Prestige market boosted by “work from home” sales


Clear air, total privacy and mountain views from the office are driving demand at the top end of the market. Joanna Leggett explains all.

Leggett sales of prime Alpine property have gone through the roof this year, we were even selling chalets and apartments "virtually" in the height of the lockdown.

It is clear that clients appreciate the benefits of buying in an area where overcrowding is simply not possible, due to the terrain and strict planning laws. In addition, the authorities have been most careful to ensure that the resorts are safe places to live, with strict protocols introduced from the start. Reports in the press that the super rich are paying up to 750,000 euros simply to rent "safe haven" chalets during the winter certainly back up our findings. Remote working in a safe location has been a big pull for many of our buyers recently.

Emma Horsfall, who works in the Three Valleys, explains: "The open spaces and fresh mountain air are big draws. We have a sale going through to a British couple who plan to live in their beautiful, piste side, ski apartment and work from their home office, with the mountains as a remarkable backdrop on Zoom calls - this is definitely a trend amongst both international and domestic buyers".

Further south, in the Haute Alpes, Jackson Collins has seen a different, but related, trend amongst high end buyers: "Here in the southern Alps we have seen a strong trend towards prestigious lakeside property, with the appeal being a year round experience rather than just winter ski. A stand alone property, with views of the lake and decent size gardens are clearly attractive, as the need for outside space to accommodate the extended family is a factor." 

Record website visitor numbers to www.leggettprestige.com mean Alpine enquiries in 2020 are double those of last year. Our agents have been undertaking discreet, virtual, viewings with some clients buying without actually visiting the properties. Similarly we have been using electronic signatures for some time now, so sales have been progressing smoothly.

It is the chalet market that drives our Prestige business and, as usual, buyers are looking in the prime locations. Good properties are hard to find and it certainly pays to work closely with an agent that lives in the area and knows the market well.  Prices vary greatly across the Savoie and Haute Savoie and you can pay upwards of 20,000 euros per m2 for a prime location in the really top resorts. The good news, however, is that there are still plenty of excellent prestige properties at more sensible prices to be found.

Learn more about Leggett here.

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