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Frenchly Webinar : The Real Estate Market in Paris in 2023

Have you ever thought of buying a pied-à-terre in Paris? If so, there are no doubt many questions on your mind, such as what is the state of the real estate market at the moment, which arrondissement would be the most interesting according to your budget etc…. That’s why we’re bringing you a webinar, produced by Frenchly with guest Melissa Regan, in which they’ll give you all the keys you need for a perfect move to the capital!

Presentation :

Transcription :

[00:00:03.710] – Speaker 1  

I believe we are live now. Ladies and gentlemen, bonjour and welcome to Frenchly. Thank you for joining us. Today, we are about to dive into the heart of the Parisian real estate market. But before we start, I want to take a quick moment to acknowledge our audience. A warm welcome to all the followers of Frenchly, the leading digital platform for American-Franco enthusiasts. Your love for French culture and lifestyle is genuine, and it is your interest and enthusiasm that fuels events like this one. I am thrilled to introduce our expert today, Melissa Regan from Mr Agency Real Estate. She has helped countless clients navigate the intricacies of this unique Parisian real estate market and is here today to share her expertise and experience with us. Hi, Melissa.

[00:00:56.150] – Speaker 2  

Hi, Franky. Thank you so much for the invitation to join you today. Hello to the audience.

[00:01:01.680] – Speaker 1  

The pleasure is ours. During this 1-hour webinar, we will learn about the real estate market of Paris, one of the world’s most coveted cities. We aim to demystify the process of buying property in Paris, particularly for our American audience. Melissa will provide key insights about market trends, property types, neighborhoods, along with detailing the significant differences between buying property in Paris versus the United States. Further, Melissa will shed light on the invaluable role of a real estate agent in Paris and share some inspiring success stories that underline the joy and reward of owning property in the City of Lights. We will also have a Q and A session where Melissa will be answering your questions that I encourage you to send me along. This session covers the real estate market in Paris in 2023. Melissa, the floor is yours.

[00:02:03.690] – Speaker 2  

Thank you so much, both for that introduction and again for the honor to be among you. So should I start by sharing my screen?

[00:02:12.110] – Speaker 1  


[00:02:13.090] – Speaker 2  

Okay, great. So first and foremost, nice to meet you all. I am a native Californian, and I have been in Paris now for almost 25 years. So I have lived more of my life now on this side of the world than in the United States. And I run several different agencies and businesses, with real estate being the key aspect of what I’ve done over here during this time. And it’s a pleasure to share this with you. So let me just share my screen and get into the details.

[00:02:44.730] – Speaker 1  

Perfect. Thank you.

[00:02:46.480] – Speaker 2  

Great. Can everyone see?

[00:02:48.490] – Speaker 1  

Yes, we do.

[00:02:49.760] – Speaker 2  

Wonderful. Okay, so I’m a multi-entrepreneur. I started in finance, moved to fashion, and then ventured into event venue management here in the City of Lights. So what I did was first become an investor myself, meaning that I both rented and purchased residential and commercial property for event usage. My event company has worked with all the major companies from around the world, such as Sony—pretty much everyone that wants to host an event in Paris has come through one of our venues. And this personal experience as a foreigner of buying, selling, renting, breaking leases, came with an incredible plethora of knowledge of navigating this world over here. I first had clients, one after the other, that would say, “Can you help us buy property here?” So we would do so, and in 2021, we formalized those services. Since then, we have helped a number of individuals and companies from around the world. So, regarding our services—what do we do for property? We do property hunting, property selling, and relocation. So, as far as relocation, I will take one after another.

[00:04:13.560] – Speaker 2  

Relocation is where we assist professionals or individuals who want to come to France and typically rent on a temporary basis. So that could be for six months, up to two years for relocation. We are actually one of the five companies in France that has a contract with the government. Welcome to the French Tech, where we help facilitate professionals coming under a special visa program. Property selling, that’s pretty simple. And property hunting. So property hunting is really where we bring a lot of value to foreign individuals because as a foreigner, you need to both find the property. But then how do you get the right property in front of you, really being able to rely upon one partner and one company to bring you all the market that matches your needs and your request? Okay, so that’s just a little overview of what we do. The market, as Franky said, obviously, Paris is a destination sought after by individuals around the world. It is one of the meccas of tourism. Paris is always a good idea. France is always a good idea. Just in 2022, we saw an increase of 65% of foreign buyers, of that 21% being American, the attractiveness for foreign investment in France has just skyrocketed.

[00:05:42.200] – Speaker 2  

Have you ever heard of the program? Choose France, for example, where you have the global leaders in industry and in tech coming to France. They meet in Versailles once a year to encourage French investment. So to give an idea, the market in 2023, the price per square meter, the medium, has been about 10,000. And investment projects across the country have increased by 3.5 billion. Okay, so that gives an idea of just the general market. Interesting.

