Nantes Property Insight

Nantes is the principal city of the Loire-Atlantique departement and is, as well, the prefecture of the Pays de la Loire region. It is the sixth most populated city of France with its 283,000 inhabitants and the 800,000 people living in its surrounding urban area. The city lies at the confluence of the Loire and the Erdre River, at the eastern extremity of the Loire estuary and at around 40km of the Atlantic Ocean. It is one of the ancient capitals of the historical Brittany, notably of the Ducs de Bretagne. Today, it still shelters their castle.


Nantes benefits of a privileged situation. Only at 40min of the ocean, it possesses several preserved greens and numerous watercourses. There, the life is so enjoyable that in 2004, the magazine Time described it as the most pleasant city of Europe. Thus, Nantes attracted lots of new inhabitants thanks to its dynamism and its culture. Today, it can be described as a cosmopolite city. In terms of architecture, it is not built in high but in a horizontal way, which implicates an important sprawl. Indeed, the buildings of a certain height are less numerous than in other big French cities.

The vexed question of the administrative adherence of Nantes (but also the entire Loire-Atlantique departement) to the Brittany region is a matter for debate. Effectively, this city was the most important one of the former Kingdom of Brittany. The ducs de Bretagne even decided to set their principal residence in Nantes. This constituted its Breton identity, still strong today.

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Nantes Immobilier & Property Market Trends

Nantes is a big city and thus variety describes well its property market. The average price was around €2,900/sq m at the beginning of 2009 versus €3,200/sq m for the general French average. However, the average price for Nantes hides huge disparities regarding the quarters. Procé Monselet and the city centre are very sought-after, as the quarter of Sainte-Anne, well-thought since a few years. On the contrary, the quarters of Bellevue, Dervallières and Malakoff still have a negative image.

In Nantes, 92% of the whole properties are main homes. As it is a big city, the majority of properties are of course apartments with a proportion of only 24% of detached houses.

To get updated info about the property prices in Loire-Atlantique, please browse our French Property Market Reports published in the News Section every month.

Click here to have an overview of Pays de la Loire Property Prices.

5 Reasons to Buy a Property in Nantes

  • Culture, art and historical heritage: Nantes is very rich in terms of historical and cultural heritage and is style-conscious to preserve and to promote its patrimony. Thus in 1972, the city delimited a protected area between the quai de la Fosse, the cours Saint-Pierre and Saint-André. Of course, this area includes the castle, the cathedral, the quarter of Bouffay, the île Feydeau, the place Royale and the quarters Graslin. This area of 126ha. is one of the most important protected area of France. The château des ducs de Bretagne stands on the right bank of the Loire River in the city centre of Nantes. It was the main residence of the dukes of Brittany from the 13th to the 15th century. It is a stronghold constituted of seven towers linked by fortification walls.
  • Good food: lots of tasty specialities abound in the Loire-Atlantique departement. Nantes is a good place to savour them, but it has also its own specific specialities. The beurre blanc au muscadet is a wonderful sauce to accompany the different fishes that are highly appreciated. Indeed, its proximity with the ocean and the rivers made fish and shellfish important elements of its gastronomy. Thelard nantais, a kind of bacon, is savoured with a glass of muscadet wine which is a white dry wine produced in the surroundings of Nantes. Many mouth-watering cakes and biscuits are part of its gastronomy, such as the gâteau nantais, the fouace nantaise, the berlingot and the rigolette nantaise.
  • Greens: since centuries, Nantes has been a botanical city and comprises many amazing gardens and parks. For instance, the jardin des Plantes shows amongst others a collection of camellias, magnolias and tropical greenhouses. In the parc du Grand Blottereau, a Korean garden (unique in Europe) can be seen while a wald in a Japanese garden is possible in the Ile de Versailles. Apparently, every inhabitants enjoy a park at less than 500m of their home, and a project of three urban forests will be developed.
  • Architectural style: the beautiful city of Nantes managed to keep a big proportion of historical quarters of different times, which is not the case for many cities partially destroyed by the wars. Dating of the 15th century, the medieval quarters of Decré and Bouffay are close to the cathedral and the castle. There, many half-timbered houses with corbel architecture or even houses rebuilt in stones during the 18th century can be seen in the dark narrow streets. In the quarter of the Ile Feydeau, rich shipowners built marvellous houses with façade in freestones during the 18th century when Nantes became an important trade port.
  • Transport links: the airport of Nantes is the most important one of the west of France with around 2 million passengers per year. It links a dozen of French cities and many international destinations such as London, Milan and Geneva. It also has a good rail network and the TGV (high-speed trains) enables to go to Paris, Strasbourg, Marseille, Lyon and Lille rapidly.

Property Styles and Architecture in Nantes

  • Apartments: as in every city, the majority of properties are often apartments. It is also the case for Nantes which accounts for a proportion of around 75% of them. Apartments of every size can be found. For example, 20% of them comprise two bedrooms and14% of them are studios. This last number can be seen as important and can be explained by the high number of students the city attracts.
  • Town houses: only 24% of all the properties in Nantes are houses. Furthermore, these houses are not always very large but often proposes a garden. Usually, these town houses have rendering facades and a tiled roof. Theses houses are often quite simple but some of them are decorated with their openings framed with red bricks.

Click here for more info about the Architecture in Pays de la Loire.

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Take a closer look at the Loire Atlantique property market:
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