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Moniqa

INFORMATION

About Buying Property in the Mediterranean

SPAIN

Property Buying Library
Buying Process Update 03.05.2016
SPAIN
General Law
Article ID:
43

Reservation of property:

Transaction Costs

Property Transfer tax 6% - 10%

Notary Fee 0.50% - 1.50%

Registration Fee 0.50% - 2%

Real Estate Agent’s Fee 2.50% - 3%

Costs paid by buyer 7% - 12%

Costs paid by seller 2.50% - 3%

ROUNDTRIP TRANSACTION COSTS 9.50% - 16.50%

How difficult is the property purchase process in Spain?

Foreigners have a right to buy and resell all kinds of property - residential, commercial or land, with no limits.

Acquiring property in Spain doesn´t automatically give one the right to live permanently in the country if the buyer isn´t an EU citizen, in the absence of a special agreement between the two states (Spain and the country of the buyer). But permission for permanent residence may be obtained by opening a bank account in a Spanish bank with not less than $150,000, and owning a business in Spain. On these conditions, a Spanish visa for the buyer and the members of his/her family is obtainable, which however doesn´t give the right to work in the country.

When both parties have agreed on a price, you must ask proof that the seller owns the property and that it is free of charges. As a buyer, you are advised to check the deeds in the Registro de la Propriedad (Property Registry) and to check for any outstanding mortgages. Remember that in Spain, debts are charged to the property and any outstanding mortgage will be passed on to the buyer. A Nota Simple will confirm this. When all is well, the parties are advised to sign a preliminary contract, a Contrato privado de compraventa.

You are then requested to pay a 10% of the purchase price as deposit. The estate agent will hold these funds in a bonded client account. As a precaution, it would be wise to put your deposit into an escrow account, a blocked account where neither party can get at them until the sale is closed.

If you intend to raise finance for the purchase, make sure that the sales agreement has an arres agreement (i.e. a 10% deposit) and a date specified for completion. However, it is possible to sign the contract without such a deposit and while technically you have the right to sue a seller who subsequently withdraws, with an arres agreement in place you are entitled to twice your deposit as compensation in the event that the seller decides to withdraw.

You pay the balance of the purchase price and all fees when you and the seller have signed the Escritura de compraventa, the definitive contract equivalent to the Deeds of the property. If you are buying a new property, you do not own the property until the work is completed, and you are in receipt of relevant certificates.

In Spain, the notary is a public official and is required to witness the deed of sale. But getting expert, independent legal advice in addition to the notary is recommended to protect your own interests. The notary prepares the official contracts and makes sure they comply with Spanish regulations. The notary enters the sale on the local property registers (Registrio de las Propriedad) to protect against third party claims. If there is common ownership, a Community of Owners must be established through which community charges can be shared. If your property is in an apartment block then the situation relating to the Horizontal Division should be clear, especially in new developments.

The transaction is normally completed in about 12 days.

Footnotes to Transaction Costs Table

The round trip transaction costs include all costs of buying and then re-selling a property – lawyers’ fees, notaries’ fees, registration fees, taxes, agents’ fees, etc.

Property Transfer Tax (Impuesto sobre Transmisiones Patrimoniales y Actos Jurídicos Documentados", ITP)

House buyers of re-sale property (as opposed to brand new) are required to pay the Property transfer tax, which varies from 6% to 10% depending on the autonomous region. The property transfer tax rate is 6% in Madrid.

The property transfer tax is paid at the relevant tax office. In cities where there are no specific tax office, payment is done at the Registry during the registration process. In Madrid and Andalucia, payment can be done online.

Value Added Tax or VAT (Impuesto sobre el Valor Anadido or IVT)

Notary Fee

Notary fees are around 0.50% to 1.50% of the property value. The notary fees for property worth over €6,010,121.04 depend on the agreement between the notary and the client.

Inspection Trips Update 03.05.2016
SPAIN
General Law
Article ID:
47

What is included:

The Spain Inspection Trip is offered at a cost of € 350 Euros per person / couple.

This covers airport transfers and 3 days hotel accommodation, as well as all food and drinks for the duration of the property inspection tour. If a customer buys he will get the money back.

