14 January 2006

Paris Real Estate Finders (Sounds daunting)

HGTV recently featured an Oregon couple named Sandra Menashe & Mark Pavillard on "House Hunters-International." The couple sought (and found) an apartment to buy in Paris. It seems an enormous challenge -- at best. It was interesting to see Sandra's expectations melt over time. Paris overpowers all.

At first she disliked the exposed pipes and flash water heater in the bathroom, then the tiny Parisian kitchens, etc. etc. There are so many things to detest about old, small French apartments. I almost felt sorry for them and for Stephanie Freedman (pictured below), the agent from Paris Real Estate Finders tasked with escorting Sandra and Mark into a new life in Paris.

Sandra's Swiss husband was a little less particular, though he had concerns about noise and light. Paris has plenty of the former and not much of the latter. It appeared that the realities of Paris wore them down. American expectations are a force to be reckoned with. Things are generally spacious, modern, efficient and new in the U.S.

Ultimately they landed a large apartment with an upgraded kitchen in my old neighborhood near the Moulin. It is one of the busiest and loudest parts of town but the apartment was gorgeous and had a terrace that was larger than my old apartment.

It seems intimidating to purchase property in France. I hope we have such a problem one day soon. Perhaps I will run into Sandra & Mark when I am back in Paris and visiting the Place Blanche area. On television it looked as if they've been embraced by the neighborhood -- and Stephanie aparently survived the ordeal.



At 14/1/06 18:32, Blogger ckeene said...

As a former Oregonian living in Paris, I feel for them! It's less the size of the apartments than the lack of outdoor space that is tough for people who grew up with wide open spaces all around them

At 17/1/06 01:33, Anonymous laurie said...

I just bought a place in the 18th, and I used a service (bonapartconsulting.com) to help me find it and wade through the paperwork. It was indispensible, and not expensive. I really don't think I would have found such a great deal without this help!


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