The Templar’s 3rd Rises Above Tough Times
Looking Across Square du Temple
June 4, 2009
Bonjour French Property Insider Subscriber,
Paris Prices were reported this past week by the Chambre de Notaires. For the first time since 1998, Paris has devalued…but granted, by only 1%. What we’ve predicted all along has come true — good property holds its value, thus the central districts have not only held strong, but shown strong increases.
The 3rd arrondissement, I am proud to announce, as a long-time resident of the district, continues to show amazing growth. That along with the recent film, "Angels and Demons," focusing on the Knights Templar gives rise to the subjects of today’s issue of French Property Insider on this district, the reported prices and the influence of the Knights Templar.
The whole of the Marais was once a state within a state owned by the powerful Order of Knights Templar, founded in the Holy Land to protect pilgrims, and the temple itself sat where the Square du Temple, the Marie of the 3ème and the Carreau du Temple now exist. There is circle drawn in front of the district’s City Hall where one tower once stood.
Once again this proves to be a part of Paris worth an investment, as rental property here is lucrative, property has good appreciation value and above all, it’s centrally located and a great place to hang your hat.
Today issue reports on the overall property market in Paris as well as the results from Sunday’s Living and Investing in France Real Estate Conference that took place here in Paris at Chez Jenny in…of course, the 3rd (!) on boulevard du Temple. How apropos!
Tomorrow I am headed to Berlin for three days and will bring you a brief report on how property in other parts of Europe compare with property in France. Until then, take time to read all about Paris’ successes in a very tough economic climate.
Editor, French Property Insider
P.S. A few attendees of the conference met yesterday during the holiday (Pentecost) to tour "Le Palace des Vosges" (www.palacedesvosges.com) — our fractional ownership property on the Place des Vosges currently under massive and a dusty renovation. The tiles are being laid, the new ceiling has been installed and the new atelier-style windows and doors are underway at the "fabricant" (manufacturer). Artists and musicians filled the square hoping for their own brand of curiosity-seekers — the kind with a few coins to spend and the citizens and tourists are out in full force..
Volume VII, Issue 23, June 4, 2009
In this issue:
* Report From Our 24th LIF Conference
* How to Understand Property Price Reports
* The Latest Paris Property Price Report
* Second Chance to See House Hunters Int. Episode
* The Latest Fractional Property Offerings
* A Brief History of the Knights Templar
* Discover the home of the Knights in Paris
* Currency Online Exchange Service
* Opportunity: A Templar Château on the Market
* Parler Paris Apartments: Les Ivoires de Montmartre
* Developers Offering New Incentives to Buy in France
* Hot Property Picks: Templar’s Tempting Third
* Results of the Latest Notaire’s Property Auction
* How You Can Obtain a Mortgage in France
* Parler Paris Après-Midi: Meets Next Tuesday!
* Managing Your FPI Subscription
* Subscribers Receive Discount on Insider Paris Guides
The beautiful summery weather in Paris was a prelude to a long and very full day Sunday at Chez Jenny with a congenial and international group of investment property curiosity-seekers at the Living and Investing in France Real Estate Conference.
It was our 24th conference of this kind, in collaboration with John Howell of The International Law Partnership in London (www.ilplaw.com). The conferences have been
held over the years in both Par
is and in major cities across the United States — San Francisco, New York, Washington and New Orleans. People come from far and wide to attend. This past Sunday’s event hosted people from Australia, Ireland, France and the United States.
The presentations included:
Why Invest in Property in France?, How to Minimize Your Tax and Maximize the Benefits! and How to Buy and Own Property in France!
by John Howell. John Rule spoke on How to Obtain a Mortgage in France! and together, he and I presented How to Renovate and Rent Your French Property for Profit! Peter Zipper enlightened us on How to Learn More About the Best Kept Secret in Offshore Banking and Investing! and I spoke about How to Find Your Dream Apartment in Paris or Home in the Country! plus Learn More About the Fractional Ownership Solution and "Le Palace des Vosges! We had two special guest speakers, Elena Herdieckerhoff and Nathalie Findlay on How to improve your job prospects, your career strategy and your professional relationships.
Over the course of almost 12 hours Sunday, we covered so much information that when asked "Is there anything you feel we have not covered in our seminar and wish to learn about?," one participant wrote, "No, absolutely nothing. This seminar has been really well thought out." And another wrote "No, plenty to ‘chew on’ for now!"
