With its 171,000 inhabitants, its Cité du design, its proximity to Pilat, Saint-Etienne is regularly cited among the most attractive cities in France. Ranking that is often accompanied by soaring prices in real estate? Not here. “Sainté” remains one of the cheapest towns to invest in stone, along with Limoges and Amiens. While 60 km away, Lyon is becoming unaffordable, Saint-Etienne is seducing and attracting investors. For the apartments, at least.
“What is always profitable, in Saint-Etienne, are small and medium-sized apartments,” confirms Gaëlle Royer, real estate advisor at Private Properties. “A big crisis in 2008 brought everything down, then the curve went up, but the city is still booming: a metropolis of this size, with the services it offers, can only go up. “
Prices that change within 300 m
The investment will therefore remain possible for a few more years, with a price increase consistent with the national average: “Each year, we take 2 or 3% of the price of the previous year in general”, indicates the advisor.
However, Saint-Etienne real estate is difficult to apprehend for an untrained eye: “Everything changes from one sector to another, within 300 m. In beautiful neighborhoods, we can go up to 1,800-1,900 euros per square meter, while slightly less popular neighborhoods will cost 800-900 euros per square meter, ”recalls Gaëlle Royer, insisting on the importance of being accompanied by a professional.
In addition to the city center, the most popular areas are “the Anatole-France and Tréfilerie sectors, the cours Fauriel, Châteaucreux which is booming …” The Cité du design is attractive, “while, two streets behind, that is a little less! Around the axis of the tram, we remain on the safe side ”.
Buyers from Lyon or much further away
The buyers are very varied, often from Lyon. Among them, “families who felt cramped during confinement, and many investors, including first-time buyers who take advantage of borrowing rates that remain attractive”, explains Mahanina Randrianesy, real estate agent at EffiCity at Saint Etienne.
This professional also notices a regular number of foreign investors, who leave Paris for the province: “I have a client from Amsterdam, who studied in Saint-Etienne, he saw the potential of the city and came back to buy. Another Hamburg customer contacted me to find out what was interesting to buy here. “
For all types of buyers, small and medium-sized stores are the most sought after. “The smaller the surfaces, the more expensive they are per square meter, but they are the ones that will sell for more and more easily,” continues Mahanina Randrianesy. With a caveat, however: “I just bought myself for 1,400 euros per square meter, where we were more at 1,200 euros only a year ago”. A still reasonable increase, compared to the 6.6% recorded in Lyon over the past three months.