Category Archives: French Property News

HOUSE-HUNTING IN #FRANCE

HOUSE-HUNTING IN FRANCE

When looking for a house in a foreign country, research is the key. House-hunting trips are expensive and time consuming so you need to weed out the unsuitable properties before you leave home, and only make the trip if there is something promising to see. Check out the estate agent’s local knowledge and experience, and if you feel you have a good rapport with them, then trust their judgement – they should know all their properties intimately and can help you avoid the frustration of a wasted visit. Be realistic – if no advertised properties meet your criteria and budget, you have probably chosen the wrong area and may need to re-consider your criteria.

Find out as much as you can about your chosen area . You may not have time to drive around looking at different towns and villages, so again, use a local French estate agent who can identify an area that fits your needs. Then when a house comes up you will already know what’s around it.

Look at as many properties as you can on the internet to get a feel for prices, and talk to French estate agents to discuss individual properties before you leave home to decide whether they are likely to be suitable. Because most French properties for sale are on the market with more than one agent, be sure to check the property is not already sold before you book your trip. Be prepared to see other properties that the agent may propose – they may in the end be more suitable than the ones you have selected. And be ready to move fast if a suitable property comes up because you won’t know how many other parties are interested.

Top 10 tips for happy house hunting

  1. Make appointments to see agents or specific houses before you leave home, to make the best use of your time in France.
  2. Set a realistic schedule. France is a big place. You may spend more time in the car racing from one appointment to another than seeing properties. Build in time for looking round the area, plus time for second visits in case you see something you like. Take into account the geographical area for example if you are looking at ski chalets for sale in different ski resorts then travel time will increase due to transport links.
  3. Leave plenty of time to get to your appointments, especially if you don’t know the roads, and have the agent’s contact details with you in case you are running late. Do notify the agent of a change of plan, or delay. They will be waiting for you and will have alerted vendors of your visit
  4. Pace yourself as house-hunting is an exhausting business. Try and avoid seeing too many properties in one day - it will cause confusion and is inevitably counter-productive.
  5. Talk to your estate agent. A half hour chat in the office can save hours on the road. Discuss the house you wish to view with your agent as they will personally know the property – they may know of some pitfalls or suggest alternatives.
  6. Don’t take friends and/or extended family with you unless they are directly involved in the purchase. Other people’s opinions and needs can lead to confusion and distraction.
  7. Know what you are looking for. What is great for one person is not ideal for another. Make sure that you all “sing from the same hymn sheet”.
  8. Take notes. A camera plus a note pad to record as much as you can about each house. A good agent will provide printed details for each property visited, with room to add your own comments.
  9. Be comfortable. Wear sensible clothing and suitable footwear for trampling around outside, and take drinks and snacks in the car in case you can’t find anywhere to eat at the appropriate time.
  10. Be honest with your agent about what you like and dislike and your budget. The more they understand, the more help they can be.

But above all enjoy the trip – France is a wonderful place to visit and to live in – so take time off to soak it all in.

Good luck & Happy house hunting!

Charming cottage in the Dordogne.

Ref 700937 – 2 bedroomed stone property for sale in Jumilhac le Grand, Dordogne

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A Character house just 15 minutes on foot to the village which overlooks the fairytale castle and river with picnic benches and walking trails. For all your everyday needs you will find bars/restaurants, a grocery shop, a bank and post office, bakers and butchers, hairdressers and pharmacie. In addition there is a primary school and doctor’s surgery. Just 10 minutes by car is the market town of St Yrieix la Perche with all the big supermarkets, DIY shops, a sports complex, train station and much more. The house is 2 bedroomed and semi detached. It had a new roof in 2011 and the upstairs of the house has been completely rebuilt and decorated to expose original beams.

To see more properties for sale in France go to www.towncountrypropertyfrance.com
For Normandy property see www.normandyproperty.com
And for ski apartments and chalets for sale in the French Alps www.frenchpropertyski.com

Fantastic views over the South Charente countryside!

Ref 701116 – South Charente. Detached country house with pool.

