picnic

French Property

2,210 posts in this topic

cut and paste if link fails.....a good summary of the current market in France.

[url="http://www.expatica.com/fr/survival/housing_market/Winter-winds-chill-French-property_-and-second-homes-in-the-sun.html"]http://www.expatica.com/fr/survival/housin...in-the-sun.html[/url]

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Almost 2 weeks and no rebuttal?? !!

It seems the french market is dead in the water and the only people talking the market up are AGENTS.

I even recognise the ''house style'' of one of the posters, (VEF ? ) A plausable almost convincing speel, but totally illogical!

Thankfully most of the agents are small beer so will not be lost by anybody except perhaps their workers.

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[quote name='picnic' post='1251084' date='Aug 9 2008, 03:42 PM']Almost 2 weeks and no rebuttal?? !!

It seems the french market is dead in the water and the only people talking the market up are AGENTS.

I even recognise the ''house style'' of one of the posters, (VEF ? ) A plausable almost convincing speel, but totally illogical!

Thankfully most of the agents are small beer so will not be lost by anybody except perhaps their workers.[/quote]

Hello Picnic

Just a quick note to make you feel the effort in pasting is worthwhile !

If you look at the other thread about French property you'll see these issues are being thrashed out.

Having said that, there really isn't a lot to debate. The market is flat in parts, and declining in other areas.

I've re

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[quote name='Happysort' post='1258345' date='Aug 14 2008, 10:29 AM']Hello Picnic

Just a quick note to make you feel the effort in pasting is worthwhile !

If you look at the other thread about French property you'll see these issues are being thrashed out.

Having said that, there really isn't a lot to debate. The market is flat in parts, and declining in other areas.

I've re[/quote]


Hi again Picnic. Sorry about the truncated reply above - not sure what happened.

I've read the article - don't know what to say really. I agree with some bits, find others amusing, and some parts I disagree with.

A few obvious thoughts -

a. I smile at all these experts now stating that they have brillantly analysed that the market is at best stagnant. In some cases as recently as a few weeks back they were still predicting increases overall for 2008 when even a bluebottle could have told them otherwise. They certainly have 20/20 vision in hindsight !

b. Outside of the major metropolitan areas, only a hopeless optimist (or an EA) could possibly have thought French prices would remain totally immune from the Uk and USA troubles. In vast areas of rural France foreign buyers are a very major factor in the local housing markets and indeed the local economy. Many of these fund their purchases and renovations based upon second mortgages secured upon perceptions of the value of the main home in the UK or sometimes holland/germany etc. Given also a high turnover (the figures I have seen suggest around 30% of UK buyers try to sell again in 2 years or less) having a constant supply of new British and other foreign buyers with money in their pockets and the confidence to spend it, was essential in maintaining French rural prices. If these buyers suddenly lost confidence that their UK finances were secure, what did French market experts think would happen ? The 'UK buyers' of course would vanish which would drive prices down !

This happened in the 3rd / 4th qtr 2007 in our general region. The foreign buyers practically vanished overnight. So, how in even mid 2008 people could keep arguing this would have no effect is entirely beyond me ! It's also worth noting that this is having a knock-on effect on French buyers. That's because a lot of rennovation, decoration and landscaping work here has simply vanished along with the British buyers and renovators. Many local artizans are saying their business has declined 50% overnight. Some are saying they have little or no work at all because so much of their business was built around British custom. This means that the local economy suffers and some French people contemplating buying also have 'the jitters' and are not doing so.

c. I've said on the other thread that my hunch is that prices though may stabilise towards year end and perhaps even pick up later in the year or earlier in 2009. I think that because in my opinion French housing outside major centres continues to offer fantastic value for money virtually unique now in western europe. I think those buyers around will start to believe that it may not be worth putting their plans on hold for say another 12 months just in the hope of saving another say 3000euros via decline over time if the price currently is already reasonable and a bargain by UK standards. Hard to know - we'll see.

Cheers;

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We lived in France for 5 years, now back in the UK. We moved at the right time, given the state of the exchange rate. Had we made the move now, we would be living in a caravan. The housing market was already slowing down a few years ago, with agents finding buyers thin on the ground and we consider ourselves very lucky to have found buyers. Lowering agency fees might encourage more people to buy.

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[quote name='babbles' post='1263327' date='Aug 18 2008, 06:03 PM']We lived in France for 5 years, now back in the UK. We moved at the right time, given the state of the exchange rate. Had we made the move now, we would be living in a caravan. The housing market was already slowing down a few years ago, with agents finding buyers thin on the ground and we consider ourselves very lucky to have found buyers. Lowering agency fees might encourage more people to buy.[/quote]

hi - would you mind sharing which part of France you relocated to and why you moved back to UK after so many years ?

