There are a lot of home ownership myths out there for those who are seeking to buy a property in France. One of which we hear most frequently is the assumption that if you buy a home in France, this automatically allows you to come and stay for as long as want.
Unfortunately, this isn’t the case as the same wouldn’t apply if one wanted to buy in North America or the UK but with France being such a wonderful travel destination, we can see how there might be some confusion.
With that, there is some good news on the horizon.
Second-home owners (or about to be owners) in France who are not French nationals or legal residents now have the chance of obtaining a special visa so they can completely enjoy their second homes.
Senator Corinne Imbert submitted an amendment to change an upcoming Immigration Bill (Article L. 312-2 of the Code on the Entry and Residence of Foreigners and the Right of Asylum) that “Any foreign national who owns a secondary residence in France may apply for a very long-stay visa authorizing him or her to stay on French territory for a period not exceeding six months per year. This visa is valid for five years.”
The purpose of this amendment is to allow foreign nationals who own a secondary residence (or who plan to) in France to apply for a very long-stay visa authorizing them to stay in France for a period not exceeding six months per year.
This is because of Brexit, for all the British who own homes in France and have found themselves without a visa, when before Brexit, a visa was unnecessary.
The senator commented that “They’ve been here a long time and are really integrated into the life of our villages, including the local associations, so it is important.”
This new visa would work well for non-EU nationals with second homes in France (or those planning to buy here) who can’t stay longer than 90 days under the current visa-waiver program but don’t need or want to commit to a long-stay visa renewable annually in France.
While the amendment was created primarily for the British, it must be available for all non-EU foreigners to avoid being discriminatory.
The campaign has the support of many French politicians, including the Member of Parliament for the Department of Manche, Bernard Sorre, who called the 90-day rule “penalizing for property owners who participate in the local economy, take part in associations and restore old buildings.”
Since this new visa proposal is on the table, this is a good sign that a positive change is coming.
We will keep you informed of any updates.