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Selling a Maison secondaire

Posted by TwoBlues-439867 - Created: 5 years ago
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Posted by Daisydoll-202178 - 5 years ago

Yes be very careful - it was 7 years ago now, but we were sent a bill for 30,000 euros after  we sold our house.   It was a maison secondaire for about four years. We had actually really been lving there for around a year  and could prove it  thankfully but I needed an absolute mountain of paperwork.  We received the bill THREE years after we had sold the  property!!  That was in Cagnes sur Mer - I don't know if it is the same everywhere.

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Posted by laughingboy-409220 - 5 years ago

Not quite so simple because the concept of maison principale is not time-related. For it to be your primary residence, it just has to be the main family home, where you spend your time and run your life from (definition at http://vosdroits.service-public.fr/F752.xhtml ). If you start calling an address your main home shortly before you sell it, after it had been on record as a maison secondaire for a number of years, the impots are bound to be highly suspicious and will look for a motive for the move as well as a papertrail to show that you have been genuinely living there (as shown by your electricity/water/telephone usage, bank statements etc), that you use that address for your tax return/bank account/carte grise, send your kids to school there, are registered with a doctor there, etc, etc. This being France it's the intention that counts, and if they can find no genuine reason for you suddenly moving there and making it your principal residence apart from to avoid CGT, they are unlikely to accept it.

So unless you can show them a really good reason (e.g. one of you got a job in the area, or it became your one and only residence) in which case you should get away with a few months, you would probably need to show proof of at least a couple of years' residence with avis d'imposition to back it up, to be safe.

Be careful because they probably get plenty of practice investigating - an awful lot of people try it.