[00:06:19.390] – Speaker 1  


[00:06:20.430] – Speaker 2  

And if you look between 2002 and 2022, you have a 115% increase in residential property value. Okay, so France, and specifically Paris, is not just a good idea, it’s a safe haven for investment. When you compare the average residential property price with other capitals across the globe—Hong Kong, London, New York, Tokyo—Paris is still on the upward trend, and we’ve seen that since 2002. Okay, I’m not sure how familiar each of you are who are participating today with the different neighborhoods of Paris. So we help clients across the country, but obviously, Paris is the capital. This is where there is the most amount of interest, and this is where our offices are based. So we definitely say that we have a core competency for the city. For those of you who don’t know, Paris is a little bit of an escargot. So in a snail, starting with the first Arrondissement and turning its way around all the way to the 20th, it’s sometimes a bit unusual for someone who’s less familiar to know that you could go from the third to the 11th or the fifth to the 13th. And when you look at this map, you can see it more clearly.

[00:07:43.260] – Speaker 2  

It’s the Escargot going around. Okay, so what is important to note is average prices and really what you can get for your money in these different neighborhoods. So on the right-hand of the screen, you’re going to see just some of the key figures. So you can also read those for yourself, but you can really see what are the most sought-after neighborhoods. The third, which is in the Marais, is very trendy. It’s been extremely up and coming over the past two years, or 20 years. The average is €14,000 per square meter. High is 21,000 for conversions. On the bottom, you’ll see square meter versus square feet. So it’s kind of like 1.1. If you want to do a general calculation in your head, then you go to Rivoli, Saint-Germain, 6th, 7th. I mean, look at those prices there. They’re getting up to 30,000, 41,000 /m² okay, 16th and 17th, get out to the west side of the city, and there the prices tend to come a little bit back down. Now, why is there so much fluctuation? Neighborhood by neighborhood, let’s take you through that. Okay, so here we are, 1st, 2nd, third, and fourth.

[00:09:06.250] – Speaker 2  

We would consider this the central area of Paris. What are the key drivers in this neighborhood? Obviously, some of the historical sites,  the Louvre, Les Halles. It is an area that is known for history. So historical, dynamic, artistic. So the Marais is in the Third and the Fourth. This was a typical, very bohemian, chic area, and it is now the epicenter of the contemporary art world. You have galleries Perrot, Thaddaeus Ropac. You have everyone on rue de turennes, Tuileries in that vicinity. It’s really the bustling, happening place to be. And with that has come an elegance. If you look around Vosges, the historical court that’s in the Marais, also the First and the Second, you have really extremely luxurious properties. Private mansions, Place des Vosges, Rues Saint-Honoré. These are all keywords that I’m sure you’ve heard before, especially if you’re with us today. So the center, Rive Gauche. So Rive Gauche has its own identity and way of living. Obviously, we’ve highlighted here at Café de Flore. This was the center of literary life when you look at La Rive Gauche and also the antique world. So all of the major antique dealers and antique galleries worldwide are located in Rive Gauche.

[00:10:37.270] – Speaker 1  

Okay, so Rive Gauche the 6th is one.

[00:10:40.320] – Speaker 2  

Of the most expensive areas in the city. It’s where you’re going to see the most high-ticket values, chic, trendy neighborhoods. You can live walking by foot, which is the way of life. Over here, the church, the famous church at Saint-Germain. Writers, painters, sculptors, musicians. This is where it all started.

[00:11:14.360] – Speaker 2  

Oh, there we go. Okay, great. The 8th, the 16th, and the 17th. When you’re thinking and contemplating what would be the right area of the city for you, it’s really a matter of your personal way of life. Also your level of comfort with, again, people, crowds, what you want to be able to access when you just go out of your apartment door. The 8th and the 6th and the 17th are definitely known to be very family-friendly. Larger properties, you get a little bit more for your buck, in essence, elegant. The streets are larger, parking is a little bit easier. It’s a different way of life. But it’s not in all areas of the 8th, 6th, 16th, or 17th that you’re going to be able to just walk down from your pit there, pick up a baguette, and go to the boulangerie. It’s a little bit more calm. More office buildings also.

[00:12:07.850] – Speaker 1  


[00:12:08.560] – Speaker 2  

And obviously Hausmannian. So Hausmannian style is very well known as the architecture in this part of the city. And that is due to the architect Hausmann, who actually created Avenue Flandre, part of Les Halles. So that’s where this architecture is the most well known for.

