Frequently Asked Questions

Our Company
The Search for Your Property
The Legal Process

Although we are working in France, the story of French Property Connection has started in the UK. In 2015, our founder, Samir Grattery is then installed in this country. Having already worked as a property finder in Paris on behalf of foreign buyers, he is already well aware of the pitfalls and problems that they encounter. He then decided to put in place a solution that will allow foreigners to overcome these difficulties and simplify their acquisition in France. He then created the head office of French Property Connection in the United Kingdom. Since then, our team has been divided in two. Our customer relations division is still based in the United Kingdom. Our operational division, meanwhile, is now based in Paris and operates throughout France.

Thanks to our 10 step solution and our funnel system, 94% of foreign buyers collaborating with us find their ideal property by making a single trip to France.However, it can happen that after your visits, no real estate presented satisfy you.In this case, we remain attentive to the market and we alert you as soon as a new property matching your need arrives on the market.Then the system remains the same: pre-visit on our part, complete interactive report then organization of your trip if interest on your part for the property in question.

We make a real detailed report that will give you an excellent overview of the properties that interest you without having to move.This also allows you to be sure that you will move to France to visit properties that are really worth it. First of all the property itself and its amenities.General pictures as well as each room that composes it.We also detail the orientation of each of these rooms, their size and the available equipment.We also insert the plans of the property in question.

Then we are interested in the town / village in which the property is located.Photos, details of shops, leisure.We also consult the local town hall to have information on the possible evolutions of the place in particular near the property.Finally, we are interested in the history of the property: previous transactions and evolution of its price.Also, we make a point with the seller or the real estate agent on potential other buyers interested including those who submitted an offer to buy.Indeed, if another buyer is already in very advanced negotiations with the seller it can be a waste of time to make you come to visit. Indeed, overbids are prohibited in France.

It depends greatly on the specification of your search (property, features, location and budget).It also depends, of course, on the supply at time t on the French real estate market.We use all possible search channels to target each property corresponding to your request.On average, we present you 8 properties once our full market search is done.Still on average, we pre-visit 5 properties and the buyers collaborating with us are moving to France to visit 3 properties.

The first reason is that this guide allows us to highlight our knowledge and experience of the real estate market in France and its specific process.We know that we are not the only company on the market offering this type of service even though our offer is today the most complete.If our popularity grows constantly, it is also because we reinforce the confidence of the foreign buyers wishing to collaborate with us by showing that we have a perfect knowledge of the purchase process in France and that we are able to help them to realize their project.

The second reason is that we know that there are two types of foreign buyers. People wishing to complete their project on their own and those wishing to be accompanied.If we wrote this very detailed guide allowing foreigners to facilitate their purchase in France, it is also to help buyers wishing to act alone to succeed in their project.We believe that it is our duty to indirectly support foreigners wishing to act on their own.The comment sections at the end of each article allow foreign buyers to interact directly with us if they wish to be advised on one or more steps of the French property buying process.It is with pleasure that we answer the questions of these people.Finally, we are also very happy to receive messages of thanks from foreign buyers who did not contact us but who completed their project thanks to our guide!

It depends on your situation and why you want to buy a property in France. What is certain is that this vote has led to a substantial fall in the British Pound.Fall that has an impact on the budget of British citizens.

The final consequences of Brexit remain for the moment rather vague, especially on the freedom of movement of British citizens in France.If a simple document of identity is enough to move in France and within the Schengen area, although the United Kingdom is not a member, the exit of the country from the block of 28 should now be accompanied by the need for UK nationals to apply for a visa in case of travel to Europe.At present, only 44 out of 219 countries require visas in advance for British nationals.Most British buyers who work with us are looking for a second home, that is, they wish to remain domiciled in their home country for tax purposes.In that case,if France does not impose a visa on these nationals then the impact will be non-existent.They will be able to freely continue to enjoy their property in France.If France imposes on the British a visa to move to France, will the French authorities make a distinction between the British owner of a property in France and others?Hard to know.

Regarding British retirees wishing to settle permanently in France it could be more difficult.Their medical coverage in France could clearly be impacted.Today retired British residents in France benefit from the French national medical system.This system is funded by British Public Health under a bilateral agreement between the two countries.This may not be the case in the future.Also, most of these people can enjoy their British retirement while living in France.The sharp depreciation of the British Pound then leads to a decrease in their income.We all hope to establish bilateral agreements between countries to preserve the quality of life of these citizens in France. Regarding British assets living in France, a work permit may be required.

Difficult to date to draw conclusions and predict the final consequences of Brexit for the British wishing to buy a property in France.

When a real estate professional in France such as French Property Connection works with a foreign buyer like you, the signing of a search agreement is mandatory (Law of 2 January 1970 and Decree of 20 July 1972).It is thus impossible for us to prospect for a third party without signature of this mandate under pain of being legally sanctioned.This search mandate must also include several essential information such as the identity of the parties, the type of property sought by the buyer or the method of remuneration of the Professional.Feel free to check out our full article dedicated to working with a French property finder for more information.

Buying a property in France is divided into two distinct tasks.Indeed, we must first find the ideal property and then acquire it according to the purchase process in force.The time to find the ideal property is variable.Some foreign buyers will find the property that fits their needs in a week when others will take several months.It is difficult to estimate the duration of this task.On the other hand, the acquisition according to the French Law will always take the same time regardless of the type of property in question and its location.It takes about 4 months to go through the buying process in its entirety including 3 months between the signing of the sales contract and the signature of the deed of sale at the notary’s office marking the transfer of ownership between the seller and you. In case of purchase without mortgage, this time is clearly reduced.

