Makin a PAP alert, checkin it twice

Up until today we had been undecided about PAP (particulier à particulier – the main French for-sale-by-owner website).  Besides the smaller amount of choice when compared with agencies, and the hassles of dealing with owners with full-time jobs and who are currently occupying the apartments they are trying to show and sell, we were concerned about the bottom line.  Were prices really cheaper than with an agency because you save on the realtor’s fees (around 6-8%, paid for by the buyer), or did owners overestimate the value of their homes?  Today I had déjà vu while looking at some listings on and I realized I would finally have a partial answer to the question.

Exhibit 1:

When I saw this ad last week, I wondered what “Californien loft” meant.  PAP asking price: 770k.

Totally randomly came across the same apartment on a realtor’s website.

Realtor’s price?  €798k.

Exhibit 2: The Madeleine one-bedroom I visited what feels like centuries ago is now listed for €20k higher on

Moral of the story:  think twice before deleting those PAP email alerts, and don’t be lazy about calling to ask about a listing (you’d be surprised how many PAP listings leave out the features that are crucial to us – with or without elevator, road/courtyard view, what floor, balconies, etc).


From the Sold in under 24 hours file:

We were out of town this weekend so I wasn’t on top of all my email alerts.  This one was listed Saturday night (by owner) and by the time I called on Monday morning they already had a buyer at full asking price.

Coeur Bastille (rue de Lappe). Copropriété de charme, calme, arborée et bordée de petites maisons. Au 2e, appartement 34 m², clair, spacieux : salon, cuisine américaine équipée, chambre avec nombreux rangements, salle de bains. Refait à neuf. 276.000 €.

Highlights: Bastille (11th, we LOVE this neighborhood), 350 sq ft one-bedroom on the 3rd US floor (which means it probably had a small balcony), completely renovated in small coop.  It’s ok though, there was a major dealbreaker: no elevator.


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