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France top location for Brits buying abroad

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02/02/2015

More Brits are now choosing to purchase property in France than any other foreign country, research from overseas property firm Conti has shown.

With the pound reaching a seven-year high against the euro, overseas property investors have begun to focus in on Europe.

Conti said almost half (46%) of its enquiries in the last four months had been for properties in France, knocking previous hotspot Spain down into second place.

In the winter months properties close to ski resorts have proven most popular with the Rhône-Alpes region seducing more buyers than anywhere else in the country.

The increasing value of the pound against the euro has made property on the continent more attractive to British investors.

Using recent averages, a €200,000 home in France now costs around £150,000 compared with £175,000 in the summer of 2013.

Clare Nessling, director at Conti, said investors are bringing their plans forward and snapping up bargains while they can.

“Rhône-Alpes has been growing in popularity, with more than four-in-ten (44%) French mortgages being taken out to purchase a ski property in this region,” she said.

“And the department of Haute-Savoie, where popular resorts such as Chamonix, Morzine and Les Gets are located, is top of buyers’ lists.

“The French ski market is popular with the British but is also extremely well supported by the domestic market, making rental opportunities good. It’s also very accessible, by air, train and car, and the culture is familiar, which British buyers like. When you combine these things with the current mix of ideal buying conditions, including the favourable exchange rate, it’s basically a great time to buy a French ski property.”

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