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Buy In France With A Limited Budget!
More and more of us are buying a second home or even opting to live in another country. Indeed in the UK, there has been an acceleration in deciding to "pack their bags", and live in a foreign country. The attractions include better life style, weather and cheaper living costs. The advent of the budget airlines has brought frequent travel to foreign climes within the reach of many families. Of course, when you can fly back to "Blighty" within hours, the safety net of the old country does not seem so distant.
Although Spain has been a favourite destination, the bad publicity and land grabs in some regions have frightened potential buyers. France, on the other hand, continues to be a popular choice. Ryanair, EasyJet, FlyBe and others have opened up this market with airports in all popular destinations. Traditionally, the Ferries had been the preferred option to cross the Channel. But cheap air travel has reduced travel times dramatically and opened up the complete country to visitors. So in the past the English bought in Normandy and Brittany, but today they are happy to buy in South as traveling time is so quick.
There is no doubt that property prices have increased dramatically in some regions over the last few years but there are still bargains around! You need to chose your area carefully. In general, property prices are highest on the coast, in major towns, and near to budget airline airports. As you go further South property prices tend to increase.
Normandy and Brittany were the source of cheap property for renovation in 90s. Property prices have increased here but in rural inland areas/market towns town houses and barns are still available for renovation with a budget of £50,000. Beware renovation costs could double your investment!
Where to look for bargains?
The Limousin has been attracting a lot of media coverage. Located in Central France, the summer climate is very attractive. The rolling landscapes to the North of Limoges are reminiscent of Dorset and Wiltshire with many lakes and rivers. Good access by motorways all the way from Calais and the popular airport at Limoges have opened up this region of France. Naturally, prices are increasing but there is plenty of rural property for renovation at below £50,000.
But even cheaper - there is plenty of rural property in the area bordered by Champagne-Ardennes / Franche-Comte / Burgundy. In recent months we have sold properties from £10,000. There is a reasonable selection from £20,000 to £40,000 with land! Close to the Burgundy and Champagne vineyards plus easy driving to dramatic landscapes in Doubs and Jura. Magnificent scenery and
Other areas to look at in Central France where property prices are relatively low: Indre (Centre region), Vienne (Poitou-Charentes) and rural Auvergne.
One of the big attractions of buying in France is the weather. There is an old adage that you need to be south of the Loire for good weather! Well in my opinion you need to be further South! On the Med coast you can expect 200 + days of sunshine (8 hours per day). Of course, property prices are high in some spots but bargains are still there! For example, Port Fitou, Port Leucate and Le Barcares (marina) are holiday complexes (the latter two with seaside beaches) have studios for less than £50K! Village houses north of Beziers can be snapped up for less than £50K. All of these are in the Languedoc-Roussillon which is extremely well served with direct flights to Perpignan, Carcassonne, Nimes and Montpellier.
In the Provence, property prices are high on the coast but moving inland can produce bargain prices. You really need a good budget here though. Where else in the South? Well the Midi-Pyrenees is a huge region (bigger than Wales) and there are plenty of bargains in this area. You can be close to the ski slopes but enjoy excellent summer temperatures. As the area is very rural - often with dramatic scenery - there is plenty of land and property for renovation.
Why not take a look and find yourself a bargain?
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Travel Part B