Are you planning to leave a large metropolis to settle in a city where the quality of life promises to be better? If you are not familiar with the selected territory, for example because it is not your region of origin, approaching the local real estate market to buy your home is not an easy task and requires laborious investigative work, but essential not to become disillusioned after a few months.
First reflex: do not become an owner immediately, start by renting for at least one year. Even if you have capital after the sale of your previous home, take the time to explore the city and find the right neighborhood, the right property. You will settle in more serenely, without the pressure of having to complete a real estate transaction at the same time as a move.
Once there, start with an old-fashioned exploration: get a map of the city and mark out its neighborhoods. Depending on your requirements (schools, proximity to the station or a road to work…), you will already eliminate some.
Do an online search to find out which areas are labeled “bourgeois” – family apartments and houses are often numerous – and those with a more difficult reputation. Just type in the name of the city and “popular neighborhoods” or “problem areas” to get this information on residents’ discussion forums. This will allow you to concentrate your research.
Cross the sources!
Field reporter tip: take a taxi! The drivers will give you their valuable advice on the specifics of certain locations (difficult traffic, complicated connection with the city center, open air markets, lack of shops or schools) and urban projects (extension of transmission lines, site delay for public equipment). Cross the sources, and check, of course …
Then go to the field. Walk through the pre-selected neighborhoods to smell the atmosphere. Explore the surroundings, see the attendance during the day, on weekends, in the evening. By examining the shops at the foot of buildings (small food stores, offices, bars, restaurants), you will know if the area is quiet, active or very lively, at any time of the week.
Stroll nose to the wind to examine the typology of housing and see if the area has a majority of townhouses, residences from the 1960s and 1970s or old luxury buildings. You will be able to position yourself on the most common property in the sector, without paying a fortune for rare accommodation.
Register on different real estate sites, you will receive alerts on homes for sale and get an idea of the prices: when you have found the rare pearl, it will prevent you from buying too expensive for the local market. Through many Ile-de-France residents who often overpay their accommodation when they settle elsewhere, surprised that the prices are not so astronomical as in the capital and its surroundings.