Termites are members of the cockroach family and their goal is to eat their way through as much wood as they can as quickly as they can, which can be a bit of a disaster for those beautiful old beams and wooden floorboards you find in French properties.
Finding out you have these pesky critters running around your house is the last thing you need – but strict laws around selling property in France mean that you need to get the all-clear on termites before you can go ahead with a sale.
A termite report must be provided to the buyer and sellers must also supply a ‘termite-free’ certificate, and all checks must be carried out by a listed professional who will check the whole house and garden.
The map below from France's Observatoire National Termite (National Termite Observatory) shows where in France you are most likely to get a termite infestation in your property, and you can also ask for information at your town hall.
If you'd rather not wait to find out if you have an infestation when you're trying to sell, then you can have a check carried out any time.
A professional will tell you whether you have an infestation however the company that carries out the check is not legally allowed to supply the treatment in order to avoid any misconduct on their part.
French words to know
Infestation – une infestation
Termite treatment – le traitement de termites
Seller – un vendeur, une vendeuse