[00:12:28.370] – Speaker 1  


[00:12:30.930] – Speaker 2  

So now we go into what I want to take you through. What does the buying process look like in Paris or in France? Okay, so purchasing property is very different, as you can imagine in the US. It’s a very quick process and it’s a private agreement done between parties. Typically, the actual agents here in France. It’s much more legalistic, and there’s much more steps to the process. So, in general, the things you need to know is that it’s a two-step process between the signature of a promissory note and the signature of a final deed. So what that means is when actually you sign a promissory note, you go to a notary. Well, you first, obviously, have an offer. The offer is accepted. Once that is accepted, then the documents go to a notary. We work with incredibly and wonderful trusted notaries who are bilingual and studied law in the United States, and they’re really able to help our clients walk through that process with us. But what they do is they actually edit a contract, which is a promissory note in which outlines all the parts of the purchase of the sale. However, there is a lapse of time between these two agreements.

[00:13:50.030] – Speaker 2  

During that lapse of time, you as the buyer. So at the signature of the promissory note, you are required to put a certain amount of the purchase price into an escrow account.

[00:14:02.850] – Speaker 1  


[00:14:04.050] – Speaker 2  

The owner has to make a promise to sell you the property under the terms of that agreement. So imagine after the promise, the owner, someone comes to the owner and offers them double the price. They cannot legally accept it. They are legally bound to sell that property to you under the terms of the agreement.

[00:14:23.990] – Speaker 1  


[00:14:25.290] – Speaker 2  

You as the buyer, you actually can choose to walk away at any point between the promissory note and the final deed. However, you risk, and you would lose your 10% escrow that was put into the account.

[00:14:40.510] – Speaker 1  


[00:14:40.900] – Speaker 2  

So that’s if you just choose to walk away. Another aspect is if your purchase is contingent upon financing. So that does happen a little bit less for foreign buyers. But if your purchase is contingent upon financing, then you might have a get-out clause if you were not able to obtain your financing, which means that both parties could walk away. Okay, what else can I tell you here that’s very important? Oh, at this point, it’s very important to know also that the purchase price that you see includes both the net to the owner, agency fees. And then when you go to this next step at the notary is when French taxes and legal fees are put on top.

[00:15:25.050] – Speaker 1  


[00:15:25.960] – Speaker 2  

So they’re very intricate to be calculated. They are actually calculated upon the years that the building was built, even the street it’s on, and it can even be contingent on your financing and your purchasing of the property. So it’s extremely precise, and it’s only done by the notary. But what we aim to advise our clients is to account for 7% of the property value to be, in addition to the fee, accounting for taxes and legal fees.

[00:16:00.730] – Speaker 1  


[00:16:01.290] – Speaker 2  

And these are to be paid at the time of the final deed.

[00:16:06.230] – Speaker 1  


[00:16:07.350] – Speaker 2  

I’m sure you guys are all going to have questions on this, and we can get back to, when we get to Q and A’s, the role of a real estate agent. So here you see me again in the center. And some members of my team. We are not strictly feminine, but we definitely have quite a few wonderful, powerful, interesting women on the team.

[00:16:26.430] – Speaker 1  


[00:16:27.280] – Speaker 2  

So what is important to me and what I aim to achieve, and what we do achieve is to be different than the typical real estate agent. So, for me, a typical real estate agent sells you a property. So, meaning that if you’re over in Paris, for example, on a vacation, you may walk into an actual agency on the street, you might walk into some of the main ones, such as Sotheby’s, Barnes, these common names that we all know. That’s great. My husband even works in one of those big companies for the past 20 years. But what they do is they’re going to sell you a specific listing. And what we aim to do is we actually take you in hand so that the entire process runs as smoothly as possible. So what we do is that we actually do a selection of properties all across the market that are adapted to what you’re looking for. So, for example, if, based on your age, the number of children you may or may not have, the number of grandchildren you want to see come visit, how often you’re going to be in the city, if you’re going to be having a car, not a car.

[00:17:35.670] – Speaker 2  

All these take into account which neighborhood would be the best adapted for you. So you might have some ideas based on who you are and how you’ve explained yourself. We might have additional ideas. So, step one for us is scanning the market, bringing to you a preselection of adapted properties. Then we know that you’re typically not here with us on a daily basis. So, well, we need to pre-visit for you. So we do the pre-visits. We actually get out on the ground for you. We do the virtual visits with you, and then when you do come, we accompany you. So as early as today, we were with a client. He wanted to, in a three-hour period, see the eight properties that were adapted. So we take a private car with you, and we do, one after the other, provide you with a booklet so that you can write notes, take photos, and really are there to exchange with you. The difference also for us is when you walk into just a real estate agency on the street, well, they can only sell you a property. When you work with us, we’re going to be able to make sure that the right property is with you, no matter what listing agent it comes from.

