Alpine property outperforms the overall French property market
Category: Finance > Finance | 17th May, 2014
The outlook is bright for property in the Alps in 2014 with some resorts presenting ideal opportunities. Property in the French Alps has fared better than France as a whole over the last few years but with a shifting outlook. In 2011 & 2012 sales were fairly strong but prices fell causing some concern amongst owners & interest in buyers. In 2013 & 2014 the outlook is generally brighter with Alpine property business reporting increased sales and activity in the sector. Property firm Savills revealed an increase of 200% in viewings through 2013 a rate of increase that has continued onto 2014. Alpine property specialists France Property Angels tell us the market is beginning to thrive & we've seen significant increases in interest & transactions lately but it's very variable on a local level. Of the ski resorts in the Savoie region, Courchevel prices are at 20% below their 2008 level whereas other resorts like Val d'Isere have maintained strong prices. The recent Notaires de France property market report showed a brighter horizon for France than the preceding FNAIM (association of French Estate Agents) report, both showed overall prices in France dropping but with some departments & their regions bucking that trend. The Rhone Alpes is the French department with the 2nd largest economy in France with the major cites of Lyon, Grenoble and St Etienne. With a vibrant tourism industry in all seasons centred around the Alps and the Ardeche it's highly popular with British ex-pats. Nearly all it's major ski resorts are found in the regions of Haute-Savoie and Savoie. The national reports on property performance show averages from a mostly urban segment of large regions & departments. They're a good indicator of overall trends but when picking a property in a ski resort you need a scalpel rather than a broadsword. The regions are diverse & local trends are the most important to consider when thinking of buying abroad. Haute Savoie contains Megeve, a resort that performed very well, as did Chamonix, Morzine, Avoriaz, home to Mont Blanc. Over the last few years prices & markets have performed very differently on a resort by resort basis, the overall figure of -2.4% for Haute Savoie prices doesn't tell the full story. The giant property developers MGM announced 100 million investment in the region across several resorts popular with Swiss & British buyers. They clearly predict growth in the medium to long term in Haute-Savoie. Savoie has more major ski resorts than any other region in France and includes Val d'Isere, Tignes, St Foy & the mighty Three Valleys. It's overall result in the Notaire de France report was strong with property price growth of 2.1%. If anything the market in Savoie is more varied than its neighbour to the north with booming resorts like Val d'Isere seeing big increases and Tignes which is also on the MGM Group's list. The reduced rate of capital gains tax on second homes creates demand in holiday destinations in particular and adds to the buoyancy of the market as does the continued low mortgage rates. The time is now for Alpine property, an apt title from a recent blog post on the effect of low mortgage rates adds to this picture. The outlook is breathing confidence into the industry yet the prospective buyer must tread carefully. Specialist agencies offer great local advice & arrange property tour weeks for potential buyers doing their all important research. France Property Angels have operated in the Alps for years & have their finger on the pulse of many key resorts, they welcome enquiries from prospective buyers & provide expert assistance in finding the right property in the right location.
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