Becoming a proud owner of a real estate property in France gives any foreigner the opportunity to apply for a multiple-entry Schengen visa at the French Embassy. It allows to stay in the country for up to six months. In some cases it is possible to obtain a residence permit based on a confirmed ownership of real estate.
After choosing an object the buyer concludes a preliminary agreement with the seller (called "Compromis de Vente"). The so-called "compromise" agreement contains the information on the transaction parties, the property construction passport and technical description as well as the price. The seller must provide the summary of the construction committee upon an obligatory examination.
The buyer will have to deposit the appropriate amount of funds within 7-10 days to the appointed notary bank account who is responsible for overseeing the purchase. The minimal required collateral is 10% of the price of the property. At this point this property is withdrawn from the marketplace and assigned to the buyer. The latter has 7 days to cancel the purchase, otherwise in case the agreement is terminated the collateral will not be reimbursed.
Usually the sale price tag already includes the fee of the real estate agency. Therefore, if potential buyers are asked to pay it in advance - it is most likely a fraud.
The conclusion of the preliminary contract is followed by a 1-3 months period. The notary checks the source of the funds as well as the state of the property being sold. Whether or not the object has been pledged, if all the necessary documents are available, etc. Various certificates and extracts are made. The notary must also receive a special document - the consent of the local administration permitting the transaction.
As a result the notary finalizes the purchase of the object (Acte de Vent). By this time the buyer must have the remainder of amount transferred to the aforementioned bank account including the transaction fee (yet another 6-7% of the realty price). Upon the conclusion of this agreement the notary changes the current owner of the real estate in the state registry. Last but not the least - don't forget the insurance!
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