Although Paris remains the most expensive place to buy property in France, several places in northern France are reporting a big jump in property prices, according to a report from real state agency LPI and property sales site Se Loger.
The data compares the price per metre square of apartments in June 2019, compared to June 2018.
The Normandy port of Cherbourg-en-Cotentin reported the highest rise at 11.6 percent. And a cluster of towns in the north east, sandwiched between Lille and the Belgian border, dominate the rankings, with Roubaix showing an 11.5 percent rise in prices in a year, Villeneuve-d'Ascq showing 11.1 percent and Tourcoing showing 10.8 percent growth.
The towns of Tourcoing, Roubaix and Villeneuve-d'Ascq have all seen a sharp rise in housing prices. Map: Google Maps
The towns are all close to the Belgian border and within easy commuting distance of Lille, which is itself enjoying something of a renaissance with rapid growth in businesses after years of stagnation.
Elsewhere the town with the third highest growth in apartment prices is also in northern France – Brittany capital Rennes showed 11.2 percent growth while neighbouring Brest recorded 10.6 percent growth.
Further south Avignon in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region recorded a 11.1 percent rise, while La Rochelle saw 10.1 percent.
The historic city of Avignon has seen a consistent rise in apartment prices. Photo: AFP
Although apartment prices in Paris remain significantly higher than the rest of the country, the city saw a rise in prices of just 6.1 percent from June 2018 to June 2019.
By contrast Saint-Denis, just outside the Paris ringroad, saw a growth of 9.1 percent in apartment prices.
The area had laboured under a reputation for crime and poverty, but is now seeing significant investment for the Paris Olympics in 2024, as it has been chosen for the athletes village.
The same data for the previous year saw Cherbourg-en-Cotentin, Rennes, Avignon and La Rochelle all in the top 10, which was topped by Pessac, a commuter town for Bordeaux which locals say has benefited hugely from the arrival of a new high-speed rail line and the extension of the Eurostar to Bordeaux.
The top 10 biggest rises in apartment prices from June 2018 to June 2019
1. Cherbourg-en-Cotentin, Basse Normandie – 11.6 percent
2. Roubaix, Nord-Pas-de-Calais – 11.5
3. Rennes, Brittany – 11.2
4. Villeneuve d'Ascq, Nord-Pas-de-Calais – 11.1
5. Avignon, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur – 11.1
6. Tourcoing, Nord-Pas-de-Calais – 10.8
7. Brest, Brittany – 10.6
8. La Rochelle, Poitou-Charentes – 10.1
9. Colmar, Alsace – 9.8
10. Saint-Denis, Ile-de-France – 9.1