Guide to Selling Property in France

Legal requirements for selling property in France

  • Sales Mandate - If you are selling your French property through a licensed estate agent, an officially registered Sales Mandate (Mandat de Vente) is required.
  • Agreement of Sale - Once you and the prospective buyer are in agreement over the price, you need to sign an Agreement of Sale (Compromis de Vente or Promesse de Vente).
  • Bill of Sale - When the property is deemed “ready to be sold”, you and the buyer need to sign the Bill of Sale (Acte de Vente or Acte Authentique) with a notary as witness.

Costs of selling property in France

Costs incurred when selling French property are:

  • Licensed estate agent’s fees (5% of the sale price).
  • VAT (referred to as TVA - Tax sur la Valeur Ajoutée in France).

Be prepared to pay capital gains if the French property being sold is your secondary residence.

Tips for selling property in France

To attract the right type of buyer, receive a fair price and sell your French property quickly, ensure it is:

  • Priced correctly
  • Well-presented

Property selling process in France

Before placing your property on the market, verify that it is in mint condition. Be open about property defects as these will be noted during the legally required property surveys carried out later on.

Since the market dictates price, a close look at current trends will help you fix a fair price for your property. A licensed estate agent can assist with this.

If you opt to hire a licensed estate agent, select one with an international clientele, sign a Sales Mandate and provide the agent with as much information and documentation as possible. Also consider signing a forward contract with a specialized foreign exchange dealer to ensure you don't incur significant losses on future transactions due to currency fluctuations.After placing your French property on the market wait to be contacted by potential buyers interested in viewing your property.

Note: If you are selling your French property through an agent, hand over a set of keys and try to be away during property viewings to give your buyer space to leisurely explore the property.

Once you receive an offer from a buyer and the two of you have reached a consensus on the final price (the estate agent can negotiate on your behalf), sign the Agreement of Sale drawn up by a notary. At this point, you will receive a 10% deposit from the buyer.

You now need to wait for three months while the notary ascertains through surveys and other measures that all conditional clauses in the Agreement of Sale are met.

After all clauses are satisfactorily met, the notary draws up the Bill of Sale and when this is signed, the selling of your French property is complete.

Winkworth International with its global marketing experience and in-depth knowledge of the process of selling French property is a trusted leader in the French property market.

Contact us for assistance with legal and other practicalities (such as advising on the asking price for your property, helping with price negotiations and offer acceptance) of selling your French property.


 This information is for guidance purposes only and is subject to change. Winkworth recommend that prospective buyers or sellers of foreign property  obtain professional legal advice.


Interested in selling or letting with us?

Contact Winkworth International Admin or call us at +44 (0)20 7240 3322