You’ve finally made the decision to move to the South of France. But first, you need to find where your new home is going to be situated. Since the region is considered to stretch from Hyeres all the way to Monaco, you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to pinpointing the location of your new home.

With the assistance of an experienced South of France charted surveyor, this is likely to be one of the biggest purchases you will make. Therefore, you’ll have a few questions to ask when you’ve finally narrowed down the properties you’d like to view.

#1 How long has this South of France property been on the market?

This should be your first question, as it indicates the South of France property’s desirability. If the property has been on the market for around 3-6 months, ask the agent why. Is it overpriced? Have other viewers realised something you haven’t? The property’s duration on the market might mean that the seller is willing to accept a lower price, so it’s worth considering going down the route of negotiation.

#2 What is the area like?

Investigating the location is crucial before you commit to purchasing a property in the South of France, so you’ll want to ensure that the house you opt for is in a precinct that serves all your needs – what are the schoolscrime ratestransport links and medical facilities like? The estate agent might have a good idea about the area, but it’s also worth doing your own research too. You might even want to ask the estate agent if they would be happy to live in the property you’re viewing.


#3 Have any major works been conducted recently?

It’s recommended to have a full structural survey done on the property you would like to buy, but it’s also worth asking the agent if any building work has been done recently and why. Previous owners won’t be liable for any of the property’s problems once the deal has been finalised. Charles Mackintosh is an experienced surveyor in the South of France region, with many years of experience.

#4 Is the property listed?

If you buy a listed South of France property, you can be severely restricted in what changes you wish to make so it’s crucial the building’s status is confirmed if renovation is something you’re keen on.

Those who want to make changes to a listed building (monument historique) need to liaise with the Architectes des Bâtiments de France (ABF). This is a specialist planning office whose consent is required for any planning application when it comes to listed properties. Even if your property isn’t listed, but you live within 500 meters of one, you will still be required to seek the same planning permissions as a listed building.

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#5 What exactly is included in the sale?

What you see might not always be what you get when it comes to purchasing a property. It’s well worth finding out if things like white goods or garden fixtures are involved in the sale so that you can factor in the costs of these into your total budget should you need to. Check with your agent if fees apply when putting in an offer and finalising the purchase of your new property.

#6 Which way does the property face?

There are 300 days of sunshine with summers averaging at 24°C in this region, so don’t forget to scope out which way your prospective property faces when viewing it. Think which rooms will be used the most – will it be the garden, living room or conservatory? For maximum sun exposure, a south-facing property is best.


#7 Are there good local amenities?

Although the property itself is of major importance, the community it’s situated in is also something you should consider. The proximity of supermarkets, restaurants, parks, leisure centres or more could make a difference to the quality of life in the South of France.

If you’re still contemplating a move and need help choosing the right South of France property for your needs, then don’t hesitate to get in touch with chartered surveyor Charles Mackintosh today.