Saint-Raphaël : running out of stocks

While buyers display on-going interest in this town in Le Var, owners are playing at wait-and-see and thus exacerbating already scant offerings.

Specializing in prestige real estate on the Côte d’Azur for over 20 years, Canat & Warton has just opened a new branch in Marseille which joins the eight agencies already operating in Le Var. Frédéric Warton, the Group’s co-founder, confirms that the pandemic has led to a significant rise in prices. “Some properties post rises of 10 to 20 %. In the South of France, outdoor space has always topped the wish-list, so that the sudden demand for properties benefiting from a terrace or garden has not had the same effect here as in other regions. On the other hand, our stocks of quality properties which previously enabled us to meet demand have fallen considerably. Even so, I do not find this momentary scarcity of availabilities, especially in the market for second homes, alarming. The wait-and-see attitude on the part of sellers seems perfectly legitimate, especially as owning real estate is a wise investment, more than ever before.” Frédéric Warton has not noticed any particular changes in the buyer profile. “Potential foreign buyers subject to travel restrictions necessarily postponed their plans to acquire properties in our region, though we see this as a temporary situation. On the other hand, thanks to interest rates still at record lows, many French buyers have carried out their acquisition plans. Unlike stocks and shares, investing in real estate enables the owner to share its enjoyment with family and friends.”

Initially focusing on the promotion and marketing of new developments in the Fréjus and Saint-Raphaël areas, the Agence Andelim developed a sales department with a team of ten and two offices, in Saint-Raphaël. Marc Viale is the firm’s Sales Manager. “Fine 2-bedroomed apartments, recently-built and conveniently situated close to shops and the town centre, meet with constant demand. Benefiting from a large terrace and a garage, they cost on average 500,000 €. Otherwise, a house in the Valescure area, priced from 800,000 to 1.2 million euros, is seen as an iconic property on the local market for second residences. Finally, in the neighbourhoods of Les Plaines and Boulouris, buyers set their sights on houses priced around 600,000 €.” Over the past year, soaring demand has resulted in a shortage of properties for sale. “Our stock has been almost divided by three. We invite owners to take advantage immediately of the current trend which is very much in their favour. If they decide to wait, they run the risk of presenting their properties all at once, thus causing stagnation in the market due to a sudden plethora of offerings.” Price rises here are not fully proven, though some properties hitherto considered too expensive now find takers. “Most of the sales we have handled recently were concluded at their asking price. Bargaining has become marginal - at around 2 %.” As for new properties, Marc Viale explains that prices in Valescure range from 8,000 € per sq. metre - versus 5,500 to 8,000 € in other neighbourhoods in Saint-Raphaël -, with the rarity of new developments giving them an exclusive status. Available lots sell quickly.

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