Buying Property in France

Posted on 03 October, 2016 by Penny Attiwill | 0 comments

At a time when the purchase price for a single-fronted terrace in Melbourne or Sydney is equivalent to buying a chateau somewhere in the French countryside with a long drive and a pair of formidable but welcoming old iron gates (or is that just me who has a thing for big gates?), I thought it would be interesting to post about buying your own piece of land in this gorgeous country.

Sharon and David set up their website French Desire many years ago to share their experiences of buying various houses in France. The website now also includes recipes, places to stay, restaurants to visit, travel tips and other bits and pieces of great interest for any francophile.

Sharon has very kindly agreed to share her knowledge with us and I encourage you to visit her website for more information.

Sharon, what is the process when buying property in France?
The whole process is unfortunately typically French in that there is lots of paperwork and it isn't a fast process but there are notaires to assist you and it is all well worth it in the end. We have written guides to help people through especially from an Aussie perspective for this reason.

Are there hidden costs/taxes potential buyers should be aware of?
Not hidden necessarily but you need to be well informed/aware of the cost involved during and also after the buying process. There are taxes that apply both in France (bien sur, a few) and also Australia e.g capital gains.

In your experience where in France are people buying and why?
The most common regions Australians buy in are the Dordogne/Lot, Burgundy, Normandy, Provence/Languedoc which are all popular destinations for those travelling to France and easily accessible from Paris. Old, smaller village houses in these regions are common and are very close to markets, boulangeries, etcetera.

Is it easy to organise tradespeople to fix up a 'doer-upper'?
If you have watched any of those European renovation programs on TV, you would be wary of some local tradespeople especially those with language issues but there are a number of expats living in France who can assist.

If I want to buy and rent out to other travellers is this fairly easy to do?
France is the most visited country in the world (even now despite a recent drop following terror attacks) so plenty of tourists to rent places to. Most Aussies buy to rent - some just to other Aussies, others use airbnb (carefully) and the like to rent to travellers from all over the world.

Tell us about some of the properties you have for sale now.
Here is some information on a couple of places for sale listed very recently. These are both in the affordable range of 130-150k euro (AUD$200-250k).

Pretty 2-in-1 house in picturesque village by the river
Nestled alongside the picturesque River Dropt in Allemans du Dropt is a lovely property ready for new owners. The village is in the beautiful Lot-et-Garonne, but only 15kms to the popular Dordogne region. It is just 5km to the larger town or Miramont du Goyanne with banks, restaurants, supermarkets and is a commercial centre. It takes only 30 minutes drive to Bergerac Airport and just one hour to Bordeaux.

Beautiful house for sale near the river in Puy L'Eveque
Good rental income, beautiful area. The house currently rents well on both AirBnb and Trip Advisor with great reviews. The area is stunning, with great cycling, hundreds of vineyards and fantastic restaurants. Beautiful Lounge. Wood burner, highly insulated roof, wood floors, antique wooden ceiling fan, great space to relax. Opens onto fantastic covered terrace. There's also a restricted height mezzanine area that's currently used for storage and an office, has a velux window, wood floors, power and lights.

For further information on buying property in France please visit

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