Thursday, 19 May 2016

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Brexit Special: French Property News

In the May issue of French Property News, Estate Agents (including myself), share their opinions on how Brexit might affect a property purchase in France...

"There is no doubt that the amount of publicity that the possible Brexit situation is getting is putting the brake a little on the numbers of UK buyers viewing in France at the moment. However, there is an awful lot of misinformation in the media today, and too much scaremongering going on.
The truth is that no one knows with any certainty what would happen if the UK left the EU, and equally, nobody knows for sure what the future holds if the UK stays in the EU. So why the panic? Given that there are some 400,000 British expats living in France, and there is also a substantial number of French expats living in the UK, it is most unlikely that we would see the drastic changes suggested on many forums.

It is important to remember that even if the UK were to vote to leave the EU, all of these rights would have to be covered in a successor arrangement.

It is most important for potential buyers to keep their eyes on the ball in respect of the foreign exchange markets. We were strongly advising our clients to by euros in Q4 of 2015 as the pound reached levels of between 1.40 and 1.44. Those savvy clients are now sitting pretty on forward trades, and have much more bargaining power than those who didn't act, and are looking at between 1.26 and 1.29 currently.

London, remember, is frequently described as France's sixth city, so this is a two-way street and not just about Brits in France. This, for me, is another reason why the 'hype' of the current situation is being overplayed. Expats were living in France long before the EU came along, and they will continue to do so, no matter what."

Peter Elias

The original article is featured on page 80.

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