September Is All About Timing

September Is All About Timing

It’s that wonderful time again, we’ve written before about the month of September and house hunting in France; “la rentrée” for kids and parents, the amazing autumn colors, delicious mushrooms, fireplaces lighting up and stunning sunsets, and bien sur it’s harvest time. The start of harvest seasons brings something else to your lips and that’s the bountiful produce that France is renowned for.

This year (2021) will be different as the weather has been very tough last spring especially for farmers and wine growers who have really suffered (Occitanie, Rhone Valley and Burgundy) while most of the country who had an unseasonal summer, yet still better than most places.

Here at MFH-HQ, we’ve been lucky enough to grow a vine (greenhouse) and will start the process of making wine soon. It’s a small home brewing set up, nothing commercial, just for fun, so watch our French blog, we may even start a wine diary!  You could say it’s one of those hobbies that became more serious during the pandemic, spending a of time outside while the sun was shining...

As people are re-adjusting to their new “now” and learning about “pass sanitaires” rules while in France, we are receiving many visit requests of buyers and families wanting to get on with their dreams and are already planning for next summer, and the one after… most probably with the delightful thoughts of al fresco “apéritifs” under the shading vine or fig leaves.

More restricted than most countries, many of our non-EU clients are now planning to come this fall and in winter as the pandemic situation is generally improving and travelling is opening up. The market is very active for all property types, including chateaux, in the usual favorites areas including Occitanie, Dordogne, Normandy, Provence, the French Alps and Paris of course.

The volume of sales are up, agents are having a great time, and the prices are creeping up. Properties are selling very quickly, at asking price, usually with multiple offers. Don’t be surprised if you hear or have noticed a shortage of properties, this has been for some months and started last year, partly due to French & EU sales, sellers holding back or who have changed their minds and keeping their home. According to the Notaires de France, the volume of older property yearly sales (not new homes) reached more than 1,1M transactions to end of May 2021 , a record level of sales on the French real estate market since 2000.

At the same time, mortgages are getting harder to obtain, some agents (and brokers) are struggling to find finance for their French buyers. If you need to a mortgage, then you must research French Mortgages early. Failing to do this will result in costly trips, months of frustrating correspondance with lenders and often, the end result being missing out on the property.

Just as for harvesting or investing, and for most things in life, making the dream happen is all about timing and research, so planning is everything.  Most of our many clients sign up, keep in touch and come back to us when they are ready to travel and more importantly to commit.

Credit to Beth at Fatdogs for the photo of the thumnail - clock in Marmande.