Minimum size for home diagnostics?

The DPE energy performance rating is needed for any property sale regardless of size

24 February 2011

WE LIVE in Manche, Normandy, and have put our house up for sale. We were informed by one estate agent that we would need an Energy Performance Rating (DPE) as they would not be able to advertise the house without this.
We told to contact a “diagnostic expert”, who asked about the house size, age, number of rooms etc.and told us that we would need all of the following.
1. An inspection of our paintwork for lead content.
2. An asbestos check.
3. A full check of our electrics.
4. And a DPE check of the energy performance as we have a wood-burning stove.
The cost would be between €400-500, plus tax we presume.
However, we telephoned another diagnostic expert, who, after we gave details about our house, told us it fell under the size required for any of the above and no checks would be required.
On speaking to two other estate agents and a notaire who deal with our house, they appear to have no idea that any such requirement is needed.
Have you any idea what is going on, or is this a scam to get as much from the British before we all go back?
L & R.S.

THERE is no minimum size limit for carrying out diagnostics on your home, confirms a spokesman for the Côtes d’Armor branch of Anil, the national agency for information housing in France.

What is more, they were very surprised that a notaire would advise you of this.

The DPE energy performance rating is the latest compulsory diagnostic needed for any property sale and it came into effect at the start of the year.

A cost of €400-500 is at the cheaper end of quotes for carrying out all the diagnostics. While they must be carried out by a professional diagnostiqueur (accredited by a body called Cofrac), there is no standard charge, so you were right to shop around.

Getting the diagnostics done individually can cost more; however, the validity period differs for the different diagnostics, so if your house is on the market for a long time, you may find you are spinning plates to keep them up to date.

All diagnostic reports must be up to date by the time you complete the sale, but there is no obligation for you to carry out repairs as a result of certain reports unless this has been written in as part of your contract or in the case that lead is found.

In the latter case, immediate action is necessary.

Failure to do this could result in the sale falling through or the buyer securing a discount. For a full list of all the diagnostics, their validity etc see, the property section of our website www.connexionfrance.com

Resident or second-home owner in France?
Benefit from our daily digest of headlines and how-to's to help you make the most of life in France
By joining the newsletter, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy
See more popular articles
The Connexion Help Guides
Brexit and Beyond for Britons in France*
Featured Help Guide
What the Brexit deal means for UK residents of France, second homeowners and visitors in 2021 and after
Get news, views and information from France