This Paris Life

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Property buyers return to Toulouse

After two years of decreasing sales volumes, Toulouse’ property market is benefitting from renewed attention. Transaction numbers have swelled since the spring, while prices have remained low.

Since the beginning of the year, Toulouse’s real estate sector has returned to form. Prices are currently 20% lower than sales prices in 2012, according to Gladys Emourgeon, realtor at the Solvimo agency. Purchasing candidates are back, especially first-time buyers and rental investors.

Nicknamed la Ville Rose — the Pink City — because of the pinkish terracotta bricks adorning its buildings, Toulouse is the capital of the southern Midi-Pyrénées region and of the Haute-Garonne department. It is also the European center of the aerospace industry, home of the Airbus headquarters, amongst others.

In this southern French city, some neighborhoods are more coveted than others and, as in most cities, the city center remains expensive. In the heart of town, near the place du Capitole, apartments in pink brick buildings typical of the city’s architecture reach 4,000 euros per square meter. In the central Carmes area prices average out at 3,000 euros per m2. In more affordable areas to the west of the city center — the Arènes district for instance — prices rarely exceed 2,000 euros per m2. Despite sales volumes growing, these prices are remaining stable for the time being.

Buyers with smaller budgets may find attractive properties in the inner suburbs of Toulouse. There, five-bedroom houses are advertised for about 300,000 euros.

Perched on the banks of the Garonne River, Toulouse comprises many village-like neighborhoods. One of these, the Minimes area, which sits to the north of the city center, houses both apartment complexes and villas. Similarly, la Juncasse is connected to the center by subway and offers all the perks of village life, such as small shops, green areas and a vast sport center.

Close to the universities, the Rangueil area is one of those benefitting from the return of investors. Credit broker Cafpi notes that rental investors now comprise 20% of loan applications. They essentially seek out studios and other small apartments to rent out to the city’s many students. They are now able to find properties offering returns of “between 4 and 5.5%.

Blagnac, a small town close to Toulouse lying on the west of the Garonne River has been heavily prospected of late, driven by the Airbus group’s economic performance. Aerospace executives and engineers are buying up townhouses and apartments in Blagnac for around 3,000 and 2,500 euros per m2 respectively.

Photo credit: Wikimedia / M. Serkouk

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