The first thing you should do is set up financing. We have several english speaking banking partners that can help you define your project. If you have a pre-approved loan then you will know your budget in advance, and have the necessary security with which to make the purchase, and appear to be a solid buyer.
The listed property prices include the agency fees. Additionally, you will have to pay the Notary fees (roughly 7% of property price excluding agency fees), and Homelike Home fees.
Paris maintains a strong demand that outweighs the supply of good properties. The best places usually sell within the first couple of visits. You must be prepared to make an offer immediately, and in most cases for the asking price.
We work exclusively for you, the buyer, and take no commissions from the agencies. The agencies therefore, are quick to contact us when new properties come into their hands.
Once the property is found, here’s what you can expect the process to be:
In the written offer, you propose to the seller a certain price, any contingencies to the purchase, and a limited amount of time within which to respond to the offer.
In principle if you make an offer at the ‘asking price’, the seller would be morally obligated to accept your offer and stop showing the apartment. This offer is independend of any approuval from the bank.
The signature of the pre-sale agreement (promesse de vente) takes place on average three months before the final sale.
If you are not able to be present either the Notary or we can sign in your place, given a Power of Attorney.
The contract is prepared by the notary, and stipulates the terms of the sale. It also contains thorough information on the apartment and the building:
– legal required tests on the apartment, provided by the seller (official measurement “loi Carrez”, quality of insulation, presence of termites, etc.)
– completed repairs and renovation, along with future projects.
At his step, you will be asked to provide a deposit held in escrow by the notary. This is 10% of the purchase price of the property.
Should you choose to take a mortgage, you may also want to include a “clause suspensive”, or contingency clause, that protects you should you not be able to obtain financing. This clause will outlines deadlines and conditions of the loan. If these terms are not met, and the bank refuses to lend money, the buyer will not lose his deposit, and the property will go back to the seller.
Once the “Promesse de Vente” is signed, you as the buyer, by law, have seven days within which a full retraction of the purchase can be made with no financial or legal ramifications.
Once you own a property in France, the fees and associated taxes will be the following:
LOCAL TAX (taxe foncière)
Local taxes are reasonable in Paris. For a one bedroom apartment, this tax amounts to about 500 euros per year.
This local tax is levied on you, as owner, by the commune where the property is located.
RESIDENTIAL TAX (taxe d’habitation)
This tax is payable by the occupant of the property, who may not necessarily be you, if you rent it. It is about the same as the local tax (500 euros per year if two persons live in the apartment).
Normally, the building in which your apartment is located is managed by an agent called “le SYNDIC” who is responsible for maintaining the common areas in the building and overseeing the management of the building.
Once a year, you will attend (or someone will attend for you) a general meeting ( Assemblée Générale) in which improvements and repairs will be voted upon by the co-owners of the building.
The charges (charges de copropriété) paid on a quarterly basis represent your contribution to :
- Managing agent fees
- Building insurance cost
- Maintenance and cleaning costs
- Concierge’s salary, if there is one.
For a one bedroom apartment, co-op charges amount to about 100 euros per month, but it is dificult to give an average price since it depends on the type of building, concierge or not, elevator or not …
UTILITIES – INSURANCE
Homeowners insurance – It can be arranged either through your bank or a referred insurance company and has to be in place at the time of signing the deed of sale.We will help you with this. The premiums are usually paid annually.
This insurance amounts to approximately 100 euros per year for a 1-bedroom apartment.
EDF-GDF (electricity and gas suppliers)
Contracts will be set up in your name and bills may be paid through automatic debit with your bank
Most package deals include cable television, unlimited telephone (excluding cell phones), and unlimited internet, for about 30 euros per month.
At this time, you will be expected to pay the following:
– balance due for the property
– various fees (agency, and buying agent fees)
– notary fees
– balance due for the building maintaince fees, and property taxes.
then…. you are given your keys!
Congratulations, you are the proud owner of a property in France
In France, it is mandatory to sign the final deed with a notary.
The notary’s role is not the same as that of a lawyer. He registers the transfer of property and makes sure that the state receives any taxes due, such as stamp duty.
The purchaser is entitled to choose the notary who should be impartial. The seller may appoint his own notary, in which case the notaries share the fees.