The quest for a French house with a soul

Month: April 2016

French judges sentence subletting via Airbnb. Really ?

Airbnb logo

An important article was recently published in the French daily Le Monde (1) regarding the latest sentences given to tenants who had sublet their dwelling or part of it through Airbnb. This were the first precedents set over this important issue for people interested in a Buy-To-Let property in France.

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Montpellier, Montpellier, Montpellier !

Place de la Comédie.

On a well know UK expats forum someone recently asked about the best places where to move in southern France. One member somehow emphatically replied “Montpellier, Montpellier, Montpellier !”.

Is actually Montpellier the trendy town to move in? Known as a vibrant city where students can fully exploit their partying capabilities Lo Clapàs as it is dubbed in occitan (the rocky mound) is more than that.
With around 280,000 inhabitants it is the 8th most populous town in France and one of these few French cities with more than 100,000 dwellers that saw their population steadily growing since 1945. As its late mayor Georges Frêche once described it, la Surdouée (the Wonder-kid) has a lot of fancying sides for house hunters looking for sea & sun without missing culture and entertainment. It has also some dark sides.

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Languedoc-Roussillon – The Beach Factor.

Franqui beach (Aude)

How often do we property finders hear the following requirement from house hunters: “One more thing, nice beaches should be no more than a 30mn drive away from the property” ? When searching for a house in Languedoc or Roussillon they are all talking the same. They want to dwell away from the tourist herds while being able to enjoy easy beach leisures from time to time.

Surely enough, Languedoc and Roussillon are God gifted areas with long sandy beaches, snowy mountains not too far, wonderful food, quite decent wines, night life and old cities with character. The issue we’ll discuss here is how to select a place in this area according to the “Beach factor”.

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Change a mortgage insurance, is that possible ?

French low mortgage interest rates have encouraged a lot of property owners to start discussing with their lender about a rate reduction. But another issue is the insurance.

It is not possible in most cases to change insurance on a mortgage that was agreed before 2014. The Hamon law of March 17th, 2014 has eased this principle by allowing to cancel or to renegotiate the insurance contract, but only for contracts signed after the law came into force and within one year only.

For all previous contracts, the French Cours de cassation reminded recently that they are subjected to the special legislation of the consumer code which does not allow termination or substitution of insurance contract. Mortgage agreed previous to law Hamon’s implementation do not allow to substitute an insurance company by another one after the loan was signed.

To change the insurance contract on a mortgage agreed before 2014, the borrower can nevertheless terminate his current mortgage and sign a new one with a different lender. To make it less costly a good advice is to negotiate a zero penalty in case of early termination of the loan contract.

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