[00:18:43.680] – Speaker 2  

So that’s a really big difference for us. Then we do the property due diligence. So when there was an extra skylight added in the bathroom of that great property we just saw, was there a valid permit? Are the inspections up to par? Typically, depending on your level of French, there might be things you can understand, but this gets very technical. So it’s nice to be able to lead upon a team that can walk you through that and do that due diligence for you. We oversee the legal and notarial process. So as I mentioned before, notaries have such a key role in today’s transactions. So a notary is a legal function that doesn’t exactly exist in the US. It’s a type of lawyer. But here, all property transactions must go through a notary. And it’s a government-appointed. Well, it’s not government-appointed, it’s a government-authorized function.

[00:19:42.530] – Speaker 1  


[00:19:43.950] – Speaker 2  

And there’s not one that can cost more than another. All notaries cost the same thing to the end buyer.

[00:19:49.810] – Speaker 1  


[00:19:50.510] – Speaker 2  

It’s really a matter of who you choose to work with and who’s going to help push that along. In today’s world, a notary can make or break a purchase. If you’re with someone that no one can reach, on the telephone, that doesn’t respond to your emails, you’re not getting the responses you need. You don’t understand certain aspects. It can make a deal crumble, it can make a dream crumble, and in the same way, having the right being surrounded by the right legal notary and advisors makes it possible. So that’s really important for us. Another thing that I’m not sure how detailed we want to get in on this, but you also have the choice as the buyer to buy under your personal name, or to use a real estate holding company vehicle. So here is called an associate. So it’s an acronym for an actual company name, which means Real estate holding company. And that means that you own shares of the company, but the company actually owns the property. Now, we’ll get a little bit more in this as we go forward in the success stories, but where this can be interesting, there are several case studies and we actually have a whole article on our website about this.

[00:21:11.210] – Speaker 2  

It can be for passing down property through generations and have tax advantages. Another very large advantage that we’ve seen with some of our foreign clients is some of our foreign clients, and especially Americans. As Americans, they cannot obtain. It’s a challenging topic. Myself as an American. Melissa Regan I’ve had trouble getting financing for a lot of my property deals, but having a French STI means that it’s not. Melissa Regan obtaining financing. It means it’s the French company which has French paperwork that is seeking financing. So sometimes a French real estate holding company can also be a vehicle for foreigners in order to open up that door of local financing.

[00:21:59.670] – Speaker 1  


[00:22:00.200] – Speaker 2  

Case by case, of course. But we’ll get into that in one of our success stories. We also facilitate the logistics transfer of funds. So again, it depends obviously, on each level of the client, but it might be the first time that you’re making a transfer of 800,000, 3 million across continents. How can you obtain the best and most optimal exchange rate? How can you ensure that the funds are in the notary’s account by the time of signing? If for some reason you’ve gone through your local bank and you filled out a transfer request form, it’s possible that two or three weeks later, the funds have not arrived. If the funds have not arrived, then the final deed cannot legally close. So that’s an issue, too. So we work with a great partner who has the best rates that we’ve ever seen and can ensure same-day receipt of funds within the French notaries. So that’s a huge power of attorney. That’s a question we get frequently, possibly between the two notaries. The final deed has been set for 09:00 a.m. On a Tuesday morning. What happens if you’re in California? Well, 09:00 a.m. In California could almost work because it’s midnight.

[00:23:20.810] – Speaker 2  

But what happens if you’re in Chicago? You’re in Texas; you might not physically be able to be on the call in Zoom. So we provide power of attorney services and also loan brokers who work with foreigners. What happens after you’ve actually closed the deal? You’ve bought your property. That’s great. What about home and fire insurance? What happens if you have a leak? If you have a fire? So we ensure that you are insured in the right way and with the right partners, and you might be seeking property management after purchase, one just to ensure that someone comes to your apartment one time a week, flushes the toilets, makes sure that everything is maintained. You might also be seeking a revenue stream. You might be interested in actually renting it out on a short-term basis. How would you do that from a distance? So we provide all of those services. So for me, the real thing here is the role of a real estate agent is obviously selling you a property, but I would say the role of us as agents goes far, far beyond. And now it’s my pleasure to share four success stories with you.

[00:24:35.280] – Speaker 2  

So we’ve taken the liberty to highlight very different case scenarios and very different types of properties. Our services, although I definitely see them as bespoke and very high know, we work with all different types of case scenarios. So you’ll see the different price points, the different things we’ve done here. So I’ll start with Howard and Cindy, an accomplished American couple who are looking for an alternative to a hotel. So frequently they would stay at Chevy Blanc, at Hotel Coste. They definitely knew a lot about Paris restaurants going out, and they knew what if their high school and college age children were interested in doing a semester abroad, studying over here. So we worked with them for months, pre-selections of properties, pre-visits. And what we ended up being able to bring to them was incredible. A fully renovated, fully furnished property on Saint Louis. So Ives, Saint Louis is incredible. One of the most historical. It’s in the center, it’s in the very center of Paris. And all they had to do was arrive with their toothbrushes. And in addition, this property came with a concierge service, came with. All of the renovation was insured for a ten-year period.

