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Buying a property in the South West France: a complete guide

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property investment the South West France

Yes, the analysis of the South West France's property market is included in our pack

Considering buying a nice property in The South West France? You're not alone!

Many people are intrigued by the South West France's rustic charm and dream of owning a traditional country house or a modern farmhouse there.

Does it make sense from a financial perspective, though? Are property prices increasing in the South West of France? How much does it cost? Is it better to buy property in Bordeaux or Toulouse? What about the taxes? Can I get a very good rental yield? Where?

We've figured it out for you.

The Investropa team knows this market inside and out. Actually, we've organized all our findings in a pack. Get it now.

In this article, get ready to receive valuable insights from us.

How is the real estate market in the South West of France?

What's the current state of the property market? Data will give us the insights we need.

Types of properties

In South West France, you can find a variety of properties for sale.

These include charming countryside homes, historic stone cottages, spacious villas with scenic views, traditional farmhouses surrounded by vineyards or farmland, cozy townhouses nestled in picturesque villages, and even modern apartments in bustling towns.

Whether you're seeking a peaceful rural retreat, a quaint village dwelling, or a vibrant urban residence, South West France offers a diverse range of property options to suit different preferences and lifestyles.

Buy or rent?

(In case you want it for yourself, not for rental purposes)

If South West France is your region of choice, you might be considering whether it's better to buy a property or opt for renting in this picturesque part of the country.

Usually, buying is better than renting in the South West of France due to the region's excellent climate, cost of living, and abundance of stunning properties.

Still, if flexibility is key, consider going for renting.

Property prices in the South West of France

On average, according to the last data from National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE), buying a property in the South West of France would cost you around $4,600 per square meter.

Clearly, there is a substantial range. The value of a square meter for a traditional home in the South West of France might differ from a property in Bordeaux. We actually offer a more in-depth analysis in our pack for buying property in the South West of France and in France.

To give you a sense of scale, it means that, instead of buying an apartment in Paris, you could afford 3 properties in the South West of France.

Also, housing prices in the South West of France are 58% cheaper than in the French Riviera.

The most expensive places in the South West of France are probably the areas around Bordeaux, Biarritz, and Saint-Jean-de-Luz, while the cheapest are likely to be in the rural areas of the region.

the South West France Property Price per Square Meter


First and foremost, we have to acknowledge that France currently stands out for its remarkable stability. The last Fragile State Index that has been reported for this place is 30.9.

Don't forget about this when considering whether it's a good idea to buy a property in the South West of France.

Also, according to the IMF’s forecasts, France's economy is expected to soar by 6.7% in the coming 5 years, resulting in an average GDP growth rate of 1.3%.

If you're about to invest in real estate in the South West of France it's a good thing because, as the economy grows, people's incomes (usually) increase, motivating them to invest in real estate, which causes a rise in property demand and prices.

Also, in France, the average GDP per capita has changed by 1.7% over the last 5 years. Though not substantial, there is still a positive trend of growth.

Looking for more updated data? We've done a big-picture study to find out if it's a good idea to purchase property in France right now.

Buying property in the South West of France

It can be difficult to buy property in the South West of France due to the lack of reliable and up-to-date information available. That's why we have created the pack to buy property in the South West of France and in France.

Buying process

Inside our pack, we've outlined the complete buying process, including a detailed breakdown of prices and yields per area, tips for negotiating the price, and information about mortgage options.

Here, we're presenting you with a more straightforward version.

This is the step-by-step process to purchase a property in South West France:

  1. Research locations and property types in the South West region.
  2. Engage a local real estate agent familiar with the area.
  3. Arrange property viewings, considering proximity to landmarks like vineyards or Pyrenees mountains.
  4. Verify "Plan Local d'Urbanisme" (local urban development plan) and "Dossier de Diagnostic Technique" (property technical report).
  5. Negotiate the price and terms, taking into account local market trends.
  6. Hire a notary ("notaire") to handle legal aspects and sign a "compromis de vente" (preliminary contract).
  7. Pay a deposit (usually 5-10% of the property price) into an escrow account.
  8. Secure financing from a French bank or other financial institution (if needed).
  9. Notary conducts property searches, including "Fiche d'Information Synthétique" (property information report).
  10. Sign the final deed of sale ("acte de vente") in the presence of a notary.
  11. Pay the remaining balance and associated fees, including "Droits de Mutation" (property transfer tax).
  12. Register the property with local authorities and update ownership details in the "Cadastre" (property register).

Also, if you're not from the country, you might want to check our article on how to buy property as a foreigner in France.

Make a profitable investment in the South West France

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buying property in the South West France

Where to find a property

Explore these websites to find properties in the South West of France.

