A stagnant number of transactions over the past year, and rising prices for houses, were among the major trends to emerge in the French housing market towards the end of 2022, new figures show.
Figures from notaire association les Notaires de France, up to the end of September 2022, have been released. They show some clear trends as the country went into the final quarter of the year.
A notaire in France is a government-appointed lawyer who must oversee all property transactions.
Housing market stalling
The housing market in general stalled, with 1,133,000 sales transactions recorded in 2022 to the end of September, new national notaire figures show. This is down 5.4% in comparison to the 1,206,000 counted over the same time in 2021.
The annual number of transactions has been dropping consecutively since the final quarter of 2021, after the increase seen between the end of 2022 and the third quarter of 2021.
Apartment prices up 4%
Prices for apartments rose on average by 4%. This is slightly less than the rises seen over some of the past two years, including a 5.3% rise in the third quarter of 2021 and 6.6% in the third quarter of 2020.
Two years ago, price changes in Ile-de-France and the rest of the country were comparable (+6.7% and +6.5% respectively).
However, the increase has slowed in Ile-de-France but continued in the rest of the country (+2.6% last year and +0.2% this year, versus +7.7% in 2021 and +7.1% in 2022, respectively).
The predictions for apartments in the final quarter of 2022 and the start of 2023 include a continuation of the annual price increase in the rest of France (+6.9%) and a more measured increase in the Île-de-France (+1.5%).
House prices up 8% in a year
House prices rose by 8.6% over most of France year-on-year (although only by 5.7% in Ile-de-France). This came after a sharp rise of 9.1% a year ago, meaning that prices overall have jumped by 18% in the last two years (and 23% over the past three).
Price per square metre hits €10,590 in Paris
The median price of property per square metre in France runs from €1,170 in Saint-Etienne (Loire, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes), right up to €10,590 in Paris.
Saint-Etienne is the only city with prices below €2,000 per square metre, while Toulon, Reims, Grenoble, Orléans, and Dijon are below €2,500. A year ago, prices in these same cities were between €2,300 and €2,400.
The cities with the highest price increases in five years
Nice, Bordeaux, Lyon, and Paris stand out with prices per square metre above €4,000.
Despite the annual increases, prices in Saint-Étienne are still lower than those seen before the 2007-2008 crisis. In Toulon and Grenoble, prices have almost returned to their 2007-2008 record levels.
Property prices have risen by 10% and 25% in five years in Grenoble (+15%), Toulon (+18%), Nice (+21%), and Reims (+23%).
The price increase over the past five years is between +25% and +35% in Toulouse (+25%), Lille (+26%), Montpellier (+27%), Bordeaux (+29%), Marseille (+30%), Orléans (+32%), Le Havre (+32%), Saint-Étienne (+32%), and Dijon (+34%).
Prices have also risen sharply over five years in Strasbourg (+37%), Lyon (+43%), Nantes (+46%), and Rennes (+59%).
Record average house sale prices
The median sale price reached a new record in each of the towns studied.
Le Havre broke the €200,000 threshold for the first time. In Nice, the median sale price reached €590,400, an increase of more than €100,000 in the space of two years.
There were six towns with a median sale price above €400,000 in 2022, compared to four last year and only two, two years ago.
There were six towns with a median sale price below €300,000 in 2022 (Le Havre, Saint-Etienne, Lille, Orléans, Reims, and Dijon) compared with 11 towns five years ago.
Read more: MAP: Latest house price rises in France - how has your area fared?
Edouard Grimond, spokesman for the office of the Conseil Supérieur du Notariat (CSN), said: “After an atypical year in 2021, the year 2022 was characterised, on the one hand, by a drop in volumes of around 5.4% over the twelve months to the end of September.
“And on the other hand, by prices still trending upwards, more strongly for houses than for apartments.”
“For the weeks to come, we expect volumes to decline slowly…Moreover, the slowdown in price rises has begun, even though a fall is not imminent.
“In the medium term, however, we remain cautious in our forecasts, as the macroeconomic situation and the geopolitical context remain uncertain. In the context of energy saving, the quality of the properties sold could have a growing impact on prices.”
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