Selling French house - possible problem

A friend of mine lives in the UK and I have been keeping an eye on her French house which has been
languishing, up for sale, for the last 5 years. Five years ago it was priced around 160,000 euros and just recently she accepted an offer of 112,500 euros from a middle aged couple, one of whom has early Parkinsons, who both love the house. They are currently staying in the locality with inlaws while the legal process proceeds and eventually concludes in December.

However, the prospective buyers would like to move in now, paying a small nominal weekly rent until the sale is complete in December. I believe a 10% deposit has been paid in the usual way regarding the purchase of the house.

I suggested to my friend that the estate agent get this legally clarified with the notaire and that a temporary safeguarding contract be drawn up if advised or necessary. (Squatting…etc?) Apparently the estate agent is not being as cooperative as she could be.

Any advice would be very much appreciated.

My gut says it’s a bad idea, if the sale doesn’t complete and they don’t move out I believe French tenancy laws could prevent any eviction over the winter so your friend would be looking at some time next year to get the house back.


Here there be dragons…


Too risky, even with the security of the deposit.

I would do what I could to find them a gite in the area.

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My friend managed to contact an English notaire - “wouldn’t touch it with a bargepole”!

So, done and finished with!

Thank you one and all.

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