If you would like to expand your property business into France, now is an ideal time to explore the market. According to the 2021 Report on International Investment in France, the UK was the third biggest investor in France last year. Compared to 2020, British investments rose by 25%, resulting in more opportunities for French and foreign workers. Growing your business can be an exciting venture and bring many advantages and opportunities. However, the process got a bit more complicated due to Brexit. The French market is much different, and there are many legalities you need to oblige with to ensure that your business and employees are safe. Our guide will help you to make the transition smoother. Here are things you need to know when expanding your business to France.
If you plan to stay in France for less than 90 days while building your new business venture, you will not need to apply for a visa. However, if you plan to stay longer than that in any 180-day period, you will need to apply for a visa that will allow you to stay and work in the country. You also need to count in any days you spent in the Schengen area during the time period. To be able to fully focus on building your real estate business in France, you need to ensure that all your legal documents are in order and that you know your rights and responsibilities while staying there. And so you avoid any misunderstandings, you should regularly check entry requirements and your legal status in the country.
Just like in any country, you will need to pay taxes while working and leading a business in France. You need to familiarise yourself with any rules and criteria for VAT or income tax. France and the UK have an agreement that will allow you to pay an income tax only in one of the countries. However, you should still get professional advice to ensure that everything is in order. When you are leading a business that focuses on real estate, you should expect that you will be liable for French capital gains tax, too. Experts such as Kentingtons can help you to find solutions and tax schemes that will suit your business needs the best. With professional tax and financial consultants behind your back, you will be able to lead your venture to success and profit safely and without any hurdles in your way.
Before you fully branch your business into France, you might want to consider setting up a representative office. That is an office that is still under a parent company but does not have a trading purpose. They will not be able to sign contracts with clients or offer any commercial services. Establishing a representative office would allow you to observe the French real estate market and look for opportunities that might help your business to grow. It does not take long to register such a representative office. In general, it is one of the first steps that you should take when intending to expand your business to the country. Take your time to get to know the market better and plan your next steps carefully.
Despite rising prices, the real estate market in France is thriving. The country is also very popular with foreigners who would like to find a new home there. Placing your business in France can also be a highly effective strategic move. The country is a part of the Eurozone, and most practices will not be typical only for France but across the EU. So, when you expand your property business to France, you will be able to grow your clientele beyond the country’s borders. The country’s real estate is not popular only with local French citizens but also with other Brits and people from other countries of the EU.
Whether you are planning to act as a company director at the new branch or want to hire someone else, some criteria need to be met. Suppose you or a different British citizen from your business want to act as a company director in France. In that case, you need to have a residence card. Only then will you be able to work in the country and fulfil your duties towards the business. When the question of residency status is out of the way, you need to be aware of any criminal record of the person you would like to appoint as a director of the branch. If they have declared bankruptcy or were convicted of some felony, then you must look for someone else. From there, all the other rules depend on the form of your company as each has specific requirements.
France invests a lot of money into the education system, and many people from the younger generations have higher education. Based on the reports from the Office for National Statistics, France is one of the most productive countries in the world and outnumbers the UK in some aspects. Suppose you are not planning to fill your French office with British employees. In that case, France will be able to offer you many skilled and well-educated potential employees. French employees might also give your business a major advantage. They will know the local real estate market and situation. Perhaps they might be able to offer you a different perspective or advice on areas that have a high potential.
When you are offering properties for sale or rent in France, it is important to know all the rules that are important for your customers as well. Currently, there are no regulations that would stop foreigners from investing in French real estate. They do not even need to have a residency status to complete the purchase successfully. However, you still need to know everything there is to know about buying properties in France. Then, you will be able to rest assured that all the legal documentation connected to your business activities is in order. It will also make the whole process easier as you will be able to give your clients clear information and requirements to make their time with your company as pleasant as possible.