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8 Things To Know About The Booming Paris Property Market

Paris Property Market Booming—Merci, Monsieur Macron

The Paris property market is booming. President Macron’s policies, energy, and youthful enthusiasm are helping to reinvigorate the country in general and its capital city’s real estate industry in particular.

Agents, mortgage brokers, valuers, surveyors, and bankers are all so busy it can be hard to get their attention.

We’ve been sold on the Paris real estate market for decades and have owned in this city for more than 14 years. Prices go up and down, as they do everywhere, but, for my money, a piece of Parisian real estate is one of the surest imaginable stores of wealth long-term.

Where are we right now? Values were up 6.6% across Paris as a whole for the first half of 2017, compared with the previous year.

Global interest in Paris continues, from both investors and tourists, the horrible terrorist events of the past few years notwithstanding. The world’s rich and famous do and will continue to come to Paris regardless. This city’s ancient buildings and monuments have stood as a living symbol of the good life and will continue to represent a lifestyle that for many is as good as it gets for centuries more.

While we generally suggest renting before buying in a new destination so that you can be sure where, specifically, you want to live before committing, market factors right now argue for moving sooner rather than later to purchase if that’s your eventual goal. Prices in Paris are moving up quickly right now… it’s a seller’s market… and the euro is gaining on the U.S. dollar.

If you’re looking to make an investment in a rental property, note that the 6th arrondissement is the most expensive in the city for a reason. This is where all the tourists want to be, meaning a rental here will always find a tenant. The buy-in is hefty, but the occupancy rates can compensate.

The 6th is also where some Parisians want to live, thanks to shopping and access to amenities like the Luxemburg Gardens.

If the 6th is beyond your budget or if you’re looking to buy up-and-coming rather than in-the-spotlight, consider the 17th near Parc Monceau or the 14th near Parc Montsouris. These neighborhoods offer some of this city’s best current values.

If you’re thinking about entering the Paris property market, here are four things to know:

  • Three critical criteria behind any good purchase—location, price, and characteristics…
  • Location is about both the arrondissement and the neighborhood. Look at things like proximity to food shops and open markets… proximity to parks, gardens, and areas for jogging, for example… and proximity to Metro stops and train stations… these things are important both your personal enjoyment and also for attracting renters…
  • Characteristics have to do with the building—including the façade, the stairwell, the elevator (or lack thereof), a courtyard, etc.—and the apartment itself. Valuable characteristics in a Paris apartment include things like parquet, moldings, fireplaces, shutters, and original fixtures and hardware. A cave (underground storage place, intended originally and specifically for wine) is another good characteristic…
  • The most expensive addresses in Paris are found in the 6th, 7th, 1st, 5th, 3th, and 8th arrondissements… in that order. Prices are recorded and reported religiously and reliably by the Notaires in Paris, so it’s easier in this city than anywhere else in the world, perhaps, to have an idea what you should spend for whatever and wherever, exactly, you want to buy…

And here are four things to know if you’re thinking you’d like to rent first before investing in a Paris pied-à-terre of your own:

  • It’s much harder to access the unfurnished rental market in France (compared with the furnished market), because it’s difficult for an owner to evict a tenant in an unfurnished apartment who stops paying rent. As result, owners of unfurnished apartments looking to rent them parade and consider potential renters as though they were holding a beauty pageant. The experience for you, as the would-be renters, can be frustrating and even insulting. You’ll need to prepare a dossier to make the case for why you’re a trustworthy candidate of character. You may even need a guarantor…
  • In addition, to rent unfurnished, you’ll need a bank account… but you can’t get a bank account in France without an address in France. So good luck with that…
  • You’ll encounter much less brain damage renting furnished. The rental manager who presented at our conference in Paris this week told the group that she is able to process the paperwork for a furnished rental in five days…
  • Rental payments must be made in cash or by bank wire. Credit cards are generally not accepted…

Kathleen Peddicord

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