The public accounts appreciated the tourist season on the flowered coast.
Of the 5.9 million euros in tourist tax paid by the Airbnb housing rental platform in Normandy, Honfleur (more than 210,000 euros), Cabourg (more than 225,000 euros), Trouville (more than 320,000 euros ) and Deauville (more than 330,000 euros, the highest total in Normandy) are in the top 10 in the region.
These tourists undeniably contribute to the economic life of the sector.
But the deputy mayor for town planning of Trouville, Guy Legrix warns: “There are a lot of Airbnb.
This is a phenomenon that we would like to control.
We have too many, to the detriment of residences.
Empty accommodation for part of the year
Too much, the word is out.
The flowery coast seems somewhat overwhelmed by several trends, between tourist rentals and second homes.
Despite their attractive living environment, the majority of municipalities on the eastern Calvados coast lost, according to INSEE accounts, inhabitants between 2014 and 2020 (the figures for 2020 serve as the official population).
“The phenomenon is not at its peak everywhere.
The closer we get to Caen, the less it is true, nuance Olivier Paz, mayor of Merville-Franceville and president of the Normandy Cabourg Pays d'Auge intermunicipal association.
But we are witnessing a struggle between private investors and households.
It's hard to settle down.
It is more profitable to rent accommodation for short periods.
And when land is available, it goes quickly to resale.
And it's expensive.
for example, has just crossed the bar of 4,000 euros per square meter (median price).
A figure that has risen significantly in recent years.
“You have to be legally armed”
Olivier Paz, Mayor of Merville-Franceville and President of the Union of Mayors of Calvados
The Covid epidemic and its confinements have boosted the momentum, which is gaining ground.
Just east of Cabourg, even Dives-sur-Mer sees the context change.
Its mayor, Pierre Mouraret, depicts “a city with a rather salaried population in the surroundings until then, with few second homes.
But old housing is transformed into secondary or short-term rental.
Land prices are skyrocketing.
And to worry: “Dives, these are 2,300 jobs.
They could be called into question because employees are struggling to find housing.
Locals wishing to reside year-round on the Côte Fleurie cannot, for the most part, compete with investors.
Town centers suffer from empty housing for part of the year.
Guy Legrix observes this in Trouville: “Life falls back in the slack period.
We want to regain dynamism,
reclaim the city center.
Which has many old little fishermen's houses, tailor-made for short vacation stays.
One solution: preempt
How to achieve, then, to "keep a balance between tourists and resident population", as Pierre Mouraret wishes?
Olivier Paz, also president of the Union of Mayors of Calvados, tries in his commune of Merville-Franceville to avoid “the purchase of housing for vacation rental.
It's a novelty.
But you have to be legally armed”.
Indeed, a municipality does not really have a say in real estate transactions.
Unless pre-empted, a tool advanced by our cookies.
“The community can act when it owns the land.
We can sell it with specifications,” says Olivier Paz.
And thus offer advantages to locals, young people or even reveal a ban on resale for several years.
Still, communities are not immune to the explosion in the price per square meter.
Read alsoAirbnb: the French are rushing to the platform to make ends meet
Faced with these difficulties on existing housing, municipalities are seeking to build new ones, integrating proportions of social housing.
Dozens of dwellings will thus emerge from the ground in the coming months in Trouville.
"We give priority to people who want to live on site," says Guy Legrix, who does not exclude the possibility of tax benefits, another lever considered on the coast.
A technical and sensitive lever.
On the Dives side, the citizen collective “Réussir Dives, really”, including an elected official in the opposition, was moved by a housing tax rate favorable to the acquisition of a second home in the town.
According to a ranking of the monthly Capital, Dives would be the third city in France where the rate would be the lowest, at 10.1%.
“When the housing tax concerned everyone, retorts the mayor, this rate was low because of the income of the inhabitants.
The tax now only applies to secondary education.
We are waiting to play on it because it is legally linked to the tax on built land, which could penalize resident inhabitants if it were increased.
“Several elected officials thus expect the State to “provide the tools” to help communities regain control in the face of these developments which threaten the balance of life on the coast.
"The concepts of high and low season no longer exist"
Olivier Paz, also president of the Normandie Cabourg Pays d'Auge intercommunality
The president of the Union of Mayors of Calvados announces the color: “It is a period of great changes.
There are several indicators", such as the figures from the operator Orange, who noticed, by listing the demarcation of telephones, that peaks in attendance had occurred even out of season in 2022. "On October 30, we counted 200,000 more people on the territory of the intercommunality, says Olivier Paz.
High and low season concepts no longer exist.
It is necessary to examine well, it is a balancing act.
» The geography of services, the proper sizing of public facilities such as schools, roads or sanitation depend on a good analysis and a livelier life all year round.