|Buying a house in France is actually
pretty straight forward. It is far less prone to going wrong than
in the UK and the law doesn’t allow either buyer or seller
to withdraw or try to gazzump.
We will work with you right though the negotiation
process, from making the offer right through to the final signing
Once you offer is accepted, the seller and buyer will then sign
the first formal contract known as the Compromis de Vente Apart
from a 7 day “cooling off period” you are committed
to buy. Any conditoionns about the condition of the property,
the planning status, getting a mortgage etc are subject to conditional
clauses ("clauses suspensives").
We will also advise you on any items of furniture etc that are
to be either included in the sale or available for a secondary
If you withdraw for any other reason
than one specified in the "clauses suspensives", you
will be liable to a penalty of 10% of the price
The seller is also be bound by similar terms. The compromis will
be drawn up either by a Notaire, or as a registered French estate
agent, by Agence Francois Labadie.
On signing, an agreed deposit (10% of the price) will be payable.
This is normally payable to the notaire, though some agents maintain
special secure accounts to hold deposits. You will also be required
to have any survey such as the now mandatory Asbestos inspection
carried out before the purchase is completed. We will advise and
assist with arranging such surveys.
After this, the notaire begins the
legal processes. he will make sure that the various conditions
agreed such as a Certificate of Habitation ( essential if you
wish to use the property for any form of habitaiton) or any planning
permits are in place. You will be agree a date, usually at least
12 weeks ahead (though expericence shows this can on occasions
be much less if really required), for signing the final Acte
de Vente. ( similar to “Completion” in a
UK transaction. Athough the Notaire can arrange to give somebody
else power of attorney we are recommend that you do this in person
and we believe it’s an important part of the purchase experience.
The balance of the price, including legal fees etc, will be paid
on or before the signing date, and after signing you will receive
the keys and the French property is yours!
The Notaire’s fees are fixed
by the government and are based on the purchase price. It is not
uncommon to receive a small rebate some while after the signing.
The deeds are normally sent form the French equivalent of the
Land Registry around 6 months after you take ownership.