Property finder in France to support foreign buyers


french-property-finderAs French property finder, we have always understood that there are two types of foreign buyers: first, people wishing to accomplish their project on their own. They are most of the time retired or professionally inactive people who have time to conduct their property search on their own. They also have the time to make multiple trips to visit properties. In fact, doing this is a pleasure for them.

And then, there are people wishing to be accompanied throughout the realisation of their project. These are mostly active people, who love France. They are looking for a second home but do not have the spare time to complete the search and do not have the time to carry out multiple visits to France. They lack the time to immerse themselves in the legal side of the acquisition following the purchase process. In this situation, the use of a property finder is essential. Indeed, a collaboration with a property finder saves you precious time. It also allows you to save money and brings you many other benefits.

What is a French property finder?

A property finder in France is a real estate specialist. He exclusively works for and protects your interests as a buyer. Depending on his status and the missions he chooses to accomplish, the minimum he undertakes is the property search. This means that he will work until he finds your ideal property in France. He can also offer additional support. This includes support through the legal process, starting from the negotiation of the price of the transaction to all the way to the signature of the deed of sale. A property finder can manage the legal section of the purchase for you.

In our case, you can entrust us with the complete realisation of your project. We only work on behalf of foreign buyers with a project to find and buy a property in France. In addition, we protect your interests against the real estate agent who will only defend those of the seller. Contrary to popular belief, few real estate agents in France care about the buyers’ interests. Indeed, they sign a sales mandate with the sellers. A percentage of the sale price (between 5 and 10%) is their remuneration for this service. Helping the buyer to buy at a lower price than requested by the seller does not make any sense for them. By acting like this, they would negatively impact their commission.

Benefits of working with a property finder

As a foreigner looking to buy a property in France, using a property finder can be a wise decision. By trusting such a specialist, you will benefit from many advantages. You will also free yourself from all the pitfalls and problems usually encountered by foreigners. The 10-step process that we have put in place allows us to always work closely with you. Together, we move forward until the final step in the realisation of your project.

Benefits when looking for the ideal property in France

We carry out the property search for you. Our skills bring you considerable advantages over people choosing to do the search by themselves.

Access to all properties on the French marketWe know where to look. We also know what search channels to use depending on the type of project. Most foreigners wanting to find a property often spend most of their time searching on online real estate portals. We also explore additional channels that only experts can access such as properties available directly from Notaires. So, as property finders in France, we give you access to 100% of the real estate offer likely to meet your need.

Time savingLooking for and finding a property in France takes a lot of time. Even more when you are a foreigner. In addition, foreign buyers encounter a major problem. They struggle to avoid the repeated trips to France to visit properties. Three steps of our solution allow you, with a succession of filters, to quickly identify your ideal property. This therefore allow you to considerably limit your number of trips to France. In most cases a single trip. It is all it takes for foreigners using our property finder skills to locate their property in France. Against an average of 5 to 6 trips for those choosing to perform the search on their own.

Financial gainAs the saying goes, “time is money”! And this saying is even more valid in the case of a foreigner wishing to buy a property in France. These inefficient trips do not just eat up your valuable free time. You also spend a lot of money for nothing! Collaborating with a property finder allow you to easily avoid this unnecessary spending.

Advantages through the French property purchase process

The services of some home finders stop once a property has been found in France. We decided to go further. Indeed, we support the foreigners working with us all the way to the signature of the deed of sale. The singing of this deed marks the transfer of ownership between you and the seller. During six of our steps, we allow foreign buyers to benefit from various advantages through this process.

Obtain a better priceWe speak French and we are experts in French real estate. It is therefore logical that we take charge of negotiations on your behalf. The goal is to make this step the most financially beneficial for you. We act on the pressure levers that we detail in our chapter dedicated to negotiating real estate to obtain in the great majority of cases, a significant reduction in the price of the transaction.

Follow the French laws to the letterA property finder must be an expert on the regularly changing purchase process. With us, you are sure to be following French law to the letter! And this from the preparation of your offer to purchase up to the signing of the deed of sale at the Notaire. A lack of suitable advice can lead you to make mistakes. And these mistakes can have far-reaching financial consequences.

Be in contact with a Notaire who speaks your languageWe are property finders exclusively working on behalf of foreign buyers. So, our network has quickly evolved to work with Notaires speaking languages other than French and English. Depending on your country of origin, we can put you in touch with a Notaire who speaks your language. It will be more effective to avoid misunderstandings. It will also allow you to be sure to receive clear answers to your legal queries.

Translation of all documents prepared in FrenchWe discussed this point in our previous section on the pitfalls and problems usually encountered by foreign buyers in France. The transaction will take place in France. All of the related documents will be therefore drawn up in French. We want you clearly understand the meaning of these documents and your commitments. So we decided to translate all of the documents into your native language. All this to avoid any misunderstanding and to allow you to sign these documents with complete peace of mind. Signing is committing, so it is essential that you fully understand the meaning of these documents!

Benefits after the transaction

Most of the property finders stop supporting their customers once they receive the payment of their commission. But we chose to go beyond this stage. Indeed, we help you settle comfortably in your new property in France. By implementing for you all the utilities contracts related to the good operation of your property. Or even by helping you to find the right property insurance, we remain close to you after the completion of the sale. With us, you benefit from 6 years of free support beyond the signing of the deed of sale. We will even be able to help you if you need support to understand and pay the French real estate taxes.

