L’Agence (The Paris Agency), tv series: petit plaisir #383
Wednesday June 5, 2024

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When a series popular in the states that depicts French lifestyle presents a distinctively French approach without following prey to what an American audience would better understand, I take note.

Such is the case with the reality real-estate series L’Agence (The Paris Agency) on Netflix.

Now in its fourth season, I haven’t chosen it as a Petit Plaisir until now for a couple of reasons, but after watching the entire fourth season, I knew immediately this season had to be shared. The show has grown and learned from what has worked and what didn’t in previous seasons, and as a result, this is the best season so far.

First, to speak to the authenticity of the French culture that is depicted.

If you are used to the real estate reality series shown in the states or even Buying London, you will be either disappointed or relieved because it is unlike those. There is no drama between realtors and the sole focus is on the properties being shown to the potential buyers as well as the storylines of each of the family members, but predominantly, especially in season 4, as they pertain to the business. L’Agence à Paris is an independently run real estate agency founded by the husband and wife Olivier and Sandrine Kretz who live in the suburbs of Paris. Now, and with the beginning of season 1, there three sons – Martin, Valentin and Louis, and by season 4, their youngest son Raphael has now become a realtor as well at the age of 20, are also part of the business, and the series solely follows the family, even though the real estate agency has continued to grow with many other realtors, and now with offices spread out throughout Europe and North Africa as well as in South America and in New York.

Which brings me to season 4. The properties you will see is extraordinary and while many are in Paris, they include so many in this season – there are 10 episodes – each about one hour in length, that you will have traveled all over France – Provence, Normandy, the Loire Valley, Bordeaux and the Alps – as well as seen gorgeous homes – both apartment and single family dwellings – in Spain, in Marrakesh, Costa Rica and in New York City.

The differences between American real estate shows and L’Agence:

  • French effortless clothing style (no labels, nothing gauche, often the same choices, always worn well and with quiet confidence)
  • No ‘show-boating’ with the realtor’s luxury life – no cars, no home tours of their life that get in the way or distract from the real estate
  • French buyers are skeptical, hold their cards close to their chest and will always point out the cons.
  • As well, the realtors while countering and offering ideas to soften the cons, don’t push, but don’t get scared away as they know how the French buyer approaches a property. Patience and clarity paired with confidence, but not arrogance.
  • No drama beyond whether or not the realtor’s lives will prompt them to move from Paris or not. 🙂
  • Majo, the maternal grandmother, brings the humor and cross-generational appeal and really the groundedness of the show as she has a strong connection with each of her grandsons.
  • There are no scenes of haggling with the seller once the buyer has decided they are interested. It is just done and you move on. Again, less drama and more about showcasing the property.
  • While yes, these are all super luxurious properties that most of us will only see on television, the lives of the realtors is presented as far more normal and less extravagant which makes them all more likable and thus relatable.

Having watched the previous three seasons, I noticed by season three the background music had become intrusive, even played while they were talking and at a volume that made it difficult to understand what they were saying. Granted, I have subtitles on, but as someone who is learning French, I want to hear what they are saying and then check as I am watching to confirm I understood. Thankfully, this auditory issue seems to have been resolved in the latest season as I watched with ease and enjoyment.

Valentin, the second oldest brother brings the differences of the French culture and way of doing business compared to the American approach to focus toward the end of the season and with good humor as well. Pointing out many of the points mentioned above, and if you watch episode #8, Ryan Serhan, who you will remember stars in Million Dollar Listings New York appears as the selling agent for one of the properties. The difference between the two agents is immediate. Not that one is better or worse, but it is made evident and obvious that there is a distinct difference how each works with their clients, presents themselves and handles the potential deal. As you might imagine, I related and appreciated the French approach far more and can confirm that indeed America’s approach to so many things (but not all) when it comes to deal making is vastly different than in France. For this reason alone, season 4 is worth watching, as it will deepen your appreciation of the French culture and how (or why) you might be drawn to it as well moreso than the culture you live if that is America.

While this series is on Netflix, it is streamed around the world, and while some international series may cater to the English speaking audience, L’Agence does not. They are presenting this with a French audience or French speaking audience in mind, and so I found it refreshing that when someone (which was rare) spoke in French, the realtors (if they knew the person understood French) would speak in return in French. Even when Valentin is in NYC, he speaks French the entire time and his clients and fellow realtors who work there – the clients being American – also speak French.

Take a look and listen to an introductory video with the two oldest brothers – Martin and Valentin – as they talk about the new season and share clips.


~Explore more Petit Plaisirs here in TSLL’s Archives, and more French-inspired Petit Plaisirs here.

Episode 331

4 thoughts on “L’Agence (The Paris Agency), tv series: petit plaisir #383

  1. I have so enjoyed this series! It is a little bit of an escape to France at the end of the day to see some beautiful properties. I don’t speak French, other than very basic phrases, but still enjoying hearing and reading along with the subtitles. It doesn’t hurt that all the brothers are quite easy on the eyes and it’s fun to observe their relationships and banter. 🙂

    1. Carrie,

      So tickled to hear you too are enjoying the series. For me, it is Season 4 that is the top of the heap. They really did polish it up for this one and wow! And indeed the brothers are all very likable. 🙂 Enjoy slipping away to France whenever the moment calls! 🙂

  2. This is a great series to watch not just for how to sell a house but how to do business in general in France. Great tour of France from the armchair.Hope you don’t mind but I thought I’ll share my real life experience of a farmhouse purchase in France. Just in case you hope to buy here and have to use the smaller agencies. Our agents weren’t as high end as the Kretz family. Here house purchasing can be a lengthy process with various unexpected issues which crop up that the seller did not reveal. This happens quite a bit in the countryside. This was my own experience.Our sellers varnished the truth a bit about our house. But eventually as the “notaire’ ( legal professional) did a good job he found out the inaccuracies and we were called urgently to his office. Had to dash from England to France within 24 hours!! He negotiated a discount on the final price as an apology and extended the boundary of our land. So all’s well that ends well .
    But once the ‘compromis de vente ‘( your offer to buy)has been signed you are contracted to proceed with the purchase within a time frame and if you change your mind then it will cost you. So it’s not a common occurrence amongst French buyers.It’s usually foreign buyers who find themselves in this situation.
    Did you hear ‘agent immobilier’? ( ee-mow-beelee-ay)Estate agent in UK or Realtor in the US. Have fun travelling with L’Agence😀

    1. Thank you very much Kameela for sharing your experience with buying a house in France. There are definite differences to be aware of and what an exciting thing to be able to have a home base in France! I enjoyed your comment immensely. Merci beaucoup! ☺️🇫🇷❤️

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