10-step process to find and buy a property in France as a foreigner

This page is a presentation of or 10-step process designed for foreigners wishing to buy a property in France. It is a summary of our Buying Process tab, which explains the French legal process and the various actions we undertake together. The object of these actions is to enable you to simply find and buy your French property. They also allow you to avoid all of the pitfalls and problems that usually face foreign buyers. 4 of the steps are dedicated to the search for your ideal property. Buying this property according to the purchase process in France is our second block of services in 6 steps.

Finding your ideal property in France

     

Through 4 steps, we enable you to have full access to the properties on the market likely to match your project and to find your ideal property in France. All this while limiting the number of trips you have to make and saving time and money.

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STEP 1

First step of our first block of services. The definition and the study of the feasibility of your project are the foundations of a successful project.

Feel free to use our template to fully describe your project. This tool will also allow you to easily send us all the data linked to your project. As French property finders, we will be able to extensively study your project and its feasibility.

We ensure that the type of property you want to buy and its location match your budget.

We also ensure that there are properties available on the French real estate market that match your requirements. Why? We want to make sure that you do not start unrealistic searches that will eventually prove unsuccessful.

  • Make sure that your project is realistic

  • Define your project in detail and share it with us

STEP 2

We then search all the properties for sale in France that match your request. Foreign buyers tend to always visit online real estate portals.

We have access to the entire French property market, not just these online portals.

We therefore increase your chances of finding the property in France that fits your requirements. We fully explore every single search channels possible:

  • Direct sales through Notaries
  • Trade fairs organised by various real estate professionals
  • Sales between individuals
  • Real estate online portals
  • French real estate agencies websites
  • Auction sales
  • Ads in trade papers

The purpose of this action is to gather as many properties as possible. This enables us to offer you a maximum of choice.

We compile a file for each property during this step. These files detail all the information available to us. They are then sent to you. Then you will be able to study the initial information gathered. This will give you the opportunity to have an overview of all the marketed properties matching your search criteria.

You will also be able to compare all the offers. You can then make a first selection of potential properties.

  • Gather all existing properties available on the market corresponding to your requirements

  • Make a first selection

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STEP 3

People often choose to personally search for and visit properties in France. Unfortunately, they are very often disappointed with the properties they have travelled to see. The properties are often very different in real life compared with the internet presentations.

Most French sellers only disclose the positive aspects of their property when they advertise. They do not hesitate to airbrush pictures to make their property more attractive and multiply the requests for visits.

Foreigners wishing to buy a home in France generally spend a lot of time and money in repeat trips to find a suitable property. Our pre-visit system saves you time and money. We are already in France, so we visit the properties selected in step 2 on your behalf.

For each property that we visit for you, we design an interactive portfolio in which you will find:

  • Photos and description of the property
  • Photos and description of the town or village in which the home is located
  • Photos and description of the amenities you have requested
  • Orientation and area of each room
  • Report on the general state of the property
  • The plans of the property
  • All local council’s information with regards to possible town / village / city developments

During this step, these portfolios are then made available to you. They allow you, from the comfort of your home, to select the right properties.

  • Make a second selection and focus on the properties that really interest you

  • Complete overview of properties of interest without travelling!

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STEP 4

The previous step helped you select the most interesting properties. You know that they are defect-free. They also match all your criteria as we have physically visited and checked them.

A visit in person is then highly recommended. Seeing the selected property(ies) yourself will help you make your mind up.

We organise the whole trip (flights, transport, hotel).

We also make all the necessary appointments with the estate agents. The only thing you need to do is to go to the airport! We will accompany you to visit the selected properties.

Our presence means that you can travel with peace of mind. Also, you avoid the potential language barrier with the estate agents.

  • Find your ideal home with one single trip to France

  • Benefit from the support of French property experts during the visits

Purchase through the French property buying process

         

To buy the property you have just found, you now need to follow the purchase process in force in France. We accompany you along this process with our 6 steps to buy a property in France. As a foreigner, this process may seem complicated and strange. Our support as a French property finder then becomes vital for you. Important fact, you receive a translation in your mother tongue for each of legal documents that will be established. This will allow you to fully understand the documents before signature and therefore before commitment.

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STEP 5

To buy the property in France, the first thing to do before fully entering the buying process is the negotiation of the price. Do you speak French, and do you know how to negotiate the price of a property? Probably not.

