You think you’ve found your dream home in the South of France. However, you want to be sure the property is ship shape and structurally sound – so you know you need to commission a professional to conduct a property survey. But how much is a house survey in this part of the world? And who pays for a house survey in the South of France?


We’ve put together this blog post to answer these questions.


Who Pays for a House Survey in the South of France?

While it’s true that diagnostic surveys are obligatory in France – and it is the seller who pays for these – they only cover the fundamentals, such as gas and electrical safety, asbestos, lead, and termites.


Read more: Obligatory Diagnostic Surveys in France


Indeed, overseas buyers are often surprised to learn that full house surveys aren’t the done thing in France like they are in other parts of the world. Instead, people tend to ask a local builder or architect to give their opinion on a property. However, these people aren’t necessarily impartial – after all, they may well be hoping to land a bit of work once the sale has gone through.


As such, it’s crucial for buyers to have any property they’re seriously considering independently evaluated by a professional house surveyor who will provide an honest and unbiased appraisal – and it is the buyer who pays for such a survey.

How Much Is a House Survey, and What Types of Building Survey Can I Have Conducted?

Property surveys are very reasonable – especially when you consider the potentially huge costs of building repairs that only a property survey will uncover. Indeed, for just a few hundred pounds, a professional surveyor will leave no stone unturned when evaluating the true state of a property so you can be absolutely sure you’re not pouring your life savings into something that you can’t afford to fix or maintain. Having a property survey conducted can also put you in a position of power when it comes to price negotiations.


There are three main types of survey report you can commission from a South of France property surveyor. They each vary in scope, and therefore price. Let’s consider each one individually.


Condition Report


This is the most basic type of property survey, best suited for new-builds and properties in good condition. The Condition Report consists of a brief assessment of the property’s general state, and is mainly used to uncover any major defects that require urgent attention.


Homebuyer Report


The next level up from the Condition Report is the Homebuyer Report. Best suited to properties in reasonable condition, the Homebuyer Report will identify if there are any underlying structural issues with the property, and will include a valuation.


Read more: What to Expect in a Homebuyer Report from Your South of France Surveyor


Full Structural Survey


Recommended for older buildings or properties in visible need of repair, the Full Structural Survey is the most expensive type of report you can commission, for it is the most comprehensive. Covering everything in Condition Reports and Homebuyer Reports, a Full Structural Survey also includes an in-depth analysis of the property’s structural condition. The report will also advise on all defects uncovered, as well as the potential costs of remedial works, repairs, and other maintenance.

Charles Mackintosh – South of France Property Surveyor

Having a property professionally surveyed before purchase is always the smartest move a buyer can make. If you’re considering buying a house in the South of France, Charles Mackintosh is at your service. With over 30 years’ experience living and operating in the region, Charles provides highly regarded English language property surveys and advice for overseas buyers. Get in touch today for more information.