French property market sees record sales in 12 months to May 2017

The residential property market in France is recovering with record sales higher than expected in the last 12 months and prices rising in some towns and cities.

Overall, the latest property report from the Notaires de France, says that they expect prices to rise by 1.2% year on year by the end of this month but some locations are seeing much higher growth.

For example, in Bordeaux prices are up 15.5% year on year, although this is likely due to the new high speed rail link which is reducing times from the city to Paris to just over two hours. The Notaires said there has been a particular rise in demand for older apartments.

In the southern city of Nimes prices per square meter increased by 11.1% in the 12 months to May 2017 and in the northern city of Lille they were up by 8.5% while prices in Paris increased by 5.5% over the same period.

But some parts of France are still in the doldrums. Prices in Clermont-Ferrand were down by 9.4% year on year, fell by 5.4% in Amiens and by 4.7% in both Rouen and Metz

Sales, have also risen. Notaires recorded more than 900,000 property sales in the 12 months to May and said that buyers are making the most of competitive prices and low mortgage rates.

This was noticeably higher than the 824,000 sales recorded between May 2015 and May 2016 and higher than the 880,000 sales that had been forecast for the 12 month period ending in May 2017.

The Notaires report also point out that properties that are selling are doing so very fast and without any negotiation and this is pushing up prices. And they warn that a rise in social security charges and changes to capital gains tax could have an impact on the property market going forward.

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