How has Brexit affected property buyers?

Posted by Admin 20.12.2016 | 0 Comments

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How has Brexit affected property buyers?

The UK’s decision to leave the European Union has understandably caused concern and uncertainty among British buyers considering a property purchase in France. Yet while the exact implications of the result are still unclear at this stage, British buyers will continue to be able to buy in France and property experts have expressed confidence in the continued growth of the French property market.

What do the experts say?

Trevor Leggett from Leggett Immobilier says it has been business as usual since the Brexit result was announced. “It’s still early days but enquiry levels from the UK are holding up pretty well. We had around 1,000 new enquiries in the week following the referendum with clients having offers accepted on 34 properties across France in the same week.”

Charles Smallwood from Agence l’Union has experienced a similar response. “Some UK potential buyers wanted to hold out and see what would happen after the result, postponing their visit to view properties. But within a day or so most of them had got back in touch with us and wanted to reconfirm their rendez-vous.”

Some agents have seen the emergence of a new type of client following the UK’s decision to leave the EU, suggesting that it has provided extra encouragement for some British buyers who are considering a move to France.

Will I still be able to buy property in France?

Brits visited and bought property in France long before the UK was part of the EU, and will still be able to do so. Buyers from non-EU countries including the USA, Australia and Chine consistently invest in French property without problems. The existing process of buying a property in France is the same for French, EU and non-EU residents. Furthermore, British buyers are an important element of the French property market, accounting for 34% of sales in 2015, and it is unlikely that France will want to damage this by making it too difficult for Brits to buy property.

Will I still be able to get a French mortgage?

British borrowers are the largest single overseas nationality who borrow from the French retail banks so it is unlikely that French banks will introduce tougher criteria for Brits who want a French mortgage. French mortgage rates are currently at historic lows and some Brits who were cash buyers are now taking out a French mortgage as a way of mitigating the effects of volatile exchange rates.

Will I still be able to live in France?

As EU citizens Brits can currently live and work anywhere within the EU without having to apply for permission and this will continue until the UK officially leaves the EU. It seems unlikely that this freedom of movement will continue after the UK has left the EU but there are a large number of French people living in the UK so it seems likely that a bilateral agreement between France and the UK will be reached. 

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