Bruno Costa de Beauregard works for La Forêt Immobilier in Sens (Yonne). He gives us some tips to avoid the slightest disappointment.Interview by Nadège MonschauHow to protect yourself from any glitch? In the case of a condominium purchase, it is essential to require certain documents that will allow the buyer to better understand the constraints and costs that will be imposed on him in the future. The future owner must therefore ask the trustee for the statement of charges, the last three minutes of the general meeting, the budget for the past year as well as the provisional budget if it has already been voted. It is also recommended to obtain from the seller the estimate of the living area according to the Carrez law, as well as the delivery of the building maintenance book. Thus, the buyer will be correctly informed of major works carried out or planned, such as a facelift or the upgrading of an elevator. Caution is also advised when buying a house. It is better to check before signing the deed of sale whether an attic is suitable for conversion or not, if certain cracks in the walls are serious… It is also necessary to ensure that the land is not subject to various easements, such as rights passage or installation of France Telecom cables in the garden. Another imperative: always consult the latest property and housing tax notices.What are the essential diagnoses? From January 1, 2009, there will be seven: termites, lead, asbestos, gas, electricity, energy performance (DPE), and finally, natural, technological and seismic risks. All must be carried out at the seller's expense and must be annexed to the act of sale. On the other hand, if the buyer wishes to obtain a loan at zero rate, he too will have to pay between 300 and 800 euros to assess the state of his future accommodation in terms of heating, waterproofing, ventilation. This is called "PTZ diagnosis". Once the sales agreement is signed, can we have peace of mind? Not at all ! Between the signing of the promise to sell and that of the notarial deed, an average of two to four months elapse. However, in this time, the state of the house may have totally changed! For example, a flood may have ransacked the common areas without the purchaser being informed. As the sellers are not always in good faith, it is better, the day before the visit to the notary, to make a final inspection of the premises. As a general rule, before affixing your signature to the final document, you must clearly identify in the small details what you are buying. And ask the seller questions such as "Do you take the barbecue? Do you leave the dishwasher available?", Etc. What are the remedies in case of hidden defect? In the case of a co-ownership, the buyer can obtain a reduction in the sale price if he finds, within one year, that the real surface area of his property is more than 5% less than what claimed the seller in the notarial deed (Carrez law). But otherwise, buying an old home is rather risky: the new owner can get redress only if he proves that the seller knew the defect in question and deliberately hid it from him. However, a new home is always guaranteed for ten years. The purchaser can therefore more easily succeed, after expertise.