The French real estate market is considerably diverse, catering to various preferences. Despite what it may look like from the outside, it is actually much more than luxury apartments in Paris and lovely old countryside cottages in Provence. 

french chateu real estate

Over the past few years, the French real estate market has shown considerable resilience, even in the face of economic challenges. Partly, this is due to a combination of strong domestic demand and the fact that many foreigners also wish to buy real estate in France – especially in certain regions. With its rich culture, exquisite cuisine, and stunning landscapes, France continues to attract foreigners who wish to own properties either for personal use or investment purposes.

Despite the ripple effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the French real estate market has remained resilient. As per recent trends, urban centers continue to command high prices while rural spaces are gaining popularity among those seeking a quieter lifestyle. However, as with any investment, there are risks involved, so it’s essential to research thoroughly, understand the local market dynamics, and, when possible, seek reputable professional advice.

Buying Property in France as a Foreigner 

Foreigners can buy property in France without any restrictions. However, the process may differ slightly from what you’re used to in your home country. It involves several stages, including signing a preliminary contract, paying a deposit, getting a mortgage if necessary, signing the final deed of sale and registering the property. It’s also essential to understand that in France, the notary plays a vital role in the property-buying process. Therefore, hiring a bilingual notary or solicitor who can help navigate the legalities if you do not speak French is advisable.

The French real estate market offers a plethora of opportunities, from investment to personal use. Understanding the market dynamics, legalities, and latest trends will help you make an informed decision. You can find a property that meets your needs with careful planning and due diligence.

Key Real Estate Locations in France


Paris, the capital city, boasts some of the most expensive properties in France. With its iconic landmarks, world-class museums, and vibrant lifestyle, Paris continues to be a hub for luxury real estate. The most sought-after areas include the Marais, Saint-Germain-des-Prés, and the Golden Triangle, where prestigious apartments offer views of the Eiffel Tower.


If you want to live fairly centrally but do not have incredibly deep pockets, Belleville could be a workable compromise. Real estate prices are still high here compared to most other parts of France, but not as high as in the areas mentioned in the previous paragraph. Belleville was once an independent municipality (commune), before begin annexed by Paris in 1860 and divided up between the 19th and 20th  arrondissement. Today, the major portion of Belleville straddles the border between these two arrondissements, but some parts are in the 10th or 11th arrondissement instead. Worth knowing is also that Belleville is situated on and near a hill which makes it one of the highest neighborhoods in Paris.  

Belleville used to be a working-class village and then continued to be a working-class part of the capital. Over the years, it has received waves of migrants and people from other parts of France, since it has been a comparatively affordable spot to live in Paris. In the 1930s, it received Jews fleeing the Third Reich and Spaniards fleeing the Spanish Civil War. In the 1960s, the dominating migration streams were Algerians and Tunisian Jews. In the 1980s, the comparatively low rents attracted French and foreign artists and musicians who could afford to live here since Belleville had not gone through the drastic modernisation efforts and extensive renovations that took place in many other parts of Paris in the 1960s and 1970s. Today, Belleville is home to one of Paris´s two Chinatowns and contains a thriving Chinese community. 

The French Riviera

For those who appreciate sun, sea, and glamour, the French Riviera has it all. Known as the playground of the rich and famous, cities like Nice, Cannes, Antibes, and Saint-Tropez are home to luxurious villas and condos. The real estate here is pricey, especially if you want breathtaking sea views and close proximity to the beach. Examples of popular resort spots are Cap-d’Ail, Beaulieu-sur-Mer, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, Villefranche-sur-Mer, Juan-les-Pins, and Theoule-sur-Mer. 

the riviera

In French, this part of the country is known as Côte d’Azur, with azur being a shade of blue. The French Riviera / Côte d’Azur has no official boundaries but is loosely defined as the coastline stretching from the Alpes-Maritimes department to Menton by the Italian border. Some people prefer to draw the western line at Saint-Tropez instead or even at Toulon. 

Notably, the Principality of Monaco is found within the French Riviera region, bordering France on three sides and the Mediterranean on the forth.