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This restored 4-bed country house enjoys magnificent countryside views from its sheltered and private location on a South-facing hillside. Situated in a small hamlet, well away from roads, it has been carefully restored in recent years and now offers comfortable and spacious accommodation. On the ground floor, a welcoming dining hall leads on to the fully fitted kitchen / breakfast room with wood-burning stove, a cosy sitting room, and a beautiful conservatory which can be enjoyed all year round thanks to double glazing and underfloor heating. On the first floor, there are 4 double bedrooms and a large, well-equipped bathroom. In addition to the main rooms, there is a downstairs shower room and WC, plus a utility room and a further large room which is currently used for winter storage and summer overflow bedroom space. This room has glazed doors to the garden and could easily be finished off to create a granny flat or guest apartment. The attached double-height barn offers parking for large vehicles, with scope for further development if wished – it is very clean and tidy and like the house has had the benefit of a new roof in recent years. Other outbuildings include a small former wine-store, a garden shed, a boiler-room housing the impressive Wiessmann central heating boiler, and a range of former piggeries which are sited alongside the pool and have been converted to make store-rooms, pool-house, and two useful covered terrace areas to allow maximum enjoyment of the pool and the wonderful views. The local village, charming and historic, is within walking distance and although it has no shops, it still has a thriving primary school. Shops, services and railway station are less than ten minutes away in the pleasant town of Montmoreau St Cybard, whilst Angoulême, historic walled city that is capital of the Charente department, is only a 35 minute drive.

To see more properties for sale in France go to www.towncountrypropertyfrance.com

For Normandy property see www.normandyproperty.com
And for ski apartments and chalets for sale in the French Alps www.frenchpropertyski.com

Normandy. Beautifully renovated stone house with separate cottage.

Ref 700232 – Beautifully renovated stone house with cottage in Manche.

700232

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Situated in a no-through lane with unspoilt views over the fields to Cametours and well away from the proposed new electricity line, this turn-key property offers any buyer not only the opportunity to own a beautiful house but to also earn a potential income. An imposing entrance hall leads into the tastefully decorated living room with an unusual double opening fireplace complete with double fronted wood burning stove that heats not only the living room but the large dining room, complete with original built in oak cupboards. The west facing kitchen leads from the dining room and is fully fitted with oak units and work tops. An oak staircase leads from the dining room to the first floor and the two large double bedrooms, a walk in wardrobe and an equally large bathroom.The third bedroom is on the second floor and benefits from an en-suite WC.The office on the ground floor has its own external access and en-suite walk-in shower and WC; this room could equally be used as a fourth bedroom. There is a cottage in need of some renovation that comes with the property, the ground floor has recently been re-laid with a new damp proof course and concreted. All utilities are to hand and just need re-connecting. Once renovated the cottage could provide any potential owners with an income and the clever layout of the principal house, could allow bed and breakfast accommodation to be offered. The historic town of Coutances is 14 kms to the west and the departmental capital of St Lo is 17 kms to the east. The beaches of the Atlantic coast are only 20 minutes away.

To see more properties for sale in France go to www.towncountrypropertyfrance.com
For Normandy property see www.normandyproperty.com
And for ski apartments and chalets for sale in the French Alps www.frenchpropertyski.com

4 bedroom country house on 2+ acres

Ref 700279 – Superb detached longère in 2 acres of land

french property mayenne
This is a very rare find and has to be seen to fully appreciate the majestic nature of the property and the beauty of its location. It is a superb detached longère packed with original character features and offering new owners a multitude of varying opportunities to create a truly unique home. Everything about the property is huge – the original carpentry used in construction, the granite stone framing each front doorway and window, the granite feature fireplaces, the dimensions of each room and the roof – and all in excellent condition. The property is presently configured to provide a large dining kitchen, large lounge/dining room, utility area, 4 large bedrooms and 2 useful storage areas (for garden tools etc) accessed from outside the main house. There is a shower room and separate wc on both the ground and first floors and stairs from the lounge/diner access the first floor accommodation, where the centre-piece is a huge galleried landing area which would make an ideal office or study. There are fully working feature fireplaces in both the kitchen and the downstairs bedroom and in the latter, the fireplace fronts a large original stone bread-oven, which is built into a small outbuilding at one end of the property.The property sits on about 2 acres of land with trees, fruit trees, lawned areas and a well and is fully south-facing. The location is everything you would want it to be, quiet and peaceful but only 5 minutes from the busy small town of Pré-en Pail, which has just about everything you need, including a large supermarket.

To see more properties for sale in France go to www.towncountrypropertyfrance.com

For Normandy property see www.normandyproperty.com
And for ski apartments and chalets for sale in the French Alps www.frenchpropertyski.com

Quaint 3 bed stone cottage for sale only 10 mins to the sea

Ref 700086 - Cottage for sale in Normandy

Cottage for sale in Normandy
This pretty 3 bed stone cottage is in a quiet hamlet with no through traffic, yet it is only 10 minutes from the Atlantic coast beaches, which makes it a perfect lock up and leave holiday home. The town of Les Pieux is 6 kms away, where you will find shops and restaurants. Diélette with its ferry access to the Channel Islands of Guernsey and Alderney is only 12 minutes away. Known for its rich history, the Cotentin peninsular has something to offer everyone from the cliffs at Nez de Jobourg in the north, to the D-Day landing beaches in the east, Mont St Michel and the museum and gardens of Christian Dior’s childhood home in Granville to the south
For more Normandy property see www.normandyproperty.com

