Home Hunts has released the third edition of INSIDE FRANCE, a ten-page report offering buyers savvy insights into the luxury French property market.
The start of 2016 has been the best start to the year that Home Hunts has had since launching in 2004, with enquiries and sales up 60% compared with 2015. The buyers’ market has made it possible for irresistible property deals to be made, due to a combination of flexible prices, low interest rates and favourable currency pairings.
With the FNAIM (national association of French estate agents) announcing earlier this year that a record-breaking 800,000 older properties were sold in France in 2015, Home Hunts confirms in INSIDE FRANCE that investment conditions continue to be excellent for buyers in France.
The most sought-after locations in France
Paris, the South West, the Alps, Languedoc, the Riviera and Provence, these six areas are the most coveted. INSIDE FRANCE summarises why these areas are so popular and highlights the most sought-after locations in each.
In Paris, Home Hunts found that some of the most coveted areas are the north of the 16th arrondissement, next to avenues Foch and Victor Hugo, and along the Ranelagh gardens. Clients are mainly looking for long-term investments and choose Paris over London where prices are almost three times higher.
In the South West (Aquitaine and the Midi-Pyrénées) there has been a significant increase in the number of clients who want to buy in the countryside, within half-an-hour of Bordeaux. The high-speed train, which will connect Bordeaux with Paris in two hours, has made this area wildly attractive. The Lot is also proving popular, especially to those with commercial goals due to the lack of quality small hotels in the area.
Home Hunts’ research showed that the top locations in the French Alps included Morzine and Les Gets – where prices are due to rise – and Evian-les-Bains. In this issue of INSIDE FRANCE an Alpine ski resort focus is featured for the first time, which gives an overview of the most popular resorts, including distance from Geneva airport and altitude.
In Provence, Saint-Rémy-de-Provence is named as one of the best locations for investment over the last twelve months, partly due to its strong international community. “Saint-Rémy has become highly desirable in recent years,” says Tim Swannie, Director of Home Hunts, “as buyers feel they are living in the real Provence.”
Narbonne and Pezenas are two out of four locations that have seen the most transactions in Languedoc in 2015. Pezanas, not far from the sea, has a strong expat population and Narbonne, the biggest town in the Aude and on the Mediterranean coast, is offering buyers real value for money.
To read more about the top hotspot locations in each of these prime investment areas in France, read INSIDE FRANCE for free here.
Recommended up-and-coming locations for luxury property investment in France
Paris, the South West, the Alps, Languedoc, the Riviera and Provence – in the report Home Hunts reveals up-and-coming locations in the most sought-after areas in France to help buyers find a savvy property deal.
A few of these recommended areas include “villages such as Bormes-les-Mimosas and Carqueiranne in Provence, which offer excellent value for money compared to nearby towns”.
The Lot is tipped as being a better investment than the Dordogne and Beziers, in Languedoc, is undergoing a facelift and is offering good real estate investment opportunities.
Samoëns, one of the Alpine locations currently offering the best value for money, is also revealed to be the place in the Alps to buy property at the moment. “These locations are currently offering particularly lucrative investment prospects,” says Swannie. “For 2016 we will continue to do what we do best and help our buyers find the best deals on the French property market.”
Want to know more about how you can find a property bargain in France’s up-and-coming locations? Check out INSIDE FRANCE now.
Who is buying where and how much are they spending?
The report also gives an overview of the various nationalities buying properties in the most sought-after areas in France and the most popular property price brackets. For example, on the Riviera, the most common nationalities are: British, Russian, Middle Eastern, Scandinavian, Eastern European and American.
In terms of property prices on the Riviera, 78% invest in the €1m – €5m bracket, 11% buy properties between €5m – €15m, 6% invest in properties over €15m and just 5% buy property under €1m.
Find out who is buying and where in Paris, the South West, the Alps, Languedoc and Provence, by downloading your free personal copy of INSIDE FRANCE.
Financial insights: the lowdown on interest rates and the most favourable currencies
Throughout 2015, interest rates were low and currency pairings, especially for British and American buyers, meant that sizeable discounts could be achieved on properties purely from the exchange rate.
“Those searching for a few years will have seen that a €200,000 property can become £40,000 cheaper, just on exchange rate movements alone,” explains Adam Bobroff, Director of The Foremost Currency Group.
Home Hunts confirms in this report that this is still the case in France and includes commentary from Tim Yates of Spectrum IFA, a mortgage and financial adviser in France, and Adam Bobroff, who give their opinions on why now is an excellent time to buy property in France.
“Mortgage rates for non-residents vary depending on the loan-to-value ratio and the payment terms, but are around 2.6% variable and 3% fixed,” says Yates. He does explain, however, that banks are tightening their lending criteria.
“If buyers wish to take out a mortgage, it is better to borrow and buy now than to delay,” he confirms.
To gain further expert analysis on the most lucrative currency pairings and interest rates in France, secure your copy of INSIDE FRANCE now.
Vineyard intelligence – how to buy and succeed at your own wine business
The vineyard focus in this issue of INSIDE FRANCE advises buyers on how and where to find quality vineyards in France. It includes specialist advice from consultant Rory Ramsden who points out how to maximise opportunities, the pitfalls to avoid and the locations offering good value for money.
Around 80% of Home Hunts’ vineyard clients are looking for profitable lifestyle vineyards under the €5 million mark. Ramsden explains how this can be challenging as many French wine producers (“vignerons”) sell their harvest to the local co-operative where their revenue is based on the quantity (weight) of the grapes delivered. “They are just not set up to make an attractive return on investment,” he explains.
Ramsden suggests how clients can create a strategy to make a vineyard more profitable and where opportunities can be found. “Our clients should see buying an underperforming vineyard as an opportunity to acquire unrealised value, then optimise both the vines (“viticulture”) and the winemaking process (“viniculture”) to transform the vineyard’s profitability” he says.
“Given that they have identified a niche market in which to sell to specialised wine shops and restaurants, they will certainly make money and increase the value of their new asset into the bargain.”
Why buying your dream yacht is plain sailing with Home Hunts
Recently Home Hunts launched a yacht-finding service, HH Yachting, with a team that knows yachts inside out and where to find them. In this edition of INSIDE FRANCE, a newly-dedicated section gives an overview of how Home Hunts helps clients find superyachts, megayachts or even gigayachts, and the extent of the support offered.
This service stands out from other yacht brokers – who work in a similar way to estate agents – because brokers have a number of vessels on their books and it is their main focus to find buyers for these boats only. “At HH Yachting, we work entirely the other way around,” says Swannie. “We help buyers to find boats, we don’t help boats to find buyers.”
The team can help clients to find the right yacht for their needs, assist with finance and tax advice, connect buyers with design and refit specialists and continue to offer support to new owners even after the sale has been made.
The section concludes with a recommended itinerary outlining how to spend a long weekend yachting on the Riviera. Nice, Villefranche-sur-Mer, Saint-Tropez, Pampelonne Beach and the Porquerolles Islands – find out how to best explore all these by yacht, ending up at Port-Cros. A must-go location that is only reachable by boat, it offers one of the best diving experiences and the clearest water in France.
To read more savvy insights on the best locations for luxury real estate investment in France, click here to read the Spring 2016 copy of INSIDE FRANCE.
To discuss your criteria, or any aspect of the French property market covered in the report, with a Home Hunts consultant, call +33 (0)970 44 66 43.