Expat Forum For People Moving Overseas And Living Abroad banner

1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone have experience of approaching a french vendor direct when their house is advertised for sale via several estate agents?

We've been looking at lots of house details on all the usual web sites, and are going to visit the region where we're looking in a few weeks' time. One of the houses we really like is one with a couple of agents but was also easy to find on google maps, so we know the address without having even spoken to any of the agents.

We're obviously tempted, when we're in the region, to go knock on their door and ask them if they're interested in selling direct... Is this a common thing for people to do? I read somewhere that lots of houses do get sold direct in France, so I figured it might be. Or are we better off approaching through a notaire or the local marie? (The house is in a small village so I'm guessing the mayor may even know the owners.)

Any thoughts and experiences gratefully received!
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
50,378 Posts
Best thing to do might be to drive past the house and see if there is a sign or signs up advertising the house for sale. I've seen houses for sale here that have both an agency sign up and also a hand lettered sign with a mobile number. The hand lettered sign is the phone number of the owner (not always the same as the occupant, by the way.)

If there is no sign up on the house at all, it means the person may want all inquiries to go through one of the agents. (Some folks don't want to be bothered by folks knocking on the door asking to see the house at all hours of the day and night.)

If you go through an agent, you'll be asked to sign an agreement to pay the agent fee if you wind up buying the house. If you "accidentally" allow two different agents to show you the same property, you're on the hook for two agent fees if you do decide to buy it.

You could also take a look in IMMOBILIER - Annonces immobilières | De Particulier à Particulier - PAP and see if the owner has a direct listing for the place. But I suspect it would be considered seriously rude to just knock on the door. Best to call first - whether the owner's number or an agency listing the property. I know of some people who expressly want the agents to only show the house when the occupants (whether owner or not) are NOT present.
Cheers,
Bev
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Bev,
That sounds good advice. Don't want our first contact with the owners to be something they find rude - certainly wouldn't help the buying process!
Cheers,
Matt
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
718 Posts
Knocking on the door certainly happens in our village. A widowed friend of mine wishes to sell up but won't have a sign outside. Her caller was a local gendarme, who had seen the property advertised by an agent and is now waiting to make an offer once her contract expires.

Personally I'd drop a note in the mail box with my contact details e.g. email address if I had no French phone number.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
A note sounds like a good idea - a bit less obtrusive than knocking on the door. I'm hoping with our one that if they're already on with two agents then they wouldn't have to wait for any contract to expire if they did want to sell direct.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,909 Posts
I've sold a few houses in France and I've always used a sole agency..(both plusses and minuse, separate thread). In this case the seller has to pay the agreed %age to the agency. I can't see how the buyer pays the agent....the agency is the AGENT of the owner. Where the owner finds a buyer the agency drops 50% of the fees. Estate agent fees are too high in France...but we can't do much about that.

I've had people knocking at the door asking about the house for sale....if they are interested in buying then I'm VERY happy to talk to them.

We bought our current house through the Bon Coin.....no fees so the price reflected this. Seems a very good way of cutting out the high price, poor service agent.

DejW
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
50,378 Posts
I
I've had people knocking at the door asking about the house for sale....if they are interested in buying then I'm VERY happy to talk to them.
Then again, you're you. <g> I have heard complaints from folks who had door knockers show up, where they just wanted a tour of the house (even though they said they were interested in buying) or where the house was occupied by renters getting ready to move out themselves, or where the person occupying the house during the day is an elderly relative who is easily freaked out or "confused" by strangers knocking at the door, or there is always the issue of an "estate sale" (where the heirs are selling Mom's house) and they don't want a for sale sign on the property for fear of attracting burglars.
Cheers,
Bev
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top