Chinese trump Italians as avid buyers of Paris property

China accounts for lion’s share of real estate acquisitions in various arrondissements around the French capital

Chinese New Year in Paris in February. Oigres8/Shutterstock

Led by the Chinese, foreigners are increasingly acquiring properties in Paris and Île-de-France, according to Le Figaro.

The Chinese made up the most active group of foreign property buyers in the French capital during the first trimester, more than the Italians who have traditionally dominated overseas real estate purchases in the city. Buyers from China accounted for more than 14 percent of real estate acquisitions made by foreigners, both resident and non-resident, a new study by the notaries of Grand Paris showed.

The Chinese have a documented affinity for not only Paris real estate but also viticultural land in the countryside. “We have documented record rates in the 3rd and 13th arrondissements, where the Chinese are very present,” said Parisian notary Thierry Delesalle.

Ranking second to the Chinese, Italians accounted for 12.9 percent of foreign property purchases. Italy’s strict regulations on the purchase of second homes overseas have had on impact on buying sentiment in the Paris market.

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“Italians, who inundated the market in the 2nd arrondissement until this point, are now selling,” explained Laurent Bénin and Jean-Baptise Molas, from the agency Foncia.

Foreign buyers currently comprise 7.9 percent of real estate acquisitions in the French capital, close to the last peak of 8.7 percent in 2015.

Chinese buyers accounted for 17 percent of foreign buys in the 3rd arrondissement, an area traditionally associated with the expat community from China. However, more and more Chinese buyers are focusing on the 13th arrondissement, where they accounted for more than 10 percent of foreign home buys.

In the petite couronne, the Chinese are again the most active foreign buyers, trumping the Portuguese and Romanians.

Around 11.3 percent of real estate acquisitions in the petite couronne and 9.3 percent of those in the grande couronne went to foreigners.