After a few calls to our agents in France, we tried to narrow down the criteria by which the prices of the French properties are determined. However, we remain cautious. One of our agents gave us a set of criteria, but it can totally change between the different agents or agencies. All those we spoke to give information about their area and their region, making it very specific.
Absolutely all the agents told us that square meter determination is practically non-existent. This method does not reflect the real French price of a house, there are actually a lot of other criteria used:
The main method is the comparative one, which consists in comparing like for like- the property must be in the same area and in more or less the same condition. All the agents we spoke to said this was the main method used, and also the most reliable.
Each region has its own criteria, depending on its location in France (close to the sea, ocean, mountain, the weather…)
Let’s now look at a few regions to get an idea about the price differences: In the Languedoc the most important criteria is the location: facing the sea, the views, the environment around the property (other houses visible or not, forests, noisy roads)…Proximity to amenities and transport links (motorways, airports) …) is also important.
In the Midi-Pyrenees, things work a little differently. The price of land is attached to the weighted average price per square metre. They do also use the comparative method.
In Aquitaine, the method applied is also the comparative one. Agents will consider the surroundings and environment, the condition of the house, whether it is a traditional build or not, and the size of the land. In rural Brittany, they don’t estimate per square metre but instead consider the surroundings (countryside or small town), the size of the land and condition of the house.
Paris is a case in itself. Foreign clients and the French aren’t looking for the same things, but some of the elements considered are the location (noisy or not, closeness to a Metro station) and the intrinsic qualities of the building itself- a porter, a garage or a courtyard are highly desired things.
Thus it isn’t easy to determine the price of a property- comparisons are commonly used, but a lot is down to specific criteria which varies from region to region.