French mortgages

Typically, it takes around 3 months to purchase a house in France - that's from the point you have signed the pre-contract (compromis de vente, or CDV), to transferring the funds and receiving the keys, whether you purchase with cash or with a mortgage. Assuming you haven't already got an Approval in Principle, the time taken from submitting an application (with all the paperwork) to receiving the formal mortgage offer will take around 4- 6 weeks with IPF, but can take over 3 months if you go to a bank directly! If we have already obtained an AIP for you, the formal mortgage offer can be issued in a much shorter timeframe.

In short, no! The notaire takes around 2 months to carry out all the checks and diagnostiques on the property, and IPF can easily apply for and obtain a formal mortgage offer for you within that time. In fact, becuase of our processes and the comprehensive service we offer, 80% of our clients complete BEFORE the date set in their compromis!

They don't use income multiples in France. Instead, they use a debt-to-income ratio, whereby they want to see that you don't spend more than around a third of your monthly income paying off your contractual debts (so that's your mortgages, car finance, credit cards where you don't pay the full amount off each month, personal loans, child maintenance). Check out our Mortgage Application Guides for more information on the eligibility and affordability criteria used by the French banks, or plug your information into our French Mortgage Calculator.

Yes, French banks will lend to self-employed persons (and anyone who is a Director of a business with more than 25% of the shareholding will be classed as self-employed). You will need to have tax returns and company accounts dating back 3 years. Bear in mind that the French banks will look at the salary you have taken from your business, and may not take into account the dividends - so please get in contact with us so we can help you understand how to best present your situation to the French banks to avoid jeopardising any French mortgage application.

It's not an immediate 'no' but it will depend on a variety of other factors, such as the level of your income, whether the overdraft is authorised, or if you have savings elsewhere. It is undeniable however that the banks will look more favourably on those that don't use their overdraft and those that pay off their credit cards at the end of the month.

Not unless you want to borrow more than €2M - in which case we can work with the UK-based Private Banks. However, if you are looking for a loan size of less than that, the only option is to use a retail (high street) bank based in France. Which is what we do - so get in touch!

Firstly, be wary of the ultra-low rates you may see on the internet as they are a) likely to be only available to French residents, and b) if they are available to non-residents they will also require you to take out life insurance and also deposit a large sum of money with the lender. These can then make the rate more expensive than the slightly higher rates offered elsewhere, which don't come with 'strings' attached.

You can check out some of the more popular products in our French mortgage rates table, but we work with all the banks that will lend to non-residents so do get in touch so we can find you the product and rate most suitable to your circumstances