  • French Entrée - A comprehensive guide to buying property and living in France, featuring property listings, guides, and lifestyle articles.
  • My French House - An award-winning property portal specializing in houses, villas, and properties for sale in France. They offer expert advice and a bespoke home hunting service.
  • French Property - A leading online portal for property in France, offering a wide range of properties for sale and rent.
  • Houses & Apartments - A leading real estate website offering a wide selection of apartments and houses for sale in various locations in France.
  • - Offering a wide range of properties for sale and rent, along with information on new homes, agents, lifestyle, news, and commercial properties.

Also, know that we have included contacts of real estate agencies, property lawyers, moving companies, expats communities and more in our pack for buying property in France.

Which properties for which budget?

As mentioned before, the average price per sqm in the South West of France is $4,600. A one-bedroom property (60 sqm) would cost around $276,000, and a two-bedroom (85 sqm) would be about $391,000.

However, the cost of properties will fluctuate depending on both their characteristics and their location.

High-end locations in the South West of France usually mean higher property values. For example, a villa in Bordeaux could be purchased for about $1,120,000, while an apartment in Biarritz would be in the range of $490,000.

However, some places cost less. You can discover a residence in Limoges for $460,000 or a residence in Bayonne that's priced at $290,000.

We give more details about property types and areas in our full pack for buying property in France.

Common pitfalls

Here are the main pitfalls when buying property in the South West France>

  • "Chasse" Rights: Potential conflicts with local hunters who have "chasse" rights to use the land for hunting.
  • "Termites": The risk of termite infestations, which are common in certain regions, leading to property damage and costly treatments.
  • "Vineyard AOC": Restrictions on renovating or expanding properties located within designated "Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée" vineyard areas.
  • "Septic Tanks": Compliance issues with outdated or non-compliant septic tank systems that require costly upgrades.
  • "Fosse Toutes Eaux": Lack of understanding of the maintenance requirements and regulations for "Fosse Toutes Eaux" wastewater treatment systems.
  • "Parcel Boundaries": Disputes over unclear or contested parcel boundaries with neighbors and land-use rights.
  • "Furnished Properties": Strict regulations for furnished holiday rentals, requiring compliance with safety standards and permits.
  • "Historical Monuments": Restrictions on renovating properties classified as historical monuments, limiting modifications and potentially increasing costs.

We don't want this to happen to you, so we have included a full checklist for your property investment in our pack of documents. Avoid these mistakes and save a lot of money.

real estate France

Everything you need to know is included in our France Property Pack

Living in the South West of France

The South West of France offers a great quality of life, with stunning landscapes, excellent gastronomy, and plenty of leisure activities to enjoy.

Cost of living

The cost of living in the South West of France is generally lower than the average for the rest of the country. However, it can still be more expensive than in other parts of Europe.

Here are some examples to better understand the cost of living in South West France:

  • Rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the picturesque "Saint-Cyprien" neighborhood of Bordeaux: $1,200 per month.
  • A meal at a local restaurant with "Foie Gras," a famous delicacy: $30.
  • Monthly transportation pass for "Tramway de Bordeaux" and "Tisséo" buses in Toulouse: $70.
  • Utilities (electricity, water) for a small apartment in the historic "Old Town" of Carcassonne: $110 per month.
  • A glass of "Pineau des Charentes," a sweet wine and local aperitif: $7.
  • Entrance fee to the "Musée de la Mer" in Biarritz, showcasing maritime heritage: $12.
  • Monthly membership at a fitness center in the "Cité Internationale" area of Lyon: $50.
  • A bottle of "Madiran," a robust red wine produced in the region: $20.


Since we want to make things easy to understand, we've created a summary table that tells about the different areas in the South West of France. For yields, prices and rents, check our property pack.

Place Description Strengths Weaknesses


Bordeaux is a vibrant city known for its world-class wines and rich cultural heritage, attracting tourists and investors alike.

Strong rental demand, thriving wine industry, and excellent transportation links.

High property prices, limited space in the city center.


Toulouse is a dynamic city with a booming aerospace and technology sector, making it an attractive location for investors looking for growth potential.

Strong job market, growing tech industry, and diverse cultural scene.

Competition for properties in popular areas, potential for noise pollution in the city center.


Bayonne is a charming Basque city near the coast, offering a mix of historic architecture and seaside living.

Appealing coastal location, unique Basque culture, and potential for holiday rentals.

Seasonal fluctuations in tourism, limited investment opportunities in some neighborhoods.


Pau is a picturesque city nestled in the Pyrenees, attracting outdoor enthusiasts and retirees seeking a tranquil lifestyle.

Stunning mountain views, affordable property prices, and access to outdoor activities.

Less economic diversity, limited rental demand compared to larger cities.

