If you are planning to move to Marseille, here are some tips to guide you through your accommodation search.
Located in Southeast France, Marseille is part of the Bouches-du-Rhône and of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region and is the oldest French city. Founded by Greek sailors who came from Phocaea, it is nicknamed the “Phocaean City”.
Marseille is a continuously developing and renewing city. So if you are planning to move there, you will definitely enjoy the lifestyle and quality of life it provides amidst urban planning and its developed economy. It also provides a range of accommodation for expatriates at rather affordable prices compared to other major cities.
Marseille enjoys a mild climate with a phenomenal sunshine rate for a European country. Indeed, did you know that the city has not less than 2,800 hours of sunshine a year?
Marseille comprises 111 small villages which, for instance, will allow you to live in a house with a garden in the city center! Moreover, each of these villages has a historical legacy which, to date, greatly contributes to its charm.
In 2013, Marseille was nominated as the European capital of culture thanks to its great heritage. Regardless of your age, you surely have a lot to learn from this city.
Marseilles is also famous for its beaches and creeks. So if you want to live near the sea, it is probably the ideal place to be.
The city-center is highly urbanized. But you can still feel the rural atmosphere in the outskirts. As regards accommodation, you can choose from various styles: flat blocks, new houses, old and modern buildings, etc.
Marseille is divided into 16 districts and 15 neighborhoods as follows:
- the city-center is a highly dense area
- Cours Julien is a preppy area with a dynamic and festive nightlife
- the old neighborhoods near Vieux Port are not appropriate for families with children due to the number of lanes and stairs
- in the 7th and 8thAvenues, you will find posh areas
- the 9th Avenue, for its part, is a developing residential area, ideal for expat families
- the 3rd Avenue is a real contrast with its popular atmosphere. It is in a remediation process.
- the 10th and 11th Avenues have a rather rural look despite the presence of new development projects
- if you are looking for a town house of villa, you better head towards the 12th Avenue
- the 13th is famous for its student population
- finally, Northern Marseille is worth of a visit thanks to its historical and cultural heritage.
In general, accommodation in Marseille costs around 12 to 14 euros the square meter, depending on the type of housing unit you have chosen. You should thus expect to pay rent as follows:
- for a studio or a single bedroom apartment – some 13.40 euros per square meter
- for a two-bedroom apartment – 12.50 euros per square meter
- for a three-bedroom apartment – 10.70 euros per square meter
- for a four-bedroom apartment – 10.40 euros per square meter.
You are advised you start your housing hunt well in advance, that is, right from your home country. However, you are not likely to sign the lease documents unless you are on the spot. In all cases, feel free to browse housing ads on the Internet thanks to general and specialized websites, as well as online local newspapers.
Word-of-mouth may also help if you have reliable friends or contacts on the spot. Otherwise, consider touring the different neighborhoods so as to determine where you would prefer to live and which type of accommodation best suits your needs.