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Specialist in French Property Law Strap Line

Purchasing an existing property

Purchasing a property off-plan

Leaseback purchase

Purchasing building land


Selling an existing property


As in the UK, existing properties can be identified from various sources: an estate agent, through private sale advertised in the media, additionally the notaire may also offer properties for sale. Purchase through an agent attracts a commission payable directly or indirectly by the purchaser, the private sale does not, the notaire generally attracts a smaller commission than an agent and occasionally no commission at all.

As in England & Wales there are two stages to a French conveyance, however that is where the similarity ends. See below our overview of the process at a glance and how at AFL we interact to insure a stress free and secure process.


1st any month, any year.

England & Wales

1st any month, any year.

Anglo French Lawyers

1st any month, any year

Stage 1

Negotiation, offer and acceptance. Via agent or private sale. Property in France sold as seen but with caveats for the purchaser upon vendors responsibility. There is no obligation until the contract is binding for any of the mechanisms involved agent or notaire to address any potential problem as the responsibility falls to the vendor.

Point of sale agreement Offer & acceptance.

Pre-sale advice & written report on the implication of your sale; considering CGT, vendors obligation and declarations regarding, amongst other things works and declarations of conformity to original planning consent gained and or works done during your ownership.

Examination of agent’s mandat prior to engaging with agent ensuring that you have the widest possible platform and exposure for your sale including private sale options and if marketed to a UK market the probability of an exchange in sterling to avoid the vagaries of a sterling euro FX transaction.

Stage 2

Drafting and signature of initial purchase contract.

Agent forwards details of sale to vendors and purchasers solicitors.

Examination and written report on content of draft initial contract prior to signature, including seeking confirmation with local authorities in the event of any missing elements of vendors declaration in respect of e . g. planning and or issues of conformity that may delay or jeopardise completion of the sale in the event of purchaser queries resulting in last minutes delay or even failure to complete at time of final signing.

Stage 3

Purchaser’s ten-day right to rescind.
Purchaser pays deposit.

Solicitors conduct required searches and ask relevant questions of vendors solicitors.

On going liaison with local authority and agent to ensure smooth transition to completion. Address any specific enquires made be the purchaser.

Stage 4

Agent forwards signed initial contract to the notaire.

Signature of deed ( exchange of contract).

Arrange for signature with the notaire and or by power of attorney here in the U K . Finalise arrangement for the payment of funds be it sterling or euro.

Stage 5

Notaire conducts required searches prior to drafting purchase deed and mortgage deed (where applicable).

Registration of deed +mortgage approx. one month.

Where appropriate, further examination of tax position, liaison with notaire as to content of the final contract, proxies, already arranged as required, explanation made to notary public here in U K . De commission of SCI ownership as required.

Stage 6

Signature of purchase deed (acte de vente) approximately 2-3 months after signature of initial contract.

Registration of title deed +mortgage with the land and charges registry copy of deed sent to purchaser deed returned to notaire to archive.

Approximately one year.

Where there is no agent involved, arranging changeover of utilities and obtaing of final deed of transfer calculating pro rata taxes and insuring purchasers disbursement are paid.

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