Brittany is very popular with UK residents, to either purchase a holiday home or a permanent residency in France, this is mainly due to the excellent travel links by sea or air and using the channel tunnel. The climate although similar to the south coast of the UK will be warmer in the summer, and less prone to severe weather in the winter. Comparing it to more southerly regions of France, you will find it to have a more temperate climate being milder in the winter and not so extremely high temperatures in the summer.
Brittany is divided into four departments which are: Côtes d’Armor (22) in the north, Morbihan (56) in the south, Finistère (56) in the west, and Ille et Vilaine (35) in the east.
Côtes d’Armor this is mainly low-lying and has a very pretty rocky coastline with many small islands. The most attractive parts of the coast are the Emerald coast and the Pink Granite coast. The department is strongly agricultural, with pig-farming and cereals crops.
Morbihan on the south coast of Brittany is famous for its mild climate. The coast offers many sandy beaches and small fishing ports. Fishing, boat-building and agriculture are among the department’s major industries, along with tourism.
Finistère is a rugged department, with a lot of granite moorland; but thanks to its mild climate, it also has a strong agricultural heritage, growing early vegetables and many other crops. The coast has a number of very picturesque fishing ports such as Camaret-sur-Mer, Douarnenez and Concarneau. The largest city in this department is Brest, one of France’s important fishing and naval ports.
Ille et Vilaine this is most easterly of the four departments of Brittany, Ille & Vilaine is also a very agricultural department with many apple orchards, cereal crops and of course dairy-farming.
For anyone looking to purchase a holiday or permanent home in Brittany, we have asked Lisa Greene for a few tips to help steer you in the right direction. Lisa is the area coordinator for Leggett Immobilier in Brittany and she moved with her family to Brittany in 2004. Lisa has many years of experience dealing with French bureaucracy, which can be very useful when purchasing a French property for the first time. She also has a good knowledge about all the departments of Brittany, so Lisa can give you genuine sound advice about all aspects of life in Brittany.
What advice would you give to prospective buyers starting to search for a property?
France is such a big country and Brittany itself a big region. Try to research areas before you start to look at specific properties. Find out about the climate, transport links and whether you like the feel of a place before you go house shopping. Give yourself some time to soak up the atmosphere and take in the scenery to ensure you feel at home.
What kinds of properties are proving popular with your British buyers at the moment?
Everything! There has been a real resurgence in the popularity of and appetite for renovations, but we have also been selling more high-end properties and everything in between. The most popular price bracket is either side of 100,000€, small holiday homes, great priced homes needing a little modernisation. Generally though, confidence is back and we have been extremely busy.
How is the French property market looking to you at the moment?
Brittany is always a safe place to invest and a perennial favourite with retirees, relocating families and holiday home owners. We have exceeded our targets for 2014, we have seen year on year growth for several years, we have very strong demand from clients so we think the market is looking very, very good.
What is your favourite part of the area you cover in Brittany?
I just love the coast and Brittany has over 700 miles of it so how lucky am I? Having spent the first 40 years of my life in a land locked area of the UK, the coast is hugely attractive. The sights, the sounds, the smells and of course, the sea food. They say in Brittany you are never more than an hour from the sea.
What style of properties can you find for sale in Brittany?
Granite houses with slate roofs, whether small cottages or large maisons de maitre are the most common. Longères are ‘literally’ a solid buy, super spacious homes which offer versatility on interior layout. For those who want less maintenance, néo Breton houses are a good choice and their enormous basements are very practical offering garage and workshop space as well as room for pets, boilers, laundry, etc.
Do prices vary between areas?
Prices get higher as you get nearer to the coast or big cities, but across much of Brittany prices are very similar. Brittany property prices range between around 1 500€ and 1 870€ per square metre and the average house price is around 155 000€.
What makes Brittany special?
It has to be the local people. Delightfully laid back, the phrase ‘live and let live’ was invented to describe the Bretons. Great neighbours and friends, there when you need them, but absolutely happy to let everyone else just do their own thing. It makes for a very relaxed lifestyle.
Should you wish to view any of the Leggett Brittany properties for sale then visit Leggett Immobilier property website.
Average Brittany property prices from June 2013 to May 2014 from Notaries de France
Please visit our Brittany Property Section for hundreds of properties for sale in Brittany from private sellers and estate agents. Should you have a property for sale in Brittany then please feel free to add a FREE listing to our website. If you are looking for a property in Brittany and not sure where to start then please email us and we will pass your search criteria to a suitable agent.