[00:25:59.860] – Speaker 2  

So it came really with the security that they were looking for and the level of comfort that they were looking for. Air conditioning, heated floors, bathrooms for every bedroom. So just that level of, I would say, precision that we have in the United States that we don’t always find in Paris with the creaky floors. Okay, so that’s one. And now we go to a completely separate here, a property of very different value. So here, 550,000, excluding all fees, 50,000. Bedroom, newly renovated, also ready to just walk into. And here. So Delphine is a French expat living in New York City, married to an American. An American. They would travel in and out. They would stay at hotels, the same thing. And they were looking to buy a Pied-a-Terre. They wanted to limit their investment. They wanted to have a property that they could rent out the same thing for them. They ended up buying in the third, in the Marais, but we looked in the first, 2nd, third and fourth for them. It was a several-month process and it was a coup de coeur. There was another offer at the same time. And the advantage also, I guess I would say, for us, and not always, but I would say yes, is a listing agent.

[00:27:26.180] – Speaker 2  

They might have several offers coming in. They don’t know the clients. They don’t know their files. Sometimes the listing agents, they don’t really even speak English. So how are they going to know that Delphine and West are going to be a better buyer than Louis and Louise or Paul and Janet? So how are they going to push Delphine and West’s offer over someone else’s? Well, how they do that is with us. We are an additional service. We vet our clients’ files beforehand. So in this case, they were almost getting squeezed out, and we were able to insure this property for them, basically with the quality of who our clients were and them and the listing agent knowing that, again, if we’re bringing them, that it’s going to go through to the final deed. Okay, success story. This was right off the block, actually, this just happened yesterday, and I was so excited to send it because I was touched by this little photo. Completely different case. Also Lisa and Jeremy. So this is a photo that they sent me last night from their new apartment where they were drinking champagne out of paper cups. So two American professionals who came to France under the welcome to the French tech Visa program, very intimidated by the cultural differences and looking for guidance through the process.

[00:28:52.080] – Speaker 2  

So property owners, both investment and primary property in the US, they started visiting on their own. So they started visiting properties. They found a property they liked, they wanted to make an offer, and they went, what do we do next? And Lisa found me. Don’t you know, I have some ideas how recommendations, French tech, et cetera. She calls me and she goes, I think I want to buy an apartment. I don’t know what to do next. So this was, again, by folk. We didn’t do even the property hunting for her. She wanted to ensure that the offer that they put in was legally binding. She wanted to ensure that the sellers would sell to them, which in today’s world, sellers really want to ensure that it’s going to go to the end of the transaction and that they’re not going to have buyers that go to the promissory note, sign the promise, try to get financing, it falls through, and the seller has lost five months of their time. That maybe was key for them for other financial reasons. So I got involved, our office got involved, and we saw this through. And what was great is that we got them in contact with a local loan broker who, again, specializes with Americans.

[00:30:12.340] – Speaker 2  

They wanted to obtain a certain level of financing that was a little bit readjusted, they chose to sell. So they did obtain financing for about 30% of the purchase price. They already had 30% in cash that was ready to go. And to go forward, they had a 30% difference that they needed to obtain. So they sold a small investment property in the state. We had to renegotiate the delays with the notary, with the sellers, with the broker. It was quite an intricate deal, and it took six months. And they got their keys yesterday.

[00:30:52.340] – Speaker 1  


[00:30:53.320] – Speaker 1  


[00:30:54.210] – Speaker 2  

And then the last one I want to show is that, obviously, I realize that this is an American panel, an American audience, but no matter where you might be from in the world, if you might be joining us today, we don’t work exclusively with Americans, and people who do choose to work with us are for different reasons. Frank is a French politician who was looking for confidentiality. So he didn’t want to be going on all these visits, calling all these different listing brokers. He didn’t want the world to know what his budget was, what his criteria were, maybe what his personal situation was, and he wanted to have one point of contact once you get your name in. And again, I want to be obviously respectful of our industry, but once you start giving your name to brokers, they can keep emailing you or calling you nonstop. It might be inappropriate. So this is an example where we were really chosen, obviously, for our professionalism, but also for confidentiality.

[00:31:51.650] – Speaker 1  


[00:31:52.220] – Speaker 2

And as for the property, this is also a very different case scenario. So, in this case, a full renovation is needed. Take a look at the bathroom; it’s very outdated. Also, consider the property price – 139m2, rue de Rivoli, two bedrooms, in need of renovation with an incredible view. Look at this monument. Once this is fully renovated, which is currently underway, it’s going to be incredible.