The three-course lunch at Chez Jenny was a fun way for everyone to relax and get to know one another. There were lots of laughs during the sessions, but special guest speaker Nathalie Findlay of "Lifestyling" made us giggle over some basic cultural cues of which we should be aware, particularly one we had to practice saying — "Phrhoah" — a typical French expression that if you can pronounce it correctly you can be classified as truly "French." (She and her partner, Elena Herdieckerhoff, are sponsoring a conference June 28th titled "Expat Excellence: Working and Living in France" for those who want to find work and integrate into society here. Visit www.adrianleeds.com/frenchproperty/conference for more information.)
I can’t stress this enough. Before you read the following article and look at the most current reported property statistics, please learn HOW to understand them so that they will be useful to you.
The property price figures for Paris and the Paris region (Ile-de-France) are reported quarterly by the INSEE, the French National Institute for Statistics and Economic Studies (www.insee.fr). Just this week, the statistics were released for the end of first quarter 2009, about 2.5 months after the closing of the quarter. Given that the properties to which the statistics relate were purchased about three months earlier than the deeds were recorded (the time between the signing of the Promesse/Compromis de Vente and the Acte de Vente), you can assume then, that these figures are already out of date by more than five months.
When prices were increasing more than 10% annually, the difference between what was reported and what the market was actually reflecting were quite different — in fact as much as 50% in some cases. In today’s market, with less of an annual increase and in some cases a downturn, the variance will not be as great. Let’s look at how it affects the market values you will experience when you set out to look at properties. This report averages Paris per square meter prices at 6,360€ with an annual depreciation of 1%. Five-and-one-half months is 46% of the year. If you were to visit properties today, you can already expect the prices to be about .46% lower (46% of -1%), or 6,314€ per square meter.
In today’s market, however, the trends are not so easy to predict! Other factors that contribute to a variance are:
1) the reduction in the purchase price, which can be attributed to direct payments made to the sales agent (agency commissions) to help reduce notaire fees,
2) the listing of inventory of fixed furniture such as built-ins and appliances and…
3) the under-the-table cash transactions, which are illegal but do occur.
4) Finally, the figures are diluted as they are reported by an arrondissement in its entirety and do not account for differences by neighborhoods or quality of properties.
I’m no mathematician nor economic analyst, and I’m sure among you there are readers who can correct my rather plebeian theory, but we know for a fact that the actual market values can be considerably different than those the Chambre de Notaires report. We know based on property searches and visits we perform daily and how those compare with these reported prices.
So, when setting out to find your perfect Paris apartment, keep in mind that what really counts are the asking prices of comparable properties!
Reporting on Paris Property Prices First Quarter 2009
June 4, 2009
The property market in Paris and the Ile de France is suffering from a lack of confidence by both
and sellers. For the first time in more than 10 years (since 1998), the Paris market has seen a depreciation — on the average of 2.1% for the quarter and 1% for the year. The average price per square meter has dropped to 6,360€ and sales for the quarter for resale apartments is down by 38.7%!
But one must look beyond the averages. As we’ve been predicting, ‘good’ property holds its value better than ‘mediocre’ property. The districts that have always been the most desirable in central Paris have held their values and continued to increase, even if not on as grand a scale as in previous years.
The 6th arrondissement continues to hold first place with 10,040€/m2, followed by the 7th with 9,760€/m2and the 4th with 9,250€/m2. In contrast, the least expensive district in the city is the 19th with 4,8500€/m², followed by the 20th with 5,0640€/m² and the 18th with 5,5100€/m².
The annual increase in Paris of 9.4% for the first quarter 2008 contrasts with -1% for the same period 2009. Twelve out of 20 districts have experienced a depreciation, but three districts stand out as the ultimate winners with appreciation as high as 5.7% (2nd) and 4.2% (3rd and 7th). Those that lost the most value were those that previously gained the most: the 19th (-4.5%) and the 20th (-5%).
From the beginning our logic is that good property holds its value best of all and therefore, we still contend that one should always buy the best property one can afford, even if expensive compared to others of lesser quality — as in the long run, the better locations will continue to hold their values even in tough economic times. Continue to look toward the 2nd, 3rd, 6th and 7th for good rental returns as well as good appreciation.
