Property in the Charente
If you plan on buying property in the Charente, or you wish to purchase land for a new build, then do be prepared:
They do things differently over here.
Despite what they tell you on their websites, a much greater percentage of properties are bought and sold in France without estate agents ever being involved than is the case in the UK.
We have heard that in some regions over half the properties bought and sold exchange hands through private advertising, by word of mouth or via the Notaire's lists - and agents don't get a look in.
Unlike UK solicitors the local Notaire in French towns keeps a register of properties for sale. (They may even update it from time to time!)
And with their expert knowledge on the local property market, they can give you an unbiased opinion on property prices.
Some even do it on line:
Property in the Charente
Property in the Gironde
Property in the Dordogne
We found our local Notaire and all the staff in his office extremely helpful and knowledgeable of everything concerning our property. Some Notaires speak good English, whilst others prefer not to. If you need help with translation, there are people around who can help you, just
get in touch.
The main Notaires website in France,
has an English translation with advice on buying or selling property in France. The practical guides that they publish for French readers are not yet available in English. But nonetheless it is recommended reading before starting out on the property trail.
The best advice we received was to rent a property in the Charente before considering buying a property. This gave the opportunity to find out about the South Charente in general and some of the communities within it. We sought advice on many aspects of our project as well.
For more information on the buying process itself see the
Buying a Property page.
If you can't make it over here easily, or you need help with finding and buying your dream home, why not try our Property Finding Service?
Property Finding in the South Charente
We will carry out a fully independent search of the local property market covering all estate agents, Notaire's offices and properties not listed with agents. No matter what the source, wherever possible, we will deal directly with the owners of the properties.
We will update you regularly with news on properties, how the market is doing and the progress of your offer.
We will accompany you to the Notaire's office, or act on your behalf, for the signing of the “Compromis de vente” (agreement to enter into a contract) and the signing of the “Acte de vente” (agreement to purchase – usually about three months later).
If required, we will arrange for: utilities, Internet access, etc. to be switched on; opening a bank account; transfer of funds from UK to France (we can arrange extremely competitive rates through contacts in the money markets).
If there is any other help you need, e.g. with schools, French lessons, registering with doctors, dentists, hospitals, organising your move, airport and train station collections, etc. please just ask. Some of these we will happily include in the Commission others we can negotiate separately.
We also run a property management service, so will be happy to look after your property when you can't be here.
If you have any experiences of finding property in the Charente and you would like to share them with others please