On the day of arrival, a customer will be picked up from the airport (Alicante or Murcia) and transferred to its accommodation.

Day 1 & 2

The customer will visit the company's office on the morning of day 1 where he will have a chance to meet a team of property experts who will review the customer's choice of properties before the start of the tour. During these days’ tour Home Team Spain will show actual properties and will also provide the customer with general information on places of interest, restaurants, beaches, along the way.

Lunch is usually served at a traditional restaurant and the afternoon will be a continuation of the tour followed by free time for the clients to relax.

Day 3

∙ The final day is usually a day of discussions, final property visits and a meeting with one of recommended solicitors where the customer will be educated on all legal, tax and title matters. The clients will also have an opportunity to raise any questions or concerns they have. Usually after the 3 day of inspection tour customers have sufficient knowledge to decide whether Costa Blanca is the place for them.

∙ On the day of departure the customers will be collected and transferred to the airport.

NORTH CYPRUS

Property Buying Library
Buying Process Update 03.05.2016
NORTH CYPRUS
General Law
Article ID:
42

Transaction Costs

Registration Tax 0,5%

Value Added Tax (VAT) 5%

Title Transfer Tax 3% (6%)

Legal Fees 1400 GBP

Total Costs paid by buyer around 10%

How difficult is the property purchase process in Northern Cyprus?

1. Selecting your Property

Select your North Cyprus property to be purchased, agree verbally on the price and on the payment terms with the seller. The purchase terms and price may need to be negotiated with the seller.

2. The Reservation Deposit

Once a verbal agreement has been reached between the parties, the buyer pays a non-refundable holding deposit to his/her solicitor to show his/her good will, in order for the property to be taken off the market. The reservation deposit is a minimum of £2000 Stg, and paid by cash, credit card or via bank transfer. A receipt is issued and the deposit is included in the sales contract as part of the payment. The property is reserved for the buyer at the agreed fixed price for a limited time of 2-3 weeks until the buyer signs the sales contract and transfers the payment.

3. Search on the Property

Buyer’s solicitor completes a full ‘search’ of the Title Deed of the property to ensure that the seller is the owner of the said Title Deed and that the property is free of any encumbrances, mortgages, charges, liens or debt. In the case of there being any problem or encumbrance of the property, then the initial holding deposit will be immediately refunded in full and any contract drawn up will be void.

4. Draw up Contract

The contract of sale will be drawn up, in English, by the buyer’s solicitor, or by certified public notary, which will reflect all the agreed terms & conditions of the sale, specifications of the property, payment plan, etc. The solicitor will then go through the contract with the client. Any corrections or changes can be made at this stage. When the client is happy with the contract, it is signed in the presence of a public notary or the solicitor by the buyer, the seller and two independent witnesses.

If the buyer has to leave Cyprus before the contract is ready, then the buyer can leave Power of Attorney with a solicitor or a trustee so that the solicitor/trustee can sign on his/her behalf when buying properties in Northern Cyprus. In this case, the contract will be faxed, posted or e-mailed to the buyer by the solicitor for the buyer to approve before signing.

The buyer will then have 10-30 days to make the first installment or full payment in the case of a completed or resale property. According to the new estate agency law, once the contract is signed, the buyer needs, within 21 days, to pay the stamp duty at 0.5% of the agreed price and register the contract at the Land Registry.

The purpose of this new law is to protect the buyer’s ownership rights. Once the contract is registered at the Land Registry, the seller can not sell this property to anyone else or put it under mortgage. By this new law, your property will be safe until you get your Title Deeds.

5. Purchase Permit

Non Turkish Cypriot buyers must apply to the Council of Ministers to obtain permission to have the Title Deeds transferred to their name. The buyer’s application for ‘Permission to Purchase’ (PTP) can be prepared by a solicitor; costs vary between £1000 Stg and £1500 Stg. 

For this PTP application you will need a photocopy of the buyer’s passport and statement of the buyer’s criminal record (character report) which can be obtained from the buyer’s local police station (original copies must be submitted).  The Northern Cyprus Government is currently taking approximately 2 years to process PTP applications. The Government is, however, trying to speed up the process. The lack of a Title Deed does not prevent the buyer from selling the property. 