Editor’s Note: To read the full report (in French), go to www.adrianleeds.com/frenchproperty/insider/ to download the pdf document. We also make available to all our FPI readers a return on investment Excel spreadsheet that will help you make intelligent property purchase decisions. Go to www.adrianleeds.com/frenchproperty/insider/.
Vacation Home in Paris
June 15, 2009 10:00 P.M. e/p
June 15, 2009 2:00 A.M. e/p
New Yorkers Jeff Ballinger and Mary Schiller recently began the first steps toward making their dream together a reality. After honeymooning in Paris, they knew they wanted their own vacation property in France. Now, they’ve moved out of their house and into a smaller condo in the Bronx, NY, and have begun their search for a pied-a-terre in Paris.
Adrian Leeds, Property Consultant, Adrian Leeds Group
If you are interested in traditional fractional ownership properties currently offered by our Fractional Ownership partners, see below:
LE PALACE DES VOSGES
CHEZ LA TOUR
LE PETIT TRESOR
Within two decades of the victory of the First Crusade (1095-1099) a group of knights led by Hugues (Hugh) de Payens offered themselves to the Patriarch of Jerusalem to serve as a military force.
It has been generally accepted that, for the first nine years of their existence, the Templars – as they came to be known – consisted of nine members.
Although it has been widely speculated that the Templars wished to keep it this way to cover their secret mission of digging for buried treasure on the Temple Mount, the simple fact remains that the lifestyle adopted by the Order was not to everyone’s taste. As such, the Templars had difficulty in recruiting members to their cause in the early years.
While it is true that the Templars were not permitted, by their rule, to own much of anything personally, there was no such restriction on the Order as a whole. As such, the gifts of land were accepted and put to immediate use by the Templars, who farmed the land generating additional wealth.
Over the years the Templars rose from their humble beginnings to become the wealthiest of the Crusading Orders – eventually garnering the favor of the Church and the collective European monarchs.
However, after two centuries of defending the Christian faith, the Order met its demise when Philip IV – known as Philip le Belle (the Fair) – sought to destroy the Templars.
Historians are generally in agreement that Philip was motivated by greed rather than his belief that the Templars were corrupt.
Regardless of his motivations, Philip had the Templars arrested on October 13, 1307.
On March 18th, 1314 the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar, Jacques de Molay, was burned at the stake, for having recanted his earlier confessions of guilt.
De Molay is said to have cursed King Philip and Pope Clement as he burned, asking both men to join him in death within a year. Although there is no historical truth to the de Molay curse story, both Pope Clement V and Philip IV followed de Molay to their graves within the year.
The Temple was a medieval fortress in Paris, located in what is now the 3rd arrondissement. It was built by the Knights Templar from the 12th century as their European headquarters. In the 13th century it replaced earlier works of the Vieille Temple (Old Temple) in Le Marais. Parts of the fortress were later used as a prison.
The enclosure (called enclos du Temple) originally featured a number of buildings important to the running of the order, and included a church and a massive turreted keep known as Grosse Tour (great tower), and a smaller tower called Tour de César (Caesar’s Tower). The fortress was destroyed in 1808 to avoid the pilgrimage of royalists (since this was the prison of Louis XVI for some time). Today the Temple Paris metro stop stands on the old location. The heavy doors of the Grosse Tour still exist and are kept at Château de Vincennes whose great keep (attributed to Raymond du Temple) is speculated to have been inspired by the nearby Templar fortress
By the 13th century the Temple, especially its keeps, or towers, was being used to store the treasures not only of the Templars but also of the king of France. After the collapse of the order in the 14th century, the towers served primarily as a royal prison, for both criminals and debtors. In the vast complex there were also living quarters for artisans.
On Aug. 10, 1792, revolutionary militants attacked the Tuileries and forced the removal of Louis XVI, Marie-Antoinette, and their family to the petite tour (“little tower”) of the old Temple, later to the main tower, as prisoners of the Paris Commune. There they remained until they were individually tried and guillotined over the following year. Other important persons were incarcerated there until the buildings were demolished
Today the existence and influence of the Knights Templar remain in and around the 3rd and 4th arrondissements. Rue du Temple and rue Vieille du Temple run through the Marais. The center of the 3rd is marked by Square du Temple, a favorite play area for neighborhood families and a lunch spot for local workers. The Carre du Temple has recently been going through renovations and brought back to life as an important part of the neighborhood.
