Real estate

These are the most sought-after regions in France for buying a second home 

Do you dream of owning a second home in a beautiful French locale? Since 2021 the property market has changed, driven by cheaper financing and the desire for space and greenery. Before buying your country house near Paris or a villa by the sea, here is what you need to know about this property market and how to choose your second home. 

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Where is the best place to buy a second home? 

There are several things to keep in mind when choosing a second home. Location is of course key. It is preferable to buy in an area that is no more than three hours drive or train-ride from where you live. This way, you are more likely to visit the property regularly during the year.

The Perche and Normandy regions have benefited greatly from the real estate frenzy created by Covid. These areas are only one to two hours from Paris, and house prices have been driven up by Parisians yearning for a country lifestyle and the elegant simplicity of the iconic longère.  

French seaside resorts are also enjoying a spike in interest from second home buyers. Côte d'Azur, Provence, Brittany and the Basque Coast are classy places that have become even more sought after. In the same vein, mountain properties are also booming, with record chalet sales in some resorts, notably in the Alps. 

In such a market it is essential to react fast to opportunity. With online work becoming a norm, second homes are being snapped up as main residences. And of course, when buying a second home one needs to consider the various costs: maintenance, insurance, local taxes, mortgage, down payment, etc. 

The best place for you will depend on various factors: e.g. proximity to your main residence, whether you are a seaside person or a mountain person. Noting too that where there is high demand there is likely to be high resale value. 

The below map shows the concentration of second homes in France, revealing a clear preference for the seaside...whether it is the Atlantic, the Channel or the Mediterranean.  

What type of property should I choose for my second home? 

There are several things to consider for your holiday home. Some people are looking for quiet old houses, with a swimming pool and a garden, while others prefer modern houses with clean lines. 

Each area has its own specific architectural style, including traditional Basque red and white farmhouses, Norman half-timbered houses, Breton stone houses and baroque or Belle Époque style homes. Whatever your tastes, choose a property in which you feel comfortable to recharge your batteries, telework, and receive family and friends. 

According to the latest INSEE publication on the number of dwellings in France, there were a total of 37.2 million dwellings on 1 January 2021. Of this, nearly 10% (3.7 million) are second homes or occasional residences; these are mostly individual properties (i.e. houses) located in rural and holiday areas.  

According to INSEE 40% of these second homes are on the coast, 16% in the mountains and 12% in less densely populated areas. Furthermore, one in four second homes is less than 40m2 and two in three are owned by people over 60. But you needn’t wait to treat yourself to a piece of paradise. We have the solution! 

Financing your second home: buy with others to achieve the dream 

This dream may seem beyond your reach, especially as house prices have risen by an average of almost 9% in 2021, and by 10% or more in certain coastal towns. But with our special financing solution you can acquire your dream and enjoy it for 40 days a year. 

Part-own a high-value property, selected by Altacas’s property specialists. Altacasa facilitates the SCI with other owners with whom you share a property, one which you might not have been able to acquire alone. The co-ownership of an SCI is not to be confused with timeshare, since - unlike timeshare - you have ownership rights over the property. And Altacasa supports you from start to finish with the acquisition, as well as the liquidation of the asset should you wish to sell.