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Will EU nationality help tax situation when selling second home?

Country of residence is in most cases the most relevant factor to capital gains

We look at what factors determine when and how much capital gains tax is charged on the sale of a second home in France Pic: Kotchapan VII / Shutterstock

Reader question: Would it be advantageous to obtain dual nationality (British and an EU country) before selling my French second home? 

There are several benefits to obtaining an EU nationality if you are moving to France or are a frequent visitor. 

For example, it would allow you to spend more than 90 days at a time at a second home without a visa. 

You would also not be affected by the Etias or EES rules travel rules coming in next year. 

However, with regard to capital gains on sale of the home, it is unlikely to make any particular difference to have French or an EU nationality as the tax treatment of non-residents with regard to second homes does not generally depend on their nationality but rather where they live. 

For example, French people who live in the UK still have to pay a fiscal representative to manage their capital gains tax process when selling property in France, due to the fact they live outside the EU – the same as British people, Americans or other EU or non-EU nationalities. 

Similarly, French people or Europeans who live outside the EU/EEA/Switzerland or the UK and sell French property still pay higher social charges on their gains – the same as nationals of those countries. 

The countries where they live are not considered to have comparable social security links in place with France, as is the case with EU countries. 

Fortunately, France considers the Brexit deals have retained similar links. 

There are more generous tax breaks for EU-nationality (as opposed to non-EU) former residents of France selling their former main home but this would only apply to you if you had at some stage used the property as your main residence.

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Resident or second-home owner in France?
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