Applications for PTP are normally a formality, unless:

1. The buyer has criminal record

2. The property overlooks a military base.

Between the time that the buyer signs the contract of sale and he/she actually receives the Title Deed; the buyer owns the property ‘on contract’. When the seller signs the sales contract, the seller relinquishes any rights over the property and gives full ownership to the buyer. Property buyers are free to sell, rent or modify their property once the buyers take possession of the property.

6. Transfer of Title Deed

When the permission is granted by the Council of Ministers, both the seller and the buyer pay the relevant property transfer taxes and the seller transfers the Title Deed onto buyer’s name at the Land Registry. 

The seller pays the Capital Gains tax currently at 6.25% and the buyer pays Stamp Duty currently of 0.5%, VAT currently at 5% and Title Transfer Tax currently at 3%. 

Non TRNC citizens are only allowed to buy one property in their name.

THIS COMPLETES THE SALE PROCESS

Summary for buying a freehold property:

• Property is chosen and payment terms agreed,

• Reservation deposit is paid and ‘Property search’ is done,

• Contracts are signed by buyer and seller and the buyer   makes the payment according to agreed payment terms, 

• ‘Permission to Purchase’ application is submitted to the Interior    Ministry,

• Once the purchase permit has been issued, the seller will then       transfer the Title Deed onto the name of the buyer. Sale complete!

Inspection Trips Update 03.05.2016
NORTH CYPRUS
General Law
Article ID:
48

What is included:

∙ 3 day accommodation

∙ Transfer from airport

∙ Welcome pack on arrival

∙ Sightseeing tour

∙ Meeting with solicitor

∙ Transfer during properties viewing

Day 1 & 2

You will be collected from the airport and transferred to the place of accommodation. In the morning we will have a meeting in WINAGENT's office, where you will discuss all your requirements and select the range of properties according to your preferences.

First two days will be dedicated to the property viewings. During the inspection trip our WINAGENTS will arrange and organize everything for you. WINAGENTS will show you as much as you want to see, including the sights and facilities available nearby projects. You will feel the lifestyle of Northern Cyprus and become familiar with the best places to see.

Day 3

On the last day of inspection trip WINAGENTs usually discuss with the client his final choice and visit the properties one more time. It's recommend to meet a solicitor which will explain the buying process and all legalities. You will be able to ask all the questions you may have, to make everything clear to you. 

On the last day of your inspection trip you will be collected and transferred to the airport.

TURKEY

Property Buying Library
Buying Process Update 03.05.2016
TURKEY
General Law
Article ID:
44

Expenses when buying property:

Transaction Costs:

Registration Fee 1%

Mortar Dues (property tax) 4%

Real Estate Agent’s Fee 3%

Costs paid by buyer 8% - 11%

Costs paid by seller 0%

ROUNDTRIP TRANSACTION COSTS 8% - 11%

Expenses after buying property in Turkey:

∙ ISKAN fee € 300 - € 400 apprx (This is the second most of important documents after title deed for the brand new Properties. Without iskan you are not allowed to have electric and water subscription)

∙ Electric subscription: € 130 apprx

∙ Water Subscription: € 190 apprx

∙ White goods: € 2,000 (fridge/dishwasher/washer machine/cooker/owen/extractor)

∙ Air Conditioners: € 1,000 - € 2,000 (Each air conditioner costs around € 500 and depending on the room count in the property this will be changed)

How difficult is the property purchase process in Turkey?

Foreign ownership in Turkey is ruled by the reciprocity principle. Citizens of countries that allow Turkish citizens or legal entities to own property in their country are allowed to acquire property in Turkey. Citizens of most EU countries (except for Belgium, Cyprus, Czech Republic and Slovakia), the United States, Canada and other countries in Asia, Latin America and Africa can freely purchase properties in Turkey.

Foreign nationals also face restrictions on acquiring properties within municipal areas with less than 2000 registered inhabitants (article 87 of Village Act).Foreigners are also not allowed to purchase properties in the confines of military zones (Military Prohibited and Security Areas Act).

