This weekend, a dozen events are organized in Brittany to demand access to decent housing
. In the sights, second homes, accused of unbalancing the real estate market in the most popular areas, especially on the coast.
Among the fifteen organizations, we find the UDB, which opened the debate from the regional campaign last spring, by pleading for the implementation of a resident status in tense areas. To summarize the idea, formulated by Nil Caouissin, who has since become a regional advisor, it would be a question of reserving the acquisition of goods to people who have lived for more than a year in the territory concerned by the device. In the eyes of the UDB, reducing the share of second homes, which they consider as “a stock of unused housing”, would rebalance the real estate market.
A very dynamic real estate market
Several local elected officials have stepped up to challenge this analysis and denounce what they consider to be an attack on individual property. Ronan Loas, mayor (ex-LR) of Ploemeur did so in a particularly virulent way by evoking a “bogus status”. Last June, the president of the Brittany region, Loïg Chesnais-Girard (PS) had also closed the door very clearly to the status of resident: “Beyond its feasibility, largely doubtful, in the current state of national and European law, this statute would be at the same time dangerous, ineffective and contrary to Brittany, its interest and its values ”, he estimated then, proposing other tracks such as the support to the mayors” who will want to preempt goods or to make the acquisition of wastelands ”and the creation of a“ Breton solidarity land office for the production of real estate ”.
Outside the summer period, the port of Crouesty, in Arzon (56), seems quite empty. (Photo François Destoc)
No “rush” from Ile-de-France residents
For a long time, land of vacationing (second homes represent more than 13% of the housing stock), has Brittany for all that shifted into a new era, where local buyers are out of the game? Things are probably less simple than they seem. “65% of people who buy in Ploemeur are Ploemeurois. And 85% are from the country of Lorient. Since 2014, we have 20 to 25 houses per year bought by Parisians out of 300 to 400 sales, ”recalled Ronan Loas to support his charge against the status of resident. An idea validated by real estate professionals. “We see Ile-de-France residents landing on the Breton coast because they have greater purchasing power. But it is not the rush that we hear about ”, assured, in September, Vincent Lemée, communications delegate of the Chamber of notaries of the West.
Brittany is not the only region where the debate on second homes is raging. In the Basque Country also, the subject is heating up the spirits, against a background of rising nationalism. In an attempt to reduce the pressure, more and more mayors, including on the right, have resolved to draw the “fatal” tax weapon: an increase in the housing tax on vacation homes. A measure allowed in the tense areas defined by the decree of May 10, 2013 modified by the decree of October 13, 2015. In the West, only the agglomerations of Nantes and Saint-Nazaire are included. Authorizing the implementation of such a surcharge throughout Brittany is one of the demands of the collective behind the mobilization on Saturday.
Quotas in Saint-Malo
The demonstrators also intend to plead for “a strong regulation of tourist rental and in particular of the system of rental platforms for individuals”. An area in which things have started to move. French champion of short-term rental, the city of Saint-Malo has implemented, since July 1, one of the most restrictive regulations in France with, in particular, the establishment of a quota of 12.5% of dwellings authorized for tourist furnished rental within the city walls. One sign among others that elected officials are well aware that they cannot remain inactive in the face of housing problems.
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