It’s not just snow falling in the Alps – the value of the euro is too!

Posted on 14 February 2014

British buyers and existing owners of property in the Alps are enjoying not only great snow conditions right now, but also a favourable exchange rate.

The interbank rate hit £1/€1.22 on February 14th, the second time it has broken the €1.22 barrier in three weeks, meaning the rate hasn’t so favourable to UK buyers in the French Alps for over a year.

The last time £1 was worth €1.22 since the end of January 2014 was the second week of January 2013, after which it plummeted to lows of €1.14 in March and again in July, before gradually rising throughout the second half of 2013.

Sterling’s performance since the start of this year has been encouraging for UK buyers in French ski resorts, with the rate spending the majority of the time above £1/€1.20. The bullish UK economy is expected to help Sterling maintain this level, with some analysts saying it will strengthen further.

Not only do apartments and chalets in the Alps get cheaper to British people as Sterling gains value against the euro, but it also brings down the cost of euro mortgage payments and running costs that come with a ski home.

As an example, the Sterling price of a typical new €250,000 apartment in Chatel is currently more than £14,000 cheaper to a UK buyer than it was at the end of July last year, when the rate was £1/€1.14. Meanwhile, a typical monthly mortgage payment of €1,500 has come down to £1,230 from £1,316 for the same reason.

British people who need to send money to France to purchase a home in the Alps, or make regular payments between a UK Sterling bank account and French euro account are advised to use a FCA-authorised currency exchange specialist rather than asking their bank direct to make the transfers, as they receive a better exchange rate and more personal service.