So, we are proud to claim that we offer the most complete property finding service in France. This support is totally dedicated to foreign buyers wishing to have a real estate expert working alongside them. This, from the initial definition of their purchase project in France to the establishment of the property insurance and the utilities contracts.

To work with a property finder in France, a document signed by both parties is required. Without this document, a property finder cannot represent buyers with their projects to purchase real estate.

Panoramic view of Nice, region PACA

The search agreement

search-agreement-property-finder-franceThe search agreement is the document that allows you to confidently and securely confirm your search criteria to us. Signed by both parties, it details various elements. First, the mutual obligations and the remuneration of the property finder. Thenthe scope of the search and the maximum budget of the property sought. Last thing, the exclusivity (or not) of the search must be mentioned. This document is compulsory under French Law. This Law regulates real estate activities when the property finder takes over the negotiations and assists the buyer during the transaction.
So, without this document, no property finder in France has the right to make representations on your behalf. There are two types of agreements, simple and exclusive.

  • The simple or non-exclusive agreement allows you to continue to search for a property personally. You can work with other property finders in France also commissioned via a similar simple search agreement.
  • On the other hand, the exclusive agreement does not allow you to search for a property either personally or through other property finders. And this for the entire duration of the exclusive agreement.

To make it valid and link buyers and professionals, this document must include various information.

  • The duration. Generally, the length is 6 months, renewable up to 12 months.
  • Specify whether the search agreement is simple or exclusive.This will have an impact on the scope of the search and the fees of the property finder.
  • The specification of the search. The client’s wishes, the scope and the location(s) of the search.
  • The maximum budget of the buyer. The property finder can act as an advisor to determine the maximum budget. He can in particular help the buyer assess the true overall cost of buying his property in France.
  • The obligations of both parties. For example, the buyer is not allowed to directly buy a property that the property finder introduced to him for a year from the date of signature of the search agreement. Likewise, the obligations of due care and dilligence of the property finder would be detailed in the document.
  • The fees of the property finder. The fees of this professional are generally calculated based on a percentage of the cost of the transaction. We chose not to offer you this payment option. Instead, we offer you the choice between two much more advantageous options! In any case, the exact amount of our remuneration will appear in the document signed by both parties.
  • The details of the principal (the buyer) and the agent (property finder).
  • Dates and signatures of the 2 parties.

Have you previously thought of working with a property finder to help you with your project? Working with such a specialist can only be beneficial to you as a foreign buyer! You would free yourself from all the pitfalls and problems usually encountered by foreigners! Feel free to use the comment box below to react to this article and ask us questions. We will be delighted to answer any questions relating to working with a property finder.

About the author

Samir Grattery is the creator of French Property Connection. Holder of a Master in Property Law from the University of Sorbonne in Paris, Samir first worked as an estate agent. He was then working on behalf of sellers and defended their interests. He then decided to solely collaborate with buyers. Working as a property finder in Paris, he accompanied non-residents throughout their purchase project and protected their interests against sellers.

In 2015, after moving to the United Kingdom, he created French Property Connection to enable non-residents wishing to buy a property in France to simplify their purchase process, particularly by avoiding the pitfalls and problems usually faced by foreign buyers.

Share this post
Rate this post
4.89 avg. rating (97% score) - 19 votes

Comment or ask us something about working with us!

  1. Jon says:

    Hi, we’d like to know how big are the areas you can target as property finders in France?
    Thx Jon

    • Hi Jon,

      It depends on what you mean by big areas!

      But depending on the specification of your search we can target quite big areas such as one or two regions.


  2. Cengiz says:

    Thank you for your reply Mr Grattery that is full clear. We do want this chalet so we will think about forgetting to sometimes rent it. You should hear from us very soon! Thanks again Cengiz

  3. Hello the team! As french property finders, are you able to help us regarding our project to buy a chalet? Our project is quite special as we would like to use the chalet 2 or 3 months per year. We would wish to rent it for 9 or 10 months per year. How can we do?
    Waiting for your reply!

    • Hello,

      Thank you for your question. As French property finder, we are able to help you with your project but before starting working together, we just would like to warn you about something.

      We assume that your chalet in France will be furnished as you will sometimes want to use it personally. In France, it is strictly forbidden to draw up a lease agreement for a furnished property with a period less than a year. If you tenant is a student, this period can be reduced to 9 months. But there are no many students in the Alps!

      Thus, unfortunately, it will be difficult for you to proceed this way. Nevertheless, you can make season rentals. But one more time, be careful as the French Law is watching you:

      – in the case your total duration of your season rentals is less than 120 days in a year, you do not need to declare anything
      – in the case this duration is over 120 days per year, then you must declare it to the Council

      I hope these explanations are clear to you and feel free to contact us if you have any other query.

  4. Alexander says:


    I want to buy a property near the Aples, can you recommend any local property finders there or do you take care also of this region?

    • Dear Alexander,

      As French property finders, we do take care about the Alps area. Feel free to fill in our “My Future Property” tool in order to fully describe your project.

      We will then be able to advise you about its feasibility and discuss together about this project.

      Samir Grattery

  5. Hello,
    Could I just know what kind of search agreement are you signing with foreigners collaborating with your company?
    Is this agreement signed under French Law even if your company is set up in the UK?

    • Dear Hans,

      For practical reasons, we only sign exclusive agreements with foreigners collaborating with us.
      These agreements are signed under French Law as the transaction will take place in France. As property finders, even if our company is set up in the UK, we must follow to the letter the real estate French Law.