Maine et Loire Property Insight

Maine-et-Loire is one of the five departments making up the Pays de la Loire region. It was the major part of the former province of Anjou. The name of the department comes from the Maine and Loire Rivers which pass through the area. Maine-et-Loire accounts for 776,659 inhabitants. It is bordered to the north by Mayenne, Sarthe and Ille-et-Vilaine, to the west by Loire-Atlantique, to the east by Indre-et-Loire and to the south by Vendée, Deux-Sèvres and a small part of Vienne. The administrative centre of the department is Angers; the other main towns being Cholet, Saumur, Segré, Chemillé and Doué-la-Fontaine.


The Maine-et-Loire department is classified by UNESCO in the World Heritage List. Indeed, the area boasts wonderful monuments, an unspoiled nature and great landscapes. The Val de Loire is part of it and offers a rich historical and cultural heritage (parks, castles, etc.). Located between Angers and Tours (Indre-et-Loire), the regional natural park of Loire-Anjou-Touraine is definitely not to be missed when visiting the department. The northern part of Maine-et-Loire is called Haut-Anjou, which also spreads on the southern part of the neighbouring Mayenne department.

The economy of Maine-et-Loire is much upheld by the industry. The area is the second most industrial department of western France with 45% of its population working in this sector. Shoes and clothes are mainly produced there. But Maine-et-Loire is also an important agricultural area. It is the first French producer of mushrooms and blackcurrant. The area of the former Anjou province is the first French horticultural region. Maine-et-Loire benefits from a temperate oceanic climate.

The area has an abundance of interesting places to visit. The Loire Valley is home to the most beautiful castles in France: chateaux of Haute Guerche (Saint-Aubin-de-Luigne), Brissac, Martigne-Briand, Breze, Parney, Challain la Potherie or Montreuil Bellay for instance are worth visiting.

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Maine et Loire Immobilier & Property Market Trends

Property prices in Maine-et-Loire (€2,145 /sq m) in 2009 are still affordable in comparison to other departments of Pays de la Loire such as Loire-Atlantique (€3,104 /sq m) and Vendée (€3,287 /sq m). On the other hand, the Mayenne and Sarthe departments are cheaper with average prices respectively of €1,208 /sq m and €1,917 /sq m.

Concerning apartments, the average price in Maine-et-Loire was about €1,800 /sq m /month in 2008. Prices are very similar in Saumur and Cholet (€1,200/sq m/month), but properties are much higher in the prefecture with an average price of €2,000 /sq m /month. The average price for a house to buy in the department is €164,800. There are plenty of properties to renovate in the area: village houses or barns to convert in a loft from €75,000, maisons de maître from €170,000, contemporary architect houses from €400, 000 and a luxury residence from €500,000.

Below are property prices of the main towns of the department for sales and rentals.

Average House Prices in Maine-et-Loire - 2009

Towns: Angers Cholet Saumur Maine-et-Loire department
Sales €2,246/square metre €1,524/square metre €1,161/square metre €2,145/square metre
Rentals €9.88/square metre/month / / €11.08/square metre/month

This table shows that property prices in Maine-et-Loire are pretty low, especially if we compare them with the national average prices: €3,197 /sq m for a house to buy and €12.22 /sq m/ month for an apartment to rent. There are still bargains to be driven in this department full of charm and authenticity, do not wait and invest in a property there!

To get updated info about property prices in Mayenne, 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 Maine et Loire

  • Good food and wines: the Anjou area offers great dishes which will indulge your taste buds! Fouées (bread bowls filled with rillettes and white dry beans), pommes tapées (dried and flattened apples), galipettes (mushrooms filled with rillettes or cheese with pieces of apple and andouillette), plum paté, etc. Maine-et-Loire is also an important wine-growing department with more than 20,000 cultivated hectares and 27 AOC appellations (French certifications). Wine lovers will for sure enjoy a glass of Coteaux-du-Layon or sparkling wine of Saumur. As regards delicious alcoholic drinks, you will be spoiled for choice in this area.