I thought once you made it past the first couple of years then coming back to UK isn't the norm. We are planning to re-locate next year to SW France (between Pau and Biarritz) - plan to rent there initially to see how we feel before making commitment to buy.

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Well this is a quiet place....nothing posted since AMO...in Auguast 08 !

I am still getting ******** emails saying it is a good time to buy inParis or France which is just total nonsence.

VEF finally bit the dust and no doubt other less well outfits have gone too. If the French market had been as boyant as they said they would still be in business.
Obviously I hope they all find new jobs.

ParlerParis are another outfit trying to promote overpriced Paris property but their target market is the USA...

There is still no regulation of property advice......
In short, don't touch the French market for at least 2 years.

This advice is free, and I will not bill you for 100,s of $$$$$$$$

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[quote name='picnic' post='1863508' date='May 4 2009, 04:33 PM']Well this is a quiet place....nothing posted since AMO...in Auguast 08 !

I am still getting ******** emails saying it is a good time to buy inParis or France which is just total nonsence.

VEF finally bit the dust and no doubt other less well outfits have gone too. If the French market had been as boyant as they said they would still be in business.
Obviously I hope they all find new jobs.

ParlerParis are another outfit trying to promote overpriced Paris property but their target market is the USA...

There is still no regulation of property advice......
In short, don't touch the French market for at least 2 years.

This advice is free, and I will not bill you for 100,s of $$$$$$$$[/quote]

Are VEF out of business? I still see their web site is up?

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[quote name='picnic' post='1863508' date='May 4 2009, 05:33 PM']Well this is a quiet place....nothing posted since AMO...in Auguast 08 !

I am still getting ******** emails saying it is a good time to buy inParis or France which is just total nonsence.

VEF finally bit the dust and no doubt other less well outfits have gone too. If the French market had been as boyant as they said they would still be in business.
Obviously I hope they all find new jobs.

ParlerParis are another outfit trying to promote overpriced Paris property but their target market is the USA...

There is still no regulation of property advice......
In short, don't touch the French market for at least 2 years.

This advice is free, and I will not bill you for 100,s of $$$$$$$$[/quote]
good post total silence here in france where i live everything is for sale houses factories flats but nothing is selling !!last week i counted in the local free advert paper over 200 houses to sell after just the first four pages then i stopped to tireing. the mother in law (french) has a flat for sale here been on the market for over two years now .nobody is interested

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[quote name='redwine' post='1865618' date='May 5 2009, 04:21 PM']good post total silence here in france where i live everything is for sale houses factories flats but nothing is selling !!last week i counted in the local free advert paper over 200 houses to sell after just the first four pages then i stopped to tireing. the mother in law (french) has a flat for sale here been on the market for over two years now .nobody is interested[/quote]

Agree. I was at the Belle Mere's place in Montpellier last week for a visit. Plenty of people trying to sell. Lot's of new build that look like prisons near the site of the new Mairie (town hall). There's a really horrible building that looks like a stack of freight containers... :huh: ...These promoters will get burnt unless they slash prices, imo. Anyway, the local freesheets are also full of private sales. I saw some places that are 20min drive from MTP , nice big villas, for 250K€ , that are still not shifting. According to my sis-in-law, who is local and earns local wages, no-one can afford them even at those prices. Why ? Well, their own appts have taken such a hit in the last 12 months and not many banks will finance the shortfall unless you have 25% deposits.

Watch the market dive even further after the summer period ends. ie. October............ ;)

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Agreed about Autumn being ripe for some big falls....

Was in the Var last week doing a bit of a reconaissance, every single estate agents I looked in was deserted, bar none, local property mags full to the brim. One really telling sight was a home-made "for sale" sign for a 4 bed detached villa on 25 ares between St. Maxime and Grimaud - now if people are resorting to this for "prime" property like that it must be getting bad.

I reckon some cheeky offers for land in that area in Autumn may be on the cards for me.

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[quote name='Smog' post='1868576' date='May 6 2009, 04:50 PM']Agreed about Autumn being ripe for some big falls....

Was in the Var last week doing a bit of a reconaissance, every single estate agents I looked in was deserted, bar none, local property mags full to the brim. One really telling sight was a home-made "for sale" sign for a 4 bed detached villa on 25 ares between St. Maxime and Grimaud - now if people are resorting to this for "prime" property like that it must be getting bad.

