Since the beginning of 2011, in France a seller of real estate has been required to establish real estate diagnostics. These diagnoses made by an expert or a series of approved experts are to be attached with the house's sales file, the Technical Diagnostic File or DDT, and are used to inform the purchaser of certain risks. It also protects the seller from litigation. Some tests have always been mandatory, but now there are more and anyone who is considering putting real estate on the market should know exactly what these tests are, who should perform them and who should be responsible if something goes wrong.
Cost of diagnostic tests
If you choose to have all analyzes performed at once, the real estate diagnostic prices should be between 400 and 600 euros approximately. If you compare multiple quotes to get the best deal, you will likely find that some areas are more expensive than others and the list of experts recommended by the prefecture doesn't give you as much choice as you'd like.
The price of a real estate diagnosis depends on the area of your property. It also varies depending on whether you are selling or renting your property. In any case, it is advisable to perform all mandatory diagnostics at once, it can help you save money. There is no regulation or regulation that sets the price of diagnostics: each company can charge the prices it wishes.
How to find certified experts?
To make sure that the experts who carry out the diagnostics are well certified, you should ask your prefecture, which will provide you with the contact details of people to call. COFRAC is the accreditation body, and all experts must be registered there. A notary or a good real estate agent will also provide you with names and contacts of qualified experts.
Another efficient and quick way to find certified diagnostician is to go to a site that connects owners and recognized diagnostic companies. This solution is effective because you can find many companies in one place and compare their prices. This saves you time and ensures that you contact a serious professional.
What happens if the diagnoses are not carried out?
These reports are a legal requirement for all properties sold. This document must be given to the new owner at the latest on the day of signature. If you do not meet all the required diagnoses, you, as a seller, remain responsible for any problems arising from these areas. The report is therefore attached to the sales agreement.
While it is seriously advisable to have all testing done before you put the item on the market, some testing can legally be done later, as long as it is completed prior to sale. The exception to this rule is the new requirement for an energy efficiency test, which must be performed before the home is placed on the market and displayed in all advertisements.
However, as the seller, your obligation is limited to providing the information necessary for the buyer to knowledge of possible faults of your property. So you don't have to do any work to correct them. However, it is possible that, if any issues are highlighted in the report, a potential buyer will withdraw from the sale or demand a reduction in the price.
Since 2013, 9 diagnoses are mandatory in the context of a sale.
All properties that obtained a building permit before 1997 must be tested for the presence of asbestos.
CREP (Finding of risk of exposure to lead)
This test is only for the use of lead in paint, where it can pose a health hazard to children or pets, not lead flashing on roofs, etc.
The gas diagnosis
Tests must be carried out on the property if the gas connection was installed more than fifteen years before the sale.
As with gas, tests are necessary if the asset was fitted with a connection to the electricity network more than fifteen years ago.
The diagnosis sanitation
The purpose of this diagnosis is to ensure that the connections to the wastewater networks comply with the standards in force.
All properties must be subject to a termite report, which covers the property and its surroundings, and this diagnosis is mandatory whether the property is located in areas or likely to be contaminated. Your prefecture will tell you whether your property is in a contaminated area or not. Termite infestation can destroy a property, so it is in everyone's interest to know the result of this test. In addition, the presence of other burrowing parasites and wood-eating fungi (dry rot) is checked during the diagnosis. It is also important to know that a report on termite infestation is only valid for six months.
A natural risk assessment must also be carried out for the sales file. This not only covers the probability of natural disasters to which the area may be exposed, such as earthquakes, floods or forest fires, but also the effects of any local industrial action that may cause toxic emissions, soil degradation, etc.
This diagnosis only applies to condominium properties (vertical or horizontal). It is necessary to establish precisely the area of the property sold. Individual houses are not subject to this criterion.
This energy performance diagnosis was added to the list of mandatory diagnoses as part of a sale and rental since 2013. It must be done before the property is put up for sale or rental and the report must be displayed with your ad. The report indicates the energy efficiency of the property and accounts for greenhouse gas emissions. It also provides advice on how to improve efficiency, lower bills and lower emissions. Its validity is ten years from the date of the inspection.