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New research- Alpine property offers good return

Research released by Alpine Homes and global property giants Savills confirmed that Alpine property still offers great rental potential. The report stated that despite the overall volume of UK holiday home buyers reducing between 2009 and 2011 the proportion of those investing in ski properties actually increased. The increase is attributed to good rental demand and year round tourism boosting the Alpine property market.

62% of the people surveyed by Alpine Homes said that they were buying Alpine property for both lifestyle and investment reasons. Alpine property offered them the opportunity of a “bolthole on the piste” while generating rental income when not in use by the owners. And whilst the ski tourism industry has seen a slight decline since its peak in the 2007/2008 season, Alpine destinations are increasingly opening up to summer tourism enabling rental property owners to benefit from year round lettings.

This positive nod to Alpine Property was followed up by a more cautious prediction from Credit Agricole, one of France’s biggest banks, who believes 2012 will see a national fall in property prices of between 5 to 6%. Frances involvement in the Eurozone crisis is one reason that Credit Agricole suggested transaction levels (the volume of sales and purchases) would decrease, possibly to their lowest level in 40 years.

But the FNAIM (the largest body representing estate agents in France) reported huge price fluctuations in 2011 with demand and sales varying hugely from region to region from a fall of 4.6% in Brittany to an increase of 10.1% in Champagne Ardenne.

The French Alps certainly seem to sit someway outside of the general French trend. An increasing number of alpine sales are to expat British buyers who are currently living overseas but would rather move to France than return home; and to expat French buyers, returning home after a life overseas. And with France playing host to more tourists than any other country in the world, and regularly topping the polls for highest quality of life Alpine property may be one investment that might just be as safe as houses. Savills certainly consider the Alpine property market to be among the healthiest and most attractive in Europe. Here at Alpine Angels we are inclined to agree.

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