Revival of the Paris property market: who’s buying and where?
A previous Paris Property Group article detailed the start of a recovery for the French capital’s real estate market, due in part to low property prices. Buyers are back and it’s time to invest in the city, but where exactly?
A close examination of some of the capital’s arrondissements reveals where prices have declined most sharply, who is buying there, and whether property in that area will prove to be good long-term investment.
Where prices remain high as a result of property shortage:
Despite a slight price decline, the 6th retains its title as the most expensive district in Paris. Originally acclaimed due to its impressive cultural history — with past inhabitants ranging from existentialist writers Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir to New Wave filmmakers Jean-Luc Godard and François Truffaut — Saint-Germain-des-Près is as alluring as ever, especially for international buyers.
However, Stéphane Artlan, director of the capital’s Royalimmo real estate agencies, warns of a looming shortage of properties: “we have many buyers willing to pay high prices for quality goods, but very few sellers”. The lack of property in the area is keeping prices high — they remain between 10,000 and 15,000 euros per square meter.
Where plummeting prices attract foreigners and Parisians alike: Luxury bargains to be had:
It appears that the market in the 1st has not yet fully taken off, despite buyers having returned, including foreigners. But the city center’s charm is not leading them to overbid yet.
With its arcades, gardens and lavish boutiques, the 1st traditionally attracts Italian buyers, but their return has not yet erased the drop in real estate prices. According to Nathalie Naccache, director of the Fortis Immo agencies in the capital, “most prices in the area have collapsed” and there seems to be a psychological threshold of 10,000 euros per square meter that is not exceeded by buyers. The Halles area has also seen its prices fall by 5.4% according to the Paris notaires.
In the 2nd arrondissement, the Grands-Boulevards still attract young professionals, especially with prices plunging there of late: the notaires record an 11.6% drop, the sharpest decline in the capital in the first half of 2015.
The appeal of the Rive Gauche — Left Bank — endures in the 5th, but costs a lot less than previously. This neighborhood of international repute remains a safe bet for buyers. L’Express cites an 84m2 first floor apartment on the rue d’Ulm that recently sold for 830,000 euros in only forty-eight hours.
The chic 7th, home of prosperous French families and wealthy foreigners, has not escaped the downward trend, with prices in the Invalides area falling by 8.8%. This has led to renewed interest from American buyers, according to Eric Vincent, head of the Emile Garcin Rive Gauche agency, who cites a 120 m2 apartment overlooking the Eiffel Tower bought for 1.6 million euros and a penthouse near the Bon Marché which sold for 20,000 euros per square meter in just a fortnight.
In the 8th, the Golden Triangle — a concentration of luxury property and boutiques bordered by the avenue Montaigne, avenue Georges V and the Champs-Elysées — has also suffered a price drop, especially with foreign buyers being fewer and more selective in 2015. CEO of the Barnes group, Thibault de Saint Vincent urges buyers to take advantage of this sharp decline, noting that “prices have become comparable to those of fifteen years ago”.
Even the upscale Ternes area in the 17th — north of the Arc de Triomphe — has seen its prices drop by 7.2% according to the Paris notaires. This decline reaches as low as 15% when properties present several defects, according to Richard Tiberghien, head of l’Etude Wagram.
Where prices are low and there is significant capital to be gained in the next few years:
Sébastien de Lafond, CEO of MeilleursAgents, says there are areas where property value is set to rise in coming years: “This is the time to buy in areas undergoing a process of gentrification” as “property bought in those areas today will grant buyers significant capital gains in ten to fifteen years”.
In the 11th, the area around the Place de la République is undergoing a makeover and property — costing between 8000 and 9000 euros per square meter — may well gain significant value in the near future.
With the Paris Philharmonic recently moving to Porte de Pantin, near the Parc de la Villette, the 19th — home to the uniquely picturesque Buttes Chaumont park as well as the popular Bassin de la Villette — is another arrondissement undergoing a full transformation. Still the most affordable district in Paris with its 6000 to 7000 euros per square meter, property buyers have begun to pour in and its relatively low prices are set to climb fast.
In the 20th, the Belleville area — one of the most multicultural districts in Paris — has also become attractive for buyers, thanks to its low property prices (-7% over the past year), increasing trendiness and tranquility.
Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons / Daniel Stockman