Last Stop…Paris, France – Episode #111

Welcome to Paris, France…commonly known as “The City of Love”. The Paris region has one of the highest GDP’s in Europe, making it an engine of the global economy. If it were it’s own country, it would rank as the seventeenth largest economy in the world!

Speaking to several locals and Real Estate Brokerages, I was able to realize that furnished rentals are most popular in Venice and it can be an attractive investment strategy in order to produce higher rental income. Apartments generally start around 330,000 Euros and can easily exceed 2,000,000 Euros. Rents for small bachelor apartments start around 800 Euros per month. Rents for 2 bedroom apartments can average around 2700 Euros per month.

The biggest thing I have learned throughout my European Tour is that LOCATION matters! Not only in the Toronto Region, but every major City in the World! Every single one of these Cities has a niche investment strategy that works better than others. My recommendation is when you find a City you wish to focus on, work on figuring out what investment strategy fits that market well. You will then have a much better understanding of how real estate can help build REAL long term wealth for generations to come. Thank you for watching my European Tour.

Real Estate Along The French Riviera – Episode #110

Welcome to Nice, France…where people enjoy the Mediterranean climate and mild temperatures throughout most of the year. Nice is the seat of the Chambre de commerce et d’industrie Nice Cote d’Azur. It manages the Nice – Cote d’Azur Airport and the Cannes – Mandelieu Airport, as well as the Port of Nice. Investors from France and abroad can benefit from the assistance of the Cote d’Azur Economic Development Agency Team Cote d’Azur…especially if you plan on investing in the real estate market here.

There are many Real Estate Brokerages in the downtown core of Nice. There was a brokerage office at every major intersection. Real Estate prices start around 250,000 Euro for an apartment size of 40-50 square meters. Rents start around 700 Euro per month. Surprisingly, furnished apartments do not bring higher rents as you would generally expect. It is more ideal to have an investment property with a long term lease versus an investment property that is furnished with a short term lease.

It is very interesting to see how property values and rentals compare across cities…especially when you compare furnished versus unfurnished rentals. In all cities, I’ve noticed Property Management plays an important role with regards to providing investors with local knowledge and the rules and regulations. In Nice, if you’re looking to get a better Sea view or a parking spot with your apartment, then you can definitely expect to pay a premium…sounds very similar to the Toronto Beaches.

Monaco The World’s Most Expensive Real Estate Market – Episode #109

Welcome to Monaco, the second smallest and the most densely populated country in the world. The state has no income tax and low business taxes, and is well known for being a tax haven. Monaco has the world’s highest life expectancy at almost 90 years, and the lowest unemployment rate at 0%, with over 48,000 workers who commute from France and Italy each day. For the third year in a row, Monaco in 2011 had the world’s most expensive real estate market, at $65,000 per square meter. According to the CIA World Factbook, Monaco, has the world’s lowest poverty rate, and the highest number or millionaires and billionaires per capita in the world.

Many of these pieces of real estate were gated and guarded by security and therefore very difficult to see in person. Even some of the high end hotels would not let you in unless you had reservations. But funny enough they had all the luxury cars sitting out in front of the Monte Carlo Casino where all the tourist would be drooling over, taking pictures beside them, and leaving their finger prints all over these cars.

Monaco was an incredible place to see, but I don’t really see a point in going back there unless Novak Djokovic wanted me to sell his house or if he wanted to challenge me in a tennis match. Otherwise, unless you are looking for the most expensive and luxurious income property, then a quick visit is all you need for this place.

The Amalfi Coast in Italy – Episode #108

The Amalfi Drive (connecting Sorrento and Amalfi) is a narrow road that threads along the high cliffs above the Tyrrhenian Sea. Sorrento is famous for the production of limoncello, a digestif made from lemon rinds, alcohol, water, and sugar. It was so good! While staying in Sorrento we had the opportunity to speak with Real Estate Brokerages and some local businesses about the economy and real estate market.

In Sorrento, on average a typical apartment sells around 6,000 Euro per square meter. And because they are not developing any more supply will become limited and if the demand continues then the real estate prices will increase. Some speculate that this would be a good time to buy and hold in Sorrento.

This compares to the Toronto Beaches since there is not much more land to build on. Therefore the supply is low and the demand is high…especially closer to the waterfront. When you have a location like this, combined with growing businesses, jobs, access to transportation, and an increasing population you have what it takes to make a great place to invest and live. This was my favourite place so far!