Monaco, a very buoyant property market
The world’s second smallest state after the Vatican is forging ahead. Construction is on-going, to the satisfaction of a wealthy international clientele. Constantly re-inventing itself, the Principality certainly has a role to play on the world map of “the places to be”.
At the beginning of 2019, the Monégasque Institute of Statistics reported 1,496 buildings, ie. 3.16 million square metres. Over the past decade, 53 buildings have been demolished and replaced by 60 new constructions. The most symbolic building sites include “One Monte-Carlo” -, adding almost 4,000 sq.m to the Golden Square’s commercial premises - the “Tour des Giroflées” and “Le Stella” both replacing houses. Since 2010, seven new-builds over 15 storeys high have risen from the earth… A sign that the Principality is continuing its development, vertically. 61 % of construction is dedicated to living accommodation. Hotels are concentrated in Monte-Carlo and the Larvotto beach area. The majority of industrial premises are to be found in Fontvieille. Containing demographic pressure… Monaco also rises to the challenge by building out at sea. Six operations have already been completed. Currently underway, “Le Portier” represents almost 15 acres and a usable surface area of 60,000 sq.m. In all, reclaiming land from the Mediterranean will have allowed for construction of 840,000 sq.m, ie. 26 % of the built-up area.
The Real Estate Observatory confirms 2018 as one of Monaco’s most active years. Delivery of the 89 apartments in “Le Stella”, shared out in four blocks, gave a real boost to the market for new properties, even though surface areas were limited in light of buyers’ preferences for more generous living space. Old properties also show a rise in both the number of sales and the average price, up 14 %. “Property dealers are particularly active,” says Laurent Locchi of Miells & Partners. “While the stock of housing is benefiting from a makeover with all the renovations, prices are rising. Only studios are suffering from a real lack of interest. Especially as the policy for delivering residents’ cards is increasingly restrictive. Families look for 2-, 3- and 4-bedroomed apartments, high quality appointments and residences like the Tour Odéon.” In Monaco, the surface area, floor, view, and prestige of the address all contribute to calculation of the price. Renovation is a trigger for acquisition, an accelerator. Admittedly less numerous than in the past, Italians are fond of the Principality. Russians who were already installed have stayed put. Other nationalities are taking an interest in the micro-state, and North Europeans remain loyal to the Principality. The past few months have been specially intense in terms of construction. Noise and eye-sores have been the rule, but the first deliveries are finally arriving on the market.
“Monaco’s Government and private investors are working day and night towards the development of the Principality,” enthuses Christian Rosengart of Rosengart Luxury Real Estate. In the historic neighbourhood of Monte-Carlo, prices range from 40,000 to 100,000 € per sq.m. All areas combined, the average price exceeded 48,000 € per sq.m in 2018. Surface areas are larger, studios no longer in demand. Generous volumes, in old buildings or developments soon to be delivered, top the bill, with prices that rise at the same pace as the surface area. “Monte-Carlo is still the most dynamic neighbourhood with transactions chalking up turnover of almost a billion euros last year – 950,200,000 € to be precise, a record year for sales in this neighbourhood. Families also like Saint Roman, the second neighbourhood in terms of the number and total amount of sales, and Fontvieille, its parks, schools, delightful harbour and many pedestrian areas. The Jardin Exotique neighbourhood has many disparities between old and new residences.” Buyers now insist on a high level of appointments : cutting-edge home automation, 24/7 conciergerie, parking places in the basement. In other words, properties that meet the standards of international mega-cities. All buyers appreciate the quality of the Principality’s infrastructures, its privileged lifestyle and, of course, its tax advantages.
“The Golden Square, harbour and beach neighbourhood win all the votes,” say Luciana Lebon and Eugenia Petrini of La Costa Properties Monaco. Clients are in search of spaciousness, luxury and views of the sea. The starting-price for the top end of the market is 60,000 € per sq.m. Families and property dealers are currently the best clients. And it’s time for optimism. From creation of the “One” to restructuring of the Hôtel de Paris… Very strong signs of economic momentum.