Unfortunately, most foreigners trying to buy a home in France face difficulties negotiating the selling price. They end up buying the property at the (often overvalued) price asked by the seller.

One of our main objectives is to allow you to buy at the same price as French residents. Indeed, foreign buyers pay on average 8.8% more than French buyers for similar homes.

By letting us negotiate directly with the seller in France on your behalf, you will benefit from the negotiation tools that we use. In most cases they force sellers to reduce their prices.

  • Take advantage of our negotiation techniques to buy at the best price

  • You no longer need to pay more than the true market price

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STEP 6

First real step of the French property buying process. Indeed, the negotiation during step 5 can be considered as a preliminary step to this process.

Legally, it is not mandatory. Once a verbal agreement with the seller has been found to buy his property, you will need to confirm your intention to acquire the property in writing.

Specific information is essential in order to make your offer valid. If the slightest bit of mandatory information is missing, your offer will be deemed null and void. You may then lose the upper hand against other potential buyers.

During this step, we will therefore draw up the offer with you in your language including all the legal elements required. Then, we transmit it on your behalf in French to the seller.

  • Create a valid offer to purchase legally to buy the property

  • Creation of a key document in the buying process in both French and your native language

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STEP 7

Finding a Notaire is a key step to buy a property in France. Indeed, you cannot complete a real estate transaction without involving this legal professional.

Firstly, the Notaire is often responsible for the drafting of the preliminary contract (step 8). Secondly, he is responsible for the drafting of the deed of sale (step 10). He is also responsible for this document being signed by both parties.

You have two choices during this step of the buying process: collaborate with the seller’s Notary or select your own.

Choosing your own Notary does not cost any more. Indeed, both professionals would then share the fees associated with this step.

Thus, we introduce you to a Notaire who speaks your language. That way you avoid any misunderstanding and you are fully advised.

  • Simplify your search for a Notaire

  • Collaborate with a notary speaking your mother tongue

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STEP 8

THE key step to buy a property in France! You must draw up a preliminary sales contract summarising all of the conditions of the sale. In most cases, the Notaire will draft this contract. Sometimes the estate agent representing the seller deals with drafting this contract.

There are two types of buying contracts that can be drawn up. Each commits you and the seller in a different way.

Our assistance then will be essential in drawing up a contract that will protect you the most.

Once this contract signed, it will be more or less impossible to reverse or modify certain aspects of the sale.

Signing this sale contract is indeed a final commitment.

Thus, during this step, we establish this contract with the Notary or the real estate agent. That way, we ensure that we assert your legal rights and obtain maximum protection.

If you wish, this contract can be translated into your native language so that you fully understand it before you sign it.

  • Put in place a sales contract that best protects your interests

  • Translation of a key document of the buying process in the language of your choice

STEP 9

Financially you have two options to buy a property in France: a cash purchase or a purchase by borrowing funds.

In the latter case, you will have two options: get a mortgage in your country of origin or obtain one from a French bank.

Despite being a foreigner, you are entitled to approach the French bank to obtain a mortgage, just like French residents.

We will accompany you during this complicated process if you choose this option.

Indeed, French banks are often rather reluctant to grant mortgages to foreign buyers.

You will benefit from our partnership with BNP Paribas International Buyers or our partner broker if you collaborate with us.

Finding a mortgage to buy a property in France has never been easier!

  • Find the mortgage that suits you best

  • Personalised support during the 7-step mortgage application process

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STEP 10

The last step to buy a property in France and the step that any foreign buyer wishes to reach!

The signature of the deed of sale by the two parties will mark the transfer of ownership between you and the seller. You get the keys to the property and the seller gets the payment of the price negotiated in step 5.

Just like for the property visits, we organise your trip and your stay. We accompany you to the Notary’s office.

We also provide a live translation if the notary does not speak English.

Thus, no possible misunderstanding during the last verbal formalities at the Notary.

  • Complete organisation of your trip

  • Live translation

Beyond the transfer of ownership (6 years free support)

     

Step 10 marks the transfer of ownership between you and the seller. You are therefore the new owner of the property in France. Our support does not end there. Indeed, our additional steps allow you to comfortably settle in the property you just bought. By collaborating with French Property Connection, you benefit from our personalised support for 6 years from the date of signature of the deed of sale. At no additional cost. Peace of mind when considering your future as the proud owner of a property in France. These additional steps include:

Do not wait any longer! Make now your first step to your future property in France!

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