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The notaire rates you can expect to pay when buying a house in France

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The notaire rates you can expect to pay when buying a house in France
Photo: AFP
12:33 CEST+02:00
When buying a house in France the services of a notaire are indispensable, but how much will they set you back?

Unlike in other countries where having lawyers involved in property buying is merely advisable, it cannot be done in France without a notaire. 

This is because they are the only ones who can register the transfer of ownership with the French land registry.

Unsurprisingly, this service isn't free and in the past the notaires fees have often been something of a mystery to newcomers. 

But instead of nervously waiting for your bill to arrive, you can now calculate how much it will set you back on the website of France's National Agency for Housing Information (ANIL).

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EXPLAINED: The real role of a notaire when buying a house in FrancePhoto: Chretien/Depositphotos

In order to calculate the cost, you answer four questions, including what kind of property are you buying, where it is and the value of the property.  

Screengrab: ANIL

For example, for an old property in the Charente worth €100,000, you can expect to pay €8,792 while for an old property in Paris valued at €600,000 you will pay around €43,147 in notaire fees (see below).

There is a significant difference between fees for an old or a new property so make sure you set the type of purchase to logement ancien (old) or logement neuf (new) to get a more accurate calculation.

Foreigners often assume they are being overcharged for the service but it's important to remember that this doesn't all end up in the pocket of the notaire. 

The reason is that French notaires have the responsibility of collecting fees and taxes on behalf of the State and delivering them to the public treasury, as well as taking their own cut from the total fee for their service. 
 
So the fee is more equivalent to Stamp Duty in the UK, and should be factored in to the purchase price.
 
"Newcomers often fall into the trap of thinking that the entire sum they pay a notaire goes into their pockets but their job is to deliver the fees," Christophe Dutertre, a qualified notaire from the company France Tax Law, previously told The Local. 
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