Crédit Foncier published a study on the real estate characteristics of the thirteen new regions, which took shape in January 2016. These figures gave a quick sketch of this region, which is highly popular among retirees and foreigners.
Demography and economy : a rather dynamic overall picture
- 4.9 million inhabitants (8% of the French population), concentrated mainly in a very dense urban network on the coast. Three large urban centres are on the seafront: Marseille (1.7 million inhabitants), Nice (1 million inhabitants), and Toulon (607,000 inhabitants).
- From 1990 to 2014, the population grew 15%, outpacing France (+13%).
- The proportion of individuals between the ages of 20 and 59 is expected to fall in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur from 52% today to 45% in 2040 (compared with 54% to 47% for France overall).
- The PACA region ranks third in per capita GDP (€30,600) among all of the new regions.
- Historically, services represent an important part of its economy, particularly because of trade (coastline and port of Marseille) and tourism (the region accounts for 11% of tourist spending on French territory).
- Corporate services are growing quickly, while the water, waste, and chemical industries are developing.
A very distinctive real estate market
- Representing a 59% share, flats are far more numerous in the region than individual houses.
- Not surprisingly, the rate of secondary residences and occasional dwellings is 17% in the region, compared with 10% for France.
- Owners make up 56% of the region, which is 3 points below the national average.
- Average prices per square metre – €3,899 for new property and €3,393 for existing property – are higher than France’s average.
- Outstanding mortgage loans totalled 70 billion euros at the beginning of 2015. The use of credit by borrowers in this region is nearly equivalent to the rest of French people.
Real estate perspectives on the region’s three major cities
- in Marseille, the study shows slower activity, particularly for new properties, with an 18% drop in new listings over the first nine months of 2014.
- in Nice, same decline for new properties. For existing properties, the decrease in transactions is around 7%, for a 2% decrease in prices.
- in Toulon, supply has grown significantly for new properties, with a preponderance of two-room and three-room properties. For existing properties, the volume of transactions has decreased with major disparities depending on the sector.