  • Architectural and cultural heritage: with 1,200 chateaux and important residences, the Maine-et-Loire department offers a wide choice of historical monuments which are real pleasures to the eye! Angers’ chateau (home to the Apocalypse Tapestry), castles of Saumur, Brissac or Montsoreau, Fontevrault abbey, etc. Fascinating strongholds, refined manors and outstanding properties with towers, little steeples and fortifications are part of the setting of the Pays de la Loire region. Both locals and holidaymakers bury themselves in the history of the area when gazing at the numerous chateaux of the region.

  • Greenery: many huge forests and hedged farmlands can be found in the Anjou. The area also has an abundance of open spaces. A Japonese garden in Maulévrier (the largest of Europe), apothecary garden in Chenillé (more than 800 medicinal plants!), the Balzac park in Angers (landscape of marsh and typical Anjou stream banks with clumps of trees), the festival of rose in Doué-la-Fontaine - just to give a few.

  • Up and coming area: the Pays de la Loire region is one of the most visited French area. Visitors are attracted by the good local infrastructures, transport links, sceneries and thriving economy. Investing in this area is definitely a good idea as there will always be a high demand for properties.

  • Location – transport links: the Maine-et-Loire department is well-linked to the rest of France. Indeed, people can reach Angers from Paris in only 1h30 with the French high speed train (TGV). The administrative centre has a very good location: between Tours and Nantes, but also not too far from Le Mans or Rennes. Angers’ airport flights to Southampton and from there to many cities in the Uk such as Belfast, Glasgow, Manchester, etc. It is also possible to reach the area of Netherlands or Germany. You can access surrounding cities such as Nantes, La Rochelle, Poitiers, Tours, Le Mans and Rennes by using buses or trains.

Local Property Market: 4 Popular Towns

  • Angers property: the administrative centre of the department is a ‘young’ town (40% of its population is less than 30) which boasts a pleasant way of life. The 17th French town accounts for 156,965 inhabitants. Many do buy-to-let investments as it is a student town (university of Angers).
  • Cholet property: the town is famous for its production of linen handkerchiefs. Many Megalithic monuments and granite quarries can be found in the surroundings of Cholet. With an average price of €1,524/square metre for a property to buy, Cholet’s property market is affordable.
  • Saumur property: called the ‘white city’, Saumur has plenty of monuments constructed with tuffeau stone. The town is home to the famous cavalry school Cadre Noire. Saumur is also renowned for being the first French producter of mushrooms and sparkling wines. As far as property is concerned, prices are quite low in this area.
  • Segré property: a lovely town which has many gardens and beds of flowers. Life in Segré is really pleasant. Do not miss the wonderful chateau de la Loire and Foliklores, an international festival of music and dance. Segré offers properties at very interesting prices if we compare it to the other main towns (Angers, Saumur, etc.).
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Property Styles and Architecture in Maine et Loire

The Maine-et-Loire department has a great variety of building materials: tuffeau stone in and around Saumur, blue slate in Trélazé, red clay brick in the town Les Rairies, etc. Many different architecture styles can therefore be found in the area.

  • Troglodytic properties: many properties were built in the rock. These troglodytic houses are very sought-after and can be found especially in the Anjou and Saumurois (around Saumur) areas. In Doué-la-Fontaine, many troglodytic houses were originally dug in order to extract pierre de falun (‘shelly sand stone’) which was used for the construction of houses and monuments. The Maine-et-Loire department is home to the largest concentration of troglodytic houses in Europe. Troglodytic properties are full of charm and have an exceptional architecture. Prices of such properties, which are nowadays very trendy, are pretty affordable.
  • Longère houses: these properties have a lenghtwise rectangular shape. Their are built with the back of the house facing the dominant wind direction. Longeres are traditional rural properties which can also be found in other regions such as Brittany, Normandy or Aquitaine.
  • Barns:the Maine-et-Loire department offers many properties in need of renovation. You will find numerous old barns which will, once renovated, be perfect properties for holiday houses or even main homes! Barns are of large dimensions and offer therefore the possibility to have many rooms. They always come with a large piece of land. These properties located in the countryside can keep their authenticity or become very modern once renovated.

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

Take a closer look at the Maine et Loire property market:
Angers Property Information Cholet Property Information
Saumur Property Information Segré Property Information