On 07 January 2006, a new law was enacted which put a limit to the amount of land that a foreigner can purchase. Foreigners are allowed to acquire a maximum of 30 hectares (74 acres) of real estate. Any piece of land exceeding 30 hectares requires a permit from the Turkish authorities.

A 10% to 25% deposit is needed during the initial stage of property acquisition, i.e., upon signing of the purchase contract. Permission for sale needs to be acquired by sending the deeds of property and passport translations of the buyer to the local Army Headquarters for approval. The permission for sale usually takes six to eight weeks to secure. Once the permission of sale is secured, the transfer of title of deed (“TAPU”) is done at the local Land Registry Office.

Having a solicitor to do the conveyancing is not a legal requirement, but it is highly recommended. Notarisation of all property sales to foreign nationals by a government-authorised interpreter is, however, a legal requirement. Moreover, both contracting parties (seller and buyer) are required to be present at the entry of title.

The whole process of registering property in Turkey takes six days to finish. The Turkish government, in turn, takes three to nine months to process the application and release the title deeds for transfer.

Footnotes to Transaction Costs Table

The round trip transaction costs include all costs of buying and then re-selling a property – lawyers’ fees, notaries’ fees, registration fees, taxes, agents’ fees, etc.

Registration Fee

Registration fees and related costs are around 1% of the property value.

Mortar Dues

Mortar dues are levied at a flat rate of 4% on the sales price of the property or market value of the property, whichever is higher.

Mortar dues are actually split evenly between the buyer (2%) and the seller (2%) but in practice, the buyer pays for all mortar dues.

Inspection Trips Update 03.05.2016
TURKEY
General Law
Article ID:
48

Destination : Alanya

Price : € 299 per person

Duration : 4 Nights / 5 Days

Accommodation : 4 stars hotel / Private apartment

Airports : Antalya (AYT) / Alanya-Gazipasa (GZP)

Including;

∙ Half board accommodation if staying in hotel

∙ Both ways flight tickets from major European airports to AYT or GZP

∙ Breakfast package in the fridge if staying in private apartment

∙ Welcome greetings at the hotel/private apartment

∙ Private airport/hotel/airport transfers

∙ Half day Alanya city tour

∙ 2 or 3 full days property viewing tours

∙ Lunch when together with clients

∙ 1 dinner in a nice restaurant

∙ 1 full day personal assistance if needed

Arrival Day : Our WINAGAENTS will welcome you at the airport and transfer you and your family members to your inspection trip apartment where you will have a welcome pack. Depending on your arrival time you will relax until the the appointed time of the meeting.

Day 2 : You will have a general meeting in our office with a WINAGENT followed by a city tour of Alanya. After lunch in a traditional style restaurant we will show you a number of projects and properties according to your requirements.

Day 3 : We continue to show you more properties and projects. To make a brake to relax we will have again lunch in one of the best places of Alanya. By the end of this day our guests usually know if Alanya is the right place for them and which property they liked the most. Often at this point we discuss various options seen by customer and customer's choice. After all the paperwork is completed, we provide dinner at a wonderful restaurant.

Day 4 : Our guests may wish to look at other properties but usually by this time they already made their decision, so we are taking them to the furniture shops and other places to help our guests to book everything they need for their new property. We also help to arrange a Turkish tax number, open a bank account and if it is needed, we help them to sign a power of attorney. Lunch is served in Alanya Castle.

Depart. Day : A goodbye meeting is briefly held at your apartment or at our office followed by your private transfer to the airport.


ITALY

Property Buying Library
Buying Process Update 03.05.2016
ITALY
General Law
Article ID:
45

Transaction Costs

Registration Tax 3.00 - 7.00%
Value Added Tax (VAT) 4.00% - 22.00%
Land Registry Tax 1%
Notary Fee 1.00% - 2.50%
Legal Fees 1.00% - 2% (+ 22% VAT)
Total Costs paid by buyer 9.05% - 32.82%


How difficult is the property purchase process in Italy?

There are no restrictions on foreign ownership in Italy.

Any money remitted from outside Italy for purchasing property, should be officially documented to ensure that the proceeds of any resale can be repatriated.

The first step to purchasing property in Italy is to hire a real estate attorney, to protect your interests. Although the real estate transfer process is a regulated process, it is potentially biased against the buyer. Keep in mind also that Italian law provides for pre-contractual liability. In the event that you feel aggrieved by the seller’s unfair behavior, you can file charges to be reimbursed for expenses.

Once you have chosen the property, make an offer. You must pay 1% of the purchase price as a gesture of good faith. Unfortunately, an offer of purchase is only binding on the buyer; the seller may still consider other offers. It is best to specify a time limit in the offer document, so as not to be left hanging by the seller.

The preliminary contract

If the seller accepts, the deal becomes binding on both parties. A preliminary contract or a compromesso is then drawn up by the seller, his attorney, or real estate agent, containing the sale price, the amount to be paid as deposit, the completion date, the land boundaries and details of the property, and any other relevant clauses (i.e. water rights and rights of passage).

Upon signing of the compromesso, the deposit is raised to 10% to 20% of the sale price, depending on what has been agreed. In the event that you decide not to pursue the purchase, the compromesso will be forfeited or the seller may seek legal action to enforce the purchase. On the other hand, if the seller backs out, he will be liable to pay double the amount you have given as deposit.

The notary performs due diligence

Closing usually takes six to eight weeks. The notaio or notary public has the responsibility of performing due diligence - although he is chosen by the seller, he acts for both parties. When the title search has been conducted to your satisfaction, pay the final balance and sign the deed of sale or rogito (witnessed by the notaio). This requires you to present a valid identification document, and your tax code.

The notaio will issue you a copy of the deed and present copies to the tax office and Land Registry. The necessary government duties must be paid for the sale to be officially registered. Registration protects the property from third parties charging any other interests against it. The notaio will also ensure that the utilities have been transferred to your name, and inform the local police of the change of ownership within 48 hours of signing the deed, in compliance with anti-mafia laws.

It takes an average of 15 days to complete all the four procedures needed to register a property in Italy.


Footnotes to Transaction Costs Table

The round trip transaction costs include all costs of buying and then re-selling a property – lawyers’ fees, notaries’ fees, registration fees, taxes, agents’ fees, etc.

* Registration Tax:
For old properties, registration tax is 3% for those buying their main home, under law 1089/39. The home must be located in your present or future comune of residence (or in the comune where you have or plan to have your main place of business) and it must not be classified as a ‘luxury’ home.

The registration tax for nonresidents and those buying second homes is 7%, so if you’re planning to become a resident in Italy, do so 18 months before buying your home. The tax is calculated on the declared value of the property and not on the purchase price.

Registration tax on the purchase of building land is 8%. Registration tax on the purchase of agricultural land is 10%.

* Land Registry Tax:
Land registry tax is payable on all property transactions. Resident buyers of their first home pay a fixed fee of €168, whether the property is an old property or newly-built. Buyers of second homes and nonresidents pay 1% of the declared price of the property.

* Cadastral Tax:
1% or a fixed fee of €168 for new properties. Fixed fee of €168 also applies if the property is their main or only residence.

* Land Registry Tax (imposta catastale)
Land registry tax is payable on all property transactions. Resident buyers of their first home pay a fixed fee of €129.11, whether the property is an old property or newly-built. Buyers of second homes and nonresidents pay 1% of the declared price of the property.

* VAT:
Buyers of new properties do not pay registration tax and instead are liable to pay Value Added Tax (VAT), which ranges from 4% to 22%.

VAT is levied at 4% for first-home resident buyers, at 10% for second-home and nonresident buyers, and at 22% on luxury homes with a rating of A1 in the Property Register. New properties are defined as those dwellings sold within five years of completion of construction or restoration. The VAT rate will be increased to 24% in 2016, and then to 25% to 2017, and then to 25.50% in 2018.

* Notary Fees:
Notary fees generally range from 1% to 2.5% of the declared value of the property. The cost of a notary is based on a property price list prepared by the Bar Association and varies according to the town council (and is subject to 22% VAT). The notary fee is payable when you sign the final contract. There are widely varying estimates and everything is up for negotiation, but €2,000 for a property costing €50,000 up to €3,500 for property costing €500,000 might be typical, including the cost of the fee of the conveyancer (geometra) which is levied depending on work, and can itself vary from €500 to €3,000.

* Legal Fees:
Conveyancing is usually performed by a lawyer (avvocato) and the legal fees are usually around 1% to 2% of the declared price of the property. Legal fees are subject to 22% VAT. A preliminary contract or a compromesso is drawn up by the seller, his attorney, or real estate agent. Hence, the buyer may opt out of paying the legal fees. The buyer is in any case protected by the public notary. The public notary is much more important than generally believed, he is obliged to check carefully all documents and if they are not 100% correct, no contract at all, so the buyer is very protected.


Inspection Trips Update 03.05.2016
ITALY
General Law
Article ID:
48

Inspection Trip of Italy Information is being prepared by Worldwide Investment Network. Information will be here shortly.

PORTUGAL

Property Buying Library
Buying Process Update 03.05.2016
PORTUGAL
General Law
Article ID:
46

Transaction Costs

Property Transfer Tax 6.50%
Legal fees 1% - 2%
Registration fees 0.20% - 1.20%
Stamp Duty 0.80%
Total Costs paid by buyer 8.50% - 10.50%


How difficult is the property purchase process in Portugal?

There are no restrictions on foreign property ownership.

The process of property purchase in Portugal is quite straightforward. Once a buyer has found a suitable property the next thing to do is to hire the services of a lawyer who will guide and assist the buyer through the process.

A lawyer’s task usually involve drawing up contracts and initiating the process of inspecting the property’s title insuring that no legal snarls will come up after the transfer. A search will be made to check the land registry (Conservatoria de Registo Predial) title at the local municipality and another search at the Inland Revenue (Repartição de Finanças) to ensure the tax registration on the property and that there are no unpaid charges. A fiscal number (Numero de Contribuinte) will be acquired for you through the local tax office as this will be necessary for most transactions in Portugal.

If the buyer is satisfied with the property and decides to buy a promissory contract (Contrato de Promessa de Compra e Venda), details of the conditions of sale and other agreements regarding the transfer will then be drawn. Once this has been signed and notarized, both parties become legally bound to see the transfer through. A deposit 10% to 30% of the purchase price is usually lodged at this stage and the parties will agree with the notary to record a date for the completion of the purchase. The buyer’s next task is to pay the municipal property tax or Imposto Municipal Sobre Transamissões-IMT.

The transaction ends with the execution of the Deed of Purchase and Sale (Escritura Publica de Compra e Venda) which is signed before a notary and officially recorded. At the same time the balance of the purchase price is paid according to the provisions of the Promissory Contract. The property will next be registered in the new owner’s name at the Conservatoria de Registo Predial. After which the transfer is complete.

Footnotes to Transaction Costs Table

The round trip transaction costs include all costs of buying and then re-selling a property – lawyers’ fees, notaries’ fees, registration fees, taxes, agents’ fees, etc.

* Property Transfer Tax
Property Transfer Tax is levied at a flat rate of 6.5%. The tax base is the selling price of the property or current market value of the property, whichever is higher.

* Registration Fee
Registration fees, including the notary fees, are around 0.20% to 1.20% of the property value.

* Stamp Duty
Stamp duty is levied at a flat rate of 0.80%. The tax base is the selling price of the property or current market value of the property, whichever is higher.
Inspection Trips Update 03.05.2016
PORTUGAL
General Law
Article ID:
48

Inspection Trip of Portugal Information is being prepared by Worldwide Investment Network. Information will be here shortly.

FRANCE

Property Buying Library
Buying Process Update 03.05.2016
FRANCE
General Law
Article ID:
47

Transaction Costs

Registration Fees 0.60% - 4.89%
Notary Fees 3% - 10% (+ 20% VAT)
Land Registry Salary 0.10%
Total Costs paid by buyer 6.10% - 22.99%


How difficult is the property purchase process in France?

There are no restrictions on foreign ownership. Most property is likely to be freehold. Apartments are likely to be held in two forms of freehold: co-ownership (which has meetings of co-owners, with votes taken and accounts kept), and volumes, adapted mostly for mixed-use developments. There are also leaseholds, for up to 99 years.

Once the parties have agreed on the price and what the sale relates to, the parties will be required to sign a preliminary agreement.

  1. The preliminary agreement usually takes the form of (in the North) an option (promesse unilatérale de vente), with a 5% to 10% penalty if the option is not exercised, usually secured by a deposit held by the notaire. If the seller withdraws, the buyer cannot sue for specific performance, only damages, unless the option has actually been exercised. To be valid, the option must either be notarized, or registered within ten days. In the South, a sale and purchase agreement is more common (promesse synallagmatique de vente), i.e., an agreement which allows the other party to sue for specific performance if the other defaults, with conditions precedent.
  2. There is a 7-day cooling-off period, in which the buyer can change his mind.
  3. This is the best time to instruct a structural survey.
  4. If a mortgage is being sought, the compromise de vente must contain a clause confirming that mortgage financing is being sought, then, if the mortgage is declined, the purchaser will not lose his deposit.
  5. Once preliminary contracts have been exchanged, there are pre-completion searches: land registry searches, local authority searches, planning permission searches, etc. If the dwelling has been sold by a “property professional” or is less than ten years old, the seller has a statutory liability to all future owners within the ten year period for defects.
  6. On completion, the purchaser and vendor sign the Acte authentique de vente at the Notaire’s office. The notaire will see that the account is settled, will accept his fee, and land registry fees, if they are not included in the notaire’s fees.

Notaires often act as estate agents, and are likely to be less expensive than immobiliers.

It takes an average of 58 days to complete all the procedures needed to register a property in France.

Footnotes to Transaction Costs Table

The round trip transaction costs include all costs of buying and then re-selling a property – lawyers’ fees, notaries’ fees, registration fees, taxes, agents’ fees, etc.

The use of French notary is mandatory for property purchases. There are several costs that are colletively called notary fees or "frais de notaire" because they are all paid via the notary. These costs include change of ownership fee (frais de mutation), charges of mortgage security (frais de garantie) and the notary fees or emoluments that also include various formalities and performance of certain acts. Most of these fees are fixed by the Chamber of Notaries and non-negotiable.

* REGISTRATION FEES (Droits d´Enregistrement):
Property transactions are subject to registration fees (also called transfer fees) when they do not fall under VAT.

Duties on sales of real property are collected when the property is transferred.

Initially collected for appropriation to the State, tax on the registration of real property transactions has become a département resource for all real property transactions other than exchanges conducted since 1st January 1985. Its rate is now a single one at 3.6 %.

Apart from the tax on the registration of real property transactions, there is an additional tax of 1.20 % collected for appropriation to the commune or to a département equalization fund;

There is also another levy of 2.50 % collected for appropriation to the State, assessed on the amount of the département duty in respect of "assessment and collection costs".

Additional levy for the State at 0.2% normal rate or 0.1% special rate

* VAT:
Value Added Tax (VAT) is levied at 20% of purchase price of a newly built property. Existing properties older than 5 years are not subject to VAT.

* Notary Fee:
The use of French notary is mandatory for property purchases. The purchaser pays the notary’s fees, which is fixed by law and non-negotiable. The notary fees are around 3% plus VAT for newly built properties. The notary fees are generally around 7% to 10% plus VAT for existing properties or properties over five years old.


There are several costs that are collectively called notary fees or "frais de notaire" because they are all paid via the notary. These costs include change of ownership fee (frais de mutation), charges of mortgage security (frais de garantie) and the notary fees or emoluments that also include various formalities and performance of certain acts. Most of these fees are fixed by the Chamber of Notaries and non-negotiable.


If there are two notaries involved, there is no extra cost to the purchaser. The fees are shared between the two notaries.



Land Registry Fee (droits d’enregistrement)
Land registry fees vary but are usually around 0.10% of the property value.
Inspection Trips Update 03.05.2016
FRANCE
General Law
Article ID:
48

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