An explosion in housing market prices, the rising cost of living and a surge in the dollar are pushing many US citizens to turn to the French market to acquire real estate. Read on to find out…
More attractive mortgages rates in France than in the US
The professionals in the sector all agree: Americans are once again keen to travel and they are back in numbers on the French real estate market.
What explains this difference? A highly favourable economic environment with a very attractive dollar-euro exchange rate, as well as much lower market prices and interest rates in Europe than in the United States.
Unable to become homeowners in their country, many Americans are finding a favourable alternative in Europe. To this end, Alix Watine Boucard, VP of Barnes US Development, says that “Buying in France is not as cumbersome a process as it may seem. Americans think it must be hell to invest in France, but this is not the case if you have the right contacts. In particular, Americans have the impression that everything takes much longer in terms of obtaining loans in France. In the United States, it takes between 60 and 90 days to obtain financing, and in France it also takes 90 days once the application is completed. The timelines are therefore very similar. Rates fluctuate between 6 and 7% in April compared to around 3.6% over 20 years in France.”
Laure Lewis, Head of International Financing at Carte Financement, points out that the rate granted depends largely on the type of asset to be financed and its location in France. In terms of destinations, Americans often aim for Paris and the Côte d’Azur as a base for their real estate investments in France. “They sometimes also move towards castles or to towns or villages with a strong cultural or historical reach. As for property acquisitions in Paris, this is often a foothold for Americans. Children live in the apartment during their studies and parents come on holiday,” says Alix Watine Boucard.
France is not the only country that is once again attracting US buyers. Italy, Spain, Portugal and Greece have also benefited from their return.
Luxury real estate in Paris
In Paris Americans are giving a marked boost to luxury real estate.
These buyers are particularly welcome as they rarely negotiate due to the favourable dollar/euro exchange rate, which offers them strong purchasing power, and interest rates that are much lower than in the US. However, they are limited, just like French buyers, by the borrowing rate and the HCSF rules.
Americans who buy property in France are educated, lovers of France and live in the major cities of the East Coast such as New York and Washington, but also Miami and Palm Beach, which are easily accessible by direct flight. Conversely, fewer Americans living on the West Coast invest in France because flights are much longer.
To contact Barnes :
|Alix WATINE BOUCARD
VP US Business Development
C : +1 305 781 8376