Oct 18, 2021 / BUYING PROCESS

Buying a ski property – the extra costs to plan for

Buying your dream ski property is extremely exciting, to say the least, especially when you find exactly what you’re looking for! However, amongst all the property searching and holiday planning, it can be easy to forget about the extra costs that come with your purchase.

To ensure that you are aware of these and budget for them correctly, we’ve highlighted some of the key costs to take note of.

Estate agent costs

In the UK, the seller typically pays the estate agent fees. However, in some countries, such as France, these fall to the buyer. Properties are usually advertised with fees included, which makes things easier when you’re budgeting. In France, estate agent fees are typically between 4-10% of the property price.

Located opposite the Mont-Blanc chain in the sunny Les Pecles area, a 15-minute walk from the town centre, this chalet, dating back from the 1950’s, has undergone a careful renovation in 2006

Notary fees

Many people assume that a notary is the same as a lawyer, but this is not the case. A notary is an impartial witness to the signing or authentication of a legal document. Their fees can encompass stamp duty, land registry fees and taxes, which are paid by the buyer.

Your estate agent should be able to point you towards a Notary who is efficient and knowledgeable about the area you’re looking to buy in. In France, Notaire fees follow a sliding scale depending on the value of the property.


Carrying out a survey on your property isn’t common in France. However, in other countries, such as Italy, surveys are sometimes required, especially if you are getting a mortgage. In Italy, expect to pay around €250 for this. If you’d like to get a survey done in France, you’ll pay between €700 to €1,000.

Rarely available centrally located apartment for sale with direct ski lift access in a sunny, panoramic location at Canazei


You should seek qualified advice from a financial adviser as to which apply to your circumstances, to ensure you pay the correct taxes. These taxes could include VAT on new builds, property transfer tax, land registry tax and so on.

After you buy a property in France, you will need to pay La taxe foncière (property tax) and La taxe d’habitation, which is paid by the occupier. La taxe foncière is decided by the local authority, meaning that the amount you need to pay will vary depending on where you buy. La taxe d’habitation is paid by whoever lives there, whether this is a tenant or the owner. Again, the amount you pay varies from region to region.

This wonderful independent family home is located in the heart of the Aran Valley, in the capital of Vielha

Legal Fees

It’s worth finding a reputable, independent solicitor before you view any properties. This will place you in a much better position if you find the right property and want to move fast to secure it. By ensuring that they are independent of developers and any other parties, you can rely on the fact that they have your best interests at heart.

In Italy, legal fees are usually around 1% to 2% of the declared price of the property and are also subject to 22% VAT.

Start looking for your ski property today

To get the process of buying your ski property underway, why not take a look at our handy ski property buying guides? They lay out the buying journey step by step to make the process as smooth and hassle-free as possible.