Buying Process - The Basics
Buying a property for sale in France can be a daunting task but we have sold many properties in France over many years so with Clé France you are in good hands.
Where are you looking to buy? Visit our Region Pages and find out more about each region and narrow down which one suits your needs best.
You may be looking for a Holiday home or a countryside Farmhouse for sale, it may be a building plot or a lake for sale, or indeed you may be looking to buy a 'Maison de Maitre' or a Chateaux, for us they are all the same as is the buying process, with a few tweaks here and there!
You can use our 'Location' box in the Quick Search to narrow your search to Town, Countryside, Village or Coastal as well as selecting No of Bedrooms, Land size and not forgetting of course the Budget.
Alternatively if you are starting from scratch then just send us your criteria and let us do the search for you and we will make suggestions of properties that 'fit your criteria' plus if you see a property that you like on the website then click on "Make and Enquiry" and ask any questions you may have.
Once you have selected some properties to see then we will arrange your viewing appointments, all you have to do is arrive, meet us, view the property and choose the one that suits you best! Then it gets interesting...
- Vendor and Buyer agree on the price and terms of the contract, including any conditional clauses (clauses suspensives) and any furniture to be included in the sale.
- The preliminary sales contract (compromise de vente) is drawn up by the notaire, and signed by both parties. The buyer pays the deposit (usually 10% of the purchase price) to the notaire, and a seven-day cooling off period ensues, during which the buyer can withdraw, but the vendor cannot. After this seven-day period, the contract is legally binding. If the buyer pulls out after this, he forfeits his deposit.
- If you are going to buy with a mortgage now is the time to put in your application. However, it is better to get the mortgage agreed in principle before you start your search, to avoid disappointment later.
- If you are taking out a mortgage, this will be a condition of the preliminary sales contract, giving you the possibility of pulling out, should your application be turned down. Once the offer is confirmed, the notaire will be notified and the contract becomes unconditional.
- The notaire does all the conveyancing, which typically takes around 8-10 weeks. When the paperwork is ready, the notaire confirms the date and time of the final signing of the Acte de vente.
- The buyer must transfer the balance of payment to the notaire in advance of completion day.
- On the day of completion, all parties meet with the notaire (the buyer can appoint a proxy), keys and an attestation de vente are handed over, and ownership is transferred. The final acte de vente papers are then sent out around 3-6 months later.
All our prices are quoted as FAI (agency fees included) unless otherwise stated and 'notaire' fees are around 7% to 8% (on average at 100K purchase price) but feel free to ask us for an exact amount on any particular French property for sale you are interested in.
So there you have it! not so difficult after all to buy a property in France, but make sure you have the best advice along the way, let us take care of all the stress and risk for you and find you your dream home in France.
To contact our Legal services partner simply fill in the 'No Obligation Form' below to make contact, Loic Raboteau is a Qualified Legal Consultant for France and the UK at B&M Law in London, he can help with all Domestic and Cross-Border Legal Advice so as well as buying property in France he can even help with the conveyancing on your UK property for example.
For everything you need to know about French property visit www.clefrance.co.uk