As a property matter, the 3rd is one of the few areas in Paris where prices have risen in the first quarter of 2009. Recent and continuing gentrification of the neighborhood have made it one of the more desirable areas in which to purchase property and live. Buildings are lower and are an architectural mixture of ancient, traditional and modern. The area offers a strong community feel, has great local commerce and is reasonably well served by public transport.
Editor’s Note: See this week’s hot properties for examples of what is currently on the market in the 3rd arrondissement.
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Visit the FPI Web site for more information and take this link for Currency Convertor by Currency Online: www.adrianleeds.com/frenchproperty/loan/moneycorpconvertor.html for up to the minute conversions of all major currencies.
At the peak of their prominence in the 12th Century, during their crusades across Europe, the Knights Templar built a number of refuges along the path to the Holy Land. One of the most beautiful, Château de La Jarthe, is up for sale.
Located on a hilltop near Périgueux, the exquisite capital of the Dordogne, the romantic Château de La Jarthe is built around a classic central courtyard surrounded by crenulated ramparts and ivy-covered towers.
Arranged around the courtyard are 18 bedrooms plus a library, atelier, chapel and five reception rooms, including the 102sqm Knights Room on the first floor. In total, the chateau has almost 1,500sqm of habitable space.
Elegant medieval features are evident in the interior including massive fireplaces, flagstone beamed ceilings, stained-glass windows and hand-carved wooden details.
One of the outbuildings is an old granary-cum-dovecote, which stands on its original straddle stones.
The château is approached on a tree-lined drive and is surrounded by 100 hectares of woodlands, gently undulating lawns dotted with trees and fields that burst with wildflowers in the spring and summer.
There are a number of possibilities for outdoor recreation including equestrian pursuits and there is an enclosed menage with stabling for around 30 horses.
Peter Boumans, sales manager for La Perla International Living, says, “This château presents superb opportunity for redevelopment, potentially into an exclusive country hotel, and the historical appeal adds significantly to its charm. Much of the château has been restored, but with such extensive grounds and various outbuildings, this is an opportunity to develop a magnificent Dordogne retreat.”
Located near the bustling town of Périgueux, a large range of restaurants, shops and attractions are easily accessible. Major railway connections provide links to the rest of France and the nearby motorway means Bordeaux and its international airport are just over one hour’s drive.
To read the entire article go to www.overseaspropertymall.com/chteau-for-sale/. Editor’s Note: Asking price for the château is €5 775 000…
Parler Paris Apartments Welcome to your home in Paris. Home is how you will feel in a private apartment in Paris that has the "seal of approval" from Parler Paris Apartments and me, Adrian Leeds. Parler Paris Apartments offers high quality accommodations to make your stay in the City of Light as enjoyable and memorable as possible.
We at Parler Paris know each and every apartment owner or manager personally, and stand behind the quality of those we represent. We understand your needs and desires, all the small details that make a rental apartment a warm and welcoming home and a much better alternative to an impersonal hotel!Parler Paris Apartments is administered and serviced by the same great team as Parler Paris, French Property Insider and French Property Consultation. You can trust that Parler Paris Apartments and all those with whom it is associated will do heir best for your 100% guaranteed satisfaction.
SPOTLIGHT APARTMENT(S): Les Ivoires de Montmartre
Rue des Trois Frères, 18th Arrondissement
Studio, Sleeps Up to 4
This bright and beautiful studio apartment has been freshly redesigned and renovated with the utmost attention to detail. Located on a quiet one-way street which was made famous by the hit movie “Le Fabuleux Destin d’Amelie Poulain” (yes that Amelie!), it promises you a stay to remember.
As a very spacious studio, the apartment is well laid-out to feel very large. From the high-security front door one enters into a small foyer, which connects to both the bathroom and the bedroom area. The comfortable Queen-sized bed (which can become 2 single beds), is framed with ample storage space. High quality linens adorn the bed. This bedroom area can be separated from the living room by drawing a heavy decorative curtain, to span the width of the apartment — great for groups using both sleeping spaces.
Those wanting to buy a property in France are being offered new kinds of incentives to do so by developers, it has been stated.
In a feature on changing practices, the Independent noted that the tactic of developing new homes alongside tennis courts or golf courses was giving way to more localized themes.