La Rochelle

La Rochelle is a beautiful coastal city with a historic port, offering a blend of maritime charm and modern amenities.

Booming tourism industry, strong rental potential, and picturesque waterfront properties.

High demand leading to competitive prices, limited room for new developments.


Perpignan is a lively city close to the Spanish border, known for its Catalan influence, sunny climate, and proximity to the Mediterranean Sea.

Affordable property prices, growing international community, and access to beaches and mountains.

Some neighborhoods may have higher crime rates, limited direct flights to international destinations.


Angoulême is a historic city famous for its comic book culture and festivals, attracting art enthusiasts and tourists.

Unique cultural scene, relatively affordable property prices, and potential for holiday rentals.

Limited job market compared to larger cities, seasonal fluctuations in tourism.

Life in the South West of France

The South West of France has a thriving agricultural sector, as well as a significant industrial base and a growing tourism industry. The region has a strong economy, with high levels of employment and a low unemployment rate.

What expats usually like the most in the South West of France is the beautiful landscapes of the Pyrenees mountains, as well as the Mediterranean climate and cuisine of the region.

In the South West of France, access to healthcare is generally good, with a range of public and private services available.

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invest real estate in the South West France

Renting out in the South West of France

If your intention is to buy a property not for personal use, but to rent it out and create income, then this section is for you.


According to the data reported by Wikipedia, the home ownership rate in France is 65%, which is average.

In the South West of France, unlike cities like Paris or Lyon where many people rent, most residents in this region prefer to buy homes because they want to live there and have a quieter way of life.

If you decide to rent out long-term, you might want to target retirees looking for a peaceful and picturesque place to settle down, as well as young professionals looking for a unique and cultural experience in the South West of France.

Here is a little summary table we've made for you.

Property type and area Profiles of potential tenants What they are looking for Expected monthly rent in $

Farmhouse in Dordogne

Expats, retirees

Rural charm, vineyard views

$1200 - $2500

Apartment in Bordeaux

Students, young professionals

City life, proximity to universities

$1000 - $1800

House in Biarritz

Surfers, beach lovers

Ocean views, water activities

$1500 - $3000

Cottage in Pyrenees

Nature enthusiasts, hikers

Mountain retreat, outdoor adventures

$800 - $1500

Now, you will probably ask us about the yields. Unlike other places, giving you an average rental yield for the South West of France is though. The region is quite varied. For example, rental yields in cities like Bordeaux and Toulouse are quite different from those in smaller villages.

Finally, if you want to rent long-term in the South West of France, be aware that the rental income tax stands at 45-50%, which is quite high.


You could also decide to rent short-term to tourists visiting cities like Bordeaux, Toulouse, and Marseille. Additionally, you could target travelers looking to explore the wineries and beaches in the South West of France.

If you decide to go with that option, look for properties in Biarritz and Saint-Tropez; both are popular tourist destinations and offer a wide variety of rental properties.

Is it worth buying real estate in the South West France then?

Absolutely, buying a property in the South West of France is a fantastic idea if you're looking for a unique blend of rustic charm, affordability, and a high quality of life. This region offers a diverse range of property options, from picturesque countryside homes to vibrant urban residences, catering to various lifestyles and preferences.

The cost of living is generally lower than in other parts of France, making it appealing to retirees and those seeking a more affordable yet culturally rich lifestyle. Property prices, on average, are significantly lower than in major French cities like Paris, and economic stability and positive growth forecasts indicate a potential for property value appreciation in the coming years.

If you plan to rent out your property, the South West of France can also be a promising choice, especially for long-term rentals targeting retirees and young professionals.

However, it might not be the best choice if you have a limited budget and are looking for property in popular areas like Bordeaux or Biarritz, where prices can be higher. Seasonal tourism can lead to income fluctuations in some regions, and the high rental income tax in France can eat into your rental profits.

Language and cultural differences can present challenges if you're not proficient in French, and there are potential pitfalls related to property regulations and maintenance that require careful attention.

In essence, while the South West of France offers a myriad of advantages, it's crucial to weigh the potential downsides against your goals and financial situation before taking the plunge into property ownership in this beautiful region.

Make sure you understand the real estate market in the South West France

Don't rush into buying the wrong property in France. Sit, relax and read our guide to avoid costly mistakes and make the best investment possible.

real estate market the South West France

The content provided here is for informational purposes only and does not imply endorsement or advice. While we strive for accuracy, we do not guarantee the completeness or reliability of the information, including text, images, links, or other elements in this material. Following the content and analyses presented here does not assure specific outcomes. For guidance tailored to your individual circumstances, it is recommended to consult with a professional, such as a lawyer, accountant, or business advisor.