The law of averages

Karen Tait finds out what the average price tag of a UK property would get you across the Channel in France...

According to Nationwide the average UK house price was �156,828 in 2008. For that UK price tag of €176,828, you could buy an average’ house in any of the French regions of Limousin, Auvergne, Burgundy, Franche- Comt�, Champagne-Ardenne, Lorraine, Nord-Pas de Calais, Normandy, Centre, Poitou- Charentes and Picardy. Examples I found on France Property Shop include a fourbed renovated stone house in Creuse, Limousin, with two barns, garage and garden for €160,000 (Holt Immobilier), a four-bed detached townhouse with fireplaces, parquet floors and garden in Allier, Auvergne, (Agence Val d’Allier), a new twobed riverside apartment in the Belle Epoque coastal resort of Cabourg, Normandy, for €160,000 (A Place in France), a two-bed farmhouse with barn in Sa�ne-et-Loire (Bentleys of Burgundy), a five-bed detached village house in Cher, Centre, for €170,000 (private seller), or a five-bed stone house with garden and pool in Charente- Maritime for €159,000 (JB French Houses). If you’re looking for a good investment, you could consider buying in a region where prices rose the most in 2008. In which case, perhaps you should consider Alpes-Maritimes, where house prices rose by 9.3% in 2007-8, Haute-Marne (6.4%), Alpes de Haute Provence (4.9%), Loir-et-Cher (4.9%), Seine- Maritime (4.6%) or Eure-et-Loir (4%), all showing healthy increases compared to the average rise across France of 2.7%.