Whether a private race track is required or a mighty mansion with panoramic views of the Mediterranean Sea, Home Hunts are the luxury property finders, they are experienced at finding the perfect luxury property no matter how challenging the criteria
Luxury property finders Home Hunts was founded by Francois-Xavier de Vial and Tim Swannie in 2005. The two directors, along with their network of more than 30 multilingual consultants, specialise in finding high-end properties in France, Monaco, Switzerland and the UK. In fact their service has recently launched in London due to ever-increasing demand. With bricks and mortar proving to be a wise choice of asset as the financial crisis shows no sign of abating, the need for buyer’s agents is rising so the well-heeled can find the right property to invest in. Properties of interest generally start at €1 million, although this figure can be lower in some areas of rural France.
Luxury Property Finders
“Following a tough period in 2009 and 2010, this year has been fantastic for us and we have never been busier,” said Swannie. “The English have really returned over the past 12 months and I think a lot of people, who were waiting over the past three years as the pound dropped against the euro, are now coming back,” said Swannie. “It really has been a bumper year for the company. By the end of November, we had sold more than €90 million worth of property and we are still negotiating on a number of offers at present.”
While both are based in France, UK-born Swannie moved to the French Riviera in 2003 and Parisian de Vial settled in Marseille in 2002 – the company’s clients are predominantly British, Russian or Middle Eastern. “We also have many Dutch, Belgian, Scandinavian, Swiss, German, Italian, Russian and American clients,” said Swannie, adding that Chinese wine companies are now contacting them looking for flagship vineyards.
The company prides itself on sustaining strong, discreet personal relationships and can often spend up to two years working with clients to find their perfect property. All high profile relationships are dealt with very discreetly. “Often celebrities will come and we must keep it all very confidential,” said de Vial. “The personal relationship is key,” said Swannie. “But with certain clients it can be a little surreal, especially, for example, when you are having drinks with a Hollywood power couple and people walk over and just stare instead of striking up a conversation.”
Working as buyer’s agents for this type of clientele, who are cash rich but time poor, means that Swannie and de Vial work hard to ensure clients do not miss out on seeing the best and most suitable properties before they are snapped up. They have been known, in the past, to charter a helicopter for a day of viewings. “This was something we did recently for a London-based hedge fund manager,” said Swannie.
Whatever challenges a property search raises, the company is happy to take them on – for the Home Hunts team it is just part of the job. “In terms of the search, we get asked all sorts of things,” said Swannie. “We had a Buddhist monk who was looking to buy a place to turn into a retreat in the south of France. Noise levels are very important so we had to go to all the properties at different times of the day and night to make sure they were quiet around the clock.”
Another buyer asked them to find a home with a full-size racing car track in the grounds. “We found it with a chateau that needed complete renovation,” said de Vial. “It had something like 500 hectares of land and this racing track was right down in the valley. In the end he didn’t buy it, although I felt really important that day as they had to stop all the racing so we could show the buyer around the circuit.”
Home Hunts, the luxury property finders, are here to help you to find your dream home. If you would like to speak to one of the team to discuss your needs or just to have a chat about the market, you can call us on +33 970 44 66 43 or send us a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you just want to browse through thousands of beautiful French homes, visit our website at www.home-hunts.com or follow us on Facebook or Instagram.