Overseas buyers are snapping up inland French Riviera property as house prices have dropped by up to 20%
An article recently published on OPP featuring Home Hunts reported that property sales inland on the French Riviera have increased up to 90% year-on-year. The current climate of favourable exchange rates, attractive mortgage deals and price falls inland of up to 20% has been encouraging buyers to invest in some of the smaller towns and villages away from the fast-paced life of the coastline.
Mougins and Valbonne top for price and desirability
“We have seen sales surge by 90% this year compared with last and a village environment with restaurants and shops is at the top of many clients’ dream lists,” says Tim Swannie, Director of Home Hunts.
“Most people want to be part of a community. The beauty of a holiday home inland, aside from the financial savings, is that you can dip in and out of the coast, but not get caught in the busy summer traffic. You can relax by your pool, visit markets to buy local food and wine and enjoy days out to the sea or mountains.”
So which villages are currently proving to be most popular with Home Hunts’ clients? Mougins and Valbonne are two of the most well-known, with Mougins being the most expensive and closest to the coast. Renowned for its gastronomic restaurants, it is a convenient ten minutes from the beach and has a highly reputed international school with an English curriculum for three to eighteen year olds.
“Valbonne is extremely desirable and prices are relatively high, particularly for properties which are within walking distance of the village,” says Tim. “Both Mougins and Valbonne are very popular for families who want to put their children in the international schools.”
Get more for your money in these smaller villages
However, while many clients start their search in Mougins and Valbonne, once they start to explore the area they are looking in villages such as Biot, Opio, Roquefort les Pins and Chateauneuf de Grasse.
“You get a little more for your money in these villages,” explains Tim. “All of them are very popular with within 5-15 minutes’ drive of one another. However, as with all properties, prices vary depending on position, views, condition, and style (people pay a premium for stone properties, for example), as well as layout of the property and the grounds.”
Bastide village of Opio
Opio, a bastide village with a population of around 2,000 people is not far from Cannes and offers an authentic French Riviera lifestyle as well as property that is better value for money than in Mougins and Valbonne.
“It is 15 minutes from the coast, 40 minutes from the nearest ski resort and under half-an-hour from Nice airport,” says Tim. “There are also three international schools nearby and a range of restaurants, from Michelin-starred to local pizzerias.”
Right time to buy property in Roquefort les Pins
Roquefort les Pins is located right in the heart of the Nice-Antibes-Grasse triangle and offers an excellent range of amenities, such as schools and shops.
“Although its population has increased in recent years, it is still less well known than Mougins and Valbonne,” says Tim, “so it’s possible to find properties that offer excellent value for money – especially at the moment.”
Biot: Medieval village close to beaches
Biot, a charming and unspoilt medieval village, is located inland just five minutes from Antibes’ beaches. It offers easy access to major roads, has great shops and restaurants and is not far from Sophia Antipolis and the CIV International College in Valbonne.
“In Biot you can get a little more for your money than in Mougins or Valbonne,” says Tim. “Interest and sales have increased in this pretty village, which is close to beaches and has all the amenities a family could need.”
Sales up in Châteauneuf-de-Grasse
Châteauneuf-de-Grasse oozes Provençal charm and is situated just a few kilometres away from Opio. With breath-taking views of the local countryside towards the bay of Cannes, this village also offers everything a family could need, including excellent local amenities, schools and a full events programme.
“This charming village is becoming extremely popular with overseas buyers,” says Tim. “Just 5km from Grasse and 30km from Nice means it is well located for international travel while also offering a peaceful and tranquil Provençal lifestyle that is a short drive away from the sea.”
To search for properties on the French Riviera, visit Home Hunts’ online portfolio, but to speak to a Home Hunts’ consultant directly about your specific property needs, call +33 (0)970 44 66 43