Changes to the tax system reducing liability, favourable exchange rates, low property prices and vendors keen to negotiate deals – buying French property has never been so appealing.
If you are considering buying French property, here are five reasons why taking the leap now could be the smartest investment you’ve ever made.
1. The rentals market has never been more appealing
Buying French property and renting it can provide a healthy second income and this is true now more than ever. Renting a property in France used to be taxed at 35%, but a recent law change has reduced it to just 20%, making it more beneficial than many other countries, even the UK.
Tourism currently brings around €150 billion to France each year, and the number of visitors to the country continues to increase. Laurent Fabius, minister for foreign affairs and tourism, recently said that France is heading towards a new record this year of 85 million visitors, so demand for rental properties should increase too. Buying French property in popular tourist areas, such as Paris or the Côte d’Azur, is undoubtedly a safe and savvy move for prime property investors.
2. Pay less than expected for your dream home
Buying French property now costs less than ever before. The combination of lower property prices with low interest rates, attractive mortgage deals and advantageous currency pairings, as well as vendors’ general willingness to strike a deal, means that there has never been a better time to be buying French property.
3. Expert advice can help you reduce or avoid wealth tax
While France is often portrayed negatively in the media for taxation, when it comes to property it is on a par with most other European countries or better. For example, in Spain the top rate of wealth tax is 2.5% but when you are buying French property the rate is 1.5%.
There are also many ways to reduce liability, one of the most common being taking out a mortgage. As wealth tax is due when net assets exceed €1,300,000, using a mortgage can help keep assets below this figure meaning that it could be avoided altogether.
4. Law change provides longer “cooling off period” for buyers
Once an offer is accepted by the vendor, a sales contract called the compromis de vente (or the promesse de vente) is signed. Up until recently this was always followed by a seven-day “cooling off period” where buyers could reflect on the sales agreement and legally pull out if they wished. Now, due to a change in the law (loi Macron), from 8 August, 2015, this “cooling off period” lasts ten days instead of seven. This means there is more time for buyers to carry out any additional checks or surveys on the property and, if desired, to back out with no questions asked.
5. Strike the property deal of a lifetime
Earlier in 2015, Home Hunts predicted that 2015 would be the year of the deal, and so far this seems to be the case. Vendors are negotiating extremely attractive deal terms and when combined with the existing market conditions in France, buyers are finding that houses previously outside of their budget are now accessible.
As an official estate agency but also a buyer’s agent, Home Hunts acts solely for the buyer, and therefore is in the best position to help clients buy French property. To view properties for sale visit www.home-hunts.com and to speak to a consultant directly, call +33 (0)970 44 66 43.