Spain Guide

France Guide

Buying Property in France France

Buying Property In France French Property

Property prices vary across France, with property near Paris and on the south coast costing much more than property in less well connected areas of the country. You can buy a four bedroom property in the Loire for up to £200,000, or a two bedroom apartment in Cannes for about the same price. It all depends on your preference for areas, how remote you want to be, and whether you need to commute to work.

Generally, buying a property abroad is a good way of reducing the cost of living, but buying a property in France is not necessarily and easy way to make a quick buck: property prices are much more stable compared to the English property market, with prices really only rising in line with inflation and not adding much value to the property in real terms. There are also the taxes and costs associated with buying property in France to consider when planning your investment. Looking for property abroad is therefore more often associated with investing in your future life somewhere to spend your holidays or somewhere to retire when the time comes.

When you buy property in France bear in mind that the costs are different to those in the UK. There are more taxes for a start, including income, wealth, property, capital gains, and residential taxes. This can add up to quite a hefty sum. Even though the government has pledged to reduce income tax by a third in the coming years, tax in France is still quite high. Late payment of taxes incurs a charge of around 10%, so make sure you pay your dues on time! If you rent out your property in France, whether this is to a friend for a few weeks' holiday or 52 weeks of commercial rent, you will have to declare and pay income tax on the rental income (revenu foncier) even if you live abroad. Property tax covers your contributions to local services like rubbish removal and street lighting and varies greatly depending on the region: oddly enough, the Paris area has some of the lowest rates in the country. You pay wealth tax if your annual income exceeds €720,000. Residential tax applies to properties with a rental value over €4,600 on 1 st January. Even if you rent or sell the property from 2nd January onwards, you have to pay the full year, not the new tenant or owner. Capital gains tax (CGT) is rather more complicated: suffice to say that the sale of second residences incurs CGT and the EU tax authorities are working together to track anyone who tries to dodge paying it!