6 bedroom renovated Maison de Maître. 1 ha + of land

Ref 700421 - MAISON DE MAÎTRE FOR SALE IN DEUX-SÈVRES

Maison de maitre for sale
Superb property recently renovated on more than one hectare of land. A private lane leads to the the house including on the ground floor, a fully fitted kitchen with a breakfast room, a living room with a fire place, a lounge with a fire place as well, a lovely and spacious dining room. Also a boiler room. On the first floor, you can find a landing, 4 large and luminous bedrooms, a shower room and a bathroom. On the second floor a fantastic 79m2 convertible attic. This property has a gite including on the ground floor, an entrance hall, a living room with fire place, a kitchen with a dining area. On the first floor, 2 bedrooms of 11m2 each, a bathroom. You also find on the second floor a convertible attic of 36m2. Outside a beautiful park with fruits trees, all on more than one hectare. A fantastic barn of 67m2 with a small outbuilding. This house has been renovated with taste and style.

To see more properties for sale in France go to www.towncountrypropertyfrance.com

For Normandy property see www.normandyproperty.com
And for ski apartments and chalets for sale in the French Alps www.frenchpropertyski.com

Renovated spacious stone country house for sale. Rural Normandy setting

4 Bedroom House For Sale in Manche, FRANCE – Property Ref: 700199.

 

Normandy property for sale

Normandy property for sale

 

This is a beautifully renovated spacious famiily house situated in the country a short walk from the nearest village and about 25 minutes from the sea. . The towns of Coutances and St Lo are within easy reach as are the ferry ports of Cherbourg and Caen. The nearest village has a variety of shops, a school, bar, bakers etc.. and the village itself is lively with many activities taking place in the local Salle des Fetes.
Centrally heated, four bedrooms a substantial garage, two living rooms, two kitchens, two staircases three showerooms 2wcs this would make an ideal residence for an extended family or even b and b/gite and house. The property has been well maintained to a high standard by the present owners as have the beautiful gardens. Additional accomodation could be available on the first floor as there is room to expand. The garage itself has a room above and is double glazed.
The layout of the property would suit an extended famiily or a family with frequent visitors who like some independence – a little gite or a b and b activity or just one big family home.

To arrange a viewing please call +33 545 98 00 98

For further information and other property for sale in France go to www.towncountrypropertyfrance.com
French ski property for sale can be found on www.frenchpropertyski.com
Properties for sale in Normandy at www.normandyproperty.com

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New tax for large capital gains on French property sales from 01/01/2013.

 

From 2013 a new further rate band of Capital Gains Tax (impôt sur les plus-values) has been introduced where the net capital gain* on the sale of a French property exceeds 50,000€.

The extra Capital Gains Tax (CGT) will be calculated on a sliding scale from approximately 1% of a net capital gain of 50,001€ rising to 6% for a net capital gain of over 260,000€.

This measure is permanent and is on top of the standard CGT rate (currently 19% for French, UK or EEC residents) and the 15.5% social charges.  It will continue to apply in 2014 and subsequent years, until the law changes.

However the French government has introduced a special ‘one-year only’ discount– just for 2013 – allowance against CGT which will help offset the effects of this new extra tax on large capital gains.

This measure will be of most interest to vendors who stand to make a large net capital gain on their French property sale, and is for 2013 only.

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 Sales for which a “compromis de vente” was signed before 07/12/12 are exempt.

Capital Gains Tax (impôt sur les plus-values) is applied to all property sales in France and is only applied to secondary or investment properties Main French residences (ie. the home address that you use on your income tax declaration to the French tax office) are exempt.

* net capital gain = taxable capital gain after deduction of original purchase costs, discount for period of ownership, and allowable expenses.

Social charges at 15.5% remain unchanged

These notes are for guidance only. We recommend that customers consult their French notaire or a specialist financial advisor for up-to-date information and advice on their particular situation.

 

 

Financing your holiday home in France

Mortgage or finance your French Property

Whether you are buying a holiday home in Normandy, a permanent house, or an investment property here in France, it may be useful to find out about mortgage financing. While you will know about finance facilities in your own country, we advise that you look into French mortgages which have become more flexible in recent years, and rates are extremely competitive.

There are several major banks offering a very good service including BNP Paribas, HSBC but don’t forget the brokers like International Private Finance (IPF) who can sometime beat the banks at their own game!

They all have friendly advisers can offer their services in English and can offer mortgage financing, loan refinancing, equity release and in some cases post financing.   They will be able to help and explain to you the products and services on offer, and can offer a useful, quick,’ in principle’ decision on a loan.

If you’d like some more information, we can put you in touch click here