A VILLAGE in Normandy is selling land for a knock down price of just €1 per square metre in a bid to boost its population and put a stop years of decline.
The village of Champ-du-Boult, in the Calvados department, is a popular stop-off point for tourists and mountain-biking fans, but is less popular for permanent residents, with just 500 people living there.
The Mairie originally decided to take action in 2007 and put four plots of land up for sale, around 1,000m² each, for the knock-down price of €12 per square metre.
However there were no takers and so the local authority has now slashed the price per square-metre price to just €1.
The Mairie sees it as a risk in the short term, that should pay off in the long run, with the new homeowners contributing to the municipal budget through property taxes.
Champ-du-Boult Mayor Patrick Madeleine said: “We had four expressions of interest within days – compared with zero in the previous seven years.”
“When we first publicised the price cut we were contacted very quickly by some British buyers. We have several dozen more people interested and we are waiting to see how many lodge serious bids.”
“My aim is to close offers in the middle of this month and make a decision by the end of the month.”
“If this is successful we have other land available in the commune and we also have a 140m² house in the centre of the village for sale – at just €55,000.”
Anyone interested should contact the mairie on 02 31 66 02 96 – but it is only open on certain days so you should leave a message on the answering machine.
Other villages in the area have looked at a similar approach, including nearby Vire which sold 40 plots of land at a discount and has seen a boost in new home construction since, with more than half of the properties now sold.