The French-Swiss border real estate market
With its international and financial activities and its positioning in sectors with high added value, Geneva is at the center of one of the wealthiest regions in the world.
The Canton of Geneva shares more than 90% of its borders with France and, with the French Geneva area and the Pays de Gex, forms a vast economic and housing area in full demographic expansion boosted by the attractiveness of the Swiss labor market.
Every day, many French people cross the border to work in Switzerland, half of these frontier workers living within 5 km from the border.
Real estate purchase: differences between France and Switzerland
This enthusiasm for Switzerland results in a strong demand for housing in the border area and in the face of the shortage of properties in Geneva, property prices in the French border regions are necessarily higher than the French average.
Choosing to live in the French side can also be explained by fundamental differences between the two countries regarding property purchase.
In the French Geneva area, the majority of households own their home (59%), while in the canton of Geneva, this share is much lower (18%). Switzerland is a country of renters especially because of the financial contribution required to obtain a real estate financing, which is much greater than in France.
Furthermore, the canton of Geneva is experiencing significant tension due to the high demand and the scarcity of housing supply, increasing prices and residential mobility to France where real estate is more affordable. The French side also attracts the Swiss themselves. Indeed, 11% of them live outside their country, and it is estimated that 1 in 40 Swiss expatriates reside in Haute-Savoie and in Gex area.
Regarding tenancy, there are more choices in Switzerland. Thanks to real estate projects started the last few years, the supply is increasing. Many families of graduate expatriates who would probably have chosen to live in France a few years ago now prefer to settle in Switzerland.
Geographic areas and prices
It is in the city of Geneva and in the municipalities on the left bank bordering Lake Geneva that the prices are the highest.
In the French periphery, the most expensive area is within 5 km of the border, Gex area being at the top of the ranking. This area is very sought after by international clients, especially thanks to its proximity to Geneva-Cointrin international airport and international organizations.
In the medium term, real estate market prices in the border area will depend on the ability to respond to population growth through the effort of construction. Transportation infrastructure such as the Léman Express rail network (CEVA), the Annemasse-Geneva tramway, the greenway of greater Geneva, as well as the development of park and ride facilities should improve access between Geneva and France and make new areas more attractive.
Despite the Covid-19, the French real estate market close to Switzerland is in great shape.
In Switzerland, prices have increased in 2020 and should continue to rise in 2021, but demand is now better distributed throughout the region. The buyers search criteria have evolved and they are now expanding their research area to find a greener living environment, made possible by the development of teleworking. The real estate market prices in the French Geneva and Gex areas has seen a slight and regular rise.
In addition to benefiting from a flexible labor market, a large part of the Swiss population is going to retire and leave qualified posts vacant that the French workforce might benefit. The development of the real estate market on the French side will largely depend on the situation beyond the border.
STONE & WOOD and Affinity Prestige, a family partnership
Exclusive partner since STONE & WOOD was created in 2014 by Lonni Carteron, Affinity Prestige, founded 14 years ago by Florence Carteron, is located in Carouge and is specialized in luxury real estate in Switzerland.
This strong partnership allows the two agencies to offer properties on both sides of the border, from which the client benefits with a single contact.
Properties in Switzerland (Geneva, cantons of Vaud and Valais) are now available on this Website.
For your real estate project, in France or in Switzerland, STONE & WOOD can assit you and help you find your place of residence.
References: Observatoire statistique transfrontalier