Researching real estate on the French Riviera: some traps to avoid


Nowadays the quality of real estate pictures is very important, especially for clients looking for properties in France on the internet.

It’s worth noting that recently the quality of photos from French  Riviera real estate agencies has improved a great deal. They actively employ professional photographers, and train their real estate agents to take great care with their pictures.

As a result, photos of apartments or houses advertised on the French Riviera may be a little bit unrealistic, and you may find the reality of the viewing a little disappointing.

So, I advise my buyers to pay very careful attention to detail, when they are browsing through French Riviera real estate properties one rainy day from a cosy apartment in London or Oslo.

You can tell a lot from the pictures. For example, if you only see interiors of the property you can assume that there will be no fantastic views, and your first reflex should be to request the address and check on Google maps for the surroundings and views.

If the building façade is missing on the picture, ask the real estate agent to send a picture of it.

If you know about the address, the surroundings, the façade and you have a floor plan you can imagine the property and plan your viewing.
If you only have stylish pictures of the modern design with no connection to the location, it’s a waste of time.

I think it’s best to put your trust in your real estate agent and not in the pictures.

Unfortunately pictures of real estate can be misleading.

Some properties which are photogenic are nothing special when you see them in the cold light of day.

There are other properties however, where the pictures are quite ordinary, and the clients are wonderfully surprised when they visit them for real.

In addition, most clients buy properties which I have suggested for them, taking into consideration their character and priorities, and not the properties they may have found themselves by searching through pictures on the internet.

Each time a client has been disappointed by a property he chose himself, and has ended up buying a property he missed off the original shortlist, I wonder why?
Perhaps it would be simpler to explain your criteria at the start, and entrust the real estate agent with a selection of the properties they recommend for you.
Sometimes I have to insist on a viewing… and the buyer ends up loving the place!

So, the pictures in real estate advertising may be a help or a trap.

My advice is to trust a real estate agent who has visited the property, and ask them additional questions about the property and location. This is a very valuable service your agent can provide.

If you give detailed information about yourself and your property search on the French Riviera, and real estate agents have a clear idea about your profile, their selection should be very appropriate.
What’s more, unlike on the websites, the agent will only suggest properties currently on the market. If you talk to them directly about your search, they can also think about properties which may not even be on the market yet.

I have noticed that clients often start their real estate search by contacting many different agencies advertising on the internet, and they end up by working with one or two trusted agents who provide them with a professional and efficient service.

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