An example given was that of the cookery and archery lessons offered as part of package by French property firm Garrigae.
Company owner Cecile Viennet told the paper: "All the activities in our resorts have been selected for their authenticity, allowing for the discovery of local traditions."
One part of France that may be able to concentrate strongly on cultural themes when looking to attract investors is Marseille and Provence.
This area has been chosen to share the title of European City of culture 2013 with the Slovak city of Kosice, something that may help enhance its attraction to investors.
Each week French Property Insider features a range of properties which we believe are on the market at the time of writing. These properties are featured in order to give readers a sample of what is currently available and a working example of prices being asked in various regions of France and districts of Paris.
As we are not a real estate agency. These properties do not constitute a sales listing. For those readers seriously interested in finding property in Paris or France, you can retain our services to do the whole thing for you. For more information, visit http://www.adrianleeds.com/frenchproperty/consultation
This week our focus is on properties in the 3rd arrondissement, one of the few areas in Paris showing a price increase so far in 2009.
***Paris, 3rd.: 1-Bedroom, approx. 37m²
Magnificent two-room a
Asking Price: € 294 000 + 2.5% Finder’s Fee
***Paris, 3rd.: 1-Bedrooms, approx. 43m²
Charming one bedroom located in the heart of the Marais near the Pompidou Centre on a small, quiet street. The apartment is located on the first floor of a period building and has been renovated in a style that preserves the details of its period. There is a spacious living room with exposed beams and open fully-equipped kitchen, a powder room, a bathroom with bathtub and a bedroom facing a landscaped courtyard. There is also a walk in closet just off the bedroom. Near plenty of shops, boutiques, restaurants and cafés.
Asking Price: € 350 000 + 2.5% Finder’s Fee
***Paris, 3rd.: 1-Bedrooms approx. 35m²
Located on the historic streets of the Marais, steps away from one of the oldest open markets in Paris, Marché des Enfant Rouges, you will discover this exceptional one bedroom apartment entirely renovated in the highest quality finishes. The apartment is sold completely equipped and furnished, and is perfect for investor who would like to rent it on a short term, furnished basis. There is a small entry with closet, a large living room and dining area with open kitchen and three French windows. The kitchen has been renovated including stainless steel appliances and granite countertop. There is a separate bedroom with en-suite bathroom and WC. Comes with a proven track record of rental revenue between 5% and 6% per year. The location is steps away from the rue du Bretagne, walking distance to Place des Vosges, the Bastille and République.
Asking Price: € 415 000 + 2.5% Finder’s Fee
***Paris, 3rd.: 2-Bedroom, approx. 53m²
Two room apartment situated on the 5th floor of a period Marais building with elevator. There is a large living room bathed with sunlight thanks to its french windows, southern exposure and an obstructed view of the southern sky. The kitchen is fully equipped and the bedroom, which faces the courtyard, has a large walk-in closet. The apartment has been fully renovated and ideally situated near major tourist destinations, including the Pompidou Centre, Notre Dame and the Picasso Museum. Sunny, bright pied à terre in the heart of the Marai.
Asking Price: € 475 000 + 2.5% Finder’s Fee
Notaires de Paris
Place du Châtelet
12 avenue Victoria
Additional information on Les Ventes aux Enchères des Notaires can be found on the Web site at www.encheres-Paris.com. Though the site has a button for an English version, it isn’t necessarily reliable.
To read Schuyler Hoffman’s article about the property auctions in Paris, click on:
|On June 02, 2009 the following properties were auctioned off but results not yet available (we will include them in next week’s issue):|
Editor’s Note: If you look at the properties on the Notaire’s site (www.encheres-paris.com), when you click on the information for a particular property there is also a link to Google Maps to show you exactly where the property is located.
When you make a purchase as important as a piece of real estate in a foreign country, you ant to know that you can trust the people you are dealing with. Adrian Leeds has developed a network of professionals that meet only the highest of standards. With the expertise and experience of Adrian and her team, you can depend on getting the best advice and support to feel completely confident that you are making an informed investment decision.
HELPFUL CONVERSIONS FOR REAL ESTATE
1 square meter = 10.7639104 square feet
1 hectare = 2.4710538 acres
For more conversions, refer to: www.onlineconversion.com/
Come for a drink and to meet and chat with other readers in Paris…
The next gathering is June 9, 2009 and every second Tuesday of the month (except August).
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