Whether it’s for the food, the art or the architecture, many Britons make the decision to move to France permanently. What do we love so much about this cultural country? It has to be the fact that we’re spoilt for choice when it comes to countryside walks and city shopping sprees!
New research from BNP Paribas, the global banking and financial service, has revealed that just over 25% of foreign property buyers in France in 2017 were British. Next came those from Belgium, with 18.4%, followed by the Swiss with 8.1% and Germans with 7%.
Not only that, but, the number of British buyers who were already residents in France has actually increased by 17.2% last year. There appears to be shift in those content with holiday homes, to those making the transition to becoming a fully fledged expat, as there has also been an 18% drop in Britons buying holiday homes. Could this be more movement caused by Brexit? It may be that many are looking to purchase in France whilst EU rules and regulations are still in place for our country, as who knows what Brexit may bring us!
Tim Swannie, co-founder and Director of luxury buying agents Home Hunts, with over 30 agents across France, has given his views on BNP Paribas’ research results:
“It doesn’t surprise me at all that there was an increase in buyers last year from Brits already resident in France. There has never been a better time to buy, prices are very interesting and are starting to increase in most areas, plus the banks are offering some good interest rates for mortgages. They are buying now before prices increase too much.”
“…We also get a lot of interest from families who have relocated to work here (particularly Paris, French Alps close to Geneva and also the Riviera) and are looking for apartments or villas in residential areas within easy commuting distance. “
“Many Brits have just got sick and tired of the back and forth over Brexit. Buyers who put things on hold in 2016 have decided it is now or never. Whether they are looking to relocate or just wish to buy a holiday home, there seems to be quite a push to do so before March next year when the UK will effectively leave the EU …IF this ever happens.”
What are your thoughts on how Brexit is likely to affect the plans of expats and holiday homeowners? Have you made a decision on relocating recently, due to Brexit news, or are you planning on waiting to see what happens next before making a decision?
Whatever you decide, just remember that if you do have a home abroad, your standard home insurance may not cover it. That’s why, at Insure My Villa, we provide specialist Overseas Property Insurance.