Advice for Buying Property in France - Revisiting Our Top Tips

Advice for Buying Property in France - Revisiting Our Top Tips

House hunting in France should be an exciting and efficient experience, not a costly and frustrating one. However, many buyers will find that the french estate agency system is ‘tres’ different to the UK or realtors in the US.

With summer upon us, now is a good time to revisit our top tips for buying a property in wonderful France.

Where? It’s all About The Location

Location is the most important factor for anyone to consider when buying a property, it always is. Your own perfect location in France will depend on your reason for buying and your priorities, ease of access for some, in a touristic region for those looking to run gites/B&B’s, or in cooler areas for others.

One of our top tips is to invest in an old fashioned paper map of France (or region), some pins and a marker pen (wine is optional). In other words, get away from you tablet (especially mobile) to get a better overview of distances between places, altitude, rivers, coast etc … think strategically look out for airports, golf courses, schools, hospitals etc … as well as power lines, fast train lines and power stations. Research is absolute key …

Think of a french person coming to your country and doesn’t know where to start! It can be daunting especially in a relatively large country (France is twice the size of the UK). A good starting point to learn about the various regions of France.

How Much Can You Afford

It’s also important to be clear about your budget and how you’re going to finance your purchase. Do you need to sell a property? If a ‘cash’ purchase, is your property on the market? Will you require finance or a french mortgage? Have a plan, even if it’s a simple one.

As new legislation against money laundering has been put in place in France it’s more important than ever that we have a clear understanding, not just about your criteria, but also about the timescale of your project, exactly the same way as you’d do back home.

French Estate Agents

By the nature of what they do, estate agents are constantly out and about; on - usually long - visits with international clients, taking on properties and are a notaires’ office overseeing the successful completion of a sale.

They are always busy and have little time to answer phone calls or emails. And at this time of the year they won’t reply, especially with the Brexit situation and many brits not able to make decisions until there’s more clarity on the future relationship with the EU.

For non EU Residents

We’ve prepared a short Guide designed for non EU residents and american buyers looking to purchase or invest in real estate in France. The most frequent questions we receive are about visas, income & wealth taxes as well legal information. Please contact us if you wish to receive it.

Planning is Key

Preparing to view properties in France  should be well planned to make the most of everyone’s valuable time. The ideal viewing trip would be between 5 to 10 days. This should also provide you with the opportunity for second viewings if required.

Try to avoid weekend visits, and back holidays, there usually plenty in april and may, every year. The two main ones are Bastille Day (14th july) and 15th august, so expect many people away, hotels fully booked and very busy roads around these periods. In the summer months, we will require more notice.

And finally, here’s our 5 Top Tips Again …

    • Work out your preferred area and budget
    • Do your house hunting homework, it's important
    • Be realistic about your requirements and expectations
    • French properties do sell, secure yours by making an offer
    • Don't forget to use this guide to buying property in France

They can be viewed online here, or download from your member area.

Many clients tell us about their frustration looking at multiple listings, at various prices on the same portals, listed with many agents, many of which don’t answer emails. This is where we come in ....

Want to Live the French Dream, and You Ready to Make It Reality? Get in touch ....