Property: French Rental Figures Increasing Ahead of Inflation Rate

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Latest data published by French property tendencies experts Clameur shows a positive trend, mostly felt in the large apartment sector

The economic crisis rolls on and is still acting as something of dead weight on the rental property market in France. Worried about the future, households in France are moving home less often, according to the anlaysis by Clameur.

“Residential mobility is down again for the third consecutive year. Market activity is at its lowest since 1998.” So state the experts at Clameur, who base their analysis on figures from professionals in the rental sector. This is particularly true in Paris and Marseilles, where the market has been stagnant since 2007.

But just as it as at this time of year normally, tenants are a little more inclined to change their abode in the Spring, usually in order to be well settled into their new apartment or house in September for back-to-school time.

“The market has a better complexion about it, even if it isn’t quite in recovery mode yet,” says economist Michel Mouillart, author of the study. The slight change in complexion has however been felt by tenants renting for the first time, who will have noticed the 1.1% annual increase that averaged during the first five months of this year, which is marginally more than the inflation rate for the same period (0.7%).

At the same stage last year, rents had gone up by just 0.5% (an increase that gained slightly in momentum as the year went on, finishing up at 0.6% for the whole of 2013). The reasons for this? The rental demand for large apartments saw a decent little jump (+1.7% for 3-room apartments, +2.9% for 4-room apartments and +3.1% for 5-room flats). In contrast, rental figures for studio apartments were at a virtual standstill (+0.2%).

As always, there are regional disparities. The rental rates were down (albeit often only slightly down) in almost 31% of cities of over 100,000 inhabitants. These include Dijon (-0.4%), Nice (-1.2%), Strasbourg (-0.1%), Saint-Etienne (-3.8%) and Nîmes (-0,8%). In Perpignan (-0,2%), Amiens (-0,1%), Le Mans (-0,1%), Rennes (-0,3%), Rouen (-2,8%), Saint-Denis (-4,4%), rental rates were down for the second and sometimes the third year in succession, according to the study.

In 23% of the other big cities, the rise in rents is slight or moderate and below the rate of inflation: Bordeaux (+0,3%), Boulogne-Billancourt (+0,3%), Grenoble (+0,5%), Caen (0%), Montreuil (+0,2%) and Nancy (+0,4%).

However, average rents paid saw a hefty increase in 46% of towns with over 100,000 inhabitants. This was the case in Mulhouse (+6.2%), Brest (+5.8%), Metz (+5,1%), Tours (+4,8%), Lille (+4,2%), Clermont-Ferrand (+4%), Aix-en-Provence (+3,3%), Lyon (+3%), Orléans (+2%), Reims (+1,5%), Marseille (+1,3%), Paris (+1,2%), Toulouse (+1,1%) and Nantes (+0,8%).

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