November 10, 2017

Once you have struck a verbal deal, you should confirm your offer in writing (and in French):

  • Specifying all details of both sellers and buyers: names (individual or SCI), DOBs, registered adresses, etc.; 

  • Describing precisely the property, (with the plot numbe...

November 9, 2017

What is a notaire?

The notaire is a public official of the French State. His role is not only to advise clients on the transaction, but also to ensure the proper transfer of the property, and to collect taxes on behalf of the State. The notaire is required by law to act...

November 8, 2017

The compromis de vente is an important document as it sets out the main terms of the agreement between the buyer and the seller. Normally the buyer pays a(n up to) 10% deposit on signing the agreement, which is held by the notaire. The agreement has to be signed by bot...

November 7, 2017

Local authority & title searches

Once the compromis is signed, the notaire begins the legal process which includes the searches on the property: land registry rights to ownership, boundaries and rights of way.

To ensure that you have undisputed ownership of the property...

November 6, 2017

Once you have decided to buy, you must decide which ownership structure is suitable for you. This can be decided on between contract and completion (acte authentique) but you will need a suitable clause in the contract in case the names that eventually go on the final...

November 5, 2017

All the documents you will be asked to sign will be in French, and often contain legal terms that you may be unfamiliar with. You may find a notaire who speaks some English, and some agents offer translations of the compromis de vente (although this is not their primar...

November 4, 2017

What are the specifics of French law?

The French legal system is based on civil law – meaning that it is codified, and it originates from Roman law. In contrast, the English legal system of “common law” is in general terms, based on jurisprudence or case law.

The main fe...

November 3, 2017

When I die, how can I ensure my French property goes to the person/people I want it to go to?

For many, the greatest worry about death is what will happen to their family – and a significant part of this worry concerns who will receive their assets. It may sound obvious...

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