Property and currency news
The latest from the French property market, plus a currency update
The French presidential elections have sparked interest in the French property market, at a time when property sales in France have reached a 10-year high. According to figures from Notaires de France, there were 843,000 sales in France last year, the highest number recorded since 2006. At the same time, property prices also started to rise in many areas of France. In the final quarter of 2016, there was a 2% increase in prices across the country with Bordeaux seeing an 8% increase, and other areas including Montpellier and parts of Provence and the Riviera also seeing a rise.
It is most certainly the low interest rates in France that are helping to boost the market – property buyers are keen to get value for money and finalise the sale sooner rather than later.
However, it is thought that the political climate, both in France and around the world, has influenced the surge in interest. Tim Swannie, Director of Home Hunts said that the political climate has made an impact on the number of enquiries they have received.
“We enjoyed a fantastic first quarter of 2017 with 36 purchases agreed for our clients by the end of March,” he said. “Around one third of these clients are British and while we have seen a 25% decrease in the number of UK enquiries since the EU referendum last June, the enquiries we do get tend to be from serious buyers.
“The quality of the British enquiries has improved; the people who are looking seem to be serious and ready to make decisions quite quickly. Some clients want to buy their holiday home now, before the UK leaves the EU, in the hope that being a homeowner in France will help when it comes to their future freedom of movement in Europe.”
Swannie also said that Home Hunts noticed an increase in enquiries from Brits looking to relocate to France permanently. This was specifically related to people relocating for work, plus families and retired couples looking for properties with income potential.