Advice on a white keyboard

Here at FrenchEntrée we try to make our property articles as practical as possible, to save you time, effort and money.

This week we asked our amazing (and very busy!) FrenchEntrée network of partners a simple question…

“If you could give prospective buyers of French property just ONE bit of advice, what would it be?”

So, straight from the mouths of our estate agent and financial services partners, this is what they said – no holds barred:

Freddy Rueda, Real Estate Languedoc:

“They should use email and only email. Many clients like to phone but it is impossible to reply to questions by phone when an agent has 400 properties for sale as it is always a different member of the team who knows the properties.”

Sarah Bonnard, AIPG:

“Prospective buyers should clearly indicate if they wish:
– to be in the countryside or close to all amenities
– a renovation project or a property ready to move in
– the type of property (Neo-Breton, longère, traditional, etc.)
– if they need a bedroom and bathroom on the ground floor
– a big/small garden, hectares of land, etc
– an indication on their budget would obviously be required”

Paola Gregorius, Allure France:

“Get to know the area beforehand and be transparent by saying whether you are just at the beginning of your search or not.”

Jenny Small, Agence Newton:

“Find out that a mortgage is approved (as much as it can be without a compromis de vente) before making an offer “

Suzanne Pearce, Suzanne in France:

“Research the area before you come and have finance in place!”

Andrew Hosker, Blue Sky Immobilier:

“To make your property search as effective and efficient as possible, I’d suggest open communication and exchanges with your estate agent. This dialogue will help you define your search in terms of place and type of property, and help him/her focus their search on the best possible property for you.”

Benjamin Haas, Burgundy4U:

“Have clear brief of what you want that is supported by all buyers involved.”

Simon Conn, Overseas Property and Finance Specialist:

“Do your research before requesting finance and committing to the purchase”

Sheelagh Gorham, Agence Newton:

“Turn up for your appointments, I had two no shows last week! One eventually sent a text 45 mins after we should have met saying they weren’t coming and the other got lost. In both cases I sat waiting for 45 mins.”

Andrew Merchant, Cendrillon:

“Please give us your exact and precise criteria and budget.”

Susie Hollands, Vingt Paris:

“Spend time looking online or reviewing our selections to try to get at least comfortable with values and realistic price per m2.”

Valérie Lavergne, SAFTI:

“Prospective clients should inform us about their exact location requirements – sea or mountains village or town etc ….”

Penelope Landau, Le Bonheur Immobilier:

“The trend at the moment seems to be that clients are coming out and visiting one property with one agent, rushing off to see another agent to visit another property and so on and so on. We believe that clients should ‘cherry pick’ agents and not properties. Once the contact with their chosen agents have been made the selection of properties to visit will naturally fall into place. If clients chose an agent or a few agents they have confidence in, the client is more likely to find their ideal property as the agent will know and understand their criteria.”

Christophe Guay, TIC Immobilier:

“Have a clear idea of criteria : certainly the area (France is huge).”

Ryan Green, My Dream Home France:

“Visit the area, before you start viewing properties, and send requests for information only if you’re actually looking to buy in the near future.”

Jessica Wall, Celaur Immobilier:

“Be honest about your budget and time-frame.”

Jane Laverock, Artaxa:

“Know the area! Explore first.”

Alice Loftie, Charles Loftie Immobilier:

“Prospective buyers should give the agency as much search criteria as possible in order to give them good service. The agents know the properties and can guide them in their choice of viewings.”

Annelise Bosshard, AB Real Estate:

“If the buyers would take five minutes to reply to our questions about what they are looking for (we send them a list of about 15 questions, style, size, bedroom, pool, work, location etc.) we would be able to help so much more!”

Pierre Giumelli, Nestenn:

“A buyer is looking for the best value for money for his purchase, the seller seeks to get the best possible price for his property. The real estate agent is able to guarantee this market price.”

Jonathan Morris, AC Immobilier

“If there is any financing involved, purchasers should have been to see a bank beforehand. They need to be sure of the area they want to purchase in and arrange all appointments in advance.” 

Jane Thom, Agence Thom 

“Know your limits! Arrange your finance before searching, otherwise you may fall in love with a property you cannot afford.”

Olivier Robette, Charles Quint Immobilier

“Prospective buyers should use an estate agency as we can advise them and address the finances upfront. They will need to define a sector in which they wish to acquire a house, be flexible on their criteria, and schedule their visits in advance.”

Samm Khoury 

“Prospective buyers should decide on a region first, instead of travelling the whole of France looking at every single French property for sale!”

Caroline Gigandet, Burgundy Home & Services

“Prospective buyers need to determine their ideal location, this will save time when visiting.” 

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