I reckon some cheeky offers for land in that area in Autumn may be on the cards for me.[/quote]


If I were you I'd focus your attention on British sellers - they're the ones hardest hit by the currency movements. Also, you tend to get a better style of restoration/refurb than an French seller. I've seen posting on various expat forums that are eye-wateringly desparate.

French sellers are very, VERY patient when it comes to selling houses. Our local Franch plumber (nr. Cognac, Dept 16) has had a small commercial site with 3 buildings on it up for €160k for 18 months now. I spoke to him a couple of weeks ago and said - 'Why don't you reduce the price - it might sell quicker?'

He looked at me as if I'd asked his wife for a BJ... I've told him I 'might' be interested at about €90k.

They all think that the Brits are all absolutely loaded and prepared to pay top dollar (or Euro I guess...)

Don't forget to try local Notaires (solicitors) as they often have properties for sale and charge lower fees than immobiliers.

As a general rule, I'd make an initial offer at 30% below asking price and work towards 20% if you have to.

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[quote name='Wannabe' post='1868844' date='May 6 2009, 06:42 PM']If I were you I'd focus your attention on British sellers - they're the ones hardest hit by the currency movements. Also, you tend to get a better style of restoration/refurb than an French seller. I've seen posting on various expat forums that are eye-wateringly desparate.

French sellers are very, VERY patient when it comes to selling houses. Our local Franch plumber (nr. Cognac, Dept 16) has had a small commercial site with 3 buildings on it up for €160k for 18 months now. I spoke to him a couple of weeks ago and said - 'Why don't you reduce the price - it might sell quicker?'

He looked at me as if I'd asked his wife for a BJ... I've told him I 'might' be interested at about €90k.

They all think that the Brits are all absolutely loaded and prepared to pay top dollar (or Euro I guess...)

Don't forget to try local Notaires (solicitors) as they often have properties for sale and charge lower fees than immobiliers.

As a general rule, [b]I'd make an initial offer at 30% below asking price and work towards 20% if you have to.[/b][/quote]

Agree with your anecdotal above. If the man is self-employed and not a forced seller, then he's going to take his time. Check with him every 3 months to see if he relents....but don't contact him during the summer as he's probably expecting some bids at this period as this is very much the most active time of the French market. Sept/October is when reality tends to set in..... ;)

As for you initial offer...yes, that figure seems about right. But only if you really want to buy in the next 6-9 months. Patience in the French rural/semi-rural market pays. Come the end of 2009, when all these Brit owners still can't sell after > 1 yr on the market, they will drop the price. And the exchange rate will play a part. 3 months ago, it was near parity. Now the rate has risen 10% (reducing any currency profit by 10%). If the pound continues to strengthen, sellers might be prepared to cut further to ensure a sale at a "better" rate. If we get back to £1=1.25€, that's quite a hit.

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[quote name='whojamaflip' post='1868899' date='May 6 2009, 08:03 PM']anyone got info on the muhouse area (tgv to zurich).

something cheap <100keur land or wrecks ;)[/quote]
where i live the dept 01 ain they are building a new tgv line to geneva , everybody seems to think that it will put the value of your house up as we can all pop onto the train and go and work in geneva .i have a friend who has just been laid - off at geneva airport due to the down turn in air traffic !i dont about mulhouse but here the tgv to geneva is going to rocket the price of your house the french call it the tgv effect or something like that be warned !

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[quote name='Agentimmo' post='1870088' date='May 7 2009, 10:41 AM']If the man is self-employed and not a forced seller, then he's going to take his time. Check with him every 3 months to see if he relents....but don't contact him during the summer as he's probably expecting some bids at this period as this is very much the most active time of the French market. Sept/October is when reality tends to set in..... ;)

[color="#FF0000"]Unfortunately he's just retired as the village plumber. Sold his business to a large outfit in Saintes (17).I get the impression he's willing to let it sit around for quite some time... Bit of a shame really as it is a good sized building (350m2 over 2 floors) and a large plot (5500m2)[/color]

As for you initial offer...yes, that figure seems about right. But only if you really want to buy in the next 6-9 months. Patience in the French rural/semi-rural market pays. Come the end of 2009, when all these Brit owners still can't sell after > 1 yr on the market, they will drop the price. And the exchange rate will play a part. 3 months ago, it was near parity. Now the rate has risen 10% (reducing any currency profit by 10%). If the pound continues to strengthen, sellers might be prepared to cut further to ensure a sale at a "better" rate. If we get back to £1=1.25€, that's quite a hit.[/quote]

[color="#FF0000"]Very true - my local English plasterer has given up the idea of selling and moving further south to the Biarritz-Pau area. He's now thinking of offering on the wreck that stands next to his place in order to rebuild and rent out.

