Buying in Monaco
The process for buying property in the Principality of Monaco is as follows:
Before signing a preliminary sales agreement which leads to the property deed being prepared, a written offer will inform the seller of your intention to buy, and will render this intention credible when accompanied by a deposit worth 10% of the transaction total, entrusted to the solicitor.
An offer is a chance for the buyer to demonstrate their willingness to buy the property in question at a set price. In short, this is a way of safeguarding the property and setting a fixed price. This act has real legal value in the Principality of Monaco, and is contractually binding for both parties. The offer must feature the following compulsory information:
- The buyer's ID details,
- A detailed description of the property,
- The price of the property in question,
- The term of validity of the offer, after which the offer becomes null and void,
- Means of response available to the seller,
- The total solicitor's fees and the real estate agency's commission, both to be paid by the buyer.
The deposit is generally fixed at 10% of the sale price, but may vary.
In Monaco, this is often paid by a cheque issued by one of the Principality's banks, or by bank transfer once the offer has been accepted. Unless otherwise specified by the buyer, the solicitor will not cash the cheque without both parties' agreement.
The buyer must fulfil their obligations as soon as their offer is accepted by the seller. If the former decides to withdraw from the transaction after the sale price has been accepted by the seller, the deposit will be fully payable to the latter. Conversely, in the event that the seller withdraws, the deposit is fully refunded to the buyer and the solicitor will demand that the seller pay the buyer compensation totalling the same amount.
Preliminary sales agreements and authenticated deeds
A preliminary sales agreement is a preparatory document leading up to the signing of the authenticated deed, which is more detailed than a written offer, and confirms both parties' intentions before a solicitor. The long, complex instructions of some cases make this procedure a pertinent necessity.
The authenticated deed is drawn up by the solicitor and confirms the content of the sale and the agreement reached between the parties. It serves as evidence and is enforceable. It carries as much weight as a final judgement and renders the new ownership official on a specific date, effectively protecting your interests with total transparency.
A summary of the required budget
As a member of the Chambre Immobilière Monégasque, the SMIR SAM Group undertakes to comply with the Board's fee scale.
- As a result, the fees incurred through buying property are as follows:
- Registration and solicitor's fees equivalent to 6% of the price of sale of a property (private purchase)
- Agency fees equivalent to 3% + 20% VAT (on the 3%) of the price of sale of a property
- A deposit of 10% of the purchase price to be paid upon submitting an offer
- The aforementioned fees as well as the balance to be paid upon signing the definitive deed of purchase in the presence of one of the Principality's solicitors.
Solicitors are civil servants acting on behalf of the State and appointed by Princely Order. They authenticate the deeds they draft through their prerogatives as public authorities. Solicitors are first and foremost professionals with the power to authenticate deeds via their stamp and signature. They are witnesses to the intentions expressed by the parties and are responsible for the content and date of the deed.