[00:32:21.140] – Speaker 1


[00:32:21.730] – Speaker 2

In the center of Paris. So we chose these four examples just to show you that our services can apply to so many different cases. And being a family-run, smaller, bespoke agency, we can adapt to you. How can we help you? Today’s presentation has primarily focused on residential purchases, but that’s not all we do. We assist in buying, selling, or renting apartments, and we also work with commercial spaces. For instance, let me share a success story. The art gallery right there, a famous art gallery in Brussels and Israel, Devere Gallery. I met them at Art Basel, and they wanted to open a gallery in Paris, so we helped them with that. Then, he wanted to buy an apartment, and later, his mom wanted to buy an apartment too. It’s been our pleasure to help them in all these different aspects. So, if you are interested in opening an office, renting an apartment for a university-bound child, or buying an apartment for yourself, we can assist you in various ways.

[00:33:41.340] – Speaker 1


[00:33:42.060] – Speaker 2

Along the way, we’ve covered the key reasons to work with us. Our team is multicultural and multilingual, going beyond linguistics to understand how you live, what is important to you, and how we can adapt. Our team includes individuals from Lebanon, Italy, Peru, France, and the UK. With my over 25 years here, starting as an investor myself, our network is strong, and our relationships with people are close-knit. Instead of just seeing an ad and calling a fixed line number, we have direct relationships by text with the right people to ensure our clients are well-serviced.

[00:34:47.480] – Speaker 1


[00:34:48.080] – Speaker 2

We are quite unique as one of the few independent agencies working this way. Our advisory capabilities help you structure the purchase legally and financially. Our relationships with banks and lawyers contribute to our distinctiveness. Franky, what are your thoughts? Where do you want to take it?

[00:35:09.230] – Speaker 1

Thank you so much for the expertise, the experience, and the success stories. It’s impressive. I was born in Paris but have been living in California for the last 16 years, and you know Paris better than me now. Let’s move on to the Q&A. We have several questions for you.

[00:35:42.020] – Speaker 2

Can you see me? I think I stopped sharing the screen. Correct.

[00:35:45.460] – Speaker 1

We can see you. I wanted you to keep sharing for a few more minutes. Also, starting now, we’ll focus on the slides, especially the last one, which contains all the contact information. This will give everyone time to note down the phone number, email, and other details, including the website. It’s a valuable resource. Initially, it’s beautiful. You can even scan it if you’d like to connect directly with MR Agency. Now, let’s address the first question. Could you elaborate on the differences between the most sought-after neighborhoods in Paris? How does one decide on the best fit for their specific needs?

[00:36:31.440] – Speaker 2

You know, that’s very personal. I think it really depends on your way of life because, like all cities, there’s no single great neighborhood in one great place. Different neighborhoods might be suitable for you at various times in your life. Personally, I started in Le Marais, then moved to the 8th, returned to Le Marais for another six years, and then settled in the area that corresponded to different phases in my life and what I was looking for. So, I would say the same for our viewers today. Consider what you want to have in proximity, whether by foot, metro, or taxi. Also, consider factors like security, cleanliness; these aspects vary from neighborhood to neighborhood. It’s very personal. Does that answer your question?

[00:37:31.460] – Speaker 1

Yeah, absolutely. Could you provide guidance on the process of securing a mortgage in France, especially for Americans? Are there particular challenges or benefits unique to the French system? We’ve received many questions on this topic.

[00:37:53.020] – Speaker 2

Certainly. I want to be realistic with our audience today. Financing is more challenging in France compared to the States. The key difference is that in the United States, individuals are free to make their own financial decisions. If you want to use your credit card or take out a loan with uncertain repayment, it’s your personal decision and responsibility.

[00:38:22.720] – Speaker 1


[00:38:23.860] – Speaker 2

In France, it’s different. Banks follow specific rules. As a general rule, not just for Americans, it’s recommended that no more than one-third of your monthly earnings should go towards housing. Unlike in the States, where you often look at annual income, in France, it’s more focused on monthly earnings. This should not exceed 30%. For instance, if your monthly income is 30,000, seeking financing that results in repayments of 3,000 to 5,000 would be one scenario, and a different scenario for higher repayments. So, the first consideration is how it’s assessed.

[00:39:18.730] – Speaker 1
[00:39:19.580] – Speaker 2

The second aspect is how Americans are viewed by the French banking system. Due to FACTA (Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act), many banks cannot legally work with American nationals.

[00:39:33.950] – Speaker 1


[00:39:34.480] – Speaker 2

For example, banks like Le General cannot open new accounts for American nationals.

[00:39:40.960] – Speaker 1


[00:39:41.670] – Speaker 2

It’s a bit complicated. Some banks can work with expats, but it varies. Additionally, the perception of your income matters. If you’re an entrepreneur or earn income from atypical sources like investment property and dividends, it’s viewed differently from a salaried job. Unfortunately, having more financial holdings makes it easier to obtain financing. It’s a case-by-case scenario, and we assess each file independently in partnership with our key brokers.

