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Real estate investment in France

Foreigners can freely buy, rent out, and sell real estate in France.

Statistics confirm the liquidity of investments: residential real estate prices grow every quarter by an average of 1.1%. Five years ago, an apartment of 100 m² cost an average of €437,000, and today it is sold for €539,000.

€5,394 Average price per 1 m²
of housing in France
1,1% Average price per 1 m²
increase per quarter
8,6—29,7% Buyers’ related expenses,
of the transaction amount

Cost of a 3-bedroom apartment in France

€6 million

Apartment in the centre of Paris

€1.2 million

Apartment within a 30-minute drive
from the Eiffel Tower

€350,000

Apartment in Bordeaux

What do investors buy?

France’s most expensive real estate is in Paris and the Cote d’Azur.

Apartments

  • penthouses
  • duplexes
  • apartments

Houses

  • townhouses and mansions
  • villas and estates
  • castles

France residence permit or citizenship by real estate investment

Obtaining a France residence permit or citizenship is not connected with purchasing real estate.

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Taxes and associated costs

Purchase
Ownership
Sale

Property buyers pay a value-added tax for new builds, a registration tax for resale properties, and additional fees.

The associated costs are approximately 8.6% to 29.7% of the purchase agreement value. When buying a new apartment for €1 mln, the investor will spend €1.25 mln, including additional costs.

8.6—29.7% Of the contract value are related costs for the purchase of housing in France
Purchase expenses
New buildings

VAT

20%

Of the transaction amount

Secondary housing

Registration tax

4.9%
Notary fee
3.6—12%

Depends on the complexity of the transaction,

VAT included

Registration fee
0.1%
Agency fee

Share paid by the buyer

2—6%

Of the transaction amount,

VAT included

Taxes

Owners of real estate in France pay one of the annual taxes: on housing, residing or property. The housing and residing taxes are paid as a tax on imputed rental income, the income the owner could receive by renting out the property. The tax amount depends on the property type and location. The owner pays about €1,000 per year for an apartment in Paris.

The property tax is 1.5% to 3% of the initial property value. It is paid by the owners of real estate worth more than €1.3 mln.

An income tax of 20% is paid on the rental income.

€1,812 Approximate annual costs for
maintenance of an apartment

Communal payments

Electricity, gas, water, heating, and garbage collection
€100—255 

per month

Internet, TV and telephone
€20—40 

per month

When selling real estate in France, non-EU citizens pay a capital gains tax of 33% on the difference between the sale and purchase prices.

The agency fee ranges between 2% and 6%.

33% Capital gains tax on the sale of
real estate in France
Expenses on the sale
Capital gains tax

Paid on the difference between the sale and purchase prices

33%
Agency fee

Share paid by the seller

2—6%

Of the transaction amount,

VAT included

Frequently asked questions

Can a foreigner buy property in France?

Yes, foreigners in France can buy and sell real estate without restrictions, rent it out.

Are property prices falling in France?

No. While real estate prices in France are growing slower than the European Union average, they still grow by approximately 1,1% each quarter.

What is the average cost of a house in France?

The average cost of residential real estate in France is €5,394 per 1 m².

What are the pitfalls of buying a house in France?

Common things to be cautious of are:

  • buying property for renovation — the estimated costs of renovative works can be significant;
  • additional fees and taxes that accompany the property purchase;
  • French inheritance law — those buying real estate in France must put a certain clause into the sales contract from the get-go. Without that, they won’t be able to put the property in their will.

France also doesn’t have any residency or citizenship by investment programs.

How much tax do you pay when buying a house in France?

Property owners in France pay one of the annual taxes: property and residence taxes are paid in the form of a tax on imputed rental income. The amount of tax depends on the type of property and location. For an apartment in Paris, the owners pay about €1000 per year.

The property tax is 1,5%— 3% of the original cost of the property. It is paid by the owners of a property that costs more than €1,300,000.