Narbonne (Aude) is one of the medium-sized towns that have gained in attractiveness in recent years. The architectural heritage of this Occitan city classified as a City of Art and History, which mixes Roman remains and medieval treasures, all not far from the beaches, has a lot to do with it.
Despite everything, it benefits from still soft property prices, with an average price per square meter of 2,593 euros, according to the National Real Estate Federation (Fnaim), compared to the regional cities of Toulouse (3,542 euros) or Montpellier (3 683 euros) that frame it. “Narbonne has therefore become a transfer market for many retirees who preferred to settle in these two cities, but no longer have the means to buy there”notes Julie Chatelin, notary in Gruissan.
The most popular area of the city is the Mayolle district. It is here that we find villas with plots of land from 250 to 400 square meters. It is also the most expensive area of Narbonne.
“There are houses at 250,000 euros, but the prices easily go up to 300,000 euros”, describes Clément Vié, director of the Stéphane Plaza Immobilier Narbonne agency. If the property has a swimming pool and a large terrace, the price ranges are between 400,000 euros and 800,000 euros.
Another sought-after district is that of Convention, near Les Halles, where the average square meter is around 3,000 euros. “This is where prices have risen the most in recent yearspoints out Mr. Vié. Goods which, before the pandemic, sold for 100,000 euros could leave in the summer of 2022 at 250,000 euros. »
License to rent
And the local real estate market does not seem to be weakening, with an average price increase over one year of 8.1% and 25.1% over three years, according to data from Fnaim (at the end of February 2023).
The most affordable housing is in the hypercentre. The rental permit has been in force there since mid-2019 – it is a device for preventing poor housing and fighting against slum landlords, which obliges owners to request authorization before putting accommodation in rental, to promote the renovation of dilapidated buildings with poor energy performance. This is also where a large part of the public investment is concentrated, through the Action Coeur de Ville programme, which aims to revitalize town centres.
This sector is also the one where rental yields are the highest. “We can sometimes reach 9% to 10% gross”, notes Philippe Acquier, director of an agency L’Adresse in Narbonne. Levels that attract, in the opinion of the professionals interviewed, many Toulouse and Montpellier investors in search of yield. “It’s a transfer market for them, even if, with the introduction of the rental permit, the municipality is more vigilant about the quality of rented accommodation. It no longer accepts the cutting of large apartments to make several and favors work aimed at making two studios a T2 or a T3”he says.
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