Buying Old v New...How do you Choose your Ski Home?
When deciding to buy your own ski home, how do you decide between old and new? The appeal of buying an old ski chalet or alpine farmhosue and restoring it to its grandeur with modern touches is a dream for many. For other buyers the lock-up-and-leave appeal of a new-build ski apartment with modern fixtures and fittings is the only way to go.
Whilst it comes down to personal preference, here's a handy summary of the benefits of buying new, and buying ‘old’.
Benefits of Buying a New-Build Ski Property
- New-build ski property values are generally 20% higher per m2 than older chalets and ski apartments (or alpine property which haven’t been recently renovated).
- Notary fees (including transfer taxes) for new-build properties in the French Alps are between 2.7 and 3.7% of the purchase price compared to 7-8% of the purchase amount of re-sale ski property. A new ski property may also be exempt from Tax Fonciere for two years.
- The "Loi Pinel" allows French taxpayers who buy a new rental property a reduction in income tax of up to 21%, with the possibility to rent the ski property to family, providing the building meets energy and thermal regulations.
- New-build ski apartments generally have lower syndic charges than re-sales, at least initially, and do not require any major renovations or upgrades for at least the first decade of ownership.
- A new-build ski home is protected for the first 10 years by guarantee. The builder is responsible for any repairs or defects which are due to faulty construction.
- New construction standards for sound, heating and insulation have been introduced to improve the energy performance of building, and so reducing energy-related costs over time.
Benefits of Buying a Re-Sale Ski Chalet or Apartment
- The initial purchase price is generally lower thanks to a lower per m2 value and there is often greater potential for the value to increase via investment in renovation or extension.
- Some original mountain homes have stood their ground for 100s of years. Older buildings were built to last several lifetimes, and the work that has gone into them and the materials used to build them have been proven to stand the test of time.
- You can physically see every aspect of the home before you buy it - off-plan can be a leap of faith!
- The best locations in a ski resort are generally where the oldest buildings are found – where there is most sun exposure, less avalanche danger, and in purpose-built ski resorts, better proximity to the village centre and ski lifts.
- The charm of an old alpine property can rarely be recreated in a new build.
There are positives and negatives to purchasing ‘old’ and new-build or recently renovated homes. Some buyers think the charm of living in a traditional French farmhouse far outweighs the upkeep it might require, and others prefer the efficiency of a brand new off-plan ski apartment. Whatever ski home you choose, there are many things which must be considered, and approaching a ski real estate professional is the best way to find out what works for you.
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