contract with a company” and that “the village needs to secure the payment of the rent”.
In January, the village’s council rejected the offer of an additional 20,000 euros to help cover the owner’s living costs, citing “a lack of land, money and landowner” for the owner.
The council said it had a “serious financial problem” and was now looking for an alternative for the property, but would not comment on the details.
The local council has not issued any eviction notice.
Al Jazeera’s John Walcott, reporting from the Greek town of Kofa, said in his report for Al Jazeera that the situation in the village is a stark contrast to the situation at the camp in Italy, where migrant workers have been living for years, often without electricity or water.
“What is going on in Greece is a very different situation,” he wrote.
“If you go to Italy and try to find out what is happening there, you will find that a lot is happening here in Kefa.
“This is the real problem. “
A lot of migrants are going to Greece and they will just find that they have nowhere else to go.”
“This is the real problem.
The situation is not good.
The authorities are ignoring it,” Walcott said.