In France, the use of a property lawyer is not necessary to buy a property.Only the call to a Notaire will be mandatory, at least for the signature of the deed of sale.Even the writing of the sales contract can be done without a lawyer or Notary.However, given the complexity of the French Laws, in practice, the Notary will take care of the drafting of this contract.The call to a lawyer can nevertheless be useful in case of dispute with the seller or the real estate agent representing him, in particular concerning the hidden defects.

Of course.You can freely deposit files in each of the French banks. Just be aware that some institutions may be a little more reluctant than others to issue a mortgage to a foreigner.But nothing insurmountable, especially if you are a national of the European Union. Check out our complete article about obtaining a mortgage in France by a non-resident for more information!

First of all, in the very short term, that is to say in the days that follow the signature of the deed of sale marking the transfer of ownership between the seller and you, we accompany you in the following tasks: search for the best property insurance for you and setting up utilities.These tasks, basic in your country of origin can prove to be complex for you in France in particular because of the barrier of the language.We believe that it is part of our mission to comfortably settle in your new home.

Then in the medium term, you will have the possibility to ask us in case of question concerning your property in France without additional charges.This can be for example a request for help to pay the real estate taxes you will have to pay or help you find craftsmen if you want to undertake work in your property.You will have the opportunity to request our help at any time for 6 years!

The Notaire’s fees in France are non-negotiable unlike the price of the property or the agency fees.Notary fees are strictly regulated by law and cannot be subject to any discount.They are 2 to 3% of the amount of the property for a purchase in the new and 7 to 8% for a purchase in the old.You can consult our article dedicated to the Notaire in France for a complete information about this.

Yes and no.In fact it depends on the distribution of the duration of occupation you want to perform between the tenant and you, as well as the period.If and only if you rent to a student, you will have the opportunity to do so.Otherwise no, because the minimum duration of a lease in France is twelve months.

Nevertheless, students benefit from a specific provision of the Law that reduces the minimum duration of a furnished rental to nine months instead of twelve.Thus, unlike a regular furnished lease with a minimum duration of one year, students can secure a roof from October to June, just the time of a school year.On your side, you can rent for 9 months of the year and enjoy your property in France during the summer period from July to September.Particularity of the student furnished lease, this one is obligatorily established without tacit renewal of the lease at the expiry of this one.You will have to sign a new lease with your student tenant if you wish to renew this contract over several years.

Yes. The process of acquiring property in France remains the same regardless of the type of property, the amount of the transaction or its location.

It depends on the stage of the French property buying process you are currently in.If you have given your verbal agreement to the seller and you have not written a written offer of purchase then you can, without any problem, retract. If you have submitted a written offer of purchase to the seller, then you must accept the redaction of the sales contract and then retract within the legal 10 day retraction period.

If a preliminary sales contract is being drafted at the time you wish to withdraw and you have therefore paid a fixed compensation, two cases are possible:

  • You retract during the legal withdrawal period of 10 days.In this case, your down payment is fully returned
  • You retract after the legal withdrawal period of 10 days.In this case, only the non-realization of a suspensive clause (the main one being the obtaining of a mortgage) can allow you to retract.If the reason is otherwise, then your withdrawal will unfortunately cost you your down payment

We know that contingencies can happen, which is why we try to always negotiate the lowest possible down payment for foreign buyers working with us.

Lately, if you want to retract just before signing the deed of sale it becomes very complicated.Not only will the seller keep your down payment, but he will also be able to claim additional damages from the French Justice.Feel free to read our article on the purchase offer, the preliminary contract and the deed of sale to understand your rights and commitments at each stage of the process.

The real estate transaction taking place in France, the French Laws prevail over all others and especially those applied in the country of origin of the foreign buyer. Also, in case of dispute, the French Laws prevail over others.

Unlike the Notary fees, agency fees are fully negotiable.When we collaborate with a foreign buyer, we do our best to reduce or even completely remove them.Indeed, from our point of view, since it is the seller who asks the agency for the sale of his property and who signs a mandate with her, it is up to him to pay for it if successful of the mission and not to you!Especially since you will have your side the notary fees to assume.

Depending on the situation (date of sale of the property, personal situation of the seller) the agency fees can be negotiated accordingly.Generally, we get at least a 50/50 split of these fees between the seller and you.The negotiation of agency fees is also part of one of our levers of actions used to tip the price of the transaction in your favor.Read our article on the negotiation of real estate in France to discover all the levers of actions to use to make the negotiation advantageous for you.

As a buyer you will have to make two payments in France.The only person to send money to in France is the Notaire.Nobody else!Neither the seller nor even the real estate agent representing him.A first payment corresponding to the deposit (between 5 and 10% of the price of the property) will have to be made at the signing of the preliminary sales contract on an account belonging to the Notary.The remainder due (amount of the transaction – deposit) must be paid to the Notary not later than the day before the signing of the deed of sale.In case of agreement from a French bank concerning the issue of a mortgage, the associated funds will be released and paid to the Notary by the bank in question.These funds from the bank will not pass through your personal bank account.

Thereafter, the Notary will be responsible for the distribution of funds.He will make transfers to the seller, to the real estate agency in charge of the sale (commission), to himself (part of the Notary fees) and to the State (taxes).Know that if a person other than the Notary claims money, this is illegal and reprehensible.