First Right of Refusal – ‘pacte de préférence’

When we bought our house we enquired whether we could exercise a ‘pacte de préférence‘ or first right of refusal on a neighbouring plot of land.

The neighbouring plot of land was also owned by the vendor.

Without that plot of land we would affectively be trespassing every time we used the door to the upper floor of our barn.

To get into the upper floor of the barn you needed to use these hidden doors in neighbouring woodland.

All the plots surrounding our house were rural plots. They were all owned by the same family.

What is a Pacte de Préférence?

If a ‘Pacte de Préférence‘ is in place; when the owner (Promisor) of a plot of land decides to sell, then they must contact and give first refusal to the beneficiary. The Promisor must give the beneficiary priority.

The beneficiary does not have an obligation to buy the property.

Pacts like this maybe made part of of the ‘ACTE AUTHENTIQUE DE VENTE‘. You might be lucky and get them free or you might have to pay.

You need to talk to your notaire before the ‘ACTE AUTHENTIQUE DE VENTE‘ is drawn up and signed.

Unfortunately for us the surrounding plots of land were all rural and could not be included in a pacte de préférence as we were not farmers. Rural plots are covered by the SAFER scheme and being an ex-pat non-farmer we didn’t qualify. However, the vendor was fabulous and sold us half an acre of woodland at half the rural land value, just so we could have access to our barn – if you don’t ask you don’t get