What is a cadastral plan? What is it used for? Where to ask for it ?

The cadastral plan is one of the documents included in what is called the cadastre. The cadastre makes it possible to identify the plots, their delimitations and their possible constructions in the form of a plan, as well as data relating to the land, useful in terms of taxation above all. Nevertheless, understanding the usefulness of the cadastral plan and its weight in the event of a problem is sometimes complex. Let’s take stock of its characteristics, its uses and see together its accessibility.

What is a cadastral plan?

The cadastre lists the parcels and their boundaries. Created in 1807 by Napoleon Bonaparte, the cadastre had the primary objective of allowing a fairer distribution of property tax. The cadastre actually includes three types of documents.

  • Le plan cadastral of a plot or a more global geographical area is accessible on the internet, at the town hall or by going to the tax office. It is neither more nor less than a drawn plan which represents the boundaries of the parcels and which indicates their number.
  • Cadastral registers, or section states, make it possible to know the identity of the current and previous owners of a plot, its surface, its rental value as well as other tax information. This document provides the address of the parcel and the changes undergone over time (transfers, etc.).
  • At the cadastral matrix is on the other hand the only document which remains private, only accessible by the owner of the plot. This matrix lists the assets of each owner in the municipality.

What is a cadastral map used for?

The primary function of the cadastre is to allow the calculation of local taxes, ie housing tax, property tax and business tax (CFE, etc.). Nevertheless, the cadastre also has the advantage of allowing historians and archaeologists to reconstruct the history of a city and its evolution over time in the context of its modernization or, on the contrary, its abandonment.

More concretely, the cadastre is useful for the owner of a parcel who intends to carry out work while respecting the limits of his land, if these are vague. It is also a way for a future purchaser of real estate or land to know the boundaries of the planned plot. Moreover, in this context, the cadastral map is generally provided by real estate agencies to locate the property in its environment and delimit its contours. This is a good way to properly identify the plot, any existing constructions on its soil and the section states.

Be careful, however, because you should know that if the cadastral plan is important, it has no legal value. In the event of a dispute, particularly with your neighbours, it is not the cadastre that will prevail, but the measurements taken by the surveyor in charge of demarcation of the land.

In which situations is it recommended to consult the cadastre?

Consulting the cadastre is possible for any individual or any real estate professional. If the cadastral plan is accessible at any time and for those who wish it online or freely in the administrative services mentioned above, it is sometimes advisable to consult it.

  • Before a real estate purchase : in general, real estate agencies provide an extract of the cadastral plan to customers potentially interested in buying a property or a plot. However, this does not prevent you from taking the lead by consulting these documents before contacting an agency if you have spotted properties for sale that may interest you. In addition, it is a good way to know the limits of a plot during a sale between individuals. You can thus visualize the limits of the property, its possible existing constructions and the name of its owners.
  • Before starting work : the cadastral plan makes it possible to better visualize the boundaries of a plot and its existing constructions before undertaking any work. If this plan is less precise and less detailed than an architect’s ground plan, it is a good basis for projecting and preparing your building permit application.
  • To verify tax information : an inconsistency is always possible in your tax notice. You can consult the cadastral map of your plot to verify the information and make a complaint if necessary.

Where can I request a cadastral map?

The cadastral plan and the cadastre are accessible via several points:

  • On line : the website cadastre.gouv.fr allows you to consult cadastral maps freely and print them free of charge. On the other hand, obtaining more complete documents is chargeable.
  • In town hall : you can go there or send your request by mail.
  • At the tax center : you can go there or send your request by mail.

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