French Property Surveys

Subject II Survey Ltd. Chartered Surveyors are one of a few established practices offering Building Surveys of property in France for the UK purchaser. A UK style building survey, formerly known as a Structural Survey, extends to circa 35 pages of text and also includes digital photography of the defects and issues.


Our French base is in South West France and whilst we specialize in the Vienne / Charente and South West France we will quote for any location within France. We are also able to offer this service within the EU. 


The French house buyer tends not to have any form of condition survey before buying property, the more cautious may ask a local builder to have a look and give them a debriefing over several glasses of vin rouge. The British purchasers are of course more used to having pre purchase surveys and of course one should not leave common sense back in blighty when it comes to buying a property in France.


Whilst the estate agent and vendor may be dismissive about the need for a survey, and that includes both British and French vendors, ensure that you have a survey carried out pre purchase, this is recommended to be carried out before signing of the initial contract.

Including a clause in the initial contract regarding a survey being carried  and not raising any problems or disadvantages with the property, may be included, but could prove legally problematic if you want to withdraw and get your deposit back and avoid being sued for the whole purchase price!, you should of course take appropriate legal advice, and this is why we recommend the survey is carried out before signing anything.   

These are some actual conversations;  


From large specialist national Estate Agents in France when asked about a Chartered Surveyor for a Building Survey in South West France;

No you cant get a Chartered Surveyor down here it would cost a fortune anyway.

Our response; We cover South West France and our fees are competitive.


From potential purchaser in South West France of an old village house;

The building hasn't fallen down in a couple of hundred years so it must be all right wont it?

Not necessarily, we will be looking for signs of past and present or active movement and the signs of a developing problem that could get worse after your purchase. Structural adequacy can sometimes be in doubt; 


Payment for a French Survey may be made via most debit and credit cards via PayPal.


If you're interested in inquiring about building surveys in France, or Spain or need further advice, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We look forward to hearing from you!


What does the quotation include? - we quote an all inclusive fee and this includes;


To receive your instructions, to confirm the survey appointment with the Estate Agent if applicable, to issue a letter of appointment to you, to travel to the property, to carry out a 4.0 - 6.0 hour duration comprehensive building survey of the property, including taking digital photos of the property and defects, to travel back to our office base, to draft the report and produce the images and issue the report to you by email and hard copy in the post, to answer your post survey questions. Our all inclusive fee includes all charges, fees, taxes, travel and disbursements.


The building survey includes;


General description.




Unusual features.


Construction type and description.










Drains, (accessible inspection chambers only).


Doors and windows.


Cellar or basement.


Internal walls.


Internal decoration.


Plaster and finishes.


Internal joinery.




Bathroom / shower rooms / cloakrooms.


Services (visually, services are not tested).










Walls and fences.


Paths, paving, terraces.


These surveys are subject to out terms and conditions and are contracted under English law and UK jurisdiction.