The appetite for a second home – a rural bolthole from which to escape the town or city, and also work remotely from if needed – has never been stronger.
Leggett is well positioned to take advantage of this trend, with 40% of our sales being second homes (vs. 10% for our competitors) and because much of our property portfolio is located outside of major cities – where most of you seek to buy. With Brexit unlikely to affect the British appetite for holiday homes in France (you don’t need a visa for stays of up to 90 days a time), where best to look?
The Dordogne is a perennial favourite, especially the Périgord Noir (Black Périgord), an area of outstanding natural beauty, medieval towns such as the popular Sarlat, the famous Lascaux Caves and more to-die-for gourmet restaurants than you can shake a fork at. Or there’s also the beautiful chateaux and vineyards of the Loire Valley – savoured by French and international buyers alike – where less than €200k is a popular budget.
Fancy something easily reached by ferry? The perennially popular Pink Granite Coast is a stretch of coastline in the Côtes d’Armor, northern Brittany for beach lovers, walkers and foodies; or the Tarn: a slice of southwest France with forests, mountains, vineyards, gastronomy and medieval hilltop towns where the average price is around €131,000.
Beautiful Cantal in central France’s Auvergne is also one to look for, especially for great value homes. You can buy a petit chateau or manor for as little as €300,000!
Meanwhile mountain lovers will head to the Alps and Pyrenees where dual-season homes can be great rental investments or weekend bolt holes as well as offering a sporty, outdoorsy lifestyle for families. You can get a little studio in a small ski resort for as little as €60,000!
Head further south for even more sun: made famous by Peter Mayle’s 1989 best-selling book A Year in Provence, the Luberon area of perched hill-top villages, vineyards and orchards, is a firm favourite with French and international homeowners.
The Languedoc is another wonderful area of Catalan infused culture, historic chateaux, vineyards and the beautiful coastline that includes the red salt lagoons of the Camargue delta, or beaches that are wide or wild, backed by sand dunes, like Espiguette near Montpellier.
But for glitz and glamour it’s hard to beat the Var! Behind the Côte d’Azur, the gorgeous backcountry of the Var gives a total contrast with its beautiful perched medieval villages, set amongst vineyards and olive groves. It’s popular for the superb climate, and easy access to Nice airport and TGV station (under an hour), as well as the beach clubs of Saint-Tropez. “Villages worth a closer look are: Fayence, Lorgues, Cotignac, Tourtour, Brignoles,” says agent Jennie Tombs. “Expect to pay €100,000-€200,000 for a small village house or €500,000 for a three-bedroom villa with a pool.”
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