At 66, Fabricia Lasne and her husband are looking for a buyer for their 200 square meter house near Saint-Gilles-Croix-de-Vie (Vendée), which they want to leave for a smaller and easier to maintain accommodation.
The ad has been online for a year and they haven't received any offers.
"The people who come to visit are mostly elderly people. They find the house very beautiful, the garden immaculate, but it's the area that bothers them, for daily maintenance," says Fabricia. "There are days when morale is very low."
Same problem for Odile and Jacques, a retired couple who, for a year and a half, have been trying to sell their large family home in Périgord to be closer to their children, in the Paris region.
Again, visits but no offer for this 230 square meter property offered at 519.000 euros, including agency fees. "Yes, one who was negotiating at less than 70.000 euros. So we said no right away!", Says Odile, who did not wish to give her last name.
"We don't want to sell off this property either, and rather wait a few months to see how the market will react", explains her husband, acknowledging that "the market is still not very flourishing".
“We negotiate more”
After years of continuous rise, property prices are beginning to stagnate, or even fall in certain areas, such as the Paris region.
The rise in interest rates, combined with regulations on the usury rate, which prohibits banks from lending beyond a certain debt ratio, has a lot to do with it, because it excludes buyers from the market.
Consequence: the latter negotiate more before signing.
“The deadlines and the negotiations are longer, the discussions relate to many details and the sellers have remained on a real estate estimate which is a bit dated”, explains to AFP Elodie Frémont, president of the real estate statistics commission of the Notaries of the Grand. Paris.
"Between the moment when the seller realizes that the price is out of step with the market and when he adjusts it, it takes time", notes the president of Century 21 France, Charles Marinakis.
According to its network of agencies, in Ile-de-France, the time between the publication of an announcement and the signing of a sales agreement has been extended by two days for houses and six for apartments. And much more in Paris and its inner suburbs.
"There is a wait-and-see attitude on the buyers' side, and suddenly it affects the sellers", testifies Romain Gonzalez, director of a Guy Hoquet agency in Issy-les-Moulineaux.
"We have been anticipating since August, telling them that it will go down, as long as it is not frozen, written everywhere, it does not go down," he said.
"Delays are getting longer"
"For apartments with defects, ground floors facing the street, exposed to the north... the deadlines are getting longer and the price reductions are happening gradually", also says Sandrine Lucas, director from a Guy Hoquet agency in Suresnes.
Added to this is the regulation on thermal colanders, which many professionals fear will bring down the price of the goods concerned.
Since January 1, in mainland France, accommodation that consumes more than 450 kilowatt hours per square meter per year is simply prohibited from being rented. All goods labeled G for their energy performance must follow in 2025, before F in 2028 and E in 2034.
"The thermal sieve effect, we have seen it a lot on small surfaces, studios, two-room apartments", more often dedicated to rental, explains Ms. Frémont. A trend that she also noticed on the houses. “People are looking at energy conservation,” she says.
But here too, the prices of goods in need of work are slow to fall. “Sellers, to date, are not yet willing to deduct this cost from the price” of sale, notes Charles Marinakis.