If you’ve been thinking about selling your French property, our experts advise seizing the moment, as the current seller’s market won’t last forever. Here’s why you should look to sell sooner rather than later, along with some of our top tips.
Make the most of the seller’s market while it lasts
2022 has been a great year to sell a French property, as our expert partners at Leggett Immobilier told us back in our September Buying in France webinar. With the post-pandemic demand for rural properties far exceeding the available properties, this left sellers in an enviable position, driving prices up in many areas and reducing property sale times.
Watch the full clip with Joanna Leggett below, including her top tips for sellers.
How is the market set to change in 2023?
While the market hasn’t changed too much since September, Joanna does foresee a ” slight slowing of sales” as we move into 2023, largely due to the tightening of the mortgage market. However, she still predicts a “healthy market” with “around 1 million sales nationally” (a slight drop from the 1.14 million sales over the previous 12 months).
House prices look set to rise between 3-5% nationally, Joanna tells us, but some areas will see higher than this. On the other hand, some cities, including Paris, Lyon, Nantes, and Bordeaux, may see stagnating and falling prices in 2023, according to France’s Fédération Nationale de l’Immobilier (FNAIM).
Joanna also predicts a strong demand for country houses as the work-from-home trend continues to be popular throughout France. This may be a big draw for foreign buyers, too, as more and more second-home owners look to work remotely from their holiday homes for part of the year.
Our top tips for selling in 2023
Target cash buyers
With the mortgage market tightening and interest rates on French mortgages at an all-time high, this is a great time for cash buyers and the good news is that foreign buyers often fall into this category.
Advertise your property directly to foreign buyers
Selling your holiday home to another foreign buyer can be a popular option, not least because of the likelihood of finding a cash buyer, but also because your French home has very likely been renovated to a style and standard that appeals to the holiday home market.
Be aware, though, that there is, unfortunately, no way to sell a property directly between UK or American buyers – your property sale must by law be carried out by a notaire, and therefore the funds must be exchanged in Euros. If you’re planning to exchange your funds into another currency after the sale, it’s a good idea to speak with a currency exchange specialist like our partners at Moneycorp and open a free account before you go ahead with the sale.
Get your property valued by local estate agents
Most local estate agents will offer a free property valuation service, and it’s also a good idea to research the local market and similar properties for sale. The current market means there’s a good chance that you will receive the asking price, providing it is in line with local prices, so it’s worth putting some thought into your starting price.
Take tax advice before you sell
Selling a second home means you are likely to be liable for capital gains tax in France, and this could be the case even if you aren’t resident in France and aren’t liable under the rules of your home country. Seeking advice from a tax specialist who understands both French and UK/American (or other) law is essential to ensure you don’t end up paying more than you need to.
Do your homework
Make sure you understand the selling process and your responsibilities as a seller before you put your house on the market. Our essential reading articles are a great place to start and will talk you through the process step by step.
Sell your property at the French Property Exhibition
Finally, if you’re looking to sell in 2023, where better to advertise your French property than our 2023 French Property Exhibition in London on January 28th-29th? As well as meeting all our experts (including Leggetts Immobilier, Moneycorp, and many more) and putting your questions to them, you can also advertise your property with our private seller’s package. Not only does opting to sell privately avoid estate agent’s fees, but you’ll also be advertising your property directly to potential UK buyers, many of whom are ready to buy.
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