An introduction to Calvados property prices

The Calvados is département 14 in France and bears the name of its most famous alcoholic beverage of apple brandy. Combining beautiful coastline with rolling countryside, the region is an ideal location to own a second home or to live permanently. Its proximity and easy transport links with the UK including the ferry ports of Le Havre, Cabourg and Ouistreham, make it very accessible for British property buyers.

The Calvados département covers the area of land stretching from the centre of Lower Normandy to the northern coastline. It has a number of resorts along the Eastern part of its coastline, know as the Cote Fleurie (Flower Coast). These are considered the best in the whole of Normandy. In fact, long before the French Riviera came in to fashion, the likes of, Honfleur, Deauville, Trouville, Houlgate and Cabourg were considered the number one destination for bathing in France. Today, they have still retained their popularity and charm. Parisians and British alike take to this coastline every summer. Further to the west lies the Pearl Coast. Although this part of the coastline does have long sandy beaches, they are not celebrated as a place for bathing but rather as a historical site reflecting on the Normandy landings. There are many museums in the area for re-discovering this past. Further inland and south, the Suisse Normande combines rolling countryside with hills, lakes and waterfalls. The town of Clécy is known as the capital of La Suisse Normande.

There is an increasing interest in the département from British buyers as the market in Brittany and its bordering Norman départment of la Manche becomes a little crowded. Two thirds of the buyers from abroad are British and most choose to settle nearer the resorts on the coast. There are cheaper properties, many needing renovation, to be found inland.

Along the Cote Fleurie, prices range from around 40,000 euros for a small studio at Courseulles-sur-Mer to over 600,000 euros for a villa with magnificent seaviews in Trouville, next to Deauville. A small two-bedroomed house with patio or small garden in the centre of Honfleur will set you back around 200,000 euros. However, if you are prepared to purchase on the outskirts of Honfleur, you could get a larger detached house with large garden for about the same price.

Further west, in Bayeux, a three-bedroomed apartment with parking space is on the market for around 130,000 euros, whereas a large 4-bedroomed house with garden would set you back around 240,000 euros. You would be looking at 800,000 euros for a stately home with heated swimming pool and a considerable amount of land near Bayeux.

In the Suisse Normande area, you can get a large 5-bedroomed house with land for around 200,000 euros in Vire. Prices in the Falaise area vary from 120,000 euros for a two-bedroomed house with garage and garden (and in need of some renovation) to 650,000 euros for a 12th century Chateau with 17 hectars of land.

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