As an aside, what sort of value would you put on a woodland plot of around 2500m2 which is heavily overgrown? We have one that adjoins our land and it would be great to buy and use for recreational purposes. Also, it would turn our large L-shaped plot into a nice large square one...[/color]

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Hi

My family have wanted to move to France. Wife is 1st language french speaker, mine OK and we wanted something in the SW. Not too rural but with a little bit of space for the kids. Can save a bit of money as lucky enough to not have mortgage payments to worry about in the UK but was wondering about the market. Can anyone give me advice on this? I'd be looking to spend 200-250K max. There is quite a bit online but really unsure! If anyone can help with any detail I'd be most grateful!

Thanks

Erwin44

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[quote name='donquixote44' post='1873744' date='May 8 2009, 02:40 PM']Hi

My family have wanted to move to France. Wife is 1st language french speaker, mine OK and we wanted something in the SW. Not too rural but with a little bit of space for the kids. Can save a bit of money as lucky enough to not have mortgage payments to worry about in the UK but was wondering about the market. Can anyone give me advice on this? I'd be looking to spend 200-250K max. There is quite a bit online but really unsure! If anyone can help with any detail I'd be most grateful!

Thanks

Erwin44[/quote]

You really need to go and rent for 6 months first, don't buy anything without doing this first.

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[quote name='whiterabbit' post='1873805' date='May 8 2009, 03:05 PM']You really need to go and rent for 6 months first, don't buy anything without doing this first.[/quote]

Agree 100% with that advice, mon ami. B)

Also, for the original poster, he could have a look at the other French property thread on this topic

[url="http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=68107"]http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/forum/ind...showtopic=68107[/url]

He'll get a lot of useful info from this link. ;)

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[quote name='Smog' post='1868576' date='May 6 2009, 03:50 PM']One really telling sight was a home-made "for sale" sign for a 4 bed detached villa on 25 ares between St. Maxime and Grimaud - now if people are resorting to this for "prime" property like that it must be getting bad.[/quote]

This isn't unusual at all on the continent. Did it last year myself, put the sign up at 7am, first phonecall at 9am! Why pay agent's fees?

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[quote name='this_prisoner_is_opting_out' post='1875687' date='May 9 2009, 06:30 PM']This isn't unusual at all on the continent. Did it last year myself, put the sign up at 7am, first phonecall at 9am! Why pay agent's fees?[/quote]
here its the same during the boom everything was hidden (top secret dont tell the neighbours etc ) now i notice people putting out white bed sheets with painted for sale wrote on them but they take down when it gets dark as the police munipal and the agents communal patrol to see if you are respecting there 5000 FRENCH laws and it doesnt look nice to show in public the reality of the crash as here we are dynamic and they want to atract new famillies to our town even though over a 1000 LEFT LAST YEAR no work!anyway the french have a hard discount mentality so if they can sell between themselves without a ea so much the better but they ask for fantasy prices as they didnt learn economics at school and they still believe that hp is still going up but for how much longer????

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[quote name='this_prisoner_is_opting_out' post='1875687' date='May 9 2009, 06:30 PM']This isn't unusual at all on the continent. Did it last year myself, put the sign up at 7am, first phonecall at 9am! Why pay agent's fees?[/quote]

I've lived in France for 6 years and its bloody unusual around my parts, in fact, unheard of.... the sign I saw was in a very up-market part of the CDA, was speaking to some people who live in that area at the weekend, even the die-hards are accepting drops of 15% which will only increase come autumn.

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when you visit a town in the uk and theres "for sale" signs in every street you know that something is wrong whereas here in france you hardly see any "for sale" signs so you have this "false" impression that a town or village are coping well with the crash this can be very misleading for british buyers a friend over here last month from england had the impression that there wasnt many houses for sale as he couldnt see any" for sale " signs anywhere!whereas its the opposite theres alot on the market waiting for buyers you would then have to look at the free ad papers often without any photos or prices "negotiation" is the norm here !even the local ea's often don't put prices on there websites "make a offer" so it is difficult to find out what the real value of property is in france?

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Hello everyone,

I'm completely new here and had a general question. Given the decline in French house prices generally recently, how has Nice fared?
Has anyone noticed a slowdown and is there a rough % change in the average price.
I'm interested in buying around the Vieux Nice (or touristy) area and was looking at studios or 1/2 bed aparts. Given what I have read from some of the bears on this forum I am interested on what people think i should do (ie. should i wait till the end of the year to buy and what average % discount to ask for off a property)

Very grateful if anyone with experience/knowledge could reply.

Thanks,
Y

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