How to buy an apartment in France? Let yourself be led...

Step 1: Clearly define your project

The very first thing to do in order to succeed in your real estate project is to clearly define your budget and the corresponding financing plan.

If you choose to take out a loan to finance your real estate purchase, you will need to define your borrowing capacity and plan a personal contribution between 5% and 10% of the purchase price. This amount corresponds to the sum your notary will ask you to pay when you sign the preliminary contract, which will then be deducted from the selling price at the date of final signature.

Once your budget and financing plan are determined, you can start thinking about your search criteria.

Lodgis can help you through this first step of your real estate project. Our team of specialists is at your service (you can reach them by e-mail or phone), to create your scope statement and find properties corresponding to your expectations (location, surface area, number of rooms, price, etc.).

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We can also put you through our partner, Artemis Courtage, to help you define your financing plan.

Step 2: Apartments' tour

After defining your needs and your budget, you can start your search. Having a precise idea of the property you are looking for will allow you to be ready to make an offer the day you find the ideal apartment.

On Lodgis' website, you will have access to numerous criteria in order to refine your search (budget, district, property type, surface area, etc.). Each apartment's listing provides you with a detailed presentation of the property (pictures, interactive map, Geo-tracking, presentation text, 3D virtual tour, etc..). You can request to visit each apartment by clicking on “Visit”: a consultant will contact you to make an appointment. You can print the property’s information sheet or request to visit each apartment by clicking on the ‘Visit’ button. A consultant will contact you to find out about your buying plans and organise a meeting.

If you couldn't find any property matching your criteria, we invite you to subscribe to the email alert which will keep you updated on the arrival of new apartments put on the parisian market by Lodgis.

Step 3: You found a property

After visiting the selected property, your Lodgis' consultant will send you all the necessary documentation for the apartment so that you can make a purchase offer with full knowledge of the facts. You will find the documents' list in Step 6.

Step 4: Make a purchase offer

If you would like to make an offer to purchase a property, you can send a purchase offer to your Lodgis consultant by e-mail or handwritten letter.

This document will have to contain the following information:

You can also add your notary's contact details. If you want, Lodgis will provide you with our partner notary's contact details.

Step 5: Sending the dossier to the notaries

Lodgis chooses to send each of the ‘sales’ dossiers to the notary in order to reassure both sides. Both parties are free to choose their own notary, but it is also possible to centralise the sale with just one notary representing the two sides.

If you don’t have or don’t know a notary, Lodgis will be happy to suggest one for you.

Step 6: Information to get before signing the preliminary contract

In order to sign the preliminary contract with total peace of mind and avoid surprises, it's important to be in possession of all the information related to the property and to the collective ownership where it is located. The law states that certain issues should be brought to the attention of the future owner such as:

The technical diagnosis dossier which includes:

Once all the documents are collected, the notaries can make an appointment to sign the agreement to sell or preliminary sale agreement. Your Lodgis consultant will accompany you to that appointment.

Step 7: Signature of the preliminary contract

At the time of the preliminary contract's signature (agreement to sell or preliminary sale agreement), you will be required to deposit 10% (usually) of the selling price to the notary (sometimes 5% is approved). In principle, the transaction is made through bank transfer, before the appointment. It corresponds to a deposit (acompte) on the selling price.

Once the preliminary contract is signed, the seller is firmly and definitively committed. As buyer, you get a 10 day withdrawal period, during which you can revoke without justification nor fees.

After this deadline, if you refuse to sign the definitive deed of sale while all the aforementioned conditions were met, you will lose the deposit you provided (it will be remitted to the seller as compensation).

Step 8: Financing with a loan

Whether you resort to using a loan or not, the deed of sale has to mention how you are financing your purchase.

When the deed states that the amount is paid through a mortgage, the latter has to include a legal condition precedent of the loan procurement. You have a minimum period of 30 days, generally increased to 45 days, to obtain a loan conformed to the planned conditions in the preliminary contract (amount, time, rate). This period can go up to 60 days according to the time of the year.

Once the loan offer is communicated by the bank, you won't be allowed to accept it before the end of the 10 days period following its reception. You will have to send it back to the bank from the 11th day. The sale can't be signed before this term.

If you don't obtain your loan before the indicated date in the agreement to sell or preliminary sale agreement, you will have the choice between continuing the sale (if you have another financial resource) or to withdraw. In this last case, you will get your deposit back except case of insincerity (offer exceeding the financial capacity or not conforming to the preliminary contract's estimates).

Step 9: Revisiting the apartment before the final sale

Once the final date has been decided, your Lodgis consultant will contact you in order to plan a new visit of the property. According to everyone's availabilities, this appointment will be planned few days before, or the same day of the final signature.

This appointment will allow you to check that the apartment as well as its outbuildings (basement, chambre de bonne...) have been emptied by the seller.

It will also allow you to check and write down the meter readings (EDF- GDF) and thus simplify the subscription transfer.

Don't forget to subscribe to a home multi-risk insurance for your acquisition.

Step 10: Final sale

The appointment is hosted at the notary's office and runs as following:

If the parties cannot be present at the signing of the deed of sale, they can be represented by a third party or their notary by proxy, the original duly signed and sent in advance.

Sometimes signing the preliminary contract is not needed and the notaries proceed to the signing of the deed of sale. This occurs when the buyer can purchase a property without needing a loan and with prior consent from the parties. In this case, the buyer is notified of the preliminary contract and its appendices before the completion of the sale and the withdrawal period (SRU law) is served like any other sale with a preliminary contract signature.

After this appointment, you will have to think of the subscriptions' shift about changing subscriptions (EDF, GDF, etc.).

Step 11: After-sales services

Once you have become the owner of your new property, whether it be a pied-à-terre or a rental investment, Lodgis will guide and advise you by offering our furnished and unfurnished rental services.

We can also help you with your tax declarations with a team of specialists at our agency, dedicated to all our landlords renting out furnished properties.

If you liked this guide, please feel free to tell us about your property plans. Our sales team will be happy to help you!


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