A PROPERTY group is being launched in Hongkong to market homes in southwest France. The De La Terre Group consists of four independent real estate agencies, as well as an architectural and solicitors firm based in France. The founder, Mr Stephen Gale, a French-based architect, arrived in Hongkong this week hoping to corner the territory's market. He attended a seminar last night in Kowloon for both expatriates and local people interested in buying residential property. Another two seminars are being held in Causeway Bay and Central tonight and tomorrow. Mr Mike Sinfield, the group's Hongkong agent, said the area was an attractive place to buy. De La Terre has more than 1000 homes ranging from 200,000 francs (HK$1.07 million) to four million francs. Mr Sinfield, a property consultant, said: ''The aim of the group is to offer an all-round service that actively promotes the acquisition of French property. ''It also helps people avoid the pitfalls - of which there are many - when buying a property in France.'' Mr Sinfield said the southwest of France was a good place to buy because prices were cheap and the climate warm. He said the group was offering properties which could be used for holidays or retirement homes. ''Traditionally, the property market does not move in the way other Western markets do,'' he said. ''It does not necessarily offer exciting investment possibilities. It is a place to buy a property for primarily an end user.'' Mr Sinfield added that the group could help buyers deal with tax and conveyancing laws which often caught people out.