[00:40:51.700] – Speaker 1

We have a question from Sarah. Do you have agents that specialize in areas of France besides Paris?

[00:41:02.320] – Speaker 2

Certainly, Sarah. We work with partners in various regions of France, including the south, Lille, AR, Saint Tropez, and Nice. Our approach is to follow the client, ensuring we work with the right people locally. Feel free to message me with your specific interests, and I can let you know if we can assist you in those areas.

[00:41:33.600] – Speaker 1

A question from Lisa. Do you work with budgets lower than those you showed and in different neighborhoods?

[00:41:43.220] – Speaker 2

Absolutely. That’s why I included the 550,000 budget. It’s a more reasonable range. Lisa, we’d need to know your specific budget to determine feasibility in the market. If it’s feasible, we’re happy to work with you.

[00:42:04.460] – Speaker 1

Catherine asks if the recording will be available afterward. Yes, there will be an article and a replay. Another question: Are there common misunderstandings among American buyers in France?

[00:42:37.720] – Speaker 2

Oh, there are so many misunderstandings; I don’t even know where to begin. It can be a bit perplexing, and it depends on your background. Coming from California in the United States, where standalone individual homes are common, the concept might be different. In contrast, in places like New York City, you are often in buildings with homeowners associations.

[00:43:07.930] – Speaker 1


[00:43:08.560] – Speaker 2

Here in France, especially in cities, it’s different. You might have your own standalone home in the south of France, but in a city, you typically have an individual apartment in a building. This entails building rules, laws, and annual meetings. Decisions are made collectively, and you can’t unilaterally make improvements in common areas. For someone like me, transitioning from standalone homes in California, this was certainly an adjustment. People can choose whether or not they appreciate the structure, but it’s a country with rules, and the administrative processes can be challenging.

[00:44:01.140] – Speaker 1

Natalie would like to hear your thoughts about being in new construction, buying a new construction, and before the project is completed, have you had experiences like that?

[00:44:15.080] – Speaker 2

Okay, very interesting. That is a whole nother niche. It’s investment property. So I would actually would love to speak to you about your specific case. So please do reach out to me after for everyone to understand what we’re discussing. There’s programs to obviously increase housing capabilities in France, across the country, and specifically in some of the cities that are congested. So these projects are typically just out of the city. They can be really interesting investment projects. One, because there are some government credits to increasing the housing. So it can be a financially sound operation. Typically with these types of properties, you also have to engage to rent them out for a minimum number of years because basically you’re saying you’re helping increase the capacity in the country. So that’s one case scenario. It’s pretty rare to buy on a floor plan for your own personal usage right off the bat is what I would say.

[00:45:19.820] – Speaker 1


[00:45:21.180] – Speaker 2

But Frankie, maybe it would be interesting. I don’t know if anyone has posed any questions about renovation and what that would look like over here, but I would be happy to maybe talk about that next if that’s of interest to anyone.

[00:45:33.600] – Speaker 1

We haven’t had a question about that, but it would be interested that you mentioned to discuss it a little bit and give us some.

[00:45:41.810] – Speaker 2

Yeah, I think so too. Imagine that you fall in love with the property. It’s in relatively good condition, for example, but the bathrooms need to be done redone. You would like to change the kitchen. You would like to again add in a skylight. How would you do that from abroad? It’s a very challenging question. Who do you trust? I think anywhere, if you bring just a random contractor in, you can come back a month later, nothing’s changed. But you’ve paid you know. So how do you go about that? So one already architects over here, there’s two different types of architects. One which is called DPLG, which means it’s a structural architect. So it’s a structural architect that comes with insurance and a certification which is recognized by the government. So if ever you need to do something structural, so far as taking out a wall or something that needs authorization from the city, such as a skylight or changing or adding a mezzanine, okay. These things require both building authorization, city authorization, and you want to ensure that they’re done in the règle de l’art, so buy in conform. Okay, so you have that type of an architect, and then you have an interior designer, which if you just see the word architect, you’re going to think that they’re an architect.

[00:47:05.730] – Speaker 2

Like a structural architect. And actually over here, architect can be used for an interior designer. So it’s okay. You just need to really know what your needs are and make sure that you’re working with the right people. So an interior designer can also still oversee, obviously an electrician. They can oversee painting, changing a wall, adding in closets. So again, getting back to us, but that’s one of the advantages of working with us, is that we have that network of trusted individuals already. Just the trusted individuals, but then making sure that it’s a match between level of budget esthetics and who you’re going to fit with.

[00:47:45.240] – Speaker 1

Perfect. I like if you have the chance to take four or five more questions, so maybe with a shorter answer. Is crypto accepted to buy real estate in France?

