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Planning permission


A permit to construct is an administrative act that allows the government to control the work, facilities and developments affecting land use in a given field.­

  • Planning permission is required for?

    • public car parks with at least 50 spaces,

    • developing golf courses of over 25 hectares (61.7 acres),

    • creating or extending campsites for over 20 people or more than 6 tents,

    • redeveloping existing campsites or residential leisure parks, thereby increasing the number of plots by 10% or changing the greenery,

    • developing land for motor sports,

    • developing amusement parks or games areas with surface area of over 2 hectares (4.94 acres),

    • land consolidation performed by a Free Urban Property Management Association (association foncière urbaine libre),

    • ground excavation or raising over 2 metres deep/high over a surface area of at least 2 hectares,

    • creating or extending residential leisure parks

    • a housing development­ from two building lots with construction or lanes, spaces, or common equipment that the project is located in a listed or in a conservation area (in these two areas, the license to develop is needed in the 1st posting)

    • The application should be sent to the town hall by registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt or delivered by hand in exchange for a receipt.

  • Period and decision

    • Unless stipulated otherwise, the appraisal/consultation period is 3 months, from the filing date of the application.
    • Permission will either be granted or refused and the reasons given, or proceedings will be adjourned.

    • If permission is granted and the work has not begun within 3 years,­ and after this time they are interrupted for more than one year, ­the permission becomes null and void. However, it is possible to take steps to obtain a renewal. The initial period of validity may thus be extended twice a year.

    • No promise to sell may be agreed in any form or under any conditions before planning permission is issued.

    • Once planning permission has been granted and before work has begun on the services or the work completion bond issued, only unilateral promises to sell (Subjected to a special regime under Planning Code) ­are accepted.

  • Role of the notaire and planning permission

    • Planning permission leaves no room for amateurs. It is a document authorising work often on a large scale. Regulations are stringent in order to cover potential buyers. The notaire ensures that the administrative requirements are met, thoroughly checks compliance with the procedure and only records instruments /deeds as the work proceeds. The validity of the instruments/deeds depends on what stage in the procedure work has reached.

    • The notaire also ensures that the conditions for implementing the insurance guarantees and work completion bonds are properly complied with. The notaire has a key role in ensuring the legal requirements are met in order to protect the potential buyer.

See also
The role of the Notaire
The letter of the notaries of France in the world / November 2016
4th Congress of the Notaires of Europe
Conseil du coin : meet a french notaire to a cafe !