Viager question

Not sure if anyone has ever dealt with a Viager purchase (and not sure if I am actually using the right term).

I "purchased" a place last year under the viager system whereby the original owner stays in the proprty until they pass on (ie not a vacant one)and I have two questions:

I thought the original owner was responsible for all taxes eg Tax Fonciere but have received a bill for this.

Made worse, the bill was sent to my place in Australia and my son did not realise what it was so I only became aware of it when I was back week before last and it is already overdue. This is complicated by the fact that I cannot mail anything to or from here (no mail system) so not sure how I could pay even if I was subject to this.

Appreciate any advice


And if you pay on the website you can now also set up a direct debit to pay your tax monthly rather than annually

Hi Steve,

As the "actual" owner, you are liable for the "taxe foncière" and the occupant at the of 1st January of any given year is liable for the "taxe d'abitation". This is the only tax that you have to pay yourself.

You can pay for this via internet. For next year look at the back of your bill for the email address of your centre and send them an email asking for "un avis dématérialisé", meaning a bill sent via email rather than a hard copy by post (these get sent off on the 15h october of each year).

Hope this helps :)


I'm sure someone wiser than me will give you a more definitive answer, but I'd say since you own the house, you pay the foncière tax, and as they are in it, they would pay habitation taxe, which may be very little if they are retired.

"En principe, quand le vendeur se réserve un droit d'usufruit, le débirentier prend en charge les « grosses réparations » définies par l'art. 606 du Code civil. De même la taxe d'habitation est à la charge de l'occupant et la taxe foncière à la charge du propriétaire (le débirentier). Mais les deux parties peuvent librement fixer la répartition des charges et réparations, qu'il s'agisse d'un usufruit ou d'un droit d'usage et d'habitation."

As to HOW to pay it... that's another question entirely! I'm guessing you can't send a cheque from a French bank account?