[00:47:59.900] – Speaker 2

It’s an up and coming topic. We have not done it yet. We’ve talked about in the office that we want to get to there. It’s not yet an accepted practice, but that’s definitely I think where there will be opportunity.

[00:48:12.420] – Speaker 1

Question from Ellen. I don’t know if you’re familiar with that market. How does the market in Paris compare to London for family with one?

[00:48:22.840] – Speaker 2

Oh, so when you say, how does the market. So the property price or.

[00:48:28.920] – Speaker 1

Okay, well, I guess the market value.

[00:48:34.040] – Speaker 2

So less expensive in Paris for sure. Both in cost per square foot and also in cost of living. Hands down? Hands down? Hands down. And in addition to that, in the UK, you have a whole other system where you actually don’t hold the property value title for life. You hold it for a certain number of years, it’s like 99 years, and then you resell it. So it’s a whole nother bag of worms.

[00:48:59.960] – Speaker 1

Okay. Mark has a question, very specific question. I don’t know if it’s, I think it’s more intended for a lawyer, but maybe you have some ideas about the subject. In the US, unless otherwise specified, property transfers directly from parent to an heir. In the case of an American without French citizenship purchasing property in France, is that also the case, or are there other processes for property transfers?

[00:49:30.200] – Speaker 2

Okay, that is a very good question. It is true that it’s a notary, but I do have experience in that too. So it follows the same. So a property would go first to your children. If you don’t have children, then it would go to your parents. But one of the things that we advise

[00:49:44.800] – Speaker 2

is to definitely consult with a notary and potentially a legal expert because the French inheritance laws can be complex. There are specific rules about forced heirship, which means that a portion of the estate must be reserved for certain heirs, like children. So it’s essential to navigate these laws properly to ensure a smooth transfer of property to heirs. Seeking legal advice in this regard is highly recommended.

[00:50:07.200] – Speaker 1

Great. A question from Tom. Are there specific areas in Paris that are more favorable for short-term rentals, such as Airbnb? And what are the regulations around short-term rentals in Paris?

[00:50:21.680] – Speaker 2

Yes, there are specific areas in Paris that are popular for short-term rentals, especially for Airbnb. Areas like Le Marais, Saint-Germain-des-Prés, and the Latin Quarter are often sought after by tourists. However, it’s crucial to be aware of the regulations around short-term rentals in Paris. The city has implemented strict rules to regulate Airbnb-type rentals, and it’s important to comply with these regulations to avoid legal issues. For instance, there are limitations on the number of days a property can be rented out for short-term stays. It’s recommended to stay informed about these regulations and work with professionals who understand the legal aspects of short-term rentals in Paris.

[00:50:58.840] – Speaker 1

Great. A question from Sophia. How long does the process of buying property in Paris typically take from the initial search to the final purchase?

[00:51:09.800] – Speaker 2

The timeline for buying property in Paris can vary, but on average, it takes a few months. The initial search phase depends on individual preferences and the availability of suitable properties. Once a property is chosen, the negotiation process begins, and this can take a few weeks. After reaching an agreement, the legal and administrative procedures, including the signing of the preliminary sales agreement and obtaining a mortgage, if needed, may take a couple of months. Finally, the closing usually takes place at the notary’s office. Overall, it’s advisable to be prepared for a process that spans several months, but the exact duration can depend on various factors.

[00:51:47.120] – Speaker 1

All right. And a final question from Rachel. Is it common for foreigners to secure a mortgage in France, or do they typically rely on financing from their home country?

[00:51:58.520] – Speaker 2

It’s relatively common for foreigners to secure a mortgage in France, especially if they plan to purchase property for long-term residence. While some buyers may choose to rely on financing from their home country, securing a mortgage in France can have certain advantages. French banks are familiar with the local market and may offer competitive interest rates. However, the process can be different from what buyers are accustomed to in their home country, so it’s essential to understand the requirements and work with professionals who specialize in international real estate transactions to navigate the mortgage process effectively.

[00:52:29.480] – Speaker 1

Great. Well, thank you so much for answering these questions and providing valuable insights into the real estate market in Paris. It’s been a pleasure having you with us today.

[00:52:38.040] – Speaker 2

Thank you, Franky. It’s been a pleasure being here and answering these questions. If anyone has more inquiries or needs assistance with their real estate endeavors in Paris, feel free to reach out. I’m here to help.

[00:52:50.440] – Speaker 1

Absolutely. And for the audience, thank you for joining us today. We’ll be providing a replay of this session, so stay tuned for that. If you have more questions or if there’s anything specific you’d like to learn about in future sessions, feel free to let us know. Until next time, take care, and au revoir!

[00:53:08.320] – End of Session
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