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What’S Hot And What’S Not

Last week, the Nouvel Observateur reported thoroughly on the latest statistics regarding the property market in the Ile de France (first quarter 2003 to first quarter 2004) at the same moment by coincidence as I had in last week’s French Property Insider. (The Chambre de Notaires makes this information public on their site at It details the average price per square meter and the evolution of the average price for each arrondissement, for each “quartier” within each arrondissement and all the other outlying suburbs of Paris for properties sold that quarter.

The twists and turns of what’s hot and what’s not in Paris is forever fascinating and sometimes unpredictable. I am student of the trends, not so much of the prices as they increase (or decrease, although rare), but of the changes in the city which would affect the flow of the tides.

What’s hot? One through four. The 1st arrondissement and the absolute center of the city with the renovation of Les Halles pending is booming — up 15.3% in one year. The 2nd, with its pedestrian streets and charming market street (the oldest in the city — rue Montorgueil), is gentrifying with lightning speed, driving out the red light district (rue Saint-Denis) and getting too chic for its own hot pants — up 14.1% in one year. My own “petit coin,” the 3rd, the non-touristic part of Le Marais, where rue de Bretagne is getting a major face-lift (widening the sidewalks and installing 60 trees) is still on a steady rise with a 14.5% increase in one year (yeah!). Last quarter, the 4th, the historic heart of Paris, saw less of an increase than this period, but it’s back and on fire with an increase of 14.4% in one year. Property around Place des Vosges and along the quais is both dear (hard to come by) and “cher” (expensive — 13,000 per square meter).

Other parts of the city are showing even higher increases, but their average price per square meter is still low by comparison and fit mostly for full time residential living (not great for a pied-à-terre you can rent out as a vacation apartment). The 11th, 12th and 19th showed gains of 18.4% plus. Buy up an apartment in a beautiful Haussmannian style pierre-de-taille around Gare de Lyon for about 4000 Euros per meter and watch it grow in value more than 20% a year!

What’s not? The 6th, 7th and 16th. Even though they are the priciest spots in town, value isn’t rising as much as others with an increase of 7.1% in the 6th, 7.9% in the 16th and no increase at all in the 7th. The lack of interest in France by the American market could be affecting these three neighborhoods that have traditionally been the favorites of the American community in Paris.

So, where should you buy, if you were to have that little foothold in Paris you’ve always dreamed of? No question. If you can afford it, the center — arrondissements 1 through 4. If you want to cash in on a great investment a few years down the road, buy where the prices are lowest and appreciation is highest, 9 through 20 except for 16. If you have plenty of money and expect your kids to inherit it, go for broke in the chic 6 through 8 and 16th.

With central Paris showing such remarkable gains in appreciation and still performing as viable rental property, we bring you some of the most luscious and spacious properties we’ve come across in a long time! Be sure to scroll down if you really want to drool and dream.

To make buying property in France even more appealing, I have this crazy idea for a new kind of visa called a “Carte de Propriétaire.” For non-resident property owners, it would be easy to obtain once you purchase a property and it would entitle you to some of the benefits of residency…like easily opening bank accounts and getting a French debit card (Carte Bleue), access to loans with French banks that lend more than 80%, getting subscriptions on cell phones and a variety of other privileges. It’s a way of getting more of the non-resident property owners “on the books” and a way of encouraging more serious investment in France. Let’s face it, one apartment purchase is easily worth 500,000 Euros…and it takes an awful lot of tourists to generate that much from their one-week vacations in France.

I tell you about this now, because I’d be interested in hearing how you would react to such a possibility and what benefits you’d like the visa to offer. I’ve got a connection in the French administration that might be willing to hear about my crazy plan. Please write me at [email protected] with your comments.

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris
[email protected]

P.S. It’s not too late to pack your bags for DC and meet with the incredible line-up of presenters at the Living and Investing in France Conference next weekend. I’ll be writing next week’s newsletters (except for Labor Day) from the Capital…Paris’ sister city that reminds us so much of Paris. For more information and to register, click on /frenchproperty/conference/LIF_DC/LIF_DC_home.html

P.P.S. Your next FPI will be coming from a diff

erent sender named [email protected]. Please update your “white listing” rules if you have any. Thank you.


Each week Paris Property Picks 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 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 /frenchproperty/insider/propertyconsultation.html

Surface: 44 m²
Rooms: 2

Rue Descartes, in an old building, 3rd floor, living room, two bedrooms, bath, charming, sunny, quiet.

Asking Price: 259,158 Euros + 2% Finder’s Fee


Surface: 60 m²
Rooms: 1

In an old building, a dublex on the 5th floor with an elevator, living room with fireplace, room on a mezzanine, foreseeable work to be done, view, sunny, quiet.

Asking Price: 215,000 Euros + 2% Finder’s Fee


Surface: 122 m²
Rooms: 3

Pierre de taille building, loft with character, large living room under a glass ceiling, three bedrooms, parking, charming, quiet, original.

Asking Price: 548,805 Euros + 2% Finder’s Fee


Surface: 125 m²
Rooms: 3

View on the gardens of a hôtel particulier, double living room with balcony, three bedrooms, two baths, perfect condition, parking, closets, southfacing, quiet, greenery.

Asking Price: 725,000 Euros + 2% Finder’s Fee


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