Estate agent interview: Seine-Maritime, Normandy
PUBLISHED: 10:00 25 May 2015 | UPDATED: 15:04 18 December 2015
Thinking of buying a property in Seine-Maritime in Normandy? We spoke to local estate agent Stephen Hilton of La Résidence, to find out about the property market in this Normandy department
What’s the cheapest property you have on your books right now?
We currently have a pretty two-bedroom colombage cottage on the market for €79,950.
How much would you expect to pay for:
A detached property with land in good condition?
You could expect to pay in the region of €200,000.
A three-bedroom townhouse?
This would cost around €175,000.
A renovation opportunity?
You could get a property to renovate from about €85,000.
Is there a typical architecture or style in Seine-Maritime?
Brick and flint are favourite materials here, with slate used for the roof, although there are also a good selection of heavy-beamed, thatched cottages as well.
Why do British people buy houses in Seine-Maritime?
The department is favoured by British buyers because it’s easy to access from a number of ferry ports. Dieppe is the most obvious, but both Calais and Boulogne, as well as Le Havre, are almost as convenient. And then there’s the quality of the restaurants and the shopping, supported by the many Parisians who have second homes in the area. The capital city of Rouen is the jewel in the crown, and the coast is spectacular.
What advice would you give to somebody who is thinking of buying in your area?
Don’t hesitate. Thanks to the GBP/EUR exchange rate, prices are very affordable at the moment.
What tips would you give to help people settle into life in the area?
My advice would be to get involved in the life of the village. This will add a richness to your enjoyment as a property owner, and will open many doors that might otherwise remain closed, and perhaps even be the start of life-long friendships.
What are your predictions for the property market in Seine-Maritime?
Being easily accessed from Paris, SeineMaritime attracts plenty of Parisian buyers and so the market is quite lively. British buyers also have the advantage at present of a favourable exchange rate, so it may be the right time to enter the market. My expectation is that demand will remain at a good level.
What are the specialities of the area?
The most celebrated ingredients of traditional Norman fare are apples, cream and Calvados, and nowhere in Normandy are these used to better advantage than in the restaurants and auberges of SeineMaritime. There are also some very fine fish and seafood restaurants at the coast.
Describe Seine-Maritime in five words?
Normandy at its very best!
What’s your favourite corner of Seine-Maritime?
I have a very soft spot for the area roughly halfway between Dieppe and Rouen, the exquisite spot where I bought my riverside home many years ago.