Margaux Fodéré / Photo credit: ARNAUD PAILLARD / HANS LUCAS / HANS LUCAS VIA AFP 06:13, June 05, 2023

Elisabeth Borne must announce this Monday, at the end of the National Council for the refoundation of housing, measures to facilitate access to housing for the French. But very few will concern the production of new housing. Yet, the sector seems to be at a complete standstill.

Extension of the zero-interest loan until 2027 - which must also be tightened on certain areas - but also the monthly payment of the rate of wear until the end of the year, second part of the Housing First Plan... Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne is due to announce on Monday a series of measures to tackle the housing crisis in France. However, very few concrete measures are planned with regard to the production of new housing.


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However, according to a study conducted by ESCP Junior Conseil for the Federation of Real Estate Developers (FPI), 450,000 will have to be built each year for ten years. But the sector seems to be at a complete standstill. In the first quarter of this year, only 17,000 new homes were put up for sale, half as many as four years ago. A figure at the lowest in 13 years.

Fewer and fewer building permits

According to the REIT, the reason supply is so low is primarily because it is aligned with increasingly weak demand. Buyers are rare, as Pascal Boulanger, president of the federation, explains. "We have people who want to, investors or owner-occupiers, but who withdraw for psychological reasons or for reasons of non-financing. Now is the time to buy because interest rates are lower than inflation. And despite that, we are broken."


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For its part, the supply of new housing is also experiencing difficulties. The cost of materials and land is rising so much that one in five real estate projects is postponed or abandoned. Another problem: town halls are issuing fewer and fewer building permits. Like Villemomble, a town of more than 30,000 inhabitants in Seine-Saint-Denis. Its mayor, Jean-Michel Bluteau, has signed only five since 2020 for collective housing. "We can consider that we have reached a threshold where the quality of life could be depreciated if we continued to densify in this way," he says. In one year, the number of building permits issued in France has dropped by more than 30%, according to the REIT.