What Else Do You Need to Know?

When purchasing property in France, it is crucial to consider several essential factors. For example, you should learn about the role of a Notaire and their responsibilities in the buying process. Additionally, it is essential to understand the tax implications of owning a French property. It is wise to consult a tax professional to comprehend the tax obligations associated with the ownership of property in France. You should familiarise yourself with French inheritance laws as they differ from those in other countries and are quite different here.

French Property Surveys

The seller must provide certain compulsory certificates and reports at his cost. These will cover things such as lead, asbestos, termites (depending on area), energy performance and what is known as a SPANC report which will indicate whether the septic tank meets the latest environmental hygiene standards. Mortgage providers in France rarely insist on a structural survey.

Pre-Emption Rights

The laws on property ownership in France depend on the type of property and the amount of land it comes with. If the property has more than one hectare (>2 acres), then you may hear from the SAFER who could potentially step in the purchase process.

The Role of a Notaire

In France a Notaire handles most of the conveyancing tasks commonly carried out by a solicitor in the UK. These include local searches and the drawing up and exchange of contracts. He will also collect any taxes due. The Notaire acts on behalf of both seller and purchaser but it is the buyer who pays the legal fees. Ask your agent if they work with an English-speaking notary.

Inheritance Laws in France

Inheritance Laws in France generally take precedence over UK law for any property owned in France and specify that the estate of a deceased person is shared between his/her children. Please seek specialist advice particularly if the house is jointly owned.

French Tax and Law

Our tax partners can assist with every aspect of buying or living in France, taxation, wealth tax, succession, trust ...

What you need to know

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