Easter has always been the traditional time for property hunters to begin their property search and this is no less true of the foreign property market. France’s property market in recent years has been completely different from that in the UK; prices have not risen very much if at all and indeed in some areas have fallen, forcing sellers to become more realistic about their property’s worth.
It is not uncommon for a property to be for sale for one or even two years in France; the market is slower than the UK and there are far more properties up for sale, and a wealth of choice of types of property across the country. It really is still a buyer’s market.
There are sure signs of property prices slowly increasing in some areas of France.
Having said all that, there are sure signs of property prices slowly increasing in some areas of France. The actual number of property sales transactions increased towards the end of last year, headed up by the Paris region which saw huge growth, particularly in apartment sales.
Most of us British people want an old character property in a pretty village, and there are plenty of such properties in France! Whereas this type of property had recently seen prices falling, the signs show that they are now stabilising as much as before and our estimate is that over the next couple of years we will see a significant price rise.
Interestingly, new builds in France have become more popular – there is plenty of building work going on, far more than in the UK. This may be in part due to the fact that there is so much more land in France to build on, of course!
In terms of the most popular areas, the gradual increase in prices can be seen most significantly in the already higher priced regions, such as PACA (Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur) and the Paris region. The Limousin remains the cheapest area to buy property in, but there are still bargains to be had in other areas, such as the Charente, Auvergne, etc.
The pound may have suffered slightly following global economic events and in response to nervousness about the forthcoming EU Referendum, but market conditions in France are still excellent for British buyers.
So what does all of this mean for the British buyer? The pound may have suffered slightly following global economic events and in response to nervousness about the forthcoming EU Referendum, but market conditions in France are still excellent for British buyers. There are some extremely good French mortgage options available in the current market, with low interest rates, and buying a French property now may well turn out to be an excellent investment over a ten to fifteen year period, since the small signs of price increases experienced generally across the country would seem to show that in a couple of years’ time, the property you have set your heart on may well cost you quite a bit more.
To summarise, if buying property in France has long been your dream, our advice is to go for it now!