Romans, at the heart of La Drôme des Collines
The second largest town in the département lies 18 km north-east of Valence at the heart of La Drôme des Collines, on the right bank of the river Isère. A town of history and culture, Romans-sur-Isère is home to almost 35,000 residents who appreciate its quality lifestyle and good schools, including two "collèges".
Close to the TGV station, this property of 230 m2 is comprised of a large lounge and 3 bedrooms, including a master suite. It benefits from an annex of 40 m2 in its enclosed and wooded grounds of 1,602 m2. 556.000 €. Intens'immo (04 75 02 15 00).
. A 20-minute drive from Le Vercors, 2 hours on the TGV from Paris, 1 hr 15 mins. from Marseille, and less than an hour from Lyon and Grenoble, Romans is certainly well-connected. The A7 and A49 motorways meet up here, together with the town's Provençal and Lyonnais influences. Romans now offers many modern infrastructures and is pursuing its development in the fields of technology and commerce with, in particular, Marques Avenue, an important shopping mall offering fashion brands at factory prices, located in the centre in a former army baracks rehabilitated by the renowned architect, Jean-Michel Wilmotte. Boasting a remarkable architectural heritage featuring the Collégiale Saint-Barnard, Jacquemart Tower, Calvaire des Récollets, many 16th- and 17th-C. mansions, and even medieval houses, the capital of shoe-making has dedicated a museum to this expertise and excellence, which won it a reputation for top-quality craftsmanship which extended well beyond the borders of France until the 1980's.
Most home-buyers here are people working locally or in Valence, Grenoble or Lyon. According to Catherine Vicat, manageress of the Vic Immobilier agency she founded 25 years ago : "2016 is looking good. In the first half of the year, the number of transactions rose by 15 to 20 % as compared to 2015. Interest rates at record lows motivate clients to pursue their desire to become home-owners. Most enquiries concern accommodation for local employees, looking for rather recent houses in good condition, with at least 3 bedrooms. Their budgets start from 180,000 €. Older homes requiring modernization can be found from 150,000 €. There is a satisfactory supply of properties, except for those all on one floor. Which are particularly popular among retirees, who have rejoined our clientele. From north and north-west France, they are drawn by the quality of life in Romans, its climate and appealing prices". Among the most highly-prized areas, Château Fleury, Bellevue and La Martinette often top the list, followed by La Pierrotte, La Royanne and Les Meannes. What about apartments ? "Those with 2 or 3 bedrooms on offer under 100,000 € are in the highest demand. Apartments in need of modernization are available from 80,000 €."
The manageress of Intens'Immo, Michelle Truchet also describes a market characterized by steady prices and a good balance between supply and demand. "There is a varied choice of residences in terms of both prices and amenities. Place Jean-Jaurès and the Marques Avenue neighbourhood are especially sought after by clients looking for apartments. We are currently marketing a few new developments in the centre, priced from 2,600 to 3,000 € per sq. metre, which is high compared to those in older buildings. Even so, investors taking advantage of the Pinel scheme are interested in these offers benefiting from tax reductions : our agency in fact proposes expert advice in this area. Most of our recent sales have nevertheless concerned houses intended to become the main homes of local families and retirees moving into the area. In the case of houses, the neighbourhoods of Les Meannes, La Martineette and La Pierrotte